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Sprouted Flours Benefits

If you are sensitive to gluten, you could well benefit from our sprouted flours. Overcoming Gluten Intolerance research shows that germination effectively break down and transform gluten to a point that although still present gluten is better absorbed by the digestive system and other difficult-to-digest grains components are also better processed.

If you are diabetic, sprouted wheat bread has a low glycemic index and does not cause post-meal blood-sugar levels or blood-fat counts to spike upwards . For instance coelica disease and type 1 diabetes have both a common genetic predisposition : HLA-DBQ1 is the gene present in the majority of people with both conditions and

If you suffer from Dermatitis herpetiformis (DH) -a red raised patches and blisters bursting on the skin-, the celiac approach will benefit you as both issues are linked. Ask you GP, as always, if you could benefit from Sprouted Flours....

If you are reducing calories or on a diet, sprouted wheat breads provide more protein and nutrition than many pre-packaged, highly-processed "diet foods.".

If you have a thyroid disease the link with coeliac disease is well established . The NICE guidelines say the prevalence of autoimmune thyroid disease in people with coeliac is up to 7%...

If you are vegetarian, bread made with sprouted flour can accompany any meal, toasted, baked, fried, grilled, cubed for stuffing, mashed for pudding.

If you are pregnant, sprouted wheat bread, being easily digested and nutrient-dense, is likely to support your health as well as normal fetal development.

If you follow a raw food diet you believe that the most healthful food for the body are uncooked. Although most food is eaten raw, heating food is acceptable as long as the temperature stays below 45 degrees celcius. Our sprouted flours are slowly dehydrated at 35 C at the most and gently stone milled at virtually no heat hence preserving all the enzymes naturally present in them. Enyzymes are the life force of a food, helping us to digest food and absorb nutrients. If we over-consume cooked food, our bodies are forced to work harder by producing more enzymes. Over time, a lack of enzymes from food is thought to lead to digestive problems, nutrient defficiency, accelerated aging, and weight gain. Most people who follow a raw food diet are vegan. Some consume raw animal products, such as raw milk, cheese made from raw milk, sushi (raw fish), or carpaccio (raw meat). Some people eat only raw foods, while others include cooked food for variety and convenience. The percentage of raw food is usually 70 percent or more of the diet.Raw food detox diets or cleanses are entering the mainstream and a detox diet last about 14 days.

If you are a gourmet cordon bleu you will appreciate the great taste of sprouted bread, far superior to any supermarket mass produced "bread" and you will not need a full loaf as a simple slice is very fulfilling !

wheat kernel  
Classification for Six Types of Flour in France
Classification Ash content as % of Dry Matter Rate of Extraction (Correlative Method)
Type 45
Below 0.50
67-70
Type 55
from 0.50 to 0.60/0.62   
75-78
Type 65
from 0.62 to 0.75     
78-82
Type 80
from 0.75 to 0.90         
82-85
Type 110
from 1 to 1.20      
85-90
Type 150
above 1.40    
  90-98   

The flour testing is the process by which the miller determines the level of enzymes, the protein content and the ash content.

What's the ash content? It measures the amount of mineral content that remains in the flour after milling. A whole wheat flour which contains all of the wheat berry or kernel will have a high ash of 1.50 or so. When the wheat kernel is milled, the heart of the kernel, or endosperm, makes up the majority of a white flour. The further away the miller mills from the endosperm, the higher the ash content. Generally speaking, a lower ash content is preferable, since it means that the flour is the purest and closer to the heart of the wheat kernel.

In France : the ash content is used to classify the flours. Type 55 flour (T55) : 0.55% of the bran is left in the flour Type 150 (T150) is whole wheat flour. Most bakers are moving to T65 because consumers are interested in complementing their diet with more fiber. the greater the ash content, the more fermentation activity. For that reason, a smaller amount of yeast should be used in dough otherwise the fermentation will be too fast.

Protein : They indicates the amount of gluten available in the flour. Gluten is the substance that develops when the protein, which occurs naturally in wheat flour, is combined with liquid. Because gluten is able to stretch elastically, it is desirable to have a higher gluten flour for yeast-raised products, which have doughs that are stretched extensively; like pizza, most breads, and bagels. For piecrusts, cookies, and pastry to be short and crumbly, a lower protein flour is better. Protein levels range from 7% in pastry and cake flours to as high as 15% in high-gluten bread flour;

Protein Content

PROTEIN

 

Protein content in flour or wheat with Nitrogen Analyses (CNA).

