Marks Daily Apple
Serving up health and fitness insights (daily, of course) with a side of irreverence.
18 Oct

The Problems with Modern Wheat

wheat3This may seem like a redundant topic, since most of you following a Primal eating plan are already avoiding wheat. The occasional dabbing of soy sauce, maybe a bit of crusty bread at a restaurant, sure, but for the most part, you’re not munching on baguettes in parks on sunny days, wolfing down huge sandwiches, and eating pasta. Wheat avoidance tends to be the rule in our circle. Still, though, haven’t you had that moment where someone asks “What’s wrong with wheat?” and you mutter something about gluten and the advent of agriculture that doesn’t really sound convincing, even to you? Consider today’s post a crash course in exactly why modern wheat in particular is a problem. To borrow a horrible concept that has helped politicians and their cronies obfuscate the truth for decades, these are “talking points” to which you can always refer when asked. The only difference is that these talking points are based on actual research.

Before we begin, what is modern wheat?

Modern wheat is dwarf wheat, a cultivar developed in the ’60s to massively increase yield per acre. But this dwarf wheat wasn’t the lovable, bearded, wisecracking, clownish, comic relief-providing, overly self-conscious Gimli of the Lord of the Rings films, nor was it the fearsome, highly respected, resolute dwarven warrior Gimli in the books. It was a high-yielding cultivar with larger seed heads and thick, short stocks that could bear the extra weight. Being shorter, it received less sunlight than traditional wheat cultivars, but it produced a lot of grains on less acreage. Agronomist Norman Borlaug pioneered the development of these high yield dwarf varieties, refining and perfecting already existing wheat strains, and received much acclaim (including the Nobel Peace Prize) for introducing the dwarf wheat and modern agriculture to developing countries. He certainly helped many millions of people find sustenance and livelihood through wheat agriculture, but what were the unintended consequences of his forays into genetic manipulation of wheat? How is modern wheat different? What are the problems – if any – of modern wheat?

It’s less nutritious.

In 1843, agronomists at Rothamstead Research Station in Hertfordshire, England began what would become one of the longest-running continuous agronomic experiments in the world: the Broadbalk Winter Wheat Experiment. For the last two centuries, generations of scientists involved in the experiment have grown multiple wheat cultivars on adjacent plots of land and applied different farming techniques and fertilizers to study the effect on yield, nutritional content, and viability of the crop. They’ve rotated crops in and out, switched up fertilizers, and tracked the change in mineral content of both soil and wheat grain. It’s a stunning example of a well-designed, seemingly never ending (it continues to this day, as far as I can tell) experiment.

Between 1843 and the mid 1960s, the mineral content, including zinc, magnesium, iron, and copper, of harvested wheat grain in the experiment stayed constant. But after that point, zinc, magnesium, iron, and copper concentrations began to decrease – a shift that “coincided with the introduction of semi-dwarf, high-yielding cultivars” into the Broadbalk experiment. Another study found that the “ancient” wheats – emmer, spelt, and einkorn – had higher concentrations of selenium, an extremely important mineral, than modern wheats. Further compounding the mineral issue is the fact that phytic acid content remains unaffected in dwarf wheat. Thus, the phytate:mineral ratio is higher, which will make the already reduced levels of minerals in dwarf wheat even more unavailable to its consumers.

Increased yield leading to dilution of mineral density is one possible explanation for the reduction in wheat mineral content, but modern wheat has shorter root systems than ancient wheat, and longer roots allow greater extraction of minerals from the soil. Some people have proposed soil mineral depletion as the cause of reduced nutrient content of food, but – at least in the Broadbalk experiment – soil mineral content actually increased over time.

It’s more damaging to celiacs and gluten-sensitives.

One of the primary proteins in wheat, gluten provides the “viscoelastic properties” that allow wheat to be turned into bread, dough, pasta, and all sorts of processed foods. Gluten provides the chewiness of good bread, the bite of al dente pasta. Bakers, cooks, and foodies prize it – but some people fear it, and rightfully so. I wrote all about gluten sensitivity and celiac disease a few weeks back, but the basic gist is that for many people, consuming gluten inflames the body, perforates the gut, and opens them up to a whole host of health maladies.

So what’s the deal with modern wheat? Well, celiac disease is on the rise, and some researchers have suggested that this is caused by the prevalence of certain gluten proteins that predominate in the new varieties of wheat. Namely, a gluten peptide known as glia-α9, which is nearly absent in older wheats but prevalent in modern wheats, is the most reactive “CD (celiac disease) epitope.” In other words, a majority of people with celiac disease react negatively to glia-α9. It’s a common trigger, and older wheat doesn’t have as much of it.

Meanwhile, einkorn, an ancient variety of wheat, has been shown to cause less intestinal toxicity in patients with celiac. Einkorn and other related ancient strains of wheat still contain gluten, of course, but they do not appear to be as damaging to people sensitive to or completely intolerant of gluten and its related protein subfractions.

It’s prepared differently.

Consider how bread is made today:

With refined, old (often rancid) white flour instead of freshly ground wheat.

Using quick rise commercial yeast instead of slowly fermenting with proven sourdough cultures.

On an industrial scale instead of in the home.

Meanwhile, for the vast majority of our wheat-eating history, humans have been grinding whole wheat berries up fresh and fermenting them before baking and eating the stuff. Dr. Weston Price famously found several traditional cultures who thrived on wheat, but they weren’t eating refined white flour treated with quick-rising yeast. They were stone-grinding fresh wheat. They were fermenting it. They were doing all the things a person has got to do if they want to make wheat a staple of their diet and maximize the nutrition in the process. Later, Price conducted experiments in which he reversed dental decay and remineralized cavity-ridden teeth in refined white flour-eating people using wholesome, varied diets that included some freshly ground wheat. Fermentation effectively “pre-digests” the proteins in wheat, as I mentioned previously. If you have the right organisms, you can even break down wheat gluten to the point that celiacs can eat it without suffering symptoms.

That’s not to suggest you should go eat wheat. It’s simply to suggest that if you do, fresh, whole, ancient wheat prepared the old way is definitely healthier.

So, there you go: a few good lines of solid evidence showing why modern wheat – which is the only kind of wheat most people are ever going to encounter in the real world – should be avoided. Does that help? If you’re interested in more, check out Dr. Davis (of Wheat Belly fame), who’s made it something of his mission to rail against what he calls a “perfect, chronic poison.”

Thanks for reading, folks. Lemme know what you think in the comment section. And don’t go rushing out to buy artisan einkorn bread and spelt fusilli or anything like that. Ancient wheat is still wheat, it’s still a grain, it’s still got gluten, and it’s still problematic for a lot of people.

