What is the difference between wheat and atta flour?

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"Atta" actually means "flour" in most East Indian dialects. Atta flour is not actually a 'type of flour'. Most East Indians, when they refer to atta in a recipe, will use a mixture of whole-wheat and all-purpose flour (most often a two to one ratio). Exclusively whole-wheat flour could be used if it is very finely ground, and in this case, the earlier answer may apply. (The definition given below of 'atta' being the flour made from the grain and the endosperm (without the bran) would be a very fine flour, and could indeed be used to make many East Indian recipes, such as chapattis or rotis. )

But the correct answer here is that 'atta' really means flour, so there is no real 'correct' answer to this question!

A grain of wheat is made up of three main parts. The germ is the bit in the middle, which holds the most nutrients and the endosperm makes up the bulk of the grain with starches and sugars. The husk or bran is the tough skin, like you find on the outside of brown rice. This is very high in dietary fibre.

Brown or wholewheat flour contains all three parts of the grain.

White flour contains only the endosperm which means it retains the carbohydrates loses most of the minerals and vitamins.

Atta flour on the other hand uses the germ and the endosperm. But not the bran. Bran fibre is insoluble, so atta flour is a much lighter more easily digested flour. And good digestion is the key to good health.
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