Best Thing Since Sliced Bread

And now a nugget of nutrition news from Mom: Besides being wasteful, there’s another really good reason to not trim the crusts off of your kids’ bread—according to a news item over on Ben Sullivan’s Science Blog, German researchers have discovered that the crust is a rich source of antioxidants and may provide a much stronger health benefit than the rest of the bread.

A recent study has identified an antioxidant called pronyl-lysine that’s 8 times more abundant in the bread’s crust. Interestingly, this compound is not present in the original flour. It is created during the complex chemical reaction of the protein-bound amino acid L-lysine and starch as well as reducing sugars in the presence of heat—a little something we amateurs call “baking.” What’s more, darker breads not only tend to have more dietary fiber but also higher amounts of this cancer-fighting antioxidant goodness too!