The older food pyramid put out by the Federal Government had grains as the base. They should be consumed the most. However, research has proven that grains should be more limited. The government came out with a new food pyramid, the current one, and it shows that grains are about equal to fruits and vegetables. This new pyramid is backed up by a lot of scientific evidence.
Grains have been around for around ten thousand years. This is a tiny blip on the evolutionary scale. Humans are biologically still those of hunter gatherers. There has not been enough time evolutionally for humans to respond to this dietary change.
Contemporary Society and Grains
Grains are a simple carbohydrate that can be broken down quickly into energy. They are closer in composition to sugar than fruits or vegetables. The chemical chains of fruits and vegetables are much more complex and it takes longer for them to break down. That is why fruits and vegetables will provide a more lengthy and balanced energy and grains will act more like a sugar. Grains will break down too quickly. The excess energy is processed via insulin and deposited into adipose tissue.
To make matters worse, we take grain and grind it into flours. These flours break down even faster. For example, white flour bread is higher on the glycemic index than table sugar. That means your body will put out more insulin faster and store the energy into fat quicker than if you eat straight sugar.
Grains are also usually spiked with sugar, honey, and other types of sugars. Sugar is the single largest cause of obesity in humans because it adds a lot of calories and is turned into fat so quickly.
Other diseases are associated with grain consumption. Many people are allergic to the gluten and others develop celiac disease.
Grains have a lot of nutrients that our bodies need. Grains should be eaten in moderation. You should never eat refined white bread or anything made of white flour. Look for labels that use whole grains and that don't add in a lot of unhealthy oils and sugars. You should also check the labels to see how much fiber the product has. In most cases, the highest fiber item is the best choice. Most people don't get enough fiber and whole grains are a great way to get it.