Is Wheat Bad For Everyone Why Should I Stop Eating Gluten
We’ve all heard that whole grains are good for us and we should eat more of them but recent studies are suggesting that isn’t the best advice---at least not for everyone.
When humans first walked the earth we mostly ate vegetables, fruits and meats. It wasn’t until later that some wild grains were added to our diet. Over time the grains we eat have changed and many are no longer healthy for us.
Just because something tastes good doesn't mean it's good for us. I've heard antifreeze has a pleasant taste but it will kill you if you eat it.
What is gluten?
Gluten is the protein in wheat that holds things together; it’s what gives dough its elasticity but for some people it’s like a poison.
Why go gluten free?
You’ve probably heard this quite a bit lately and wondered why people are saying no to wheat and wheat products. What is suddenly wrong with wheat and is it bad for everyone?
There are a few reasons to go gluten free.
This is an autoimmune disorder that affects 3 million Americans. They are unable to eat even the tiniest amount of gluten due to a host of medical symptoms. The immune system attacks the small intestine and prevents the absorption of vital nutrients, which can result in malnutrition.
For some of us we simply can’t digest it properly and it ferments in our stomach like beer, which sounds kind of cool but not so much. The result can be some or all of these symptoms: diarrhea, constipation, gas, bloating, vomiting, nausea, skin irritation, fatigue, muscle cramps, fog and depression.
You might have noticed some of these symptoms sound suspiciously like Fibromyalgia or Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and it has been suggested by some clinicians that many cases of these disorders may in fact be gluten intolerance.
For many, passing on gluten is an addition to many other carbohydrates they no longer eat. Bread, pasta and potatoes all add padding to our middle so cutting back or eliminating them can make a big difference.
Less carbs for better breast health
A recent study found that women who increased their starch intake by 2.3 grams that’s half an ounce of potatoes and half a cup of pasta over a one-year period had a higher risk for breast cancer. “Carbohydrates increase insulin levels, which may fuel tumor growth,” says Jennifer A Edmond, M.S., lead researcher of the University of California.
Source: June 2012 issue of Natural Health
Wheat has changed over the years
Wheat has been bioengineered to have more gluten in it than it did in the beginning. Why? More gluten makes fluffier breads and cakes. You may ask why that is bad if the outcome is a better bakery product; the problem is it’s harder to digest.
Once upon a time, before scientists changed the grain, we could digest small amounts of wheat (we were never intended to eat large quantities). Dr. Peter J. D’Adamo and like-minded physicians believe that some blood types have evolved to break it down better than others. Those with B and AB blood types can tolerate some forms of wheat while O and A blood types still can’t digest them properly.
More stress on our digestive system can lead to other health problems like colitis, colon cancer and many other issues.
If you have Celiac disease or a wheat allergy you will need to be aware of some of the hidden places you can find this grain.
It is used as a thickener in foods and even some health and beauty aids like toothpaste, lipstick, lip balm, medications and vitamins.
They don’t always list wheat in their ingredients so beware of generic names like “flavor”, “natural flavoring” or “other natural ingredients”. It is natural but for people with allergies it can be dangerous.
The Food and Drug Administration is working on this but products like cosmetics that aren’t consumed are in a different category not to mention many are made in other countries without the same regulations we have here in the United States.
To be on the safe side only use cosmetics from health food stores that specify gluten free or wheat free. Bert’s Bees is a great brand with hypoallergenic ingredients.
Gluten free products aren’t always healthier
When they take out flour they often substitute with cornmeal or potato flour, which is just as bad or worse for those with O blood types not to mention the calories they add.
Read your labels and don’t assume what you are buying is going to be healthy just because it says, “gluten free.” The trouble with food companies is that when they take out an ingredient they tend to load it down with chemicals or other bad stuff. If you don’t understand a word, look it up and if it doesn’t sound appetizing or good for you pass and look for a better alternative.
As you can imagine dining at your favorite restaurant will be a challenge and some should be avoided altogether like Italian cafes.
Some are becoming more accommodating for their patrons but just like baking mixes substitute unhealthy ingredients, so do restaurants.
Asking a chef what is in the dish will help in some cases but many use prepackaged mixes and don’t really know what is included. Food factories often change ingredients and how they prepare items so if you go home feeling sick it may not be the cook’s fault.
Any foods with a thick sauce, gravy or pudding should be avoided since flour is the most used ingredient for thickening dishes.
Major chains will give a menu online and you can usually stay safe with salads just so you avoid their salad dressing, potato salad or other creamy additions and of course croutons are a big no-no.
Most beer and some liquor have wheat in them. You need to be careful, especially with beer because they don't always list all of the ingredients on the label.
You can be safe with wine so long as it’s on your list of foods that don’t give you problems.