You want comments? We got comments:

Imagine you’re George Clooney. Take a moment to admire your grooming and wit. Okay, now imagine someone walks up to you and asks, “What’s your name?” You say, “I’m George Clooney.” Or maybe you say, “I’m the Clooninator!” You don’t say “I’m George of George Clooney Sells Movies Blog” and you certainly don’t say, “I’m Clooney Weight Loss Plan”. So while spam is technically meat, it ain’t anywhere near Primal. Please nickname yourself something your friends would call you.

  1. I wonder if back in the day wheat was not as bad as today? like Bible times 800BC stuff

    lockard wrote on October 18th, 2012
    • Um, did you even bother to read the article? It was more nutritious, less problematic and prepared differently, so yes. Even if you just go back to 1950, it wasn’t as bad as today.

      John wrote on October 18th, 2012
      • yes I read the Article. i guess i did not articulate well enough – i meant for general consumption – could you make bread and gain the same kind of health as we are from being primal- Mark says in closing

        ” Ancient wheat is still wheat, it’s still a grain, it’s still got gluten”

        but back then before anybody jacked it up – could it be healthy to enjoy

        lockard wrote on October 18th, 2012
        • Dr. Davis says in his book Wheat Belly that he baked bread with an heirloom variety of wheat. He then compared it to Organic wheat, and modern-day wheat. He did not suffer the ill-effects from heirloom varieties that he felt when eating modern-day wheat, or organic wheat.

          But I think it’s a bit of a trial and error self-test.

          Denise wrote on October 18th, 2012
        • My husband did not get heartburn from einkorn wheat pancakes and neither did I. Still high carb and fattening and so I abstain.

          Oly wrote on October 18th, 2012
    • Prior to primal, I was grinding wheat-berries in my home to bake my own bread. It was sooo good too! Toasted… slathered in butter…
      But I digress; since I’ve eliminated wheat all my health problems are gone and I do not feel well at all if I eat anything with gluten. It’s just not worth it to me anymore. I don’t think I would bother, even if I could get my hands on a bagful of the ancient stuff.

      Beth wrote on October 18th, 2012
      • Free shipping day on tropical traditions was how I got some. It has some impressive nutrition information. But it’s also from Italy and the olive oil mafia controversy makes me wonder if I can trust it.

        Oly wrote on October 18th, 2012
      • About how long after “quitting wheat” did you begin noticing improvements in your health? I’ve only been off it for 2 weeks, and don’t feel much different, but I figured it’d probably take around a month to actually notice anything.

        Dp wrote on October 17th, 2013
        • It took along time to get that way so give it time. Sometimes you’ll forget about feeling bad and it will hit you a few months out that you no longer have trouble getting up from the floor, don’t hurt as you get out of bed, or the car…. little things like that. Your body repairs slowly if you let it have a chance.

          2Rae wrote on November 8th, 2013
        • I stumbled on this question when I was reading through the article and responses. I noticed there wasn’t much of a reply. It depends on your individual digestive system, have gluten sensitivity, or celiacs. I could tell in 24 hours but I am severely wheat sensitive and was having severe abdominal pains from the wheat. Unfortunately the same goes in the opposite direction for me as well, even small amounts of gluten give me indigestion and if I eat it multiple days in a row I will end up getting the sharp stomach pains again. My grandfather says it takes 2-3 days for him if he eats wheat and he has celiacs and it took him a lot longer to feel better after stopping. It really depends on your digestive system and how your body is handling the wheat on how quickly you see results for not eating it.

          Adriane wrote on February 27th, 2014
        • I never noticed any problems with eating wheat (digestive or other), but after a few months being gluten-free (maybe 6 before I was really sure), I could honestly say my immunity was better (I have Hashimoto’s), my skin was clearer than it’s ever been, my minor/occasional joint pain was lessened (I still overuse my computer so I have issues with my hand/wrist/arm/elbow), but best of all, my brain fog was gone!! I can’t tell you how great it feels to be “back in my own head” again. I can follow through with thoughts like I couldn’t before. This alone is worth the inconvenience of being gluten-free.

          My functional medicine doctor says it takes several months to get all the gluten out of your body–or at least to stop reacting to it, I’m not sure which. Also, I don’t know if this only applies to those of us with autoimmune disease. But regardless, I don’t think anyone NEEDS wheat or gluten. I just watched this and it’s very compelling:
          http://youtu.be/J6JrHteOsII

          Diane wrote on September 29th, 2014
    • This might answer some of your questions regarding ancient wheat. :)

      http://www.enabling.org/ia/celiac/cul-wht.html

      Karen Magill wrote on February 18th, 2014
  2. I have been experimenting with making my own homemade sourdough bread and I have no ill effects when I eat this. Of course I have included this in my 20% and eat very little of it. But so far no gastric issues with the sourdough. It’s also fun and it takes a few days to make the bread so it is not always readily available. I also made this bread from my own homemade starter which took a week to make. I know it goes against the grain so to speak but it’s homemade, real and delicious!!!

    Lucy wrote on October 18th, 2012
    • When I was a kid, I was never a fan of sourdough, but your approach may be worth trying for the every now and then 20% meals/cheat days. Although at that point it may make more sense to try out the “paleo bread” recipes floating around the internet

      Ben Hirshberg wrote on October 18th, 2012
    • I used to get San Francisco sourdough and toast it with butter and strawberry jam… loved it.

      Amy wrote on October 18th, 2012
    • Would you be willing to share your recipe?

      Sandra wrote on June 3rd, 2013
  3. More than a grain of truth that it’s not wheat-berry good for you!

    Groktimus Primal wrote on October 18th, 2012
    • LOL – nice puns!

      Tom wrote on October 18th, 2012
  4. I like that you are continuing the theme of genetically modified food from yesterday. It doesn’t surprise me that the wheat eaten today was modified to produce more food with the unintended side effect of removing all nutrition. I would rather live and enjoy life on the paleo diet than just survive on the nutrient poor American diet based on wheat products and sugar.

    Wayne wrote on October 18th, 2012
    • Just to be clear, there’s a difference between “genetically-modified food” and the selective breeding that leads to different varieties or strains of wheat. Selective breeding is just cross-pollinating different strains of the same species to achieve various results. GM foods require manipulation of the DNA of a specific species, often including splicing in the DNA of a completely different species. Selective breeding has been going on for centuries and is just an acceleration of naturally occurring processes. GM is a new science. Not to say that one is any worse than the other, but they aren’t really the same thing.

      MarkA wrote on October 18th, 2012
      • Selecting for certain traits (ie high yield) while ignoring other traits (nutrition) is almost certain to diminish the other traits, as traits only stay if they’re selected for. GMO or not doesn’t change that.

        Sofie wrote on October 18th, 2012
        • Selecting for certain traits while allowing other traits to be bred out is not at all the same as inserting completely new traits from a different species.

          Don wrote on October 18th, 2012
        • I was only commenting on how traits are selected for, not whether those traits are good or bad.

          GM means genetic modification – a laboratory exercise. Selective breeding means cross-pollinating and saving the resulting seeds – a greenhouse or field exercise.

