Ezekiel said what?

Some people are reluctant to give up wheat because it is talked about in the Bible. But the wheat of the Bible is not the same as the wheat of today. (See In search of wheat and Emmer, einkorn and agribusiness.) Comparing einkorn to modern wheat, for example, means a difference of chromosome number (14 chromosomes in einkorn vs. 42 chromosomes in modern strains of Triticum aestivum), thousands of genes, and differing gluten content and structure.

How about Ezekiel bread, the sprouted wheat bread that is purported to be based on a "recipe" articulated in the Bible?

Despite the claims of lower glycemic index, we've had bad experiences with this product, with triggering of high blood sugars, small LDL, and triglycerides not much different from conventional bread.

David Rostollan of Health for Life sent me this interesting perspective on Ezekiel bread from an article he wrote about wheat and the Bible. David argues that the entire concept of Ezekiel bread is based on a flawed interpretation.

"I Want to Eat the Food in the Bible."


Are you sure about that?

Some people, still wanting to be faithful to the Bible, will discard the "no grain/wheat" message on the basis of biblical example. After all, God told Ezekiel to make bread, he gave the Israelites "bread from heaven," and then Jesus (who is called the "Bread of Life"!) multiplied bread, and even instituted the New Covenant with what? Bread and wine! If you're going to live the Bible, it seems that bread and/or wheat is going to play a part.

But this is unnecessary. Sure, the Bible can and does tell us how to live, but this doesn't mean that everything in the Bible is meant to be copied verbatim. Applying the Bible to our lives requires wisdom, not a Xerox machine.

The Bible was written in a historical context, and the setting happened to be an agricultural one. Because of this, the language used to describe blessing spoke of things like fields full of grain, or barns overflowing with wheat. Had the Bible been written in the context of a hunter-gatherer culture, the language describing blessing probably would have been about the abundance of wild game, or baskets full of vegetables. Whatever is most valuable in your time and in your culture is a blessing. God accommodated His message to the culture as it existed at the time. This is done throughout Scripture.

There is a danger, then, in merely copying what the Bible says, instead of extracting the principles by which to live. Take the above example of Ezekiel, for instance. There's a whole product line in health food stores called "Ezekiel Bread" that supposedly copies the recipe given in Ezekiel 4:9. This is from the website:

"Inspired by the Holy Scripture verse Ezekiel 4:9., 'Take also unto thee Wheat, and Barley, and beans, and lentils, and millet, and Spelt, and put them in one vessel, and make bread of it...'"

Believing that this "recipe" has some kind of special power just because it's in the Bible is ridiculous. How ridiculous is it? I'll tell you in a moment, but first let me say that this is why it's so important not to confuse descriptives with prescriptives. Is the Bible telling a story, or is it telling us to do something? We would be well-advised not to confuse the two.

In the case of the Ezekiel Bread, what is going on in the passage? There's a siege going on, with impending famine, and Ezekiel is consigned to eating what was considered back then to be some of the worst possible food. It was basically animal chow. But that's not the worst thing going on in this passage. Apparently, when the makers of Ezekiel Bread were gleaning their inspiration for the perfect recipe, they stopped short
of verse 12:

"And thou shalt eat it as barley cakes, and thou shalt bake it with dung that cometh out of man, in their sight."

Um...what? Well, there was a good reason for this. God was judging His people, and by polluting this really bad bread with dung (which was a violation of Mosaic law; Lev. 5:3), He was saying that they were no different from the unclean Gentiles.

So why would we take this story and extrapolate a bread recipe from it? Beats me. If you were going to be consistent, though, here's what you'd have to end up with:



Let that be a lesson to you. We don't just go and do everything that we see in the Bible.

Comments (24) -

  • Tony

    6/10/2010 12:23:01 PM |

    If you're going to base your diet on the bible, then you shouldn't be eating pork (Leviticus 11:7), and you should eat plenty of locusts and crickets (Leviticus 11:22)

  • Jim

    6/10/2010 1:46:17 PM |

    Oooh, wait'll the God-deniers get a load of this one.

