When you woke up this morning to prepare for your day, did you eat a good meal for breakfast? Maybe a slice of toast, a bowl of oatmeal, or a tasty waffle? You may have had some grain at your kitchen table! This time of year is a special time to be thankful for the foods we eat—and we can be thankful for gobs of grains!
What Are Grains?
Grains are a kind of grass. The seeds from different grains are food that people and animals can eat. Those seeds are also known as cereal. Wheat, rice, and corn are the grains most people eat. Other healthy grains are barley, oats, rye, and millet. Whole grains are the healthiest kinds of grains for kids and adults.
Corn is part of the grass family and grows in a long stalk. An ear of corn is also called a corn cob. Inside each ear of corn are hundreds of small seeds called kernels. Corn flour is used to make foods such as tortillas and cornbread.
What Is Wheat?
Wheat is a cereal grain that also grows as a tall grass in many places in the world, including China, India, France, Canada, Australia, and the United States. Some foods made from wheat are breads, rolls, doughnuts, muffins, cookies, cakes, cereals, crackers, pancakes, and waffles.
Some people might have an allergy to foods with wheat, or they find that foods with wheat upset their stomachs. In these cases, foods made from rice and corn are great choices.
More Oats, Please!
Oats are another cereal grain that can be crushed to make oatmeal or ground to make oat flour. Oat straw is often used as bedding for animals.
Rice grows in long, grass-like stems in many places in the world. Because lots of water is needed to grow rice, it is planted in places where it rains a lot.
Do Animals Eat Grains?
Many farm animals, including horses, cows, goats, sheep, and chickens, eat grains. Their favorites include corn, oats, and wheat.
Fun Grain Facts
● There are more than 40,000 kinds of rice.
● Corn is called “maize” in most countries. The name comes from the Spanish word ‘maiz.’
● Popcorn is a puffed-up whole grain.
● Whole grains have healthy vitamins and minerals that give your body energy.
● Most granola bars are made from oats.
Thankful for Grains
Eating grains is a great way to keep your body healthy and strong. During this Thanksgiving season, don’t forget to give thanks to God for all the many foods you are able to eat!