Nutritional benefits of whole grains
Whole grains are a great source of dietary fiber, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.
Why are whole grains a superfood?
- Whole grains are a great source of dietary fiber. A ½ cup serving can provide anywhere from 1 to 6 grams of dietary fiber.
- They are excellent sources of vitamins and minerals such as iron, zinc, magnesium, and vitamin E. They also offer a variety of antioxidants.
- Whole grains are naturally low in sodium. A ½ cup serving of most whole grains will offer approximately 10 mg or less of dietary sodium. It is important to note that one should look carefully at the sodium content of preseasoned whole grains in which sodium may be added to the packaged product.
- Whole grains have a long shelf life and are often inexpensive.
- Studies have shown that whole grains offer benefits for heart disease, hypertension, diabetes, and kidney disease.
Whole grains and kidney disease
Whole grains may contain higher amounts of potassium and phosphorous per serving compared to refined grains, however, phosphorous in plant-based foods is not absorbed completely. Most whole grains contain less than 200 mg of both potassium and phosphorous per ½ cup serving and therefore can be included in any of the following kidney conditions and treatments:
- Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD)/Transplant
- Hemodialysis (3 times/week)
- Daily Home and Nocturnal Hemodialysis/Peritoneal Dialysis
- Kidney Stones
Whole grains may offer additional benefits for those with kidney disease by helping with bowel regularity, blood pressure control, cholesterol levels, and blood glucose control. Talk with your kidney dietitian to learn more about how to incorporate whole grains into your eating pattern.
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Download the National Kidney Foundation’s Fact Sheet: Kidney-Friendly Superfoods: Whole Grains
*This content is provided for informational use only and is not intended as medical advice or as a substitute for the medical advice of a healthcare professional.