    Actually, I've wondered about the proper interpretation of passages like those mentioned, and this post is helpful for me.

  • Kathryn

    6/10/2010 2:45:43 PM |

    I appreciate this & putting the verses into context - but was human excrement to be used as content in the bread, or the fuel source to bake it?

  • Rob K

    6/10/2010 3:29:47 PM |

    I'm pretty sure the dung was not to go into the bread, it was to be used as fuel for the fire over which the bread was baked. But your point still holds very well. They also omit the lying on your side for 390 days. If eating Ezekiel bread is so healthy, so must be lying on your side for over a year.

  • zach

    6/10/2010 4:35:05 PM |

    I prefer to "kill the fattened calf."

  • Anonymous

    6/10/2010 5:57:57 PM |

    LOL

  • ShottleBop

    6/10/2010 6:44:12 PM |

    Dung was probably not an ingredient, but the fuel used to cook the bread.  (Still pretty unsavory, though.)

  • Brett

    6/10/2010 7:55:51 PM |

    1) All religion is poetry...

    -- Paul Tillich

    2) I have a huntch that, uh, folks from a couple thousand years ago, uh, never heard of macronutrients, glucose, insulin, etc.

    3) Peace

  • Lori Miller

    6/11/2010 1:11:51 AM |

    For those who are interested in the Bible's statements on food, here's a link to a brief overview of kosher laws:

    http://www.kashrut.com/articles/soul_food/

  • Anonymous

    6/11/2010 2:46:51 AM |

    Combining a lesson in both religion and medicine, Love It!!

  • Ned Kock

    6/11/2010 2:56:55 AM |

    I agree with you, Dr. Davis, that religious issues are very important to many people concerned about dieting. And it is important to discuss them, even though some people think that religious issues should not be part of any discussion related to diet.

    In fact, a lot of people who think  about diet issues from a scientific standpoint tend to think that religiosity is a product of pure stupidity. This post and the comments in response to it illustrate what I am talking about:

    http://healthcorrelator.blogspot.com/2010/05/atheism-is-recent-neolithic-invention.html

  • Cassie

    6/11/2010 3:24:05 AM |

    Waiting for my local library to get a copy of Pandora's Seed by Spencer Wells. In it, he examines the unforeseen costs of farming, which began to transform society 10,000 years ago (using a scientific timescale), such as diabetes and obesity.

    Definitely one of man's worst inventions.

  • Anonymous

    6/11/2010 4:48:04 AM |

    Interesting fact:  The Catholic church will not use anything other than wheat to make the wafers for the Eucharist.  If you have wheat intolerance, you can request a low-gluten wafer.  But a non-wheat wafer will never be used as part of that sacrament, no matter how badly one might react to wheat.

    I think that stance is a bit much, but I am not a devout Catholic.

  • Anonymous

    6/11/2010 10:58:52 AM |

    Dr. D.
    As the Brits say; you are on a losing wicket.

    No person of religion will be pursued to move from the crowd. That is why they follow.

  • Mia

    6/11/2010 11:45:27 AM |

    Great post! I've never understood how people can take the Bible literally. As someone mentioned in the comments, it's mainly poetry, and it describes a frame of reference and customs of thousands of years ago. Would be very weird to apply all that literally to our high-tech society.

    I looked the Bible fragment up in Dutch. It says he has to bake it on human dung (i.e. using the dung as fuel). The fun thing is that a couple of verses later Ezechiel complains and says he has never eaten anything impure in his life and then God gives in and says, 'OK then, you can use cattle dung instead of human dung.' Smile

  • olddude

    6/11/2010 12:36:48 PM |

    Sounds to me like the beginning work on "fecal transplant".