          Selective breeding and genetic modification are not the same thing, although some of the goals can be the same – higher yields or drought restistance, for example.

          All the different breeds of dogs we see are the result of selective breeding. The glow-in-the-dark bunny was the result of genetic modification.

          MarkA wrote on October 18th, 2012
      • The high yield grain isn’t just cross pollinated- it has been exposed to gamma radiation and extremely toxic chemicals to form mutations. This process is called chemical mutagenesis.

        Jack wrote on October 19th, 2012
    • Capitalism (n.): sacrificing the needs of humans in favor of the needs of Capital.

      Jeffrey of Troy wrote on October 20th, 2012
      • If it does not ” supply the needs of humans”, then no one buys it, then it is not capitalism. The customers decides. Pretty basic, sir.

        Killshot wrote on October 21st, 2012
      • There is nothing wrong with capitalism or capitalists.

        Mark Sisson is a capitalist. He is supplying the needs of health conscious consumers, for profit. if we consider his services worthwhile, we pay him. If we don’t, we don’t. No harm, no foul.

        Contrast Sisson with Halliburton. Halliburton is NOT capitalist. It is “corporatist.” Look it up. It does not profit through the free market, by provide a worthwhile service to consumers.

        Halliburton resorts to political patronage. It uses its political connections to rip off taxpayers. Not the same thing at all.

        Capitalism good. Corporatism bad.

        Bevin Chu wrote on October 22nd, 2012
        • Errata:

          “providing” not “provide” a worthwhile service to consumers.

          Bevin Chu wrote on October 22nd, 2012
        • That would make Haliburton a private operator in a utility/gov’t function. Not all markets are free markets, only those with competition and alternatives, and an array of consumers. Professional markets are not free either, as there is no alternative, though competition. Utilities MUST be regulated, though the free market puts all the power in the hands of the consumer.

          scottindallas wrote on October 23rd, 2012
        • There are no more free markets, just interventions.

          sixMidgets wrote on January 29th, 2013
  5. Wheat belly is a great book btw. It’s what eventually pointed me towards the Primal Blueprint.

    I noticed when I stopped consuming lo-carb products that contained wheat, my weight started to drop again.

    Nathan wrote on October 18th, 2012
    • Wheat Belly was my dive-off point into the world of paleo-dieting as well. Thanks Dr. Davis!!!

      Brad wrote on October 18th, 2012
      • I read Wheat Belly after I went Primal and, wow, what an eye opener!! If I wasn’t Primal before reading I definately would have been afterward.

        Kitty =^..^= wrote on October 18th, 2012
      • Hear! Hear! My entree also. And my friend’s at the same time. It stopped her endocrinologist from putting her on insulin as he was scheduled to do. Turned her a1c right around. Thank you, Dr. Davis! You made my life way better!

        Joy Beer wrote on October 18th, 2012
  6. Great write-up. I think this post is very timely. It is so true – after being paleo for so long, we often forget the “why” behind what we do. At this point I feel my food choices are just common sense, yet, when questioned, I am a bit rusty with my explanation. Thanks Marks.

    Kelly O'Connell Schmidt wrote on October 18th, 2012
    • I agree. I have a hard time defending my eating habits because, duh, I’m eating FOOD, people!

      Deanna wrote on October 18th, 2012
      • I get criticized for what I eat by people eating lunchables and coke. SMH.

        Nathan wrote on October 18th, 2012
        • Yeah…people like to tell me I’m not eating right. Usually when I have a fish and veggies, or an apple, and they have a bowl of orange Kraft mac ‘n cheese.

          Kitt wrote on October 19th, 2012
        • Not a fish. Just fish. Oops.

          Kitt wrote on October 19th, 2012
        • “What are those? Oysters?! Eeeeewww! Grosssss! That’s disgusting! I’ve lost my appetite! I can’t eat now!”
          Then they slather and slop more artificially sweetened jam and hydrogenated soy-infused peanut butter on their toast, meanwhile making a huge mess.

          Animanarchy wrote on October 26th, 2012
    • I can totally relate! I was so much more knowledgeable in the early days. Now it just is what it is.

      Dave wrote on October 20th, 2012
  7. What I didn’t see mentioned is that wheat, any kind of wheat, can become addictive for some people. They start craving it. Then the more they eat, the more they want to eat. Pretty soon veggies and other healthier foods get pushed right out of the picture in favor of bread, pizza, pasta, more bread, etc. I mostly avoid wheat products for this very reason.

    Shary wrote on October 18th, 2012
    • Same here. I cut sugar out first and found myself gorging on wheat products. As soon as a I cut that, my appetite has dramatically reduced. It feels great to not constantly think about eating.

      Megan wrote on October 18th, 2012
      • I also gorged on wheat products the second I “gave up” sugar. It gave me the same sort of high.
        Wheat (and sugar) both affect my Rosacea terribly. Besides making me bloated and giving me moods swings, I try to stay off the wheat because about 2 hours after eating it I get all hot and flushed, which paints my face bright red and the next day I break out.
        Does anybody else experience these Rosacea problems with wheat?

        Rachel M wrote on October 20th, 2012
        • My Rosacea has pretty much cleared up since I started eating Paleo/Primal. If I cheat, my face pays for it .

          Lesley wrote on October 21st, 2012
        • Yep, I have the same problem when I eat wheat. I also break out.

          Jen H wrote on October 23rd, 2012
    • Star Trek episode: The Trouble With Tribbles. The more wheat they ate the more they wanted, until they ate themselves to death.

      Jane wrote on October 18th, 2012
      • Sorry, but my inner Trekkie can’t let that pass. The tribbles died from eating poisoned quadrotriticale (wheat like grain).

        The Klingons poisoned it to thwart a colonization attempt by the Federation.

        It was also an engineered grain, so we’re completely on topic, here. But don’t feel bad about calling it “wheat”. Kirk did too.

        steve wrote on October 18th, 2012
        • Star Trek geek level 1: mentioning tribbles in a blog post
          Level 2: correcting that blog poster with facts about the episode
          Level 3: knowing the tribbles were eating “quadrotriticale”
          Congratulations, you have achieved true geekdom!

          (I bow to your superior trekkieness, as I am only level 2)

          Camille wrote on October 19th, 2012
      • Stargate SG-1 had a similar plot device: space corn (colloquially called “evil Orville Redenbacher”). It was engineered to contain an addictive psycho-stimulant. The withdrawals made people act violent and insane and engage in corn-seeking behaviour.

        Animanarchy wrote on October 26th, 2012
        • John Green, a YA fiction author, wrote a short story about the evils of genetically modified corn. It turned people into zombies who’s only concerns were planting more corn and feeding more people the corn so that more corn could get planted. It was called, unsurprisingly, Zombicorns. I didn’t make the Stark Trek or Stargate connections until just now. Nerd out!

