September 20, 2019
What is an Ancient Grain?
Lindsay Atwood, RD, LD

Grains have been around for centuries and have many health benefits. You might have heard of oats, quinoa or whole wheat couscous, but other ancient grains include farro, kamut, teff, spelt, bulgur, barley, millet, freekeh, bulgur, einkorn, emmer, sorghum, and more.

This type of whole grain is in more of its whole form, so the bran isn’t striped of all its nutrients like we often find in our pasta and rice these days. It takes longer to digest so the fiber and protein content is higher, making you feel fuller for longer. They are also packed with more nutrients including B vitamins, iron, calcium and zinc. 

The next time you are at the grocery store, take a look at these grains and try some out. Here are some ideas of how to add them into your day:

  • Instead of oatmeal, make breakfast quinoa with all the fixings.
  • Add an ancient grain to any salad.  Here is one of my favorite recipes to try.
  • Cook some on the weekend to have in the fridge/freezer to add to salads, casseroles, soups, etc.
  • Make some healthy granola bars with added grains that the whole family will enjoy.
  • Use as a healthy side for dinner.

You can also find more recipe ideas on the Your Plan For Health website via Zipongo on Virgin Pulse. To access Zipongo for healthy recipe ideas, sign into your Virgin Pulse account at Click on the button that says programs and type “Zipongo” in the search bar.