Every year on the first Wednesday of April, people around the country celebrate barley, buckwheat, quinoa and wild rice. They crack open granola bars and dip their spoons into oatmeal to partake in Whole Grain Sampling Day.
This year, April 2 marks the third annual Whole Grain Sampling Day, which is presented by Oldways and its Whole Grain Council. The celebration, which prompts millions of Americans to try delicious whole grains, is bolstered by several companies and food bloggers across the country, including Jennifer Drummond, a blogger from Oakley.
“I am proud to be an ambassador for the Whole Grain Council because I believe that whole grains are a very important part of a healthy diet,” said Drummond. “Even if you are gluten free, you can still have whole grains like brown rice and, my favorite, quinoa.”
Drummond’s food blog Peanut Butter and Peppers is filled with healthy recipes as well as fitness and health tips. Her recipes have been featured in Cosmopolitan, Health, and Fitness magazines. She was also awarded second place in Trader Joe’s Quinoa Contest.
Drumond’s site also chronicles her roller coaster weight loss journey and her motivation to become – and stay – fit and healthy.
“At about age 24, I wasn’t working out at all and just partied and enjoyed my time with my friends,” she writes in her blog. “I had an asthma attack and went to the doctor and that is when he told me, if I keep going this route, I would die! Pretty abrupt, but it’s true.”
Drummond will be blogging about whole grains on April 2 as well as hosting contests offering whole grain giveaways. She will also be sharing some of her most popular whole grain recipes, including baked oatmeal, quinoa mac and cheese, and black bean and quinoa tacos. Drummond and a handful of other bloggers across the county were chosen to be Whole Grain Ambassadors by the organizers of the event.
“We looked for bloggers who have a true love of food and those who either already were familiar with whole grains and used them in their cooking and/or those who have enjoyed cooking but might not have had as much of an opportunity to add whole grains into their routine,” said Rachel Greenstein, communications manager at Oldways. “This way they can learn about whole grains, try out a variety of them and share their experience with their community.”
Besides bloggers, several companies are participating in Whole Grain Sampling Day, including California Pizza Kitchen, Denny’s and Rubio’s. Many of these companies will be offering a discount on whole grain entrees on April 2. The purpose of all of Whole Grain Sampling Day is to encourage people to try whole grains.
“People say they didn’t think they like whole grains, and then they try it,” said Cynthia Harriman, director of food and nutrition strategies for the Whole Grain Council. “Nutritious and delicious can go together and there is something whole grain for every palate.”
To join in on the whole grain celebration, visit Drummond’s blog at www.peanutbutterandpeppers.com.