Method : A sample of flour or ground wheat (0.15 to 0.20 grams) is weighed and placed into a CNA protein analyzer. This process is automated and begins by dropping the sample into a hot oven where it is burned at 952 degrees Celsius. The amount of nitrogen released during burning is measured and a formula is applied to convert the measurement to protein content in the sample.

Results: Protein content is determined through high temperature combustion in a protein analyzer. Since protein is the major wheat compound that contains nitrogen, the protein content can be determined by measuring the amount of nitrogen released during burning. Protein content results are expressed as a % of the total sample weight; for example, 10 % protein content on 12 % moisture basis for wheat or 8.5 % on 14 % moisture basis for flour.

Why is this important? Protein content is a key specification for wheat and flour purchasers since it is related to many processing properties, such as water absorption and gluten strength. Low protein content is desired for crisp or tender products, such as snacks or cakes. High protein content is desired for products with chewy texture, such as pan bread and hearth bread. Bakers use protein content results to anticipate water absorption and dough development time for processes and products, because higher protein content usually requires more water and a longer mixing time to achieve optimum dough consistency.

Ash Content

ash content

 
Ash content in flour or Wheat

Method : Flour or ground wheat (3/5 grams) is weighed and placed in an ash cup, then heated at 585 degrees Celsius in an ash oven until its weight is stable (usually overnight). The residue is cooled to room temperature and then weighed.

Results : Ash content is determined by high temperature incineration in an electric muffle furnace. When a sample is incinerated in an ash oven, the high temperature drives out the moisture and burns away all the organic materials (starch, protein, and oil), leaving only the ash. The residue (ash) is composed of the non-combustible, inorganic minerals that are concentrated in the bran layer. Ash content results for wheat or flour ash are expressed as a percentage of the initial sample weight; for example, wheat ash of 1.58 % or flour ash of 0.52 %. Wheat or flour ash is usually expressed on a common moisture basis of 14 %.

Why is this important? Millers need to know the overall mineral content of the wheat to achieve desired or specified ash levels in flour. Since ash is primarily concentrated in the bran, ash content in flour is an indication of the yield that can be expected during milling. It also indicates milling performance by indirectly revealing the amount of bran contamination in flour. Ash in flour can affect color, imparting a darker color to finished products. Some specialty products requiring particularly white flour call for low ash content while other products, such as whole wheat flour, have a high ash content.

Gluten is the protein found in wheat. Similar proteins which are harmful to Coeliacs are present in rye, barley and possibly oats. Wheat, rye and barley are therefore excluded from the gluten-free diet. Oats may be allowed for some patients, under careful medical and dietetic supervision.

COELIAC DISEASE : Coeliac Disease is a life-long inflammatory condition of the gastro-intestinal tract that affects the small intestine in genetically susceptible individuals. Gluten damages the lining of the small intestine, reducing its ability to absorb adequate nutrients from food, resulting in illness which may resemble malnutrition, The treatment for Coeliac Disease is a strict gluten-free diet for life. They cannot tolerate a protein called "gliadin", which is found in wheat, rye, barley, oats, and spelt. When people with celiac disease eat foods containing gluten, their immune system responds by damaging the villi – the tiny, fingerlike protrusions coating the inside of the small intestine. The villi allow nutrients from food to be absorbed into the bloodstream. Without functioning villi, a person can become malnourished. Individuals with Celiac Disease, gluten intolerance and other food allergies and intolerances require high quality, good tasting, and gluten-free foods to live a quality healthy life.

DERMATITIS HERPETIFORMIS : Dermatitis Herpetiformis is an itchy blistering skin eruption, due to gluten sensitivity. This sensitivity also affects the small intestine in the majority of patients, giving rise to a mild form of Coeliac Disease. The gluten-free diet eventually cures the skin rash as well as being the treatment for Coeliac Disease - ft should therefore be continued for life. For more information on Dermatitis Herpetiformis click here

WHAT IS NATURALLY GLUTEN-FREE? : Many foods are naturally gluten-free as they do not contain any wheat, rye, barley or oats. For example, all fresh meat, fish, cheese, eggs, milk, fruit and vegetables are gluten-free. However, once such foods are processed or used as ingredients in other foods, great care must be taken to ensure that wheat or other gluten-containing cereals have not been added in the manufacture.