          Suzie wrote on February 5th, 2013
    • Ditto. I don’t get that addictive quality with gluten-free grains, so I can eat them moderately without a problem at all (and can easily go without them as well). But when I was eating gluten all the time, I was all over the bread basket, the brownie pan, the cookie plate, etc. etc.

      Michelle Rollins wrote on October 18th, 2012
      • Darn, this is supposed to go above this comment so I can go “Trekkie Geek Level 4″! Anyway, they made up the term ‘quadrotriticale’ to sound all futuristic, because triticale is (wait for it…) a type of wheat!

        KitC wrote on October 19th, 2012
        • Not exactly. Triticale is a cross (not GMO) between wheat (triticum) and rye (secale).

          Philalethes wrote on October 23rd, 2012
    • Very well said, that is exactly what happened to me when I was eating wheat products, veggies and stuff got kicked to the curb. No wonder moms have a tough time getting kigs to eat their veggies.

      gayle wrote on October 19th, 2012
  8. Good write up. Discovering Primal is what helped me to identify that years of chronic bloat and stomach ailments were due to gluten intolerance. I read Wheat Belly as well and found it informative. Beer, (especially during this time of year with all of the pumpkin ales) is the thing I miss the most since going gluten free.

    BodhiC wrote on October 18th, 2012
    • Do you actually notice symptoms if you have a pumpkin ale now and again? How long til the onset?

      DarcieG wrote on October 18th, 2012
    • Cider, Wine, Mead and GF beers (I personally hate GF beers but hey…)… oh yeah most distilled products will be relatively GF (but YMMV some people have issues).

      Kiran wrote on October 18th, 2012
      • what is YMMV?

        W.J. Purifoy wrote on October 19th, 2012
        • “your mileage may vary”…e.g. everyone’s individual results from a certain dietary change will be different

          2ndChance wrote on October 19th, 2012
      • If your distilled products aren’t Gluten Free, someone’s lying to you.

        kraut wrote on October 14th, 2013
        • But in beer, fear the unlabeled GMOs
          http://foodbabe.com/2013/07/17/the-shocking-ingredients-in-beer/

          Must-read if you drink any beer. I’ve been blindsided by Guinness, kidding myself that it’s European, therefore cleaner (+ high hops are nourishing). Not.
          Every time I’ve requested a dark beer, in a glass bottle, from Europe, in what appears to be a well-stocked bar, I draw a blank (forget about organic). I’d be relatively pleased if a somewhat informed bartender responded, “If you’re concerned about ingredients, all I can say is that all our beers contain an unknown number of unknown chemicals, in addition to the water, hops, yeast and barley, so we can’t tell you because we don’t know either.” Mostly they don’t know what they don’t know.
          >> http://foodbabe.com/2013/07/17/the-shocking-ingredients-in-beer/

          excerpt:
          …Beer, especially American beer, is made with all sorts of ingredients beyond the basic hops, malt and yeast. There are numerous other ingredients used to clarify, stabilize, preserve, enhance the color and flavor of beer.

          When you drink beer, there is almost a 100% chance that you don’t know what you are drinking … The ingredients in beer are not required by law to be listed anywhere on the label and manufacturers have no legal obligation to disclose the ingredients. For regular beer, calorie levels and percent alcohol are optional and for light beer calories are mandatory but alcohol levels are optional.

          Michele Simon, a public health lawyer, author of Appetite for Profit, and president of Eat Drink Politics told me the reason that beer companies don’t disclose ingredients is simple: they don’t have to.

          “Ingredient labeling on food products and non-alcoholic beverages is required by the Food and Drug Administration. But a whole other federal agency regulates beer, and not very well. The Department of Treasury – the same folks who collect your taxes — oversees alcoholic beverages. That probably explains why we know more about what’s in a can of Coke than a can of Bud. You can also thank the alcohol industry, which has lobbied for years against efforts to require ingredient labeling.”

          ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
          German Beers are also a good bet. The Germans are very serious about the purity of their beers and enacted a purity law called “Reinheitsgebot” that requires all German beers to be only produced with a core ingredient list of water, hops, yeast, malted barley or wheat. Advocates of German beers insist that they taste cleaner and some even claim they don’t suffer from hangovers as a result.

          Joel wrote on January 12th, 2014
  9. Really enjoyed the articles this week as this topic hits especially close to home as I am also gluten intolerant. It makes me wonder what if I had lived during the times when ancient wheat was the norm and the effects it would have had on my body.

    James Hunter wrote on October 18th, 2012
  10. Add me to the long list of persons whose digestive problems disappeared within weeks of going primal and cutting out wheat.

    DuncaN wrote on October 18th, 2012
  11. One question:

    Why is it that gut symptoms appear to be WORSE when you eat gluten after staying away from it for a long time? Before I went paleo/primal (and gluten-free), my gut issues were minor. Now, my gut feels great most of the time, but when I eat wheat, it’s worse than ever before (lots of gas, bloating and intestinal pain at a minimum). This surprises me, because it seems that if my gut were healthier, it would have more of a strong barrier against the occasional piece of bread, and I’d be able to eat some here and there without incident. I never had such severe reactions when I was regularly eating gluten! Same goes for me with dairy now…

    I also don’t find the argument that “you were just used to feeling bad all the time before you went paleo” all that persuasive because my gut issues were not really that big of a deal before. I went paleo/primal more due to energy and mood issues.

    Can anyone help me with this? Thank you!

    Elizabeth wrote on October 18th, 2012
    • Honestly I think it’s just noticing it more. Before paleo eating my wife and I would barely notice if we were bloated or gassy or uncomfortable, it was pretty common. After paleo it’s rare enough that we really notice it now.

      JohnC wrote on October 18th, 2012
      • This seems to be my perception of the issue as well. When I first started reading this blog, whenever someone would mention an instant reaction to some non-primal food, I would think to myself that they were perhaps being a bit too sensitive towards the cause and effect at work. Too many variables, the geek in me cried!

        Then I started eating primal. Then I started feeling better than I can ever remember. Then I ate a bowl of chili for the first time since going primal. Then I discovered what everyone was talking about, as I was barely half-way through the bowl before my stomach went nuts.

        Normally, I’d eat two or maybe even three bowls without any difficulty. Not any more.

        Now in retrospect, it seems that there were indeed too many variables, all in the non-food category, that is! Since eliminating these non-foods, and their subsequent effects, I’m starting to clearly see the relationships that were previously obscured by a lifelong SAD diet.

        And it is this clarity which has made going primal an obvious choice, since finally, diet, lifestyle and exercise all make sense as the old contradictions of Conventional Wisdom fall by the wayside.

