Happy Wheat Germ User: Maria Valdez Haubrich | Kretschmer Wheat Germ
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Happy Wheat Germ User: Maria Valdez Haubrich

Running a business, running marathons and running PTA committees might leave some people running on empty when it comes to feeding their family. But Maria Valdez Haubrich handles all three with enthusiasm and seemingly endless energy, and still makes time to feed her family delicious, healthy meals. Here she shares her history with wheat germ—and her No. 1 role model who introduced her to it.

When did you first start eating wheat germ? 

When I was growing up, my mom’s pancakes and waffles always had a secret ingredient, a certain taste we couldn’t name. Yes, it was love, but it was also wheat germ. To us kids, it tasted like home.

What brought you back to wheat germ as an adult?

My mom still cooks with wheat germ, and she uses it when she makes pancakes and waffles for her grandchildren. As a mother of two picky eaters, I’m always looking for ways to make the foods my kids eat more nutritious, so I decided to give it a try.

What are your favorite ways to incorporate wheat germ in meals?

I now put wheat germ in the pancakes I make, plus I add it to my kids’ cereal. My husband and I use it in our breakfast, too—myself in my cereal and oatmeal, and my husband on bagels with peanut butter and honey. I’ve also used it in smoothies and turkey burgers.

You’re a business owner, PTA member, runner. . . . How do you prepare healthy meals for your family with such a busy schedule?

I have a great role model—my mother. She worked full time and volunteered at our school and in the community while I was growing up. After my dad suffered a heart attack she made it a point to prepare healthy meals, so I learned to always have balanced meals with vegetables, small amounts of starch and more protein and fruit. I try to have all these elements in my house ready to go so I’m not scrambling at meal time. It doesn’t always happen, but I do my best. Plus, since my kids are pretty picky, I have a variety of foods for them to try and possibly reject, but I always try.

What do you want to try making next with wheat germ?

I’d like to try to bake with wheat germ so I can make our sweets a little healthier.

Want to incorporate wheat germ into your meals like Maria does? Try these pancake and smoothie recipes. Or, download our handy substitution guide to make your favorite meals healthier for you and your family.