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Five Healthier Alternatives To White Flour

Thinking of ditching the gluten, or just want to go for the more nutritious alternatives? With health and nutrition at the top of more and more people’s priorities these days, many experts and nutrition movements have discouraged the intake of too much refined white flour. White flour has very few vitamins and minerals, with the value of grains stripped away, and it’s loaded with high fructose corn syrup and preservatives. Aside from many other increased health risks, white flour increases your risk of high blood pressure, heart attack, stroke, obesity, diabetes, and high cholesterol, as well as certain types of cancers. However, thanks to the variety of alternatives now available in the market, giving up white flour isn’t synonymous to giving up pastries and bread. Thanks to these options, you can still eat your beloved breads, cookies, pastries, and even pasta.

1. Whole Wheat Flour

If you’re not feeling very adventurous yet, swap the white flour for its whole wheat counterpart. Unlike white flour, all of the grain is used in wheat, which means it retains the nutritional value. It’s a good source of calcium, iron, and fiber, and may be used to fully substitute white flour.

2. Oat Flour

Oat flour is literally ground oatmeal, so it gives you the same amount of nutrients and fiber found in regular oatmeal. That also means you get the most amount of protein out of all the types of whole grains. Oat flour is great for breads and loaves like banana or carrot bread, or even for cookies and pastries.

3. Coconut Flour

This unique flour is made of finely-ground dried coconut. It’s higher in fat than most flours, but its fiber content is remarkably high. This also means that it absorbs liquids quickly, though, so you may need to increase the number of eggs called for in a recipe. Substitute about 20 percent of white flour for this variety go get more fiber out of your recipe.

4. Almond Flour

Although it’s a lot more expensive than regular flour, some prefer this nutty alternative that gives you a good amount of “healthy fats”. It’s naturally grain-free and Paleo-friendly, with lots of protein and Vitamin E. It’s great for use as a substitute for bread crumbs: breading in chicken, fish or meat; or for replacing up to one-fourth of flour in cakes and pastries.

5. Quinoa Flour

Quinoa is a natural grain that’s packed with nutrients and complete protein that provides all your essential amino acids, and it adds a nutty, exotic flavor to dishes. Quinoa flour is basically finely ground quinoa that works great with cookies and cakes, if used to substitute half the required amount of white flour in most recipes.

Trisha Bautista is a freelance writer, food and product stylist, social media manager, and violin teacher. She was formerly editorial assistant and social media editor for Women’s Health Philippines, and the assistant lifestyle editor and social media editor for Cosmopolitan Philippines. She enjoys discovering easy recipe hacks, working out by herself and trying out DIY workout programs, traveling outdoors, and enjoying wine and whiskey.

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