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Almost immediately, my appetite was roughly halved. I became stunningly detached from eating -- I still feel real hunger, but the compulsions lurking behind it -- that little voice that says, "seriously, McDonalds, NOW" -- are gone. No more guilty batches of cookies or brownies before bed. I mean, I still like cookies and brownies, but there's just no drive to seek them out. I don't really care about them. -- Daffodil-11

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Author Topic: How toxic is wheat?  (Read 15563 times)

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nougat

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Re: How toxic is wheat?
« Reply #15 on: March 16, 2010, 09:17:48 am »

don't all carbs break down into SUGAR??

hi anacara!
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Pip

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Re: How toxic is wheat?
« Reply #16 on: March 16, 2010, 10:08:19 am »


Maybe we should blame TRANSFAT and HFCS too. And Xeno Estrogens. And sitting on your butt all day.


No arguments there!!

I don't believe, however, that just because humans have been eating grains for thousands of years means that we are completely adapted to it. We have also been cultivating dairy for thousands of years, yet lactose intolerance is very widespread. According to Wikipedia, "The frequency of decreased lactase activity ranges from as little as 5% in northern Europe, up to 71% for Sicily, to more than 90% in some African and Asian countries."

Additionally, we may have been eating wheat for more than 10K years, or even 100K years, but I'm pretty sure that the wheat that is grown nowadays looks nothing like the wheat that was eaten back then. In fact, grains may have been used more for alcohol production than food originally. Vices have been known to drive innovation.  :D  

Thanks to decades of selective breeding, much of the produce we consume doesn't much resemble what we had 10k years ago or even 1K years ago. Fruits have more sugar content, turkeys have been bred to have such large breasts that they are unable to reproduce naturally, etc., etc. etc.

I did look at the article on genetic testing. It's an interesting idea and I like the thought that nutrition scientists may be moving away from one-size-fits all approach. I just wonder what the unintended consequences will be. For example, would an insurance company be able to drop your health insurance because you are not eating to type? I can totally see that happening in the U.S. under our current system. Maybe some people with a varied ethnic background will have genetic markers for more than one type of diet. Finally, will that information be kept private?

I think the safer and more reliable approach (and cheaper & can be done immediately) is this: if you are unable to lose weight, having cravings, huge appetite, GI distress, or autoimmune problems then you need to explore the possibility that you are eating the wrong things for your body. The only way to do this is to try eliminating various foods from your diet. Gluten intolerance may be as common as lactose intolerance, but because whole grains are being pushed as universally healthy people might not think to try it.
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Pip

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Re: How toxic is wheat?
« Reply #17 on: March 16, 2010, 10:10:03 am »

don't all carbs break down into SUGAR??

Good point, Nougat!

(Hope you were able to get though the article. Not too scientific, but a bit dense)
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anacara

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Re: How toxic is wheat?
« Reply #18 on: March 16, 2010, 10:44:34 am »

don't all carbs break down into SUGAR??

hi anacara!

Hey nougat! Nice to see you too. It's great to see you've lost a lot of weight since I was last active on the forums - I remember you were having trouble for quite a while. Did you do something different?

Yes carbs break down into sugars, but sugar as in sucrose, is particularly dangerous. The part of it that is glucose raises the blood sugar immediately, leading to raised insulin and so on, and the fructose heads straight for the liver where it is converted to fatty acids and causes a rise in triglycerides. And lots of other stuff which I don't have time to go into, because I can't remember them off the top of my head.

Judging from epidemiological studies (and simply from family members :-)), people can live long (I'm talking about mid nineties) and healthy lives with daily but moderate intakes of wheat in the form of bread (even if it is by no means a healthy or nutritious substance), but I doubt very much that any group of people on a high sucrose diet would be living similarly long and healthy lives. Any sucrose intake would have to be moderate indeed.
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An Alchemist

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Re: How toxic is wheat?
« Reply #19 on: March 16, 2010, 12:54:41 pm »

The lactose intolerance is due to us eating dairy products beyond infancy. Other mammals are weened at an early age; we continue to consume through our entire lifetimes (by choice, not necessity). We lose the ability to produce the necessary enzymes in sufficient quantities as we age, so it's no wonder we have lactose intolerance in our adulthoods.