        NotApplicable wrote on October 23rd, 2012
        • No, that is NOT why. The reason why you are more sensitive to foods is because all foods require enzymes to digest. Each type of good requires a specific type of enzyme, and your stomach produces enzymes on a supply and demand basis. So if you eliminate a category of food, such as grains, for a long period of time you will not have many enzymes on hand to digest that type of starch the next time you eat it and you will have indigestion. But if you eat some grain every day for a week, you will quickly start producing more enzymes and become more tolerant. It is true for every category –vegetarians will get indigestion after their once a year Thanksgiving turkey dinner, etc.

          Rachael wrote on October 7th, 2013
    • I apologize for this “drive by” answer, it won’t be complete, but hopefully would lead you into the realm of more research.

      I think the probable answer might be your stomach had adapted to eating those foods with the production of special enzymes. It was not well adjusted but still, your stomach was in production of the chemicals to help digest your regular foodstuffs.

      Since you no longer eat those foods on a regular basis, your stomach no longer produces the correct enzymes. Thus, your reactions are much stronger because your stomach/digestive system is not currently producing the right chemicals to deal with gluten quickly or effectively.

      Basically, it’s a “low carb flu” in reverse. It takes time for your digestive system to handle big changes in food supply, but amazingly, it can adapt.

      I think our omnivoric stomachs have been the other great asset (brains being the first) to our long term success. I’m not sure there are many other animals on the planet able to adapt so quickly well to whole sale food changes.

      Amy wrote on October 18th, 2012
      • I think Amy and JohnC are both right. Because or me, it seems to be a combination of both. I suspect I was gluten intolerant since grade school, but didn’t figure it out for 30 years. In 4th grade, I used to get stomach aches nearly every day after lunch, and I would go to the school nurse. She would call my Mom to come pick me up. My Mom took me to the doc, who couldn’t find anything and said it was all in my head. Eventually my Mom refused to come pick me up, and I just learned to ignore it. I actually forgot about it altogether until I gave up gluten last year when my son was diagnosed with gluten sensitivity. Until I eliminated gluten, I had no idea it wasn’t normal to not feel bloated and achy after a meal. NOW, I eat just a little and I feel it within an hour. It seems worse than before, because now i know what true normal feels like.

        However, I also think Amy’s “low carb flu” in reverse theory has to be true. Whether a food is bad for you or not is almost irrelevant if your body isn’t used to processing it and lacks the enzymes. Last month, I suddenly started slamming shots of coconut oil. Bad idea! I backed off, then increased gradually tsp by tsp every couple of days with no reaction.

        Missy wrote on October 18th, 2012
        • I agree, and would add that the populations of certain species of microbes in our guts change (more or less) over time depending on the food we normally eat. I suspect that once certain species die off as a result of eating PB, the microbiome may become less adept at handling the foods we gave up, so reintroducing those foods could force adaptations within the microbiome as well as the body’s enzyme production. It could be that during such an adaptation process, the metabolic activity of gut bacteria generates a byproduct in the form of copious amounts of gas.

          Which could conceivably affect the disposition of your bed mate.

          Jeff wrote on October 19th, 2012
      • Excelllent answer. My husband and I are almost 100% Primal, and if we eat SAD foods now, like a meal at a restaurant that uses lots of bad oils, we both get a bad digestive reaction to it. I am fine with this since it means I’ve got all that nasty stuff out of my system for good. There’s no turning back. I was one who was constantly bloated and crampy and thought that was just normal, since everyone else aroound me seemed to have the same issues. My primal body is my new normal and I’m so thankful.

        Pure Hapa wrote on October 18th, 2012
      • Sounds probable. Maybe we develop a tolerance. I’ve noticed that the more coffee I drink regularly(as long as it’s not huge amounts), the more I can drink without digestive issues, but if I go a while without it, one cup might stimulate a bowel movement.
        Currently I’m drinking tea and eating a little 100% dark chocolate instead because I’ve been drinking way too much coffee lately for my endocrine system’s good, and that from a plastic filter holder and pot.

        Animanarchy wrote on October 26th, 2012
    • Like wearing poor fitting clothes & shoes, your body just sort of gets used to or more tolerant to feeling off. When I first started showing symptoms of Crohn’s disease, my knees and ankles would alternate between feeling fine and then feeling arthritic overnight. After a week or so being inflamed, I could jog on the affected part without too much difficulty, but when I’d wake up to a new sore joint, it was difficult to even walk. If there was some sort of objective pain metric, there likely wouldn’t be a big difference between the old tolerable pain and the new intolerable pain, but there would be a big difference between new pain and no pain.

      Charles wrote on October 18th, 2012
    • I’m in the same boat. When I went Paleo a few years ago, I didn’t really have an “aha, this is the cure for everything!” moment that some people had. I just generally enjoyed what I was eating more, and I lost some water weight.

      The longer I stay Paleo/Primal, the more I notice the effects when I stray. I went super-strictly Primal for 30 days, and my mood and well-being was so much better. It seems that after that, if I stray too much, I get hyper-emotional and the bloating takes longer to go away than it did when I first switched. Could just be age, but it’s made me increasingly more likely to stick to a stricter diet.

      On one hand, I do think I was more used to feeling bad, and now when I feel good, I want to hold on to it. On the other hand, I sure feel like I react worse when I stray.

      Deanna wrote on October 18th, 2012
    • You can adapt to nearly anything. Teenagers can survive on nachos, twinkies and Mountain Dew. A large tenet of the Paleo diet is that you’ve adapted to carbs, and a transition period is required to get back to digesting fats.

      Your body was as adapted as it could get to survive on the crap you (and all the rest of us) were feeding it. Once your body adjusted back to running on premium unleaded super high octane, you weren’t tuned for the crap any more.

      Run a pizza through the blender and mix it in the fuel tank of an old diesel tractor, and you won’t notice a thing. Try that in your Ferrari and it’s going to cause missing and backfiring, just like in your gut.

      steve wrote on October 18th, 2012
    • I also find this question interesting. Wouldn’t you expect that a healthy person could handle a little grain ones in a while? Imagine people eating their traditional diet coming into contact with our Western foods of commerce. If they would have immediately reacted as badly to white flower as Elizabeth or I do, they would never have started eating that stuff. Thus I guess, they were able to handle it for some time, before getting problems.

      Victor Venema wrote on October 20th, 2012
    • you might not have the enzymes to process the wheat if you’re not eating it regularly. It could be the greater divide between a lack of suffering and a return to the mundane pains you recall. I’m just guessing here.

      scottindallas wrote on October 23rd, 2012
  12. Some people think it’s just a fad my going gluten-free,think I’m being picky and extremist but… come on… Honestly? Really? WHO IN THEIR RIGHT EFFING MIND would give up something as incredibly delicious as warm, home-made, fresh-from-the-oven-and-slathered-with-pastured-butter sourdough if they didn’t have a problem with it? NOT EFFING ME, that’s for sure.

