“We Treat the Person, Not the Disease Name”
Earlene Wernham, HD, DSHomMed – Honours, RHom., Homeopathic Physician
431 Boler Road & 6 Longview Court, London, ON 519-204-2391
Drop the wheat? Am I crazy? Actually no, I’m not crazy and you will eventually thank me for this article. Read on….
Now, before I provide the list of wheat options, I want to make an important distinction between gluten and wheat….gluten is a protein found in grains such as wheat, barley, rye and others. It is not the grain itself – which is an important distinction. Also, it’s possible to separate the gluten from the grain. So if the label says gluten-free it doesn’t mean the product is wheat-free, and vice versa.
If you have celiac disease or gluten intolerance, you will need to eat a gluten-free diet. But my recommendation is to avoid all wheat, totally. Here’s why there is a problem with today’s wheat…
The wheat that we are eating today is not the same wheat that our relatives ate even 50 years ago. In fact, the original genome of wheat has been changed so much with bio-tech agriculture, that it is a “frankenwheat”.
The wheat that grew 10,000 years ago had only changed slightly due to natural evolution. Nowadays, wheat is a genetically engineered crop, it’s genetic material manipulated so that there are higher yields, lower growing dwarf varieties that withstand wind and rain and draught, and to resist insects. Wheat among other GMO foods today, are loaded weapons that wreak havoc with our health. The problem with today’s wheat is that:
- it contains a hyper-gluten that’s hyper-inflammatory
- it contains a hyper-starch (amylopectin A) that’s hyper-fattening, and as an added bonus,
- it processes into gluteomorphin, which is addictive… and makes you crave more!
That’s right, today’s wheat is an addictive food and you will experience withdrawal symptoms when you stop eating it, but, it is worth it.
You Might As Well Trade In That Toast for a Candy Bar!
If you think the best way to avoid diabetes is to eat less sugar, you could be in a lot of trouble. Even if you aren’t overweight, and don’t have a typical diabetic profile if you keep eating a particular type of grain, you could be going down the path to DIABETES.
It’s all because one of the foods that is putting the most people in danger of diabetes is not technically thought of as a sugary food. Even worse, most Diet Experts consider this substance to be part of a healthy diet so it is being touted as a “healthy food”, even by the Canadian Diabetic Association – BUT, they are DEAD WRONG!
I’m talking, of course, about WHEAT!
Even as the gluten-free trend is heating up, and many people are eliminating carbs to curb weight gain, we don’t hear enough about what I consider one of the top reasons to go wheat-free – The diabetes risk! Not to mention the Visceral Belly Fat Caused by, you guessed it ~ WHEAT!
The relationship between wheat and insulin is a major factor in diabetes, regardless of whether you have other risk factors or not. In fact, if you really understood the connection, you would probably indulge in a candy bar more often than you would have toast or a bagel with your eggs in the morning.
We may even have the cause-and-effect of diabetes backwards. The wheat-insulin response may well be what sparks weight gain, rather than the other way around. This means that if you wait to take steps to control your blood sugar, you could already be too late.
Let’s start by looking at where wheat falls on the glycemic index, and what those numbers mean. And more important, what sugar spikes do to your body…
Foods raise glucose – or sugar – to varying levels in your blood. Measuring the Glycemic Index (GI) of different foods enables us to compare those foods, relative to one another. The GI ranks foods based on the effect they have on your blood sugar levels – and the lower the index, the better. And looking at the numbers side-by-side tells an alarming story.
Wheat raises blood sugar higher than nearly all other foods, including white processed sugar and many chocolate bars.
Check out this comparison…
The GI of white bread is 69 and whole-grain bread is 72. Wheat cereal is 67. Compare that to a Mars Bar at 68 or a Snickers bar at 41. Table sugar comes in at 52. Meanwhile, chickpeas and lentils show up at 33 and 29 respectively. An alternative grain such as quinoa is 53.
Fruit often gets a bad rap for a high GI – but not compared to wheat. Many fruits, such as grapefruit and cherries come in as low as 25.
The highest fruit on the GI scale is watermelon at 72 which is equivalent to whole wheat toast. And most vegetables, such as broccoli, celery, and cauliflower come in as low as 15.
While there are only a few foods that increase blood sugar higher than wheat, these are the very foods that are often used in gluten-free products, just read the labels. These include: figs, dates and other dried fruit, rice starch, corn starch, tapioca starch, and potato starch – the most common ingredients used in gluten-free foods. Gluten-free foods are not by any stretch of the imagination “healthy foods”.
A gluten-free whole grain bread, for instance, is usually made with a combination of brown rice, potato, and tapioca starches – a combination that can send blood sugar through the roof!
The difference between those who go wheat-free and those who go gluten-free can often be spotted by two factors: their waist circumference and their blood sugar levels.
My recommendation is that you try to eliminate wheat and the use of gluten-free products altogether.
One of the biggest challenges to changing your diet is when you eat out in a restaurant….or over at a friend’s for dinner.
No sooner you sit down at your table, there is bread and dipping brought out….to solve this issue, just ask the server not to bring out the bread in the first place. Then you won’t be tempted to eat it! Instead of bread for an appetizer, there are yummy veggies and cheeses, sautéed mushrooms, etc., that are usually available which will allow you to still enjoy an evening out without blowing your no-wheat diet.
