Bread: How a Frozen, fresh, stale or over-toasted slice can impact your health

Whether you prefer your toast golden or dark, your loaf frozen or fresh, it changes the structure of the bread — and the impact it can have on your health.


The glycaemic response of bread (the speed at which the starches break down to sugars) varies when it is frozen, defrosted and toasted — compared to fresh bread.

That’s what a 2008 study by Oxford Brookes University, published in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition, found — blaming the fact that it changes the make-up of starch molecules, making them more resistant to digestion, says Dr Sangeetha Thondre, a senior lecturer in nutrition at the university’s Center for Nutrition and Health.

The structure of the starch is broken down by the freezing process, making it harder for digestive enzymes in the mouth and gut to break it down, says Dr Thondre.

“Even when the bread is defrosted, those starches cannot return to their original state, in fact they become even less digestible,” she adds.


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