    Jennifer wrote on October 18th, 2012
    • Your sooooo right. The mother inlaw is the one who just does not understand. I can make some of the most wounderful bread, But if I eat it I will have the worst head each for about 2or3 days. It is just not worth it any more.

      ponymama wrote on October 18th, 2012
    • Completely agree. I was one told by a male friend that he appreciated that I wasn’t one of those girls who was deathly “afraid of bread.” Not long after that conversation I discovered my gluten intolerance. He was speaking to the tune of carbophobia, and understands a very little bit why I legitimately can’t handle wheat (and I did tell him that I ate gluten-free bread just fine), but it’s still sort of sad in retrospect. Since going gluten-free, my baking (especially bread baking) has decreased significantly. It’s amazing that simply removing gluten from my diet has drastically reduced my carb cravings. While I still eat some gluten-free grains on occasion, I don’t get the blood sugar swings and addictive effects anymore.

      Michelle Rollins wrote on October 18th, 2012
    • Give up any type of bread in any form? Me. Easily. Never understood the obsession for, even in my prepaleo days, what is, essentially a filler. So many healthy things that taste so much better that I would rather eat in larger quantities. Having said that I am in the vast minority, giving up beer was insanely easy. I enjoyed this article from the perspective of you can see the progression from tolerable to the body, with some potential nutritional benefits, to the destructive problems we have today.

      Doug wrote on October 19th, 2012
  13. As always, I appreciate your flexible approach Mark. Much better than railing about wheat being poison. Some people are not going to give up bread. That’s the reality. (I did, long ago.)

    Harry Mossman wrote on October 18th, 2012
    • Amen to that! I haven’t given up gluten-free bread, but being legitimately education on it as definitely influenced the frequency of my consumption of all grains (mostly that they simply aren’t that nutritious compared to all other real food). I don’t think heritage wheat is any more poison than shrimp is. Just because some people are highly allergic to it doesn’t make it toxic to all. It is even beneficial to some, and innocuous to many. But I believe a good education on the facts of grains can give people a more realistic idea of the value of it in their diet.

      Michelle Rollins wrote on October 18th, 2012
  14. Elizabeth,
    I would like to second your comment!
    I too wonder how abstinence from gluten causes a greater reaction upon its reintroduction.
    It seems that if you turn your back on gluten, it then turns its back on you!
    Counter-intuitive that if ditching gluten heals the gut then why does it become an even more ‘chronic poison’ with just a sampling of bread.
    Does the body need to be weaned back onto gluten and then the head fog and intestinal trouble will be less severe with the passage of time.
    It is a strange one alright and I too would like to know the theories that seem most reasonable.

    Seosamh wrote on October 18th, 2012
    • Ditching gluten WILL NOT heal you by itself. It will stop the damage, but won’t heal existing damage. You would have to go on GAPS diet or similar to heal the gut, then try introducing various foods in order (gluten being last) to see how you react.
      I agree about the reactions: mine are now much quicker and more severe after being GF for over 5 years and now grain free for over 1.5 years.

      Magda wrote on October 18th, 2012
    • I don’t have a good scientific explanation, but maybe a good analogy: if you have an old scratched up coffee table and you add a few extra scratches, it’s not going to be very noticeable. But if you sand it down and give it a good polish so that it looks like a new coffee table, any new scratch is going to look horrible.
      If your digestive system is chronically inflamed or damaged from wheat consumption, you may be functioning on a low level without too many outward symptoms. But when you stop eating wheat, everything eventually heals and starts working the way it’s supposed to again. So any damage from that point on is going to feel worse because you’re doing damage to healthy tissue.

      MarkA wrote on October 18th, 2012
      • Ugh, I inherited my grandmother’s authentic Danish modern furniture. My parents had it beautifully refinished before it moved into my apartment, and then one day my cat decided to take a flying leap just after my husband dusted it with Pledge. That single scratch ticked me off to no end…

        Deanna wrote on October 18th, 2012
        • Reminds me of one of my cats when I was 9 years old or so. It chewed on one of the pieces from my awesome carved wooden chess set. I loved that cat but it was retarded. In the backyard my family had a big clothesline and the cat was scared to walk under it if there were clothes hanging. It would walk all the way around.

          Animanarchy wrote on October 26th, 2012
    • Like the rats in a certain area in Great Britain – they have adapted and become resistant to poison baits that used to control them. People also adapt and become resistant to bad foods, although only partially. The very weakest never thrive, and the strongest have no idea that good health is not merely the absence of obvious disease.

      Paysan wrote on October 18th, 2012
      • People can become resistant to deadly poisons like cyanide by taking small amounts. It’s hypothesized that Rasputin did so.

        Animanarchy wrote on October 26th, 2012
  15. Elizabeth & Seosamh: I have the same issue and Mark covered it a couple weeks ago in a posting about non-celiac gluten intolerance. Go to the archives and find it, it was very helpful to me. Now if I eat one piece of whole wheat cereal my intestines blow up. Yikes.

    Lora wrote on October 18th, 2012
    • Lora, do you mean the post?

      http://www.marksdailyapple.com/how-common-is-gluten-sensitivity/

      It states: “It’s conceivable that gluten could be doing damage and causing constant, low-grade inflammation without you even knowing it. This is why folks who go Primal and give up wheat and other gluten-containing grains become more “sensitive” to wheat upon reintroduction. It’s not that going Primal has suddenly made them intolerant of gluten; it’s likelier that going Primal has made them more sensitive to their gluten sensitivity. It was probably always there, but they never knew what they were feeling until they removed it and then tried to reintroduce it.”

      My main problem with this argument is, why would people with a grain free diet start eating our Western diet if they would initially be so sensitive and immediately experience the kind of symptoms many people on a paleo diet notice.

      Victor Venema wrote on October 20th, 2012
      • Hi Victor- Actually, I can’t remember how I know this (perhaps it’s from the book Wheat Belly) but many other nations have boycotted American-grown wheat simply because the gluten content is too high. I’m not sure if it has given people intestinal issues or what, but for whatever reason, no other countries seem to want it. I also know of a few folks who cannot eat American wheat, but can eat it while abroad. So, perhaps if you are grain-free and jump into eating American wheat immediately, you will get major symptoms, whereas possibly the less modified wheat from other countries is easier to transition into. Just an unresearched idea…

        Elizabeth wrote on October 20th, 2012
        • That is a good argument, Elizabeth. If modern wheat flour produces stronger symptoms as grain products more than a century ago, that would solve that logical problem.

          And maybe there are also other changes that have made grains more offensive. Someone once suggested that fats protect the intestines against gluten. If that is true and people used to eat more fat, they may also have had less symptoms as a consequence.

          Victor Venema wrote on October 28th, 2012
  16. Perhaps the gut biota (biome?) change after going gluten free for awhile, and the new population is far less able to handle gluten without producing lots of gas and other discomforts.

    Pauline wrote on October 18th, 2012
  17. So you can pretty much say that it might not be wheat that’s the issue, but actually the quality of wheat available today. Just like pink Himalayan salt is actually good for low carb Primal eaters as opposed to refined table salt because they contain all the minerals our bodies tend to be deficient in. It looks like the issue is basic human overpopulation.