  • Mary Beth

    6/11/2010 1:25:15 PM |

    But, here's the question: do you think the Ezekiel Bread is worth eating for health reasons?

  • Jonathan

    6/11/2010 4:52:44 PM |

    Other translations have the dung as a source of fuel.  
    As much fat as I eat, you'd probably have to put a wick in it.
    I don't think that would give it a nice smoke flavor or anything. Wink

  • David

    6/12/2010 2:33:26 AM |

    I think some of these comments are missing the point. Whether the dung was used as fuel or incorporated into the recipe makes little difference to the interpretive thrust of the passage. According to Mosaic ceremonial law (which was typological, not perpetual), excrement was to be covered with dirt. You don't touch it, and you certainly don't cook with it. The point is that the bread was polluted, and this served as a typological symbol of Israel's pollution and rejection. Israel, the elect and "clean" nation, has become filthy.

    God didn't make Ezekiel write this stuff down so we could whip up a great recipe 2400 years later. And by the way, the same goes for the book of Daniel. Just because Daniel and his buddies ate nothing but vegetables and water for ten days doesn't mean that vegetarianism is the best diet. That's not even close to the original intent of the passage. Yet I see these kinds of non-contextual claims all the time. It saddens me when I see fellow Christians using the Bible this way.

  • David

    6/12/2010 4:01:22 PM |

    FYI: The "Wheat and the Bible" article can be accessed in its entirety on my website here: http://www.reforminghealth.com/Wheat_and_the_Bible.pdf

    David

  • Dr. William Davis

    6/12/2010 10:20:46 PM |

    Thanks, David.

    For anyone else interested, David's article provides a very nice overview of the broader topic of Wheat and the Bible.

  • Paleo Phil

    6/14/2010 1:38:22 AM |

    Dr. Davis, I appreciate your courage in tackling this difficult subject. Dr. Kurt Harris has also discussed the fact that even traditional methods of processing wheat do not eliminate all of its negative qualities: http://www.paleonu.com/panu-weblog/2009/12/28/avoid-poison-or-neutralize-it.html.

    Religious concerns are undoubtedly one of the trickiest issues that biologically appropriate diets raise. Everyone on the planet is not going to abandon what they see as their religion principles for health reasons, so I try to meet people where they're at. For those Christians who tell me that wheat must be healthy because it's in the New Testament and the Levitical diet, I say, sure, the Levitical diet is older and healthier than the SAD of today, but there was an even earlier diet in the Bible that's even healthier. It's composed of God-made foods instead of man-made foods. It usually occurs to them that this is the diet of wild foods available at the time of humanity's creation, which I also refer to as the "Garden of Eden diet", which was free of wheat bread, even unleavened, and certainly wouldn't contain any pizza, pasta or processed breakfast cereal. This doesn't always convince people, but it rarely fails to give them pause.

    Plus, in Genesis 3:17-19, bread is part of a curse, not a blessing. So wheat could be regarded as a blessing compared to starvation, but a curse or penance compared to the original Biblical foods of the Creator's making.

    Also, at times in the Bible, suffering is treated as an opportunity for penance or purification. It doesn't mean the bad stuff that causes the suffering (ie wheat) is "good" in and of itself. Perhaps this could be a way to explain Jesus' direction to eat bread in remembrance of Him? I generally avoid this subject as potentially too touchy, so I'm curious for input from wheat-avoiding Christians on how they deal with this.

    On top of all the above, bread is no longer necessary for survival in wealthy modern cultures, like it may have been in some of the regions and times covered by the Bible. So the contexts are very different.

    Hope this helps.

  • David

    6/16/2010 11:13:27 PM |

    Paleo Phil,

    As a wheat-avoiding Christian, I deal with this issue by actually trying to return the focus to the intent of the Biblical text(s). Was it the biblical author's intent to communicate wheat/grain as perpetually appropriate and required foods for all time (unlikely), or was it rather simply that the biblical narrative existed within an agricultural context and was thus accommodated to those times? I think the latter option is the reasonable one.

