When It Comes to Nutrition, Einkorn Can’t Be Beat

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Einkorn. You’ve probably never heard of it-I hadn’t. And yet it’s been around for quite a while. In fact, when Adam and Eve cooked up a mess of porridge for breakfast, it was undoubtedly einkorn they were stirring over the campfire. Indeed, it’s that old!

Okay yes, the morning habits of Adam and Eve are somewhat speculative, but wild grains of einkorn have been found in archaeological sites dating back 12,000 years or more. Evidence suggests that einkorn was the first grain to be domesticated. DNA fingerprinting points to Turkey around 7500 B.C. as the first cropping of the grain.

But by the end of the Bronze Age, it fell out of favor as other forms of wheat were found to have higher yields. And soon, einkorn was to be found only on small isolated farms here and there in Central Europe. No one wanted this genetically unique wheat any more.

So why the renewed interest in this ancient grain after millennia of neglect? For three simple reasons:

Nutrition: Einkorn has it all over modern wheat when it comes to nutrition. It has a higher protein content than any other wheat, and it offers 3-4 times more beta-carotene, twice the vitamin A, and four times the antioxidants lutein and riboflavin. Plus, it has been shown that einkorn retains more of its nutrients during the baking process than modern wheat does.

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