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Real women share: Why I won't give up bread

Dedicated to breaking bread

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The whole low-carb trend may have eased up in recent years, but bread still seems to get a bad rap. To reemphasize the concept that all bread is not bad, we rounded up these smart, healthy women who refuse to give up bread. Check out their reasoning to see if you agree.

It's a historically nutritious part of society

Culturally, bread has been a part of human diet and tradition for thousands of years. Entire religious ceremonies are centered around the meaning of bread! So it makes sense that some women would be adverse to giving up bread partly because of that legacy. Angela Betancourt, a healthy lifestye advocate, notes, "Bread isn't a bad thing. Whole-wheat bread is an excellent way to get fiber, zinc, B vitamins and a host of other nutrients. Not only is bread not a bad thing, but bread is also a historical aspect of who we are as a people. Bread has been around for many millenia."

The key is to eat bread the way it's been eaten traditionally: Focus on 100 percent whole-wheat and whole-grain varieties packed with fiber and good-for-you ingredients.

How to choose the healthiest whole grains >>

It cuts cravings

If you've ever tried to cut a food you love out of your diet, you know it usually doesn't go very well. Dr. Katja Rowell, a family doctor and childhood feeding specialist, experienced this firsthand."I won't give up bread because I would miss it. I enjoy whole-wheat bread, white bread... sometimes I bake my own. I have found that, when I cut out a food I enjoy, I crave it and then eat more when I have the chance. When I incorporate foods I love, and give myself permission to enjoy them, then I end up naturally with moderation. I find that trusting my body helps me enjoy all foods."

It stops my symptoms

Not only does bread provide healthy nutrients and fiber, for some people, but it also helps prevent health problems. Jennifer L. Fee, a licensed psychologist, says, "Eating it, especially at the start of a meal, helps defend against IBS (irritable bowel syndrome) attacks. Bread, and similar starches such as rice and pasta, have soluble fiber that seem to soothe the GI track and help absorb some of the other foods that are harder on my system, like brocolli, salads and so forth."

Sourdough bread better for blood sugar control >>

It fuels my body

Carbohydrates are a necessary part of a balanced diet because they provide fuel for the brain while also providing a quick source of fuel for exercise. This is particularly important for active individuals who need to be able to push through hard workouts. Sharon Rosenblatt, an avid exerciser, points out, "As a serious carb-ivore, I will never be able to give up bread. While I've gone the way of whole-wheat, high-fiber breads as opposed to white bread, I do this because I exercise a lot. My body needs those quick fuels for runs and bike rides in order to sustain my energy for the long haul."

Fitness fuel: What to eat, when to eat >>

It's pure pleasure

The fact is, most people eat bread because they enjoy it. Try approaching bread the way that Roberta Perry of Scrubz Body Scrub, Inc. does: "I love good bread, and for me, that is the answer. I will only have really good, chock-full-of-everything bread that has substance and flavor. Multi-grain, sprouted bread is my favorite! It is wholesome, flavorful, and for me, it's a real treat."

Sarah Caron, a recipe developer and blogger for SarahsCucinaBella.com, feels the same way. "I love all things bread and have no plans to give it up — ever. Bread, especially whole-grain varieties, are a perfectly acceptable (and delicious) part of a balanced diet."

More healthy eating tips

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Laura Williams, M.S.Ed. is a freelance writer and entrepreneur who works with a wide variety of fitness, fashion and beauty clients. After working hard to receive her Master’s Degree in Exercise and Sport Science, she now spends her days writing, working out and developing her own website for the "sporty woman" - GirlsGoneSporty.