OBVIOUS DIETARY SOURCES OF GLUTEN : Wheat is usually milled into flour and therefore any food made from four, such as ordinary bread, biscuits, cakes, pastries, puddings and pies, will contain gluten.

HIDDEN SOURCES OF GLUTEN : Gluten is also contained in manufactured and processed foods where wheat flour is commonly used as a processing aid, a binder, a filler or as a carrier for favourings and spices. Contamination with wheat or wheat flour can also occur during cereal production, storage, processing or manufacture.

WHAT IS WHEAT STARCH : Wheat starch is produced from wheat four by removing the proteins including gluten. Years ago it was believed that all the protein could be removed, It is now recognised that it is technically impossible to remove all traces of protein and a small amount remains.

There are two types of wheat starch : Commercial wheat starch which is not pure enough to be suitable for Coeliacs. Specially-manufactured wheat starch which complies with the lntemational Gluten-free Standard (Codex Ahmentarius) and can safely be included in the gluten-free diet. Wheat starch of this purity is expensive and it is most commonly used in products specially-manufactured for Coeliacs, to provide palatable and acceptable bread and flour substitutes.

WHEAT FREE, GLUTEN-FREE DIETS : These may be preferable for a few Coeliacs who appear to be intolerant to wheat starch. This diet contains breads and flours made from naturally gluten-free foods such as maize, potato, rice and soya rather than wheat starch.

SUPER-SENSITIVITY : There are a few super-sensitive Coeliacs who do not respond fully to a strict traditional gluten-free diet, Such people may therefore be advised to limit their diets further - not only by omitting wheat starch on the gluten-free, wheat free diet, but also by restricting malt extract and malt extract flavorings. Sensitive Coeliacs should additionally avoid oats and oat products. However, further restrictions should not be undertaken lightly and the Society therefore recommends that highly sensitive Coeliacs should discuss their diets carefully with their Consultant Gastroenterologist and Dietitian.

SPECIAL GLUTEN-FREE FOODS : Many specially-manufactured branded gluten-free and wheat free products are now produced. For people medically-diagnosed as having Coeliac Disease or Dermatitis Herpetiformis, basic foods such as breads, flours, mixes, biscuits, crackers and pasta are available on a doctor’s prescription, A complete up to date list of Prescribable Items is always available from the Coeliac Society Office. Gluten-free luxury items such as cakes, chocolate and fancy biscuits and seasonal foods like mince pies are not prescribable, but can be bought over the counter, at pharmacies and some health food stores. They may have to be specially ordered and they can be expensive.

Food labelling : Unfortunately, food labels do not tell consumers everything. A label will reveal the obvious presence of wheat or wheat flour, but where flour is used as a processing aid or as a small percentage of a compound ingredient, it does not have to be declared on a label. Although labeling legislation is continually improving, Coeliacs are still advised to use the Coeliac Society’s Food List rather than rely totally on information given on a label. If a product is not in the Society’s Food List then it should be avoided. Each year the Coeliac Society produces an extensive List of Gluten-free Manufactured Products which is sent to all its members. This list is constantly updated throughout the year using information from the major food manufacturers and supermarket chains. Only a current Food List should be used, and it is essential that this is regularly updated throughout the year with information available from the Coeliac Society.

Is there Gluten in Sprouted Grains?

“Do sprouted or germinated grains contain gluten?

I am gluten sensitive and want to know if they can affect my health.”

I’m very glad this question was asked. I address it one on one with patients frequently and there definitely seems to be some false information out on the internet that is likely propagating the confusion.