    We’re constantly trying to find cheaper faster ways to produce food to meet the demands. Foodwise, cheaper and faster means bad quality. There’s simply too many people alive, and we’re doing anything and everything to keep them alive. It’s not even risk-reward anymore, it’s more like cost-reward.

    JP wrote on October 18th, 2012
    • Well JP, you are free to lead the way in decreasing world population. Forgive me if I don’t follow.

      Joshua wrote on October 18th, 2012
      • I wish one could point out that there are too many humans on the planet without being invited to kill oneself.

        Carl wrote on October 18th, 2012
        • lol

          Ashley wrote on October 18th, 2012
    • People who believe the Earth is overpopulated should lead by example and kill themselves. None of them are volunteering for that though; they all want to be the ones sitting on the panels deciding who lives and who dies.

      MatBastardson wrote on September 4th, 2013
  18. Thank you, great article! I am celiac, there’s no way I would trust any wheat! I sometimes will be told nonsense in a nice restaurant, because they don’t want to admit they are not making their own dressings. I have to let them know my condition and then they might tell me the truth!

    Susann Edmonds wrote on October 18th, 2012
  19. According to Dr. Davis, “Two slices of whole wheat bread increase blood sugar higher than table sugar, higher than many candy bars. Oddly, this doesn’t stop dietitians and the nutrition community from encouraging you to eat more of it. Eat more wheat, blood sugar rises increase in magnitude and frequency. This leads to higher and more frequent rises in insulin, which, in turn, creates insulin resistance, the condition that leads to diabetes.” AND MAY I ADD…FAT STORAGE.

    Linda A. Lavid wrote on October 18th, 2012
    • But it’s OK if you keep taking your meds…

      BillP wrote on October 18th, 2012
      • So true. Chase those Wheaties down with Metforim.

        Linda A. Lavid wrote on October 19th, 2012
    • “higher than table sugar”

      How much table sugar? The bread is measured, but the sugar isn’t?

      Ashley wrote on October 18th, 2012
      • Per Davis…one slice of whole wheat bread increases blood sugar more than one tablespoon of sugar.

        Linda A. Lavid wrote on October 19th, 2012
        • Oops. It’s two slices of whole wheat bread that increases blood sugar more than one tablespoon of sugar.

          Linda A. Lavid wrote on October 19th, 2012
  20. Also worth mentioning is the addiction factor. I believe it was exorphins mentioned in wheat belly that bind with our opiate receptors. I think this is one of the biggest rewards no longer feeling like your cant live without bread!

    Luke DePron wrote on October 18th, 2012
    • I think sugar does the same thing. Diabolical.

      Linda A. Lavid wrote on October 19th, 2012
  21. Where can you find such natural sourdough around ATL?

    Dylan wrote on October 18th, 2012
    • Try H & F. They do conventional yeast and sourdough breads.

      MarkA wrote on October 18th, 2012
  22. Great article, I was actually thinking about sending this question in today. Could it be possible that we are throwing the baby out with the bathwater, and a small, supplemental amount of heirloom, fresh, grains and sourdough products eaten by someone with a healthy body and gut, could be acceptable and healthy? Our bodies deal with toxins from nightshades, nuts, and other seeds just fine.

    james wrote on October 18th, 2012
    • There really isn’t any special micronutrient in grains that the average MDA reader can’t find somewhere else, and their macronutrients are even more easily replaced. I’d say that it would be like consuming legumes, if you go through all the hoops and aren’t sensitive or allergic they’d make for a decent enough meal. Our early agricultural ancestors wouldn’t have been dealing with these newer strains of wheat, and could quite possibly have been fermenting their wheat (at least by accident), yet archaeologists could probably tell you how much wheat an early farmer ate based on how bad the skeletal remains of his or her teeth are.

      Charles wrote on October 18th, 2012
    • Why even bathe the baby, if you’re just going to throw it out?

      Animanarchy wrote on October 26th, 2012
  23. I love your posts. They get me all riled up though. Its crazy how we’ve destroyed our food.

    Amanda wrote on October 18th, 2012
    • +1 Amanda.
      It makes me sad too that legislation and red tape prevent people from exploring and maintaining traditional practices. The whole food monolith is a huge and scary thing now, and I wonder if anyone with clout will finally join all the dots.

      Heather wrote on October 18th, 2012
      • It’s up to us. The individual has to teach the child about non-food, genuine old-school food prep. and growing supplies from scratch if they want any grandchildren to see the other end of all this.
        Sounds like more of a thrill and challenge to me than being sucked in to the city five days a week, having the state drag my children up and slaving my guts out to pay a mortgage for an ego-house in a good suburb.
        Emotive words but what else is there to this, really?

        Madama Flintstonefly wrote on October 18th, 2012
    • And yet, humans now live twice as long as when everybody was paleo, and all farming was organic.

      MatBastardson wrote on September 4th, 2013
      • From what I’ve read, that may not be entirely true. The average lifespan was indeed around 30, but that’s only because the infant mortality rate was so high.

        David wrote on October 15th, 2013
  24. I’ve heard that some evidence suggests that the “lactic acid” in sourdough bread (REAL sourdough) negates some of ill effects of phytates and gluten in sourdough bread. Seems a reasonable excuse for me to include it in my 20% (on the weekends).

    Rocky wrote on October 18th, 2012
    • I have heard this too…. would a sourdough made from emmer, spelt, or einkorn also be a better “bad” choice?

      TK wrote on October 18th, 2012
  25. been trying to work in paleo with my family but this wheat thing is the hardest….. if I have to use a variety of wheat in a recipe, what would your best “bad choice” be? emmer, spelt,or einkorn?

    TK wrote on October 18th, 2012
    • Why do you have to use that recipe at all? There are literally thousands of paleo/primal recipes out there to choose from!

      Egglet wrote on October 18th, 2012
  26. i didn’t read anywhere about the protein gliadin found in the dwarf wheat, that attaches itself to the opiate receptor cells and blocks your body’s own pain relief efforts and creating a constant hunger state. primal 8 months and loving life!! success story coming soon.. Thanks Mark!!

    MIKE B wrote on October 18th, 2012
  27. The Broadbalk experiment does indeed continue today. I frequently ride my mountain bike up on the Rothamstead Station.

    This year they may have compromised the experiment as a new director of the research station planted an experimental GM wheat crop. No-one wanted it, and it required huge security resources to protect the crop.

    Steve wrote on October 19th, 2012
  28. Amen to any article about any topic that references Gimli–or any other LOTR character, for that matter. Ever notice how slender Gollum looks on his raw fish diet compared to Sam, who eats a post-agricultural diet and washes it down with beer? Of course nobody wants to look like Gollum, but had he not been wasted by the Ring all those years, he’d probably be quite the looker.

