People normally eat bread especially at breakfast with bread spread, a slightly thick to thick substance spread on the surface of bread presumably to make it more delicious. There are some many types of bread, each with its health benefits and drawbacks. The purpose of this write up is enable us make informed choices on the spread we eat. All products discussed below are un-salted.
1. Butter (from cow milk)
Butter is made from un-soured cow milk, so it is a dairy product. It contains plenty of fat , about 81 percent, little water about 17 percent and plenty of Vitamin A. Because of vitamin A, it is good for our sight. How the fat when further examined is mainly saturated fat and cholesterol; both can harm your heart. Therefore as we age we should cut off butter as bread spread.
2. Margarine (from vegetable oil)
Margarine is made from vegetable oil, it could be from soyabean, safflower oils. These oils are liquid at room temperature, so to make margarine, the oils are subjected to high heat and pressure and then hydrogenated but do not bother yourself with all that jargon. The oils are un-saturated fat.
Margarine therefore contains a lot of fat (about 80 percent) but mostly unsaturated fat, it has no cholesterol but has a lot of Vitamin A and some Sodium.
It can help your sight and it is better for your heart to take margarine instead of butter as you age.
3. Jam (from sugar and strawberry/currants)
Jam is made from sugar and fruits such as strawberry and blackcurrant. Because of the sugar the consumption should be limited to childhood years and very thin spreads. However it does have the vitamins and minerals contained strawberry
4. Marmalade (from sugar and orange, lemon)
Marmalade is made from sugar with orange or lemon. Adults should limit consumption of marmalade because of the sugar. It contains very little Vitamin C and Calcium. Adults should not go for it except you crave for sweetness.
5. Cheese (from cow milk)
Cheese is made from sour cow milk; it contains fat (about 28 percent), water (58 percent), little carbohydrate and protein, plenty of Vitamin A, and minerals (calcium, Potassium and Sodium). The fat in cheese is mainly saturated fat and cholesterol but in smaller quantities than butter. Adults are advised to go for cheese as it is healthier than butter.
6. Peanut butter (ground peanuts)
Peanut butter is actually blended peanuts, could be done at home; no water is added. It contains carbohydrates, protein, fat, minerals and vitamins. The fat is unsaturated fat, no cholesterol. It is very healthy for your heart and you are encouraged to use it as bread spread if you can get it.
7. Chocolate butter (from cocoa)
Chocolate spread is made from cocoa, sugar, some vegetable oil and sometimes milk. Therefore, it contains mainly sugar and fat (saturated fat), it has some unsaturated fat but no cholesterol. Also it has a few minerals in low quantities but no vitamins. However it has flavonoids and other phytochemicals which have been associated with increased libido especially in women.
Chocolate is recommended in moderation for adults especially youths (18-35 years) because of the flavonoids and phytochemicals.
8. Honey (by honey bees)
Honey like most people will know is produced by honeybees from nectar of plants; however most of the honeys in the market today are adulterated. Real honey is thick, has a peculiar odour and has impurities (nectar and parts of honeybees).
Honey contains various types of sugar, vitamins, minerals and anti-oxidants. Apart from the medicinal properties ascribed to it, it lowers blood cholesterol level thereby protecting the heart, it is good as a sweetener for diabetics and because of its anti-oxidants, it can slow down aging.
Honey irritates the stomach of a few people like me, if it does not irritate yours, you can go for it.