    In the biblical account, all of creation is said to be "good" (as opposed to Gnosticism, which says that matter is intrinsically evil) but I think it is a mistake to take this as synonymous with "harmless," and it is important to remember that despite being "good," elements within creation can be either appropriate or inappropriate depending on the use and context. Plant toxins are "good" in the creational sense in that they make for a balanced and workable ecosystem, but are relatively "bad" for the unwary animal that eats them. The wheat/grain issue is no different. Grains might be creationally good and play an important role somewhere in the broader order of things, but this doesn't mean they're harmless if the circumstances are right (e.g. genetic modification, improper preparation methods, etc., etc.).

    Appealing to the "Garden of Eden diet" might work for some Christians, but I think there's a deeper problem going on. Too many modern Christians see the Bible as a sort of "prescription" for what they should or should not eat. For instance, the Levitical diet (clean vs unclean foods) is often pointed to as the ultimate "healthy diet." However, the health aspects had nothing to do with the actual declared purpose of the restrictions. The diet was purely typological and temporary, and any health benefits were merely coincidental side-benefits. These typological requirements have had an antitypical fulfillment, however, so the diet should have no bearing on anyone today.

    Likewise, many Christians point to the supposedly vegetarian diet in Genesis as the "original" diet that mankind was created for. But again, this misses the point of the author's literary intent. What was going on in the Genesis creation account? Was Moses telling us how to eat, or was he telling us something completely different? Most Christians are clueless here. As it turns out, the creation story has nothing to do with scientific explanations or dietary prescriptions. It was written in an ancient Near Eastern (ANE) context where creation myths abounded, and Moses was contrasting the Hebrew God with the surrounding deities of the ancient world. The account is not relating scientific facts, but is rather a literary polemic written to combat other ANE pagan religions point for point. The God of Israel is not like Ptah, or Shu, or Marduk, or Baal. The Genesis account powerfully overturns the Enuma Elish and other ANE creation stories. That was its historical intent.

    Unless one is familiar with ANE culture, many of the subtleties within the Genesis account will not make sense, and you will end up with an interpretive disaster, like Young-Earth Creationism or Vegetarianism, for instance. The Bible does say that God created, but it does not tell us how He created. This is nowhere near the intent of the original author.

    (Continued)

  • Bryan

    10/21/2010 4:47:41 AM |

    As I read the chapter, it looks more like Ezekiel is instructed to act in a symbolic manner.  He is instructed to symbolically lay seige to a model of Jerusalem that is drawn or built on a tile--even building miniature seige engines. In essence, the call to moral behavior in the book is a "seige" against the transgressions done within the city.  Thus, the "bread" is also to be made and eaten as a symbol.  The context is fairly plain.  Nowhere is there any statement that Israel, or even just Jerusalem, is to make or eat the stuff.  Ezekiel is told to bake and eat the bread "in their sight" or "in the sight of the people" and then tell anyone who sees him that this is the level of wretchedness they will be reduced to, I presume because of their faithlessness and obstinacy after many warnings, given the general context of the Book of Ezekiel.

    Thus, "Ezekiel bread" is actually a symbol of the wrath of God against the obstinately faithless and not a "recipe" for what God wants a faithful believer to eat daily.

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Blame the gluten?

Blame the gluten?

Wheat is among the most destructive components of the human diet, a food that is responsible for inflammatory disease, diabetes, heart disease, several forms of intestinal diseases, schizophrenia, bipolar illness, ADHD, behavioral outbursts in autistic children . . . just to name a few.

But why?

Wheat is mostly carbohydrate. That explains its capacity to cause blood sugar to increase after eating, say, a turkey sandwich on whole wheat bread. The rapid release of sugars likely underlies its capacity to create visceral fat, what I call "wheat belly."

