Here is an article from philstar.com which talks about the history of bread eating in Philippines and the latest trend to have healthier breads which are richer in fiber. This article is interesting since it sources how bread reached Philippines and what is the latest trends regarding this hugely popular food item.
With so many breads available on the market today, one cannot tell which is fit to consume for a healthy diet. Bread is the most popular food in the world and second only to rice in the Philippines, home to 100 million people.
Bread-eating in this country as a primary source of nutrition and physical energy is relatively new, thanks to the western colonizers, notably the Spaniards and Americans, who introduced such alternative foods made from wheat to Filipino natives more than a century ago.
The first bread
It is said that in Mactan circa 1521, Rajah Humabon and his queen were the first two natives to receive and to taste the European conquistadors’ gift of bread, which they considered “the real food from the gods.” From then on, the Spaniards took the opportunity to use bread as a diplomatic gift.
Fast forward to the present. In a consumer survey, it was found that nearly 88 percent of the population, or 88 million Filipinos, eat bread at any time of day, which makes the Philippines a good market for wheat-based products. For six-month-old babies to living centenarians, bread is the preferred source of food to enhance their carbohydrate intake, helping them accelerate cell growth and energy.
To date, pan de sal is the most popular and bestselling type of bread in the country, and is considered part of the Filipino’s daily breakfast. A few years ago, when the price of wheat rose unabated in the international market, it created a political scene locally when the masses protested the escalating price increase of pan de sal.
Bread making is an art and the business of satisfying the health needs and palates of consumers is the mission of Creative Bakers, Inc., the maker of the famous Walter Bread brands. With close to 30 years of providing quality breads on the market, Creative Bakers Inc., continues its commitment to offer Filipinos healthy products, especially now that many people have adopted a healthy lifestyle.
In its vision statement, Walter Bread exists to make breads not simply to make money but, more importantly, to offer products helpful to the general well-being of Filipino consumers.
According to Walter Co, president of Creative Bakers, “Making money is not a priority for producing these healthy breads. It’s alarming to learn that our country now has one of the highest rates of diabetics in Asia. Because of that, we realized the need to produce bread that is not only healthy but the taste of which is something we can enjoy.”
As the country’s leader in the mass production of healthy and nutritious bread, Walter Bread is committed to its vision of bread as an alternative food for a healthier, diabetic-free Philippines. The company has initiated years of research and development to arrive at tasty bread products that pass high-rigidity tests based on nutritional standards.
Indeed, the company is now reaping the dividends of making better bread. Its loyal patrons through the years are composed of diabetics, weight watchers and those with restricted diets who now have something to munch on for breakfast and snacks without worrying about their sugar or cholesterol level and putting on more pounds.
Among its products is Walter Bread’s bestselling Whole Wheat Raisin Bread, which is a rich source of fiber and phytochemicals, or powerful antioxidants. It is the favorite choice of diabetics who need to control the sugar level in their body. It is also fat-free, has a low-sodium content and is high in dietary fiber. Frequent buyers can attest that it is also tasty and sweet compared to other brands.
Double-fiber wheat bread
Another product is Walter Bread’s Double Fiber Wheat Bread with Heart Protect, which is made for those with hypertension and other coronary-related ailments. This bread contains two all-natural fibers: insoluble fiber from wheat and soluble fiber from apples.
In fact, after years of research by Walter Bread, consumers now appreciate the taste of wheat breads that used to be bland or salty (as salt is used to strengthen the structure of breads). Walter Bread found a way to alter the process to come up with a moister, smoother texture of bread that uses less salt, which is more heart and kidney-friendly for consumers.
Insoluble fiber plays a role in gastrointestinal and colon health, while soluble fiber contributes to heart health. Fiber from apples is also a source of sweetness in the bread and helps keep it moist. Unlike other wheat breads available on the market, Double Fiber What Bread with Heart Protect is really soft and moist.
Very popular with diet-and-figure-conscious consumers is Walter Bread’s Weight Control Bread with High Fiber, which can be eaten even while they are on their weight-loss program.
Weight Control Bread with High Fiber is rich in oat and vegetable fibers that keep consumers feeling full for longer, which is why it is said to be perfect for those on a strict diet and exercise program. It is 98-percent fat-free and has 50 percent less sodium. Consumers of this bread say that it is tastier than other high-fiber breads that are bland or lack taste.
Co says, “We make sure that our product is better than the existing ones. It has to pass not only my own standards, but I would even have to ask friends and other people for their feedback on the products we produce, and the result is positively amazing in terms of health benefits and profit.”
Source – http://www.philstar.com/food-and-leisure/2014/07/31/1352071/let-them-eat-healthy-bread