So here you go : the definitive answer: Sprouted glutinous grains (wheat, rye, barley and contaminated oats) still have the protein gluten present. I believe the confusion comes from the fact that the act of sprouting begins some enzymatic breakdown of the protein and for those who are not gluten intolerant but merely have difficulty digesting certain grains, sprouting can make that process of digestion easier. These people notice that they don’t have the same symptoms from eating sprouted bread as they do from eating non-sprouted regular bread. But in NO WAY does sprouting eliminate gluten from the grain and these sprouted grains are NOT SAFE for anyone with gluten intolerance – celiac nor gluten sensitivity.

Do realize that one of the major problems associated with gluten intolerance is the “silent”, insidious nature of it. While many people notice immediate symptoms when eating gluten, about 75% notice no digestive symptoms, and some notice very little symptoms at all. Unfortunately that doesn’t lessen your chances of developing autoimmune diseases, nervous system damage and intestinal cancer, to name a few. Some of these serious conditions do develop silently and your first knowledge of the damage comes with the diagnosis of a disease.

I’m not trying to scare you but the theme of early diagnosis rings out in much of the scientific research being performed during the last decade. We know the association with gluten and autoimmune disease. What’s the recommendation? Diagnose the problem with gluten early in life so as to prevent its development.

We know the association between gluten and depression in children and adults. What’s the recommendation? Diagnose the problem with gluten early in life so as to prevent the needless suffering and use of dangerous anti-depressants.

Do you see the theme? It goes on and on. From osteoporosis to infertility, from psoriasis to obesity - the list of symptoms is very long and the recommendations are always the same. So please do not fall into the trap of eating gluten (even in a slightly predigested fashion) and thinking it’s okay because it doesn’t initiate certain symptoms. If you’ve already determined that you are gluten intolerant then don’t play Russian roulette with your health.

And lastly, not to confuse the matter, but the grass of the grain is gluten-free for approximately the first 10-14 days of growth. Beyond that point “jointing” occurs which is the development process whereby the grain forms and gluten becomes present. This means that if you drank wheat juice made from the grass only (and it was less than 10 days old – pre-jointing phase) it would be a gluten-free product. But I must emphasize that would be consuming the grass only, NOT the grass PLUS the rest of the grain such as what is used in sprouted breads.

I would recommend that if you do choose to ingest a greens drink that you ensure that the company tests their products thoroughly to ensure that they are gluten-free."

Using Sprouted flours in bread making

Falling Number

The Falling Number method was first described by Hagberg and Perten in the early 1960's for the purpose of providing a rapid means of determining the extent of sprout damage in wheat or rye (Doty, 1980). It has found widespread acceptance because of its rapid analysis time, simple operation, and high degree of reproducibility (Pyler, 1986). Sprout damage in wheat is of critical concern if the end-use for the flour being milled is bread production. As little as 5% heavily sprouted wheat in a mill mix of otherwise sound grain can make the mixture unacceptable for bread production (Perten, 1985). The Falling Number Test, an internationally standardized method, measures the alpha-amylase enzyme activity in flour to determine how much sprout a grain has achieved and to assure the grain has not been drowned. While a lower falling number indicates high enzyme (sprouting) activity, it is very important to compare the falling number prior to sprouting with the falling number after sprouting to accurately measure how much sprout action has occurred. A grain that started with a falling number of 350 and is now 150 has sprouted more completely than a grain that started at 250 and is now 150. To assure that Breadlink Sprouted Flours contain the highest sprout action, our sprouted flours must always have a final falling number equal to or lower than half of the falling number prior to sprouting. High quality grain that has been sprouted and stabilized resulting in a low falling number is very difficult to achieve so beware of anyone making claims without documentation.

Sprouting in wheat results in a higher than normal level of alpha-amylase in the flour. Wheat that has been harvested before sprouting has occurred contains low levels of alpha-amylase (Posner, 1997). Alpha-amylase is of greater concern in bread production than ß-amylase for four reasons: (1) it is able to hydrolyze damaged raw starch; (2) it has a higher thermal stability allowing it to act on gelatinizing starch for 3-4 minutes when the interior of the bread loaf is 140-150F, (3) it is stable at the common pH of bread dough: 5.0 - 5.6, and (4) it is activated by calcium ions that inactivate ß-amylase (Pyler, 1986). In addition to this, ß-amylase is only able to act upon the non-reducing ends of starch chains from which it splits off maltose, and it is unable to act upon intact raw starch (Doty, 1980). The activity of ß-amylase is also dependent upon the level of starch damage in the flour as damaged starch has more sites at which ß-amylase can act. Starch is damaged in the milling process and typically accounts for around 8% of the total starch in hard wheat flours (Pyler, 1986).