But neither the carbohydrate nor the other components, like bran and B vitamins, can explain all the other adverse health phenomena of wheat. So what is it in wheat that, for instance, worsens auditory hallucinations in paranoid schizophrenics? Is it the gluten?

First of all, what is gluten?

Gluten protein is the focus of most wheat research conducted by food manufacturers and food scientists, since it is the component of wheat that confers the unique properties of dough, allowing a pizza maker to roll and toss pizza crust in the air and mold it into shape. The distinctive “doughy” quality of the simple mix of wheat flour and water, unlike cornstarch or rice starch, for instance, properties that food scientists call “viscoelasticity” and “cohesiveness,” are due to the gluten. Wheat is mostly carbohydrate, but the 10-15% protein content is approximately 80% gluten. Wheat without gluten would lose its unique qualities that make it desirable to bakers and pizza makers. Gluten is also the component of wheat most confidently linked to immune diseases like celiac.

The structure of gluten proteins has proven frustratingly elusive to characterize, as it changes over time and varies from strain to strain. But an understanding of gluten structure may be part, perhaps most, of the answer to the question of why wheat provokes negative effects in humans.

The term “gluten” encompasses two primary families of proteins, the gliadins and the glutenens. The gliadins, one of the protein groups that trigger the immune response in celiac disease, has three subtypes: a/ß-gliadins, ?-gliadins, and ?-gliadins. The glutenins are repeating structures, or polymers, of more basic protein structures.

Beyond gluten, the other 20% or so of non-gluten proteins in wheat include albumins, prolamins, and globulins, each of which can also vary from strain to strain. In total, there are over 1000 other proteins that serve functions from protection of the grain from pathogens, to water resistance, to reproductive functions. There are agglutinins, peroxidases, a-amylases, serpins, and acyl CoA oxidases, not to mention five forms of glycerinaldehyde-3-phosphate dehydrogenases. I shouldn’t neglect to mention the globulins, ß-purothionin, puroindolines a and b, tritin, and starch synthases.

As if this protein/enzyme smorgasbord weren’t enough, food processors have also turned to fungal enzymes, such as cellulases, glucoamylases, xylanases, and ß-xylosidases to enhance leavening and texture. Many bakers also add soy flour to enhance mixing and whiteness, which introduces yet another collection of proteins and enzymes.

In short, wheat is not just a simple gluten protein with some starch and bran. It is a complex collection of biological material that varies according to its genetic code.

While wheat is primarily carbohydrate, it is also a mix of gluten protein which can vary in structure from strain to strain, as well as a highly variable mix of non-gluten proteins. Wheat has evolved naturally to only a modest degree, but it has changed dramatically under the influence of agricultural scientists. With human intervention, wheat strains are bred and genetically manipulated to obtain desirable characteristics, such as height (ranging from 18 inches to over 4 feet tall), “clinginess” of the seeds, yield per acre, and baking or viscoelastic properties of the dough. Various chemicals are also administered to fight off potential pathogens, such as fungi, and to activate the expression of protective enzymes within the wheat itself to “inoculate” itself against invading organisms.

From the original two strains of wheat consumed by Neolithic humans in the Fertile Crescent 9000 years ago (Emmer and Einkorn), we now have over 200,000 strains of wheat virtually all of which are the product of genetic manipulations that have modified the protein structure of wheat. The extraordinary complexity of wheat proteins have therefore created a huge black box of uncertainty in pinpointing which protein causes what.

But there's an easy cure for the uncertainty: Don't eat it.

Comments (17) -

  • lindaharper

    5/14/2010 3:18:04 PM |

    Do you have the same destructive problem making bread from other grains instead of wheat, i.e. rice, barley, spelt? These are all useful for those with wheat intolerance, but I haven't heard you say about using other grains in making your own homemade bread.  I have also read that sourdough leavening is also less destructive.

  • Kevin

    5/14/2010 4:07:03 PM |

    Quote:

    "So what is it in wheat that, for instance, worsens auditory hallucinations in paranoid schizophrenics? Is it the gluten?"

