Local Vendor Spotlight: Our Daily Grain

Local Vendor Spotlight: Our Daily Grain

Wendy Miller’s organic California Porridge is made with 100 percent whole grain, making it one of the best things you can eat for your health.

By Carmelo Sigona

Everyone wants to be healthier and have more natural energy. I find that steel-cut oats and other whole grains offer my body a great carb that breaks down slowly and gives me lasting energy, though there are many of us that can’t find time to take 30 minutes to prepare a breakfast that will give our bodies this unmatchable energy.

Statistics from a 2006 study on the Whole Grains Council site show that less than four percent of Americans over the age of 12 meet their daily whole grain requirement. The same study conducted in 2008 showed less than 11 percent were meeting the daily requirement. While the percentage increased, this shows that far less than half of our national population gets nearly enough whole grain in its diet.

Wendy Miller, a Sigona's local vendor based in Belmont, Calif., makes a ready to heat-and-eat porridge with 100% whole grain.

Wendy Miller, a local vendor who makes a fully cooked and ready to heat-and-eat organic porridge from a blend of 100 percent whole grain, shared these stats with us. Being the nutrition aficionado I am, I was so pleased to meet Wendy and learn about her passion for the community’s health; it’s this passion which led her to start her Belmont-based company, Our Daily Grain.

The porridge blend Wendy supplies to our store meets 93 percent of the recommended whole grain daily allowance…if you’re looking for an easy way to incorporate more whole grains into your diet, it doesn’t get easier than Wendy’s porridge. As our gift to you, you can try it for free next week (May 26 – June 1, 2010) with your coupon when you make a purchase of $30 or more…and we’re throwing in a basket of local, in-season berries, too!

Wendy, a mother of three who lives in Belmont, started Our Daily Grain in early 2009 with a recipe she developed as a go-to breakfast meal or snack for her children.

“I wasn’t a big breakfast fan myself, but knew my children needed a healthy start to the day, so I knew I needed to lead by example,” said Wendy. “I love to cook and know there are a lot more ways we can take care of ourselves, so I first focused on incorporating more organic whole grains.

The more I thought about it the more I realized I couldn’t think of a better food than the porridge,” she continued. “I actually came across a porridge recipe while on vacation and with a few adjustments it quickly became a staple in our home. It’s really more of a ‘cause before the recipe’ approach that led me to start this business.”

Wendy’s heat-and-eat porridge contains organic ingredients, including steel-cut oats, red winter wheat berries, rolled oats, raw sunflower seeds, ground flax seeds and vanilla extract. Her fans have many different ways of eating the porridge (her teenage son often eats it as a pre-workout snack with a little almond butter before heading to football practice), but what I like to use best are fresh berries.

“The connection between porridge and berries is what led me to Sigona’s in the first place,” said Wendy. “Thinking from a marketing standpoint, we wanted to get the porridge placement in stores with lots of berries.”

The Whole Grains Council created a stamp to help consumers easily spot authentic whole grain foods

I eat a homemade mixture of whole grains as often as possible as I know they offer outstanding health benefits. According to many sources, such as the Whole Grains Council, the medical evidence is clear that whole grains reduce risks of heart disease, stroke, cancer, diabetes and obesity. Few foods can offer such diverse benefits.

“A quick, easy and minimally processed whole grain source, like porridge, is a good and very key way to significantly increase the health of our country,” said Wendy.

Wendy’s porridge is readily available for those who don’t have time to mix up batches at home (which can take 30 minutes to an hour alone!) and is a fantastic breakfast or snack for people on the go. Just remove the lid, pop it in the container in the microwave for 60-70 seconds, stir in your berries, and you’re good to go.

Try a container of Wendy’s California Porridge and a basket of local berries on us next week (May 26-June 1, 2010) when you make a purchase of $30 or more. Remember your coupon!

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