Humans did not pop out of thin air, though. We evolved from other Hominidae mammals (assuming you believe Darwin was correct), and those animals were omnivorous and/or frugivorous Where humans differ in our DNA from our closest Hominid relative is that we produce amalyse, the enzyme required to break down starches. We clearly evolved to eat starches, otherwise we wouldn't produce amalyse. True that the varieties likely have changed over the centuries, but the building blocks are still the same.

To be clear, I don't I don't disagree that a small portion (small) of people have allergies or sensitivities to wheat products. I only disagree that wheat is 'toxic', or that as previously implied, ingesting 'moderate' amounts of wheat might be akin to ingesting moderate amount of arsenic or other poisons. I see more danger in shunning foods out of fear than eating responsibly and mindfully the same foods that our species have consumed for ages.
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Pip

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Re: How toxic is wheat?
« Reply #20 on: March 16, 2010, 01:38:29 pm »

Alchemist,

Perhaps you would like to read the articles and make your criticisms more specific to the information contained therein?

http://high-fat-nutrition.blogspot.com/2007/11/how-toxic-is-wheat-well-first-point-is.html
http://www.paleonu.com/panu-weblog/2010/3/12/the-argument-against-cereal-grains-ii.html

By the way, I am not advocating shunning foods out of fear. That is an unfair characterization of anything I have posted here. I am saying that it is worthwhile to experiment with the different foods we eat to see if we can uncover something problematic in our diet and to question what we think we know about food, but that point seems to be lost on you.

There is absolutely no danger in eliminating wheat for short periods or even longer periods of time.

I did not compare wheat to arsenic. I compared HFCS, hydrogenated oils and artificial ingredients to arsenic.

Just because we are able to eat starches doesn't mean that they are the optimal food source.
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Pinkmug

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Re: How toxic is wheat?
« Reply #21 on: March 17, 2010, 08:44:06 am »

Hey nougat, on top of what anacara says I'd like to add that eating an ounce of bread is not the same as an ounce of sugar. Of course the carbs in bread will break down into sugar, but so will fat!

Now if you eat a slice of whole grain bread you can also get protein, folate, iron, calcium, vitamins and fiber!

But check your bread ingredients - these days they add incredible stuff to bread. Better yet is making your own.

My mother and her siblings all lived into their 80's. They were heavy bread consumers. Of course being born in the 1910's and 1920's they probably ate good, homemade bread most of their lives.

don't all carbs break down into SUGAR??

hi anacara!

Hey nougat! Nice to see you too. It's great to see you've lost a lot of weight since I was last active on the forums - I remember you were having trouble for quite a while. Did you do something different?

Yes carbs break down into sugars, but sugar as in sucrose, is particularly dangerous. The part of it that is glucose raises the blood sugar immediately, leading to raised insulin and so on, and the fructose heads straight for the liver where it is converted to fatty acids and causes a rise in triglycerides. And lots of other stuff which I don't have time to go into, because I can't remember them off the top of my head.

Judging from epidemiological studies (and simply from family members :-)), people can live long (I'm talking about mid nineties) and healthy lives with daily but moderate intakes of wheat in the form of bread (even if it is by no means a healthy or nutritious substance), but I doubt very much that any group of people on a high sucrose diet would be living similarly long and healthy lives. Any sucrose intake would have to be moderate indeed.

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Pinkmug

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Re: How toxic is wheat?
« Reply #22 on: March 17, 2010, 09:15:39 am »

I don't believe, however, that just because humans have been eating grains for thousands of years means that we are completely adapted to it.

Good! Then you don't believe that just because our species has eaten meat for thousand of years means that we are compeletely adapted to it either  :D :D

I think all the intolerances you mention are tied up with ethnicity and genetics. It varies with population and their historical background. As the wikipedia data suggests.
I agree that wheat and everything else for that matter we eat today is different than 10,000 yrs ago. Even 100 yrs ago!
Fruits, poultry, meat etc yes it's all different. New and supposedly improved! You don't have to go any further - I'm 52 y.o. and I recall foods from the past with very diffrent looks and flavors! The free range chicken I ate and their eggs were nothing like today's. The chicken meat was much harder and had to be cooked for much longer. It also took more munching. Now chicken breasts practically don't even need much chewing.  Food wasn't so tender, we had to chew more, fruit wasn't so sweet, and so today's dentists are very happy!
(and diet pill pushers!!)

