It’s easy, it’s flexible, it’s convenient and it tastes good. What could be wrong with buying bread? It’s just flour and water… right?
Wrong. Unfortunately shop-bought bread is highly processed and often contains toxic ingredients that your body just shouldn’t be going near. The problem is, manufacturers want to produce as much bread in the shortest possible time so they can be the most profitable. This means speeding up the bread-making process by using chemical dough conditioners such as azodicarbonamide, which are linked to many health issues.
What’s more, shop-bought bread contains preservatives to prevent spoilage, artificial colorings and flavorings, GMO products such as soy oil and the unnecessary amount of added sugar. All these added ingredients make what you thought was a healthy and nutritious sandwich into a toxic nightmare. In fact, the bread isn’t really bread at all; it’s just a bunch of chemical ingredients combined to create a bread-like consistency.
That’s probably why you’ve heard people say that eating bread is fattening. This is because the refined white flour that’s used in commercial products means that our body metabolizes it like it does a sugar, causing our insulin levels to spike. We are therefore left feeling hungry soon after while our body thinks we just ate a great big sugary snack.
But I only buy whole wheat bread…
Don’t be fooled, shop-bought whole wheat breads are no different. There might more bran added to the recipe but at the end of the day it is made with the same problematic chemicals. Just because something contains whole grains does not automatically make it healthy. What’s added beyond that gives us a good indication. A normal home-made bread, for example, shouldn’t contain more than five or six ingredients; generally wheat flour, yeast, sugar, salt, water and either oil or butter. If you look at the ingredient list on your shop-bought bread and you’re seeing a list of ingredients that doesn’t seem to end, you know something’s not quite right.
The good news
We can certainly overcome these problems and still enjoy our daily sandwich, but the only way to know what’s truly in a product is by making it yourself. That’s why making your own bread not only tastes amazing – in fact you won’t be able to buy shop-bought bread again once you’ve had the real thing – but it truly can be a nutritious experience. And it really isn’t as hard as it sounds.
A bread machine will of course make this task extremely easy, with you only having to insert the ingredients into the pan and waiting for your freshly made loaf. Bread machines are not expensive and are a good idea if you are going through a lot of bread. If you’re not quite ready to make the investment, there are many no-knead dough recipes out there that you can make by hand which will still come out superb.