7 Reasons to Add Sprouted Grain Bread to Your Diet


by Matt Weik, BS, CSCS, CPT, CSN

You have probably come across sprouted grain bread in stores or markets, and it might seem like a somewhat new health trend. Surprisingly, the methods behind making sprouted bread have been around for thousands of years.

If you’re on the lookout for a bread that’s healthier, more digestible, and loaded with nutrients, sprouted grain bread might be your new go-to.

The process involves soaking nutrient-rich ingredients, unlocking all their healthy benefits. And for those who enjoy DIY projects in the kitchen, you can even try sprouting grains at home and bake your own nutritious loaf, ready to enjoy for months from the freezer.

In this article, we will dive deeper and discuss seven reasons why sprouted grain bread is one of the best kinds of bread for you.

Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only and is not meant to treat or diagnose any condition. It is recommended that you speak with your doctor before making any changes to your nutrition regimen.

7 Reasons to Add Sprouted Grain Bread to Your Diet

There are many types of healthy bread on the market today, but sprouted grain bread is one of the few with multiple (actual) health benefits.

Below are seven reasons why you should add sprouted grain bread to your grocery list or consider making it yourself at home.

1.      Better nutritional value

Traditional bread, made from ground grains, often loses essential nutrients during processing. Whole-grain and sprouted-grain breads, luckily, preserve more nutritional value.

Whole-grain bread uses the entire grain, maintaining fiber, vitamins, and minerals. Like Ezekiel 4:9, sprouted grain bread (which many in the fitness and bodybuilding industry love) combines sprouted wheat, barley, lentils, soybeans, and spelled, offering a diverse nutrient profile. Both outshine processed flours, providing higher fiber and essential nutrients.

While enriched white flour compensates, it still lacks the comprehensive benefits of whole grains. The combination of various grains and legumes in sprouted grain bread enhances its nutritional spectrum, offering complete protein with all essential amino acids.

2.      Supports blood sugar control

Non-sprouted grains, rich in amylopectin, can increase blood sugar levels and pose metabolic risks, potentially leading to diabetes.

A study revealed that sprouted grain bread reduces the glycemic response in overweight and obese men, offering a healthier alternative compared to whole grain bread, which showed no improvement in metabolic responses.

Going for sprouted grains can be a strategic choice in managing carbohydrate intake and promoting better metabolic health.

3.      Easier to digest

Research indicates that sprouting whole grains enhances digestibility. This process breaks down starch, easing digestion due to partial pre-digestion.

Sprouted grains boast higher enzyme levels, including phytase and amylase, which are crucial for digestion. However, high-heat baking may deactivate these enzymes, prompting some sprouted breads to adopt lower-temperature cooking methods. Lectins, implicated in issues like leaky gut and inflammation, reduce as grains sprout, potentially making sprouted grains lower in lectins than unsprouted varieties.

Consuming sprouted grains can contribute to improved digestion and reduced lectin-related concerns.

4.      Eliminates phytic acid

Traditional bread, whether white or whole wheat, contains phytic acid, a compound known for inhibiting mineral absorption. Despite nutritional claims on packaging, a significant portion of minerals, such as iron and magnesium, remains bound to phytic acid, impeding bioavailability.

Research indicates that approximately 80% of these minerals in whole grains are indigestible without sprouting. By soaking and sprouting grains, the phytic acid content decreases, triggering the release of essential nutrients like iron, zinc, and magnesium, thereby enhancing their absorption and nutritional benefits.

5.      Lower in gluten

Gluten, the adhesive protein in wheat and related grains, has garnered attention for its potential health risks, particularly for those with digestion issues.

Research indicates that sprouting reduces gluten content in wheat by up to 47%, potentially enhancing tolerability. However, complete gluten elimination through sprouting is not guaranteed. Individuals with celiac disease or a true gluten allergy should exercise caution and opt for sprouted gluten-free grains like rice, corn, and quinoa.

While sprouting may mitigate gluten concerns, those with specific conditions should choose alternatives to ensure a gluten-free diet.

6.      Sprouted grain bread tastes better

Sprouted whole grains not only deliver nutritional and digestive advantages but also offer a tastier experience. The natural enzymatic processes that enhance digestibility also contribute to a more appealing taste profile. As starches break down into simpler sugars during sprouting, the grains acquire a subtle sweetness.

Bread and baked goods from sprouted grains showcase improved caramelization, resulting in delightful crusts and cookies. Sprouting also moderates the bitterness of antinutrients like tannins and saponins, creating a more palatable flavor.

The transformation of natural compounds, such as flavonoids and phenols, adds complexity, making sprouted grains and seeds more flavorful than their unsprouted counterparts.

7.      Helps in weight loss

Sprouting reduces carb content in grains, making sprouted grain bread an ideal choice for those managing diabetes or high blood sugar.

A study found sprouted grain bread to have lower carbs (34g in 4oz) and a lower glycemic index compared to other bread types, promoting better blood sugar control.

Another study revealed that the grains absorb water during the process of sprouting, which makes the sprouted grains lower in calories than whole grain flour.