Hovis Wholemeal Challenge – Part II

Potato chips

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Research suggests that the average British woman will devour 1,092 unhealthy snacks this year, from crisps, sweets and biscuits to cakes and chocolate, according to research released today by Hovis Wholemeal.  This of course is good news to snack producers!

The study, involving 2,000 British women, said that an average of over 129 packets of crisps, more than 127 chocolate bars, over 77 cakes and more than 133 biscuits will be consumed by every female in 2011 alone.

But I won’t be one of them.

I’m not a ‘holier-than-thou’ slim lettuce eater, don’t get me wrong, my halo isn’t without a little tarnish as crisps, chocolate, cakes and biscuits do pass my lips occasionally, but very rarely mid morning.

I reserve crisp eating for social evenings with a drink but mostly I’m home alone babysitting the kids. I have secret stash of chilli chocolate in my desk to nibble as the mid morning boost. But the kick is a warning in itself. Cake? Well I bake for birthdays and biscuits I rarely buy…so, somewhere, some poor woman is snacking more than the average just because I’m not!

For me, snacking comes with boredom, so I like to keep busy.

But, Hovis showed that 48% of women admitted that mid-morning hunger pangs are the culprit for them reaching for the biscuit tin…

Eating bread among women has, let’s face it, become unfashionable.

For example, there’s often a lot of discussion about bread in my circle of friends. We are in the 40 something bracket, some with teenage faddy daughters, so “I’m staying away from carbs” leads to tricky conversations about dieting. My age-group suggest that they don’t eat bread because they have a wheat intolerance that makes them find bread unpleasant and difficult to digest. I’m not sure if this is a fairly typical excuse, but you’re staying away is for health reasons then no one dares to dispute you…However this wheat intolerance thing is almost epidemic and I’m wondering if there is something more in it.

I ate Hovis bread and although I like my bread a bit more rustic and rugged, I thought it surprisingly good.

Compare it with fresh-baked super-market bread. You know the stuff that smells so good that you can’t resist it? I heard they other day that it takes around 35 minutes from flour to baked bread to make. I don’t know if Hovis can make it’s bread that fast – I hope not. Supermarket bread is tasteless and we have got used to that, so Hovis Wholemeal tasted distinctly yummy and flavourful in comparison. The other thing is that to get bread to rise and bake that fast it has to be stuffed full of chemical rising agents and the yeast does not have time to break down. No wonder then that yeast-intolerance is apparently on the rise. I’m pretty sure that I get ‘gut ache’ and bloating if I eat too much bread, so I used to eat it in moderation. But with eating Hovis,  I suffered neither of these symptoms and that’s a positive.

Plus, baking my own bread has changed my point of view. I’ve been baking slow-rise sour dough breads (with Hovis flour – this is a sponsored post you understand) for the past two months.  Not only does it fill me up and keeps me going, it doesn’t give me that unpleasant bloated feeling and if there’s one thing I’m now particular about, it’s my daily bread. The staple of hard toil deserves reverence and respect.  If bread can be made in less than an hour, with such indecent rush, it suggests near immoral depravity. Plus, can it be good for us? The problem is that modern bread is made too quickly. The flour has no time to ferment to become easily digestible.

So I have become a ‘bread convert’ recently, albeit with reservations….

Hovis ambassador and Olympic gold medallist Victoria Pendleton, said, “As an athlete I understand how important it is to start the day the right way. The basic facts are simple, Hovis Wholemeal is rich in fibre that can help you feel fuller for longer and could help stop snacking. I have it for breakfast and it works for me!”

A trial conducted on behalf of Hovis showed that 64% of women who swapped their regular breakfast for Hovis Wholemeal felt fuller for longer and 86% agreed that eating Hovis Wholemeal for breakfast helped them snack less on naughty treats in-between breakfast and lunch. To help resist the lure of the biscuit tin, sign up to the Hovis Stop Snacking app at www.facebook.com/hovisbakery.

My advice is to watch the type bread you eat. Good , slow-rise and / or tasty bread is satisfying, it keeps you feeling fuller for longer and it will stop you snacking.

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