Wheat germ is something I used to think was for old people. Anything with the word germ in it lacks a certain appeal. When Heidi and I started researching how and what to feed our babies she mentioned wheat germ to me. Why? This wonderful little part of the wheat kernel is so packed full of good stuff it almost makes your jaw drop.
The germ in the name refers to germination. Wheat germ is the reproductive part of the wheat kernel that germinates and grows into a plant. It is very small and is only about 2.5% of the wheat kernel. It is also where most of the kernels fat is stored making it the most nutritional part of wheat.
Wheat germ contains more protein then most meat products. For vegetarians, picky eaters, toddlers, or babies 8 months or older it is a good way to make sure they are getting all the protein they need. Wheat germ is also a great source of vitamin-E, which is an antioxidant that helps your skin. It also contains lots of omega-3 fatty acids which are important for the nervous system to function and helps elevate the blood. It lowers cholesterol and promotes healthy hearts. Wheat germ is a good source of fiber. Fiber helps us all stay regular and helps prevent heart disease and diabetes.
In addition wheat germ is a good source of B vitamins-folate, niacin, thiamin, and vitamin B6, calcium, complex carbohydrates , iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorous, potassium, selenium, and zinc. As you can see this little guy packs some punch.
Wheat germ will go rancid so it is best to store it in the freezer or refrigerator in a sealed container. How do you eat wheat germ? You can sprinkle it in oatmeal, pasta, eggs, quesadillas, and even yogurt. I also like to bake with it. Add it to your bread, pizza crust, muffins, cakes, and pancakes. All of these are fast and easy to do for your little one. They will never know the difference in the taste of the food but will feel really good. Treat yourself right and start adding it to your food. You deserve it!