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November 05, 2009

Why Grains Are Unhealthy

By Mark Sisson
1706 Comments

I find that grain bashing makes for a tasty, but ultimately unsatisfying meal.

You all know how much I love doing it, though. But no matter how often I sit down to dine on the stuff (and I’ve done it with great gusto in the past), I always leave the table feeling like I left something behind. Like maybe I wasn’t harsh enough about the danger of gluten, or I failed to really convey just how much I hated lectins. If I didn’t know better, I’d think the mere mention of grains was eliciting a crazy insulin-esque response and throwing my satiety hormones all out of whack. I was filling up on anti-grain talk, but I just couldn’t fill that void for long.

Well, I’ve got the hunger today, and this time I aim to stuff myself to the point of perpetual sickness. I don’t ever want to have to look at another anti-grain argument again (yeah, right). If things get a little disjointed, or if I descend into bullet points and sentence fragments, it’s only because the hunger has taken over and I’ve decided to dispense with the pleasantries in order to lay it all out at once.

So please, bear with me.

Apart from maintaining social conventions in certain situations and obtaining cheap sugar calories, there is absolutely no reason to eat grains. Believe me – I’ve searched far and wide and asked everyone I can for just one good reason to eat cereal grains, but no one can do it. They may have answers, but they just aren’t good enough. For fun, though, let’s see take a look at some of the assertions:

“You need the fiber!”

Okay, for one: no, I don’t. If you’re referring to its oft-touted ability to move things along in the inner sanctum, fiber has some unintended consequences. A few years back, scientists found that high-fiber foods “bang up against the cells lining the gastrointestinal tract, rupturing their outer covering” which “increases the level of lubricating mucus.” Err, that sounds positively awful. Banging and tearing? Rupturing? These are not the words I like to hear. But wait! The study’s authors say, “It’s a good thing.” Fantastic! So when all those sticks and twigs rub up against my fleshy interior and literally rupture my intestinal lining, I’ve got nothing to worry about. It’s all part of the plan, right?

Somehow, I’m not convinced that a massive daily infusion of insoluble grain fiber is all that essential. And that “lubricating mucus” sounds an awful like the mucus people with irritable bowel syndrome complain about. From personal experience I can tell you that once I completed my exodus from grains, the IBS completely stopped. If you’re not yet convinced on the fiber issue I’ll refer you to Konstantin Monastyrsky’s Fiber Menace. Anyway, there’s plenty of fiber in the vegetables and fruit I eat. Which takes me to the next claim:

“You need the vitamins and minerals!”

You got me. I do need vitamins and minerals, like B1 and B2, magnesium and iron, zinc and potassium. But do I need to obtain them by eating a carb-heavy, bulky grain? No, no I don’t. You show me a serving of “healthy whole grains” that can compete – nutrient, vitamin, and mineral-wise – with a Big Ass Salad. What’s that? Can’t do it? Thought so.

“But it forms the foundation of the governmental food pyramid!”

You know, I should have just started the entire post with this one. I could have saved my fingers the trouble of typing and your eyes the trouble of reading. Governmental endorsements are not points in your favor, grain-eater; they are strikes against you. An appeal to authority (unless that “authority” is actually a preponderance of scientific evidence, of course) does not an effective argument make. Conventional Wisdom requires consistent, steady dissection and criticism if it is to be of any value.

There’s a reason grains are first and foremost on the list of foods to avoid when following the Primal Blueprint: they are completely and utterly pointless in the context of a healthy diet. In fact, if your average unhealthy person were to ask for the top three things to avoid in order to get healthy, I would tell them to stop smoking, to stop drinking their calories (as soda or juice), and to stop eating grains. Period. Full stop. They really are that bad.

