Monday, September 22, 2014

Wheat is a Genetically Modified Poison!

Eating gluten-free is hot right now. Many grocery stores and restaurants have gluten-free options but what exactly is gluten, why are people choosing to stay away from it and why do many of my patients who have food sensitivities eat wheat-free diets and not necessarily gluten-free diets? Burning questions, I know!

Gluten is a protein found in grains that include wheat, oat, spelt, rye, and barley and some people have a true allergy to it where their body cannot digest it so when consumed, their digestive track becomes inflamed, the intestinal wall damaged and over time celiac disease forms. Celiac disease is diagnosed by blood tests and examining a small piece of tissue from your intestinal track to see if it's damaged.

But a lot of people who feel that gluten may be an issue for them go for the celiac disease test and it comes back negative, yet they know they somehow feel better if they don't eat gluten. So even though there is no true gluten allergy causing a disease there could be a gluten sensitivity causing symptoms. That is why I muscle test to see if gluten is a problem for the body to digest and once off gluten their symptoms become dramatically better. Symptoms helped by not eating gluten when indicated by the muscle testing (also known at Nutrition Response Testing) include acne, constipation, diarrhea, gas, acid reflux, headaches. A lot of the times patients inform me about weight loss that occurs as a result as well.

Sometimes though, when testing the body, I don't find gluten as a problem for the body to digest but wheat itself is a problem. Whereas the other grains, oat, rye, spelt, etc. are okay for the patient to eat. So why would wheat be an issue but not gluten? The answer is because it has been genetically modified and the body looks at it as a toxin instead of a food. So for some bodies it is a "perfect, chronic poison," according to Dr. William Davis, a cardiologist who has published Wheat Belly. Davis said that the wheat we eat these days isn't the wheat your grandma had: "It's an 18-inch tall plant created by genetic research in the '60s and '70s." This thing has many new features nobody told you about, such as there's a new protein in this thing called gliadin. It's not gluten. The gliadin protein is an opiate. This thing binds into the opiate receptors in your brain and in most people stimulates appetite. Opiates include chemicals like morphine, heroin and opium.

So when people stop eating wheat, just like when people stop eating gluten, they tend to lose weight. My patients have also found relief in digestive issues, fatigue, headaches, acne, severe PMS and brain fog. When making food options while staying off of wheat you know if it's gluten-free then it won't have wheat so buying/ordering gluten-free is an easy way to go about cleaning up the wheat in your diet.

Besides staying off of the bread, pasta, bagels, pretzels which are obvious white flour/gluten containing foods one should be careful of gravies, soups and salad dressings which tend to use wheat as a thickner. Soy sauce has gluten in it as well and so a lot of my patients go to a health food store and get gluten-free soy sauce and bring that to the restaurant when ordering sushi or sashimi.