Most of this boils down to our "I want it all and I want it now" attitude.
I don't want to sound like a luddite but I miss old times' ways of raising and cultivating and cooking, and eating stress-free, but as vegan Kitten pointed out on another thread it's so different making for resources for 6 billion people than for 3 billion.


I did look at the article on genetic testing. It's an interesting idea and I like the thought that nutrition scientists may be moving away from one-size-fits all approach. I just wonder what the unintended consequences will be. For example, would an insurance company be able to drop your health insurance because you are not eating to type? I can totally see that happening in the U.S. under our current system. Maybe some people with a varied ethnic background will have genetic markers for more than one type of diet. Finally, will that information be kept private?

Your observations are scary, do you think that could really happen? How would "they" know what we eat?? Big brother is watching you??


I think the safer and more reliable approach (and cheaper & can be done immediately) is this: if you are unable to lose weight, having cravings, huge appetite, GI distress, or autoimmune problems then you need to explore the possibility that you are eating the wrong things for your body. The only way to do this is to try eliminating various foods from your diet. Gluten intolerance may be as common as lactose intolerance, but because whole grains are being pushed as universally healthy people might not think to try it.

I totally agree with this. One should take this on self and save time and money on appointments, pills, gimmicks... as long as we stay within safe commonsensical limits we should do our own investigation and experimentation. No two persons are alike!
(even though genetics may lump them together in general groups)

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Pinkmug

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Re: How toxic is wheat?
« Reply #23 on: March 17, 2010, 09:21:49 am »


Just because we are able to eat starches doesn't mean that they are the optimal food source.

The more I think of it and watch how opposing studies come and go all the time, I'd say there's no one optimal food source. The optimal food source is a wide combination of foods. Then we may restrict one or another according to our own response to them. I mentioned a case of a sailor stranded in the sea that after 10 days of eating fish flesh had to turn to the spines, internal organs, everything but the intestines (yecckh) to get the nutrition that was lacking in the flesh, and that saved his life.
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Pip

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Re: How toxic is wheat?
« Reply #24 on: March 17, 2010, 10:11:33 am »

I don't believe, however, that just because humans have been eating grains for thousands of years means that we are completely adapted to it.

Good! Then you don't believe that just because our species has eaten meat for thousand of years means that we are compeletely adapted to it either  :D :D

Ha Ha! Nice try. The paleo folks would argue that eating meat is what allowed us to become human in the first place.

I did look at the article on genetic testing. It's an interesting idea and I like the thought that nutrition scientists may be moving away from one-size-fits all approach. I just wonder what the unintended consequences will be. For example, would an insurance company be able to drop your health insurance because you are not eating to type? I can totally see that happening in the U.S. under our current system. Maybe some people with a varied ethnic background will have genetic markers for more than one type of diet. Finally, will that information be kept private?

Your observations are scary, do you think that could really happen? How would "they" know what we eat?? Big brother is watching you??

They wouldn't have to watch you. It would be evident from the diseases you get. U.S. health insurance companies currently pay people to look for excuses to drop you when you actually get sick. Given the current trajectory of insurance practices I think that pretty much anything is possible unless we get some major changes in place. Further, the genotyping thing is a slippery slope in my opinion. My husband who is a physician (internal medicine) had a patient who found that she had the gene for breast cancer and got so panicked that she went and had a double mastectomy even though she had not developed in cancer at all. My husband was upset that she did not consult him first because he would have advised lifestyle changes and monitoring before radical surgery. Genes do not equal destiny.

I think the safer and more reliable approach (and cheaper & can be done immediately) is this: if you are unable to lose weight, having cravings, huge appetite, GI distress, or autoimmune problems then you need to explore the possibility that you are eating the wrong things for your body. The only way to do this is to try eliminating various foods from your diet. Gluten intolerance may be as common as lactose intolerance, but because whole grains are being pushed as universally healthy people might not think to try it.

I totally agree with this. One should take this on self and save time and money on appointments, pills, gimmicks... as long as we stay within safe commonsensical limits we should do our own investigation and experimentation. No two persons are alike!
(even though genetics may lump them together in general groups)


Good! Then I am happy.  :D


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Pinkmug

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Re: How toxic is wheat?
« Reply #25 on: March 17, 2010, 10:34:31 am »

Hey Pip,

Ha Ha! Nice try. The paleo folks would argue that eating meat is what allowed us to become human in the first place.