I’ve mentioned this time and again, but the fundamental problem with grains is that they are a distinctly Neolithic food that the human animal has yet to adapt to consuming. In fact, cereal grains figured prominently in the commencement of the New Stone Age; grains were right there on the forefront of the agricultural revolution. Hell, they were the agricultural revolution – einkorn wheat, emmer, millet, and spelt formed the backbone of Neolithic farming. They could be stored for months at a time, they were easy enough to grow in massive enough quantities to support a burgeoning population, and they promoted the construction of permanent settlements. Oh, and they were easily hoarded, meaning they were probably an early form of currency (and, by extension, a potential source of income inequality). And here’s the kicker: they were harsh, tough things that probably didn’t even taste very good. It also took a ton of work just to make them edible, thanks to their toxic anti-nutrients.

Toxic anti-nutrients? Do tell.

Living things generally do not want to be consumed by other living things. Being digested, for the most part, tends to interrupt survival, procreation, propagation of the species – you know, standard stuff that fauna and flora consider pretty important. To avoid said consumption, living things employ various self defense mechanisms. Rabbits, for example, with their massive ears, considerable fast-twitch muscle fibers, and nasty claws, can usually hear a predator coming, outrun (out-hop?) nearly anything, and (in a pinch) slash a tender belly to shreds. Blue whales are too big to fit into your mouth, while porcupines are walking reverse pincushions. Point is, animals have active defense mechanisms. They run, fight, jump, climb, fly, sting, bite, and even appeal to our emotions (if you’ve ever seen a puppy beg for a treat with sad eyes, you know that isn’t just accidental cuteness) in order to survive. All the while, predators are constantly evolving and generating adaptations.

Plants, though, are passive organisms without the ability to move, think, and react (for the most part). They must employ different tactics to ensure propagation, and they generally have to rely on outside forces to spread their seed. And so various methods are “devised” to dissuade consumption long enough for the seed to get to where it’s going. Nuts have those tough shells, and grains have the toxic anti-nutrients, lectins, gluten, and phytates. (Of course there are some obvious exceptions. Fruits are tasty, nutritious, and delicious so that animals will eat them whole and poop out the seeds, preferably into some fertile soil. The seed stays intact throughout the digestive process; it is indigestible by design. No seed “wants” to be digested, because this would defeat the purpose. They “want” to be swallowed, or borne by the wind, or carried by a bee to the next flower, but they do not want to be digested.)

Some animals are clearly adapted to grain consumption. Birds, rodents, and some insects can deal with the anti-nutrients. Humans, however, cannot. Perhaps if grains represented a significant portion of our ancestral dietary history, things might be a bit different. Some of us can digest dairy, and we’ve got the amylase enzyme present in our saliva to break down starches if need be, but we simply do not have the wiring necessary to mitigate the harmful effects of lectins, gluten, and phytate.

Lectins are bad. They bind to insulin receptors, attack the stomach lining of insects, bind to human intestinal lining, and they seemingly cause leptin resistance. And leptin resistance predicts a “worsening of the features of the metabolic syndrome independently of obesity”. Fun stuff, huh?

Gluten might be even worse. Gluten, found in wheat, rye, and barley, is a composite of the proteins gliadin and glutenin. Around 1% of the population are celiacs, people who are completely and utterly intolerant of any gluten. In celiacs, any gluten in the diet can be disastrous. We’re talking compromised calcium and vitamin D3 levels, hyperparathyroidism, bone defects. Really terrible stuff. And it gets worse: just because you’re not celiac doesn’t mean you aren’t susceptible to the ravages of gluten. As Stephan highlights, one study showed that 29% of asymptomatic (read: not celiac) people nonetheless tested positive for anti-gliadin IgA in their stool. Anti-gliadin IgA is an antibody produced by the gut, and it remains there until it’s dispatched to ward off gliadin – a primary component of gluten. Basically, the only reason anti-gliadin IgA ends up in your stool is because your body sensed an impending threat – gluten. If gluten poses no threat, the anti-gliadin IgA stays in your gut. And to think, most Americans eat this stuff on a daily basis.

Phytates are a problem, too, because they make minerals bio-unavailable (so much for all those healthy vitamins and minerals we need from whole grains!), thus rendering null and void the last, remaining argument for cereal grain consumption.

