The debate between white and brown bread has been around for a while, with proponents of each claiming that their preferred type is the healthier option. So what does science have to say on the matter? Well, it turns out that there isn’t a clear winner when it comes to the healthiness of white and brown. Both are made from flour, water and yeast, with brown bread also containing whole grains.
The process used to make white bread is different – it involves removing the bran and wheat germ, which are the first two layers of the grain. This explains why it is lighter in colour, as it contains less fibre and vitamins than brown.
Since fibre is essential for a healthy diet – it helps maintain a healthy gut microbiome, prevents cancer, and reduces the risk of diabetes, whole grains and brown bread are better for you than white bread. However, only eating white bread won’t undo any of your other healthy habits. You still need to eat sufficient calories to gain enough energy. So at the end of the day, swapping white bread for whole grains like wheat bread or pasta isn’t going to improve your health meaningfully – but it’s still better than eating it daily. As for brown bread, it contains less sugar and salt than the white, making it the more preferable choice if you’re watching your weight or simply prefer the taste.
The differences between white and brown bread aren’t massive, and you can still enjoy either on your lunchtime sandwich without too much guilt. So whether you prefer the taste, texture or appearance of one over the other is purely a personal choice.