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Drop 50% More Body Fat with Whole Grains

If you could make a simple diet change to drop more pounds and body fat, would you? .

Switching from refined-wheat foods, such as white bread or pasta, to whole-grain versions can boost your weight loss by 35% and help you melt nearly 50% more body fat.

In a new study, 79 overweight or obese postmenopausal women were randomly assigned to eat a diet containing refined or whole-grain wheat products. After 12 weeks, both groups lost weight (7.9 pounds for the whole-wheat group and 5.9 pounds for the refined-wheat group). The whole-wheat group also shed 3% body fat, whereas the refined-wheat eaters shed 2.1%.

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Even more dramatic was the result for heart health: The refined-wheat eaters saw a whopping 5% increase in their total and LDL (bad) cholesterol levels. No changes were found in the whole-grain group.
That's great news, except only 5% of Americans actually consume the minimum recommended serving of whole grains -- three (1-ounce) equivalents per day, such as an ounce of dry pasta or a slice of bread. Still, a whopping 92% of consumers say they believe whole-grain breads are much healthier than white bread, according to The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics' Nutrition and You: Trends 2011 survey. They're right. Processing grains strips away up to two-thirds of many of the nutrients naturally found in whole grains.

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Now that you've been persuaded (right?) to eat three or more servings of whole grains a day, how do you know you're choosing the right foods?

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Don't think you're stuck chowing down on slices of whole-wheat bread every day. "Half of your intake of grains should be from a variety of whole-grain sources," Dubost says. Throw some sauce on that whole-wheat pasta and before long you'll be losing, not gaining, body fat.


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