Ahhhh the typical Western Diet: ‘Whole Grains’ has become such an integral part of our eating habits as we were taught that we NEED FIBER! Because of this, the intake of processed foods and refined sugars have become an important part of our eating habits. In 2010, according to the American Institute of Cancer Research, we ranked 7th of having the highest rates disease and cancer such as heart disease, colon cancer, breast cancer, prostate cancer, high blood pressure, MS, diverticulitis, and many many more! Wheat causes inflammation in the joints and organs, and can increase oxidative stress to your body. When this happens, aging occurs and increases the likelihood of contracting a disease sooner in your lifespan.
What is Found in Wheat to Cause Inflammation
When we eat a diet high in wheat and/or gluten, for example, a whole grain cereal for breakfast, whole grain bread for lunch and whole wheat pasta for dinner, you are intaking high amounts of amylopectin A. When you ingest high amounts of this enzyme, it can spike your blood sugar. In a study done by the Institute of Animal Nutrition in Sichuan Agricultural University showed that a diet high with this enzyme can increase lipogenisis in the liver (fat storage). The study was done on animals, however, you can see there is a very similar path for humans.
Wheat also contains an opiate, gliadin protein, which stimulates the brain and appetite causing an addictive eating behavior. No wonder soft whole wheat bread and salted pretzels are addicting! There is another protein in wheat that can have toxic effects on the intestines, called agglutinin. It can cause acid reflux, IBS, and other serious digestive issues. Ever wonder why after eating a spaghetti dinner or large deli sandwich causes the belly to bloat? Well, your digestive tract doesn’t like how your treating it! Wheat is not the same today as it was 50 years ago. It has been hybrid to resist fungus for quicker production. It’s like putting diesel in your hybrid car. Not a good choice, right?
Life Without the Wheat
Now I know for most of you, it’s going to be hard to kick the wheat to the curb. However, I think your health is more important than that fettuccine alfredo and garlic bread. Choose sprouted wheat flour: Ezekial breads, Spelt flour, etc. Limit yourself on your intake and moderate your portions on brown rice, millet, quinoa, and amaranth. Increase your fruits and vegetables (you should be getting about 5 servings/day for both!) because you can get just enough fibers from those alone!
Don’t become a victim of this misconception that we need our ‘Whole Grain.’ I love this food pyramid on the right. If you have the food pyramid posted on top engraved in your brain, I think you should burn it and replace it with this one. Follow it the best you can, drink plenty of water (64oz/day), hit some activity about 30min/day, and you will decrease your chances of aging and upregulating your inflammatory genes!