Here’s What’s Really in Your Pancakes

Here’s What’s Really in Your Pancakes

They feel like home and compared with a detailed omelet, they’re quick to make. Here are the real pros and cons of flapjacks hot of the griddle.

Monday to Friday the menu is boring but nutritious plain-old-oatmeal for breakfast in our house-and whatever anyone can grab in a hurry, really.

But Saturday is reserved for pancakes. And if you make your pancakes from a box like we lazy bums do, here is the truth. We’re all getting a lot of straight carbs from those cakes.

This is great if the plan is to head out on a weekend bike ride for a couple of hours or a long walk. It’s instant fuel.

Pancakes have simple carbs that are bad for your health.

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The truth is though that most of us are headed to the couch after breakfast on a Saturday, or maybe out to the driveway to wash the car. Perhaps we’re heading out to the mall to cruise around for cheap t-shirts.

All those carbs aren’t really being put to great use. Here’s how it works.

Deadly Simple Carbs

Pancakes made with white flour and without anything extra added in like berries or nuts, are giving our bodies a blast of simple carbohydrates. It’s not entirely bad for you, but they’re digested quickly.

In scientific terms, the pancakes have a high glycemic index and make your blood sugar levels spike suddenly when you eat them.

The trouble is, a high glycemic index has been linked to a higher risk for developing diabetes and heart disease, being obese, infertility and colorectal cancer. Not pretty.


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And when you add syrup in on top of all of this, it just makes things worse. That stuff is ALL glycemic index- it’s super high in carbs as it’s basically liquid sugar.

So what can you do to improve the picture? Simply make some small adjustments. By substituting new ingredients for old and adding others in for taste and texture, you can greatly improve the health status of your pancakes.

How to Fix Things

It might take a while to get used to it, but try using whole wheat or buckwheat flour instead of the white stuff, in your recipe. This will give your body more fiber and slow down the digestion process, in turn lowering that glycemic index in your cakes, which will help you maintain a more even level of sugar in your blood after eating.

If you can, drop the syrup and use fruit, apple sauce or natural peanut butter as toppings instead. Again, you’ll add in more fiber to your meal and the spread will give you a bit of needed protein, to boot.


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Finally, for good measure consider adding ground nuts like walnuts to your pancake mix. Nuts contain a whole host of health benefits and will tide you over more easily until lunch, with all that protein content.

Not for you? If you can’t change what you love and insist on keeping your delicious pancakes the way they are, consider eating fewer of them and adding in a bowl of berries at breakfast. It’s all about balance.

Fire up the griddle and enjoy!



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