    If wheat is associated with auditory hallucinations, is it also associated with olfactory hallucinations?  I've had them at least 20 years.  For me they go away if I take zinc regularly.  

    kevin

  • Anonymous

    5/14/2010 5:39:38 PM |

    I'd also be interested to know if there is any type of bread (gluten free) which you feel is safe to eat within moderation.

    Rice bread tends to be high-ish in carbs, but at least it avoids the gluten.

    Just wondering if rice bread and other gluten-free alternatives cause small LDL like wheat does.

  • Michael Barker

    5/15/2010 12:51:59 AM |

    What I've never understood is how the Italians have eaten pasta for so many years without, it appears, great problems.

  • Dr. William Davis

    5/15/2010 12:53:57 AM |

    Hi, Linda--

    If you subtract the gluten, you have (mostly) carbohydrates.

    It then boils down to how carb-sensitive you are gauged by, for instance, postprandial blood glucose or HbA1c.

  • Peter

    5/15/2010 11:45:29 AM |

    Another puzzling bit of information is the northern Indians who eat lots of wheat have a fraction of the heart disease of the rice eating southern Indians.

  • Anonymous

    5/15/2010 3:33:12 PM |

    Regarding pasta and Italians -- it was in North America, not Italy, where pasta graduated to main-course portions, probably because it's cheap.

  • Jim Purdy

    5/15/2010 9:24:29 PM |

    "But there's an easy cure for the uncertainty: Don't eat it."

    That makes sense to me.

    But if I have to give up Wheat Chex cereal, can I still eat Corn Chex and Rice Chex?

  • Anonymous

    5/15/2010 11:17:03 PM |

    We've recently gone gluten-free after suspecting gluten intolerance in me and my 3 yr old son. Wow what a difference. After one week off gluten, I gave him one piece of sourdough bread since we were low on groceries and I wasn't able to go out that day. I noticed immediate behavioral changes and changes on his skin (small bumps... my Naturopath says it's a sign he is deficient in certain vitamins, they were going away while he was off gluten). Our lifesavers are quinoa porridge (quinoa, water, milk, egg yolks) and buckwheat pancakes, the kids love them. Makes going grain-free a little easier for my carb-addicted preschooler (we've taken it one step further then gluten-free and eliminated all grains.) Buckwheat pancakes can be used to make sandwiches, as a substitute for bread.  - Valley Mom

  • Chris

    5/16/2010 3:39:29 PM |

    What plant or animal source of food has not been severely manipulated over the last 9,000 years? What if I'm sure I don't have Celiacs Disease or Schizophrenia and I control my daily blood glucose and HbA1C? Isn't wheat just another source of carbs/fiber/protein?

  • Dave

    5/16/2010 3:50:50 PM |

    Just to expand on your last sentence: if there's no upside to eating wheat, and even the remotest possibility of a downside, then the decision is easy.

    Of course there clearly is an upside, or else wheat wouldn't get eaten in the first place. The question is whether or not this upside represents an actual positive impact on health, or a misinterpretation by the brain of signals which normally indicate positive health outcomes. See my blog and ensuing discussion here:

    http://sparkofreason.blogspot.com/2010/05/why-do-you-eat-grains.html

  • Myron

    5/16/2010 6:35:24 PM |

    For People that make excuses or try to talk their way out of avoiding wheat or any other food item, that is the #1 sign of an allergy addiction.

    Take a look at the relationship between low Testosterone and metabolic syndrome and belly fat.

