Bread Not So Bad

by Anne Myers-Wright RD/APD

Posted on Nov 12, 07:40 PM in and . No comments.

You should avoid bread if you are trying to lose weight, right? It’s a seriously big bad guy when it comes to weight loss? Well bread has had a good result in a recent trial testing the effect of bread in a meal on hunger, satiety and amounts of food consumed.

In this study, 122 women were asked to follow a 16 week weight management programme and were randomly assigned into two groups. Both groups had food plans with the same amount of calories and the same proportions of fat, carbohydrate and protein. One group of women had meals with bread as the carbohydrate serve while the other group had no bread and had pasta or rice instead. After being on the plan for 16 weeks, the group which had the bread recorded the highest satiety scores and were more satisfied and less hungry than the other group, with no bread, especially after sixty and even ninety minutes following their meal.

The researchers concluded that the inclusion of bread in a low-calorie meal may result in a greater sensation of satiety after eating and that bread shouldn’t necessarily be excluded from a food plan aimed at weight loss.

Of course this doesn’t mean bread at every meal and certainly doesn’t mean that adding more bread will make you feel less hungry and lose weight. Remember these diets were calorie controlled. That also means that the bread probably wasn’t covered in high calorie fatty spreads. It’s also important to include a variety of different foods, especially when on a weight loss plan. This is important to keep you interested, happy and motivated.

The type of bread you choose is important too. Bread with a lower Glycaemic Index will absorb and digest a lot more slowly and will keep you feeling more satisfied and fuller for longer. These low GI breads include heavy grain breads with nuts and seeds like pumpernickel and soy and linseed bread rather than white bread which has a much higher GI.

So be careful of your portions, choose your bread wisely, watch your added fats and include variety in the diet. You don’t, it seems, need to leave the bread out when trying to lose weight.


Loria Kohen V, Gómez Candela C, Fernández Fernández C, Pérez Torres A, Villarino Sanz M, Bermejo LM. Impact of two low-calorie meals with and without bread on the sensation of hunger, satiety and amount of food consumed. Nutr Hosp. 2011 Oct;26(5):1155-60.

Tags: Bread, Calories, Diet, Weight Loss

About the author

Anne Myers-Wright

Anne Myers-Wright RD/APD

Anne is a Health Professions Council (HPC) registered dietitian (RD), an Accredited Practicing Dietitian (APD- Australia), a fellow of the Higher Education Academy (FHEA), a member of the British Dietetic Association, The Nutrition Society and of The Dietetics Association of Australia.


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