Ezekiel bread is popular because people see it as an unusually wholesome bread option. What are the benefits for people with diabetes?
Most sliced bread out there is made of highly refined flour, and often contains added sugar and hidden oils. For those of us with diabetes, such bread can cause glucose spikes and can fuel issues like insulin resistance, unwanted weight gain, and even constipation. Ezekiel bread is different because it contains no refined flour and is made of organic sprouted whole grains like wheat, barley, millet, oats, and corn. Some Ezekiel bread choices contain sprouted legumes, too.
Those hearty whole grains aren’t just healthful — they also mean big flavor.
The Health Benefits of Ezekiel Bread
Compared to most other breads, Ezekiel Breads are packed with large amounts of both fiber and protein, usually boasting four to five grams of protein per slice, and three grams of fiber.
Why does that matter? For one thing, many obesity experts today believe that fiber and protein are much more satiating than other carbohydrates and fats. A diet high in protein and fiber may help curb excessive hunger and help you maintain your weight, or even promote weight loss.
The business believes its bread is an ideal plant-based protein:
Ezekiel 4:9® Sprouted Grain Bread is inspired by the Holy Scripture verse: “Take also unto thee Wheat, and Barley, and beans, and lentils, and millet, and Spelt, and put them in one vessel, and make bread of it…” Ezekiel 4:9®
We discovered when these six grains and legumes are sprouted and combined, an amazing thing happens. A complete protein is created that closely parallels the protein found in milk and eggs.
Ezekiel bread is also unusually low on the glycemic index, partially due to all that protein and fiber. The company claims that its 4:9 bread scores a 36 on the glycemic index. For reference, pure sugar scores a perfect 100, Wonder Bread a 71, and most whole wheat breads come in around 50. Low-glycemic index foods are thought to make blood sugars rise more gradually and enhance satiety.
Ezekiel bread is not a true keto option. Their flagship bread, the 4:9 Sprouted Grain Bread, has 12 grams of net carbohydrates per slice. But that’s a lot less than some other sandwich breads, and people with diabetes may find that the high fiber and protein counts and the use of so many lower glycemic index ingredients all result in a more modest blood sugar rise. But if you use insulin before every meal, you still need to count those carbs and bolus for them.
It’s also worth noting that Ezekiel bread does contain gluten.
What exactly are sprouted grains? Sprouting a grain or legume entails soaking them in water so that the seeds germinate. This creates more nutrients and degrades the anti-nutrients that are present in many grains.
What are anti-nutrients? It sounds funny but, just as a snake may bite and a porcupine has quills, most plants contain toxic substances to protect against predators and parasites. Nutrition experts don’t want us to worry too much about anti-nutrients; after all, they’re found in very healthy foods such as broccoli, beets, and nuts. But they are known to block the absorption of healthy nutrients.
Sprouting breaks down the anti-nutrients, which enables your body to better absorb all the healthy nutrients in the bread.
Will Ezekiel Bread Work for You?
If you’re looking for a more healthful option to replace a standard white or wheat bread, almost certainly. Ezekiel bread is a terrific choice, given its wholesome ingredients and impressive fiber and protein counts. Most people with both type 1 and type 2 diabetes will probably benefit from the slower and less dramatic glucose rise.
If you’re already managing your diabetes with a low-carb or keto diet, you’ll have to try the bread and see if it fits within your tolerance for blood sugar changes. For some of our readers, even Ezekiel Bread contains more net carbohydrates than they want to regularly deal with or dose insulin for.
Finally, but importantly, we haven’t addressed the flavor. Ezekiel bread is robust and hearty — it has a very rich nutty flavor, stronger than wheat bread, and it is not at all soft and spongey. You can really taste all of those little sprouted grains.
We think it’s delicious. But the truth is that if you prefer mild and pillowy white bread, you might have a tough time with it.
Ezekiel Breads are customarily stored in the freezer section, because they go stale more quickly than conventional breads (which can be pumped full of preservatives). It can go stale in your fridge, too, which is why some customers almost always eat their bread toasted.
One of our writers thinks that a single slice of Ezekiel bread works extremely well for her, especially when she loads it up with nutritious high-fat and protein toppings: “It is the only bread that I can cover with insulin and not observe a post-meal spike from later in the day. I feel energetic after eating it whereas any other bread makes me feel suboptimal and gives me a harder time with my blood sugar.”
We have focused on Ezekiel’s best-selling products, but the business has many other types of bread and other products, including specialty and gluten-free bread, cereals, buns, and tortillas.