Hmmm like I said before, i don't trust everything paleo folks say. There's so much we don't know. They said humans only started using cereals for food 10,000 years ago but recently tools were found in a cave in Mozambique that had been used to extract and mill sorgum 100,000 years ago. That's quite a gap...

Eating meat alone could not turn australopitecs into human. That's too simplistic...no?

They wouldn't have to watch you. It would be evident from the diseases you get.
Geez if I get diabetes or a GI disease okay but what about migraines or an ingrown hair??? :-D
But seriously I'm afraid European  insurance cos are following the same trend as in the US :-(

My husband who is a physician (internal medicine) had a patient who found that she had the gene for breast cancer and got so panicked that she went and had a double mastectomy even though she had not developed in cancer at all.

A cousin's wife, in her 20's did the same! Double mastectomy (and reconstruction). Geez... my mom had breast cancer, and I'm waiting to show the markers counts to my doctor, but I have no intention of being so radical. I'd do what your DH said. My mom's cancer was estrogen-related so I have a good clue.

And.. I'm happy that you're happy! -)


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Pip

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Re: How toxic is wheat?
« Reply #26 on: March 17, 2010, 11:07:12 am »

Okay, this is the last thing I will say about wheat in this thread (I hope).

I suspect few people actually read the post I linked to when starting this thread so I will try to do a summary here.

In the post Peter points to various studies that show that Wheat Germ Agglutinin (WGA) mimics insulin and enhances the rate of glucose transport.

My interpretation =  if you are trying to lose weight by stabilizing/reducing insulin levels, then eating wheat, especially whole wheat, may be counter-productive.

WGA was shown to increase the permeability of cells lining the intestines.

Intestinal Permeability is a bad thing because it allows molecules that shouldn't cross the intestinal lining to do so, provoking an immune response and inflammation.
http://altmedicine.about.com/od/healthconditionsdisease/a/TestLeakyGut.htm

So far as I can tell there are no studies that disprove WGAs ability to increase the permeability of intestinal cells or mimic insulin.

In fact, WGA is so good at binding to cells and enhancing insulin absorption in the gut, that scientists are considering using it as a delivery system for oral insulin. Good news for diabetics perhaps, but not necessary for the rest of us.

These factors are why I think that if someone is having trouble losing weight, having GI or autoimmune problems, eliminating wheat from your diet is very worthwhile to try.

So, yes, there may be other very problematic substances out there, but the risk/reward profile of wheat is poor in my opinion. On it's own, wheat flour does not provide any nutrients that one can't get elsewhere. As Pinkmug points out, the nutrients that are in wheat products are artificially added. Further, it is very easy to find non-wheat sources of starch - potato, oatmeal, rice, gluten-free flours, etc.


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August

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Re: How toxic is wheat?
« Reply #27 on: March 17, 2010, 11:12:23 am »

Dropping wheat from my diet was a seminal moment. 
If you are still struggling to lose those last few pounds, you owe it to yourself to dump the wheat (and soy) for a while and see the results for yourself.
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nougat

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Re: How toxic is wheat?
« Reply #28 on: March 17, 2010, 11:15:42 am »

i miss bread and other carbs very much....:( 
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Pip

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Re: How toxic is wheat?
« Reply #29 on: March 17, 2010, 11:32:49 am »

Hey Pip,

Ha Ha! Nice try. The paleo folks would argue that eating meat is what allowed us to become human in the first place.

Hmmm like I said before, i don't trust everything paleo folks say. There's so much we don't know. They said humans only started using cereals for food 10,000 years ago but recently tools were found in a cave in Mozambique that had been used to extract and mill sorgum 100,000 years ago. That's quite a gap...

Eating meat alone could not turn australopitecs into human. That's too simplistic...no?


Eating meat is estimated to go back about 2 million years or more. More densely packed nutrition led to more brain development and us becoming human.

You are right, though, no one really knows for sure. But regardless of how long we have been eating wheat, etc. there is pretty of good evidence that WGA can cause problems. As you say, sensitivity to it is likely tied up with genetic background. However, given the prevalence of obesity, T2 diabetes and allergies in modern society one has to wonder if sensitivity to it isn't more widespread than currently thought. Perhaps there is another factor influencing sensitivity in our environment or diet or maybe we just consume a heck of a lot more of it than our ancestors did.

Sorry to hear that mom had breast cancer. But it sounds like you are very on top of diet & lifestyle in relation to breast cancer, so that is good.

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