    It's not just a sugar thing, more  related to steroids and stress, IMHO

  • kris

    5/16/2010 8:06:02 PM |

    I do not see a single person around my family who doesn’t have some sort of health issue and they all have northern Indian background. Most of them are diabetics, have heart disease, wheat belly, puffy cheeks, unable to run a mile after the age of 30, hypothyroid, over weight. Just for this topic, if I think about all of the hundreds of people that I know who have northern Indian background, most of them have health issues and they all have high carbohydrate, high wheat based diet. Now there are people within the family who are changing their diet ever since they have seen me improving, about every one of them has made improvements after the change.
    Everyone is entitled to their opinion but,
    I for one believe that the wheat is the one of the biggest culprit in our diet.
    Carbohydrates might be the second in line along with iodine shortages and the list goes on.
    The high glycoside symptoms are very close to the hypothyroid symptoms.
    Every person should own a blood-sugar meter and should have the knowledge to their sugar/carbohydrate reaction profile.
      But I think that finally the time has come where free-will education is being shared in a positive manner which will eventually push the “wanna be Mr Right side” organizations to jump the band wagon sooner or later.
    By the way Dr. Davis, after giving up wheat, taking care of thyroid and weight management which helped me loose 40 some pounds, I am happy to report that after reading your blogs religiously and following that low carb diet, I have lost the last 10 pounds. I have never felt this way in my entire life.
    Keeping my blood sugar level between 4 and 5.5 almost all of skin problems go away which includes but not limited to 10 years old broken hand palm skin, bloody gums, skin inflammation on back of my head, red patch on the facial skin, less bloody shave etc.  Interestingly, if the after meal blood sugar level stays over 6 and around 8 for few days, then most these issues slowly begin to come back. This might explain why I had bloody stomach few years back. Introduction of more fat in my diet may have also helped in all of above.
    All of above is my personal experience so it may not be backed by any study.
    Please keep it up, you are The Doctor.

  • Anne

    5/17/2010 1:21:21 AM |

    Lindaharper - barley and spelt have gluten similar to wheat and need to be eliminated on a gluten free diet. A gluten free diet eliminates wheat, barley and rye and related grains.

    I have gluten intolerance and type 2 diabetes. I can keep my blood sugar in control by limiting carbs. I have not found any grain that will not raise my blood glucose to unacceptable levels. I guess I could eat tiny amount of grain, but why bother. I would rather get my few carbs from highly nutritious low carb veggies.

    Eliminating gluten gave me back my life. Eliminating grains in general further improved my health.

    A great site to read more about gluten is The Gluten File

  • Captain Mikee

    5/17/2010 2:41:49 PM |

    @Jim Purdy: Most breakfast cereals contain barley malt even if they don't have wheat. Barley also contains gluten.

    My family went through a couple months of substituting gluten-free grains before we decided it wasn't worth it and gave up all grains. Gluten-free substitute foods can help you break the addiction, but in the long run I don't think they're very healthy. In fact, in terms of pure nutrition (ignoring the anti-nutrition) no grain can beat wheat. Everything else is worse.

  • Anonymous

    5/20/2010 1:45:25 AM |

    General Mills brand Rice Chex and Corn Chex have been reformulated to remove the barley malt, so they are now gluten-free.  Some (but not all) Erewhon rice crispy cereals are also gluten-free.

  • Aleck H Alexopoulos

    7/20/2010 11:14:29 AM |

    Very interesting information.
    I wonder if there is a compounded problem with fructose consumption.

    I personally believe that we haven't had the time to evolve
    and adjust to the high-carb diets characteristic of agricultural societies.

    Some people are more susceptible to problems of increased carbs, refined-carbs, sugars, and fructose. This susceptibility
    can take a long time to manifest itself. Its not just insulin-resistance, but growth hormone levels, HTA-axis, and other
    hormonal controls but also there
    is a growing realization of the effect of refined carbs and sugars on the inflammation process which suggests connections to atherosclerosis, neuronal damage, and even autoimmune diseases.

    Last note:
    I find it very striking that cancer cells have such a "craving" for sugars that they represent the only cells - other than hepatocytes - that will readily uptake fructose from the plasma.

    Just my thoughts.

    Aleck H Alexopoulos

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