What, then, is the point to all this grain madness? Is there a good reason for anyone (with access to meat, fruit, and vegetables, that is) to rely on cereal grains for a significant portion of their caloric intake?

The answer is unequivocally, undeniably no. We do not need grains to survive, let alone thrive. In fact, they are naturally selected to ward off pests, whether they be insects or hominids. I suggest we take the hint and stop eating them.

And with that, I’m done. I don’t think I could eat another bite.

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1706 Comments on "Why Grains Are Unhealthy"

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Wyatt
Wyatt
6 years 10 months ago

Very timely, as I read this in my school’s buffet. I’m going to grab some more salad!

Primal Toad
6 years 3 months ago

Sounds like a wonderful idea! There is nothing like a good ole primal salad 🙂

I can’t believe I just read this article…

It is a MUST READ for anyone who thinks grains are good for them! I will be passing this around the web like crazy 🙂

R
R
4 years 8 months ago

While I feel it’s probably right, it surely isn’t a must read. That is, unless your must read criteria favors feelings and cute parenthetical usage over evidence and citations.

Iqra
Iqra
3 years 11 months ago

Thank you Mark Sisson for this article and everyone who commented. The Paleo diet is amazing and giving up grains was one of the best decisions I have made for my life and health.

Kris Gunnars
3 years 8 months ago
@R: Actually if you look through the article Mark links to a bunch of studies to back up his key points. Personally I am very much against gluten grains, although I do eat healthier grains like rice once or twice a week. For pleasure, not for health. At the end of the day, grains are a food group that contains absolutely NO essential nutrients that you can’t get in MUCH greater amounts from animals and vegetables. Therefore, making them the foundation of the food pyramid (or food plate) just doesn’t make any sense at all. I think the evidence is… Read more »
Zac
Zac
3 years 8 months ago

Agreed. These are some interesting assertions, and probably worth investigating, but where is the evidence? What sources can you cite? Are there any peer-reviewed studies that support your claims?

It takes more than vitriol and big words to make me change my daily habits.

J
J
3 years 7 months ago
Research paleo diet and you will see that it is greatly considered a bad idea based off inaccurate theory. Red meat and eggs high in cholesterol good cancer preventing grain bad? This is essentially a dairy free Atkins fad diet. It’s actually listed as one of the worst diets out of a list of 25 and is generally considered a fad diet. It’s based on a diet of people that didn’t live long and had horrible health. By the way fiber does a lot more than give you a solid shit. Oh we’ll have fun with your colon cancer dumb… Read more »
J
J
3 years 7 months ago

Also the key is moderation. There is no need to cut anything completely out of your diet. Why punish yourself. Health is based on person to person. No one has the right answer. One person say eat it or prepare it like this and the next says dont. The key is to get the nutrients you need I’m a moderate and common sense diet.

Emma
Emma
3 years 5 months ago
Of the links that he gives in the article, several of them lead to dud 404 error pages. One of them was done 40 years ago, and the one from 2006 that he linked to hadn’t even been published when he got the info from it. The only legit article I could see that he linked to had a p value of 0.036 for the variable he was interested in which, while statistically significant in some studies, is not an overwhelmingly positive result, and I couldn’t find any other articles to back this result up. Meanwhile, I look this up… Read more »
Julie
Julie
2 years 9 months ago

HERE HERE!

Jeremy Hendon
2 years 2 months ago
I agree with Kris’s comment that the article is full of studies to back up most of the salient points. And I’m no fan of grains at all. However, I think the article could use a bit of updating based on what we know now, specifically in terms of fiber and lectins. Lectins are bad, but they’re almost always broken down by heat and digestion, so the harmful effects are mostly limited to folks with a compromised gut flora or pre-existing digestive issues. More importantly, while we don’t need the fiber that grains contain (predominantly non-fermentable), our guts do thrive… Read more »
Arejaye
Arejaye
4 years 2 months ago
The thing here though is….is if you believe everything you read, there’s nothin’ left on the menu, so to speak. Most, if not all foods have some benefit, BUT….all things in moderation. And I don