I recently heard that the Wonder company announced they'll be discontinuing their bread sales in certain parts of the country. Are there any good substitutes for Wonder Light bread and buns? I love them. Thanks!
Wondering What to Do
The news is true. Soon Wonder Bread won't be as widely available, due to the closing of many of their bakeries and distribution centers in Southern California. I personally am VERY sad about it, since I live in Southern California. Not only is the Wonder brand a true American icon (who didn't grow up eating Wonder Bread?!), but their Light options are fantastic and I eat them all the time! So this is truly sad news for me, and I'm sure it is for many of you, too. But we must carry on, hold our heads high, and find new bread options to chew! I already have some favorites -- Weight Watchers breads (Multi-Grain and 100% Whole Wheat), Nature's Own Light breads (Wheat, Honey Wheat, and Premium White) and 80-calorie Double Fiber Wheat Buns, Arnold Bakery Light Wheat bread, Pepperidge Farm Light Style (Oatmeal, 7 Grain and Wheat), and Very Thin (White & Wheat) sliced bread and Classic Whole Grain White Hamburger Buns and Hot Dog Buns, and more. When it comes to bread slices, look for packages labeled "light" or "reduced-calorie", and aim for ones with 40 - 45 calories per slice and at least 2g fiber each. For hot dog and hamburger buns, there are SOME lighter/lower-calorie options out there, but they can be a little hard to find. East Coast brand Stop & Shop makes 80-calorie light hamburger and hot dog buns with 4g fiber each! In general, stick with the standard small ones -- as opposed to the oversized ones -- with around 120 calories or so and lots of fiber (whole wheat ones are your best bet). I actually like to fold a piece of light bread and use it in place of a hotdog bun (it works perfectly!). BTW, you'll still be able to find Wonder Light on shelves for a little while longer, so stock up and freeze 'em. You can also sometimes find the stuff online at Amazon. But if they wind up gone for good in your neighborhood, you'll have other options on the shelves (I promise!).
When a nutrition label lists "soluble fiber" and "insoluble fiber", what the heck does that mean? If the total fiber amount is huge, but only a small amount of it is soluble, am I really getting the full benefits of a so-called "high-fiber" food? Is there a certain ratio of the two types that a person should shoot for? Can you offer some fiber-licious insight about this issue?
GREAT question -- one that I've been getting a lot recently -- and frankly, it's something I have often wondered about myself (I may be an expert on finding delicious fiber-packed foods, but I'm NOT a nutrition expert). That's why I called upon my pal (the Queen of Fiber herself) Tanya Zuckerbrot to help me answer this one. Tanya is a registered dietitian, author of The F-Factor Diet (GREAT book!!), and a super-cool person. Here's what she told me: "Dietary fiber comes in two forms: soluble and insoluble. Soluble fiber swells in your stomach, providing bulk and giving you a feeling of fullness. Good sources include dried beans, legumes, oatmeal, and citrus fruits. Soluble fiber also has cholesterol-lowering properties because it acts like a sponge, absorbing cholesterol and pulling it out of your body. Insoluble fiber, usually referred to as roughage, includes the woody or structural parts of plants. It's sometimes called 'nature's broom', because it tends to speed up the passage of material through the digestive tract and help reduce the risk of colon cancer and diverticular disease. Good sources are broccoli, apples, wheat bran, and whole grain cereals." Here's the best part. Tanya says, "Although you should get both soluble and insoluble fiber in your diet every day, there is no need to fixate on one type or the other. Because most whole plant foods contain both types of fiber, just increasing your intake of foods high in total fiber will provide you with beneficial amounts of both." There you go! (Psssst... for a list of my favorite fiber-packed recipes and foods, click here.)