a-amylase is far more able to reduce the long starch molecules into smaller pieces upon which the ß-amylase can act. a-amylase is able to act upon interior portions of the starch molecules. The result of this is that the ß-amylase now has more open sites upon which is can act and produce more maltose molecules: a source of energy for yeast involved in fermentation. It is the combined action of these two molecules that can convert nearly the entire starch molecule into fermentable sugar (Doty, 1980)

This amylolytic action in dough occurs once the dough ingredients are combined and mixed. The conversion of starch to maltose and other yeast fermentable sugars is critical to the bread baking process. This conversion results in several changes in dough properties including: a decrease in absorption capacity, a slackening of dough consistency, and the development of a stickier dough. The rate at which these changes occur is directly proportional to the amount of starch damage and a-amylase level of the flour. As we noted above, flour milled from sound, un-sprouted wheat has a very low amylase content and requires supplemental a-amylase to have the required functional properties for bread production. Hard wheat flours typically have a total sugar content of 1.5%. This level is initially boosted to 2.0 to 2.5% during mixing by the rapid action of a-amylase upon the damaged starch (Pyler, 1986).

Typically, wheat is harvested once the grain has dried to an appropriate moisture level that takes into consideration both optimality for harvest and suitability for prolonged storage. In a dry, normal growing season this is done before the grain has had a chance to germinate and sprout. The direct implication of this is that alpha-amylase levels are typically quite low and supplementation of the milled flour must occur. The Falling Number Method is used to measure the level of alpha-amylase activity in newly harvested wheat as a means of detecting sprout damage and as a method for determining the proper supplementation rates of barley malt, or other alpha-amylase enrichment (Doty, 1980).

Bread flours with normal diastatic activity (milled from sound, un-sprouted wheat and supplemented with alpha-amylase through the addition of barley malt, or fungal amylase) typically having falling number values in the range of 220 to 250 seconds. Flours deficient in diastatic activity will typically have values in excess of 400 seconds and over supplemented flours or flour milled from sprout damaged wheat can have the minimum value of 60 seconds.

The Falling Number Method is based on the starch liquefying action of alpha-amylase and expresses this as the time in seconds required to stir and allow the stirrer to fall a measured distance through a heated aqueous flour gel that is undergoing liquefaction (Pyler, 1980). The instrument consists of a boiling water bath, a stirring head, and a timer. Also needed are, a test tube and a stirring rod. The stirring head consists of motors and gears which allows for precise and uniform stirring insuring reproducibility of the results (Doty, 1980).

The procedure for flour involves mixing 7 g of flour with 25 mL of distilled water in a test tube. The tube is shaken and the stirring rod is inserted and then the whole assembly is placed in the boiling water bath. The timer is automatically started and a stirring process is activated and continues for 55 seconds and a rate of 2 strokes per second. At the end of 60 seconds the stirring rod is released from the up position and allowed to fall through the heated flour-water slurry. Upon completion of the vertical fall the timer stops and displays the elapsed time in seconds (Pyler, 1986). The descent of the stirring rod through the slurry is related to the amylase activity of the sample. Upon completion of the stirring action the amylase present in the flour starts to break down the gelatinized starch reducing the viscosity of the slurry (Doty, 1980).

If analysis of a wheat sample is required then a 300 g sample is ground in a hammer mill to obtain a flour sample. From here the procedure is the same as above for the flour sample (Doty, 1980).

There are several factors that have the potential to affect the results of the Falling Number Method. These include the sampling method, the preparation of the samples, moisture content of the samples, boiling temperature (affected by altitude), heat treatment of the grain, and the stirring procedure (Perten, 1967). This last issue is not of particular importance today as the Falling Number Instruments most commonly found are fully automated and require little operator input aside from the initial shaking of the sample.

The falling number method as described is an absolutely essential analysis technique in both the milling and baking industries. As alpha-amylase plays such a critical role in baking, the development of this rapid, simple, and highly reproducible technique has proven to be invaluable.

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