Getting off wheat – and not replacing it with gluten-free products that cause even greater blood sugar problems – is often enough to get my patients out of the diabetic range completely and some, that are faithful in what they eat, have even been able to eliminate the use of insulin and other diabetic drugs. It is concerning though, how many patients are taking insulin and Metformin and are basically still eating the foods that caused their type 2 diabetes in the first place.
I am totally convinced that if more people would make these changes, more would be able to get off the Insulin and other Diabetes drugs and stop this Type Two Diabetes Epidemic altogether. Time to get off the foods that are known to contribute to this dangerous disease.
The Canadian Diabetes Association, The Canada Food Guide and other Dieticians, encourage you to consume “whole wheat” and “whole grains”. But, don’t be fooled! As I stated earlier, whole wheat/whole grain bread is higher on the glycemic index than white sugar and if it’s not organic, the chances are, it contains GMO’s.
Some Health Issues which have resolved by giving up Wheat Include:
Type 2 Diabetes
Weight Gain of Viseral Abdominal Fat
Carbohydrate Food Cravings
Irritable Bowel Syndrome
TMJ (jaw pain and locked jaw)
Bunions on big toes
Blistering rashes on face, and arms
Restless Leg Syndrome
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome
So, if you’re ready to go wheat-free, but not grain-free, here are some types of healthy grains to try:
Amaranth: This grain is one of the most common wheat substitutes you’ll find. It contains more protein than wheat, is an excellent source of lysine, and unlike most grains, is highly digestible. You will see amaranth in baked goods and breads that are wheat and gluten-free. You can also buy your own to bake with.
Buckwheat Berries: Don’t be fooled by the name, this grain is neither buck nor wheat. It is from a plant in the rhubarb family. You will see this grain also as kasha or kashi. It is most commonly cooked into hot cereal. Buckwheat flour is also used in pancakes and bread. You may also buy your own.
Millet: This grain can be cooked into breakfast grits and is a good replacement for breadcrumbs in casseroles, croquettes and other side dishes. This grain is quite tasty when toasted.
Quinoa: Pronounced “keenwa”, it is often referred to as a “wonder grain”. Quinoa is high in protein, easy to digest, and quick to cook and it tastes yummy!. Cook and use as you would rice, it makes a great baked apple crisp. It is also found as any number of pastas, from spaghetti to macaroni. It has a wonderful “nutty” flavor and I just love it!
Brown Rice: This is my favourite gluten free pasta! I buy organic brown rice pasta in every shape and form. We eat a lot of pasta in our household, so this makes a great substitute for potatoes and rice dishes. Most of the world eats rice as a staple carbohydrate. And now, with gluten-free and wheat-free preferences becoming more popular, this is a great healthy choice!
Don’t forget to also add more vegetables and fruit into your diet for fiber and nutrients. And if you are a vegetarian and were counting on grains for protein, opt for quinoa and amaranth as higher-protein alternatives. If you are eating fish and meat, you can stick with rice as a substitute.
And lastly…Don’t expect to feel better or be happy right away! Just consider how long you have been eating wheat. It takes time for your body to adjust and to rebalance.
You should find that after the first few days or so, the wheat cravings will stop, you won’t feel so grumpy. The brain fog will start to clear. Some of those other aches and pains will amazingly vanish. Your energy levels will start to increase, and the weight will start to come off, especially the belly fat. Most important, your blood glucose levels will start to stabilize….that is, if you stay faithful. Make the effort to go at least 6 weeks without eating wheat or any wheat products. Once you experience the remarkable results, it will be much easier to stay off this health menace.
I really encourage you to give the no wheat diet a try, you just might find that you feel a lot better and as a bonus and a reward for your dedication, the stubborn belly fat starts to melt away!
I also recommend that you read the Book: “Wheat Belly” by Dr. William Davis, Cardiologist. It is an excellent read.
Don’t miss next topic: “GMO’s – Genetically Modified Organisms & Their Health Implications”
Bonus: Yummy Gluten Free Quinoa Apple Crisp Recipe:
6 apples (Macintosh, Delicious, Pink Lady, Gala, Granny Smith)
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
2 teaspoons tapioca or arrowroot starch
1 cup quinoa flakes
3/4 cup brown rice flour (or sorghum flour)
1 cup organic light brown sugar
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon sea salt
3/4 cup organic coconut oil
Preheat the oven to 350ºF. Grease the bottom and sides of an 8×11-inch gratin or baking dish with butter or vegan spread. Set aside.
Peel and core the apples. Slice them and toss into a bowl. Sprinkle with lemon juice and toss to coat. Add the maple syrup and stir. Dust with tapioca starch and stir again to coat the slices. Pour the slices into the prepared baking dish.
In a mixing bowl, combine the quinoa flakes, brown rice flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, ginger, and sea salt and whisk to blend. Add the coconut oil in pieces and using a whisk or a pastry cutter, cut the coconut oil into the flour blend until you have an even, sandy mixture.
Spoon the mixture all over the top.
Bake in the center of a pre-heated oven for about 20 minutes. Cover the top loosely with a piece of foil and continue to bake for another 20 minutes or so (depends upon the size/type of apples), until the apples are fork tender and the sides of the crisp are bubbling. (The foil will help keep the topping from browning too much.)
Allow the crisp to cool before serving- though slightly warm it is luscious. We had leftover apple crisp the next day, chilled, right out of the fridge, and Darling it was fabulous cold, too. It tasted like apple pie.
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