    Anyway, true enough that new wheat is much worse than old wheat, and the article is excellent. However, as we all know already, no grains (nor any seed foods, including beans, nuts and seeds) are healthy–lectins, phytic acid, immunogenic proteins, fattening starches and fermentable carbs? No thanks. Pass the fish, please:)

    Georgia Ede MD wrote on October 19th, 2012
    • The descriptions of the two Gimlis were superb.
      And on that note…
      Is lembas bread primal?

      Animanarchy wrote on October 23rd, 2012
      • Mmmmm…Lembas bread…the only bread anyone should eat:)

        Georgia Ede MD wrote on November 15th, 2012
  29. I had a weak moment and ate a large bread roll at a friend’s home recently.
    Within ten minutes my heart started pounding in my chest, and I could feel stranger flutters in my temples and extremities.
    After eating clean for months my body could not handle the wheat gluten anymore. Not to mention the gas and bloating that came later.
    I enjoy reading the scientific studies that Mark provides us to back up this different lifestyle that we have all taken on, it is helpful to have to keep the nay sayers at bay.

    Sarah Martini wrote on October 19th, 2012
  30. Surviving off the food given to me buy a government-funded shelter (Salvation Army – a population control organization, for those who didn’t know), I end up eating lots of grains (and hotdogs, peanut butter, etc.) for lack of other options.
    A print-out on the wall says that every resident has the right to enough nutritious food. Is that why dinner is greasy deep-fried type stuff ordered from a restaurant, less produce is provided than the food guide recommends, and breakfast and lunch is almost always processed and somewhat poisonous?
    I often resort to cereals, oatmeal, and a bunch of milk so I can at least get some protein and a little micro-nutrition. Loaded up with [cream] cheese and cinnamon to combat the ensuing blood sugar spike.
    It’s a win-lose situation.
    I’ll maintain muscle mass and have enough energy to make it through the day and get some exercise but to do so I have to be uncomfortably full, unable to be lean, and crap out a bunch of partially digested food-substitute far too frequently.
    Eating primal = well formed logs.
    Eating CW = a nasty, foul-smelling mess.
    I’m considering returning to camping and collecting welfare checks.
    I’ve stayed in four shelters and one church program that provides shelter in the winter. In some way they are all corrupt and managed incompetently and illogically.

    Animanarchy wrote on October 19th, 2012
  31. Good reading. And nice to refer people to re wheat and its history.

    Aili wrote on October 19th, 2012
  32. Ha, just as I was reading this I was thinking, “Yes! I can go out and buy some Einkorn pasta and forego all these terrible side-effects, guilt free!”
    But no. It’s always good to read up on the Basics of our primal diet because I too am confronted by questions which can be hard to answer at times. I know what my body likes and doesn’t like, but it’s always great to know the research that backs it up.

    Rachel M wrote on October 20th, 2012
  33. The other BIG issue that has come from today’s engineered wheat, corn and soy…..metric tons of high-yield food that enables us to over populate both the US land mass as well as the Globe. If not for the high yield per acre push, and there wouldn’t be all this food to feed our 7 billion and growing hungry mouths.

    Population growth is good news to Monsanto, DuPont, and the rest of the Industrial Food monopolies….their financial models count on population growth…and sooner or later, we are going to hit the tipping point where even the agi engineers can’t crank the meter any further. But of course this is to be expected when the 3rd largest nation in the World, the US and 312 million people, are basically governed by corporations…in every industry and especially the food industry.

    Where’s the tipping point?

    steve wrote on October 22nd, 2012
  34. I always love the articles here and appreciate the discussion points offered. However, to appeal to anyone who is interested in a non-scientific discussion point, I offer the following.

    For several years I ate Gluten-Free. My husband is the only person in my life who has been supportive of my change in eating habits. Everyone else thinks I’m just being difficult. Recently after noticing that weight loss is still difficult and that I still suffer from distended gut after eating other grains, I’ve decided to go grain-free. Again, I expect zero support in social situations from my family, so now when anybody asks why I don’t eat certain foods, my one and only point will be:

    I don’t eat foods I don’t like.

    It’ll be interesting to see if anyone will or can counter-point this position.

    Cath wrote on October 22nd, 2012
    • Do what YOU feel is in YOUR best interest. It always helps to have the support of those around us but in the end it’s up to you. The best testimony will be the change they see.

      MoT wrote on October 23rd, 2012
      • My usual reply is to launch into my “nickel” tour of Primal. If their eyes don’t glaze-over, I continue in more detail. After that I separate the wheat from the chaff. The “wheat” are few and interested, the “chaff” rarely ask twice about my eating habits.

        Bufo wrote on October 23rd, 2012
  35. Is there any study that looks for vacination damage causing or contributing to this gluten reaction?
    None of my 60 and older friends have this here glutenitis.
    And quit fearing your food and hating the farmer. What’s with you dumbheads taking in that meme, ‘hook line and sinker’?

    IndianaJohn wrote on October 23rd, 2012
  36. Doubling the carbs doubles the bodies’ vitamin and mineral requirements.

    Man has 60 essential minerals and we lose and use some every day.

    Fibers carry away toxins and trace minerals.

    Paul_S wrote on October 23rd, 2012
  37. Chewy, not that digestible.. they should call it glueten.

    Animanarchy wrote on October 23rd, 2012
    • Don’t be a glueton glutton.

      Animanarchy wrote on October 26th, 2012
  38. What we have today is in no way what we had even fifty years ago. That’s why when people tout the life-expectancy in Americans I have to remind them that those folks who are keeling over now didn’t eat the garbage people eat today when they were growing up. Ergo… they “appear” to be living longer when todays general population is actually afflicted with all sorts of poisons that will, come the day, kill you quicker unless you get off the federal food pyramid scheme. Garbage in garbage out. We’re all going to snuff it… it’s simply up to you how you’d prefer to go: quickly and painfully on their “schedule” or on your own terms.

    MoT wrote on October 23rd, 2012
    • I was just checking out a copy of Canada’s food (mis)guide this morning. It says to cut off all the visible fat from meat.
      So basically they’re saying, “Don’t eat any animal fat but what’s in pasteurized dairy for your entire life.”
      DERP!

      Animanarchy wrote on October 23rd, 2012
  39. Guns and Butter

    “Comparing Modern Wheat to Ancient Grain” with Robert Quinn, Ph.D. KPFA Fundraiser- one-hour audio presentation at the Heirloom Festival in Sonoma County.

    http://www.kpfa.org/archive/id/84847

    Lisa wrote on October 23rd, 2012
  40. Did the term “bullshit” originate from the fact that given a choice, cows will just eat grass? (and a similar diet crashes human brains)

    Animanarchy wrote on October 29th, 2012

Leave a Reply

If you'd like to add an avatar to all of your comments click here!

© 2014 Mark's Daily Apple