Of all the grains we love, hard white wheat is not going to be the one for those with gluten issues. However, if you are comfortable with modern wheat, there are still some nutritional wins for hard white wheat.
With 10.9g of protein per half cup, this grain is a good source of protein for men and an excellent source of protein for women.
It is also high in fiber. In fact, it boasts the third highest fiber content of all the grains we feature (11.7g/half cup), topped only by rye and barley. That makes it an “excellent” source of fiber. If you aren’t predisposed to gluten related issues, this whole grain may do good things for your digestion.
As far as nutrients go, hard white wheat doesn’t top the list compared to other grains but it is still a great source of several nutrients. For something to be considered a “good” source of a specific nutrient, it needs to provide 10-19% of the daily value for that nutrient. For it to be an excellent source, it needs to provide 20% or more of the daily value.
With those numbers in mind, you’ll be happy to know that hard white wheat is an excellent source of thiamin, niacin, vitamin B6, zinc, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, and manganese.
That’s a lot to consider. Maybe it’s best to break it down into functions.
Thiamin,niacin, and phosphorus are very important for metabolism. Thiamin helps us transform carbs and glucose into energy so our body can function. Phosphorus is crucial to the metabolism of fats AND carbs. Vitamin B6 also plays a role in transforming the food we eat into energy. Then there’s manganese! This useful little mineral helps metabolize amino acids in addition to carbs and even cholesterol.
Nerve, Muscle, and Heart Function
Thiamin and magnesium are crucial for these important parts of the body to do their jobs. Iron is also huge for these processes. If you’re not getting enough iron, you’ll know really quick. The body uses it to make hemoglobin and myoglobin which are necessary for getting oxygen through the blood to all parts of the body. A half a cup of hard white wheat has 24% of our daily iron need. Manganese is also important for blood clotting in our cardiovascular system.
Vitamin B6 is super important for the creation of blood cells and the health of all cells. Phosphorus also plays an important role in our cellular function. As the building blocks of ever part of our bodies, cells are worth our attention!
Zinc is awesome for helping our bodies fight off invaders. A half a cup of hard white wheat has 29% of the zinc you need in a day.
Zinc and magnesium are also important for the creation of DNA and other proteins.
This is a huge concern for many people especially when eating something high in carbs, like wheat. Magnesium can help regulate blood sugar and a half a cup of hard white wheat has 21% of the magnesium you need in a day.
Our bones take on a lot of weight. We need magnesium, phosphorus, and manganese for strong bones and teeth.
That’s a lot to take in! And on top of all that, hard white wheat is also a good source of pantothenic acid and Omega 3 fatty acids.
Keep in mind when you’re adding grains to your diet that all grains have phytic acid which binds to nutrients so you may not necessarily be getting all the nutrients that are available. Some are higher than others and wheat is among the higher. To mitigate that issue, consider sourdough, sprouting, or soaking.