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Why scientists are trying to make bread with peas

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Researchers at the Canadian International Grains Institute (CIGI) in Winnipeg are experimenting with peas to make bread. Not only would pea-based bread add more protein to your meal, but it’d also reduce the overall gluten and carbs found in it.

Classic bread made with white flour and white sugar is being avoided by more and more people who are trying to eat healthier. Scientists are hoping that bread made from peas will let people feel guilt-free about eating a slice.

“Protein is the seller,” Ashok Sarkar, senior adviser of technology at the grains institute, told the Financial Post. “That’s the biggest draw, and there are many side benefits, like fiber, minerals, micronutrients.”

Since peas are members of the legume family, they’re higher in protein and lower in fat, too.

Not only does the use of peas result in a more protein-packed product, but it also may provide a great future option for those who want to consume Canadian-made ingredients (like the peas).

Development of this product is still underway; however, one of the challenges aside from the expense (peas are more expensive to grow, harvest and process than grains), is the sticky consistency that peas give the bread. Flour made from peas is stickier than wheat flour thanks to the absence of gluten, and it poses a problem for the bakers’ production line: gumming up the equipment.

But the researchers at CIGI are working hard to find a solution for these issues, because gluten-free eating is definitely here to stay.

We look forward to the day when we can enjoy a sandwich with the knowledge that we’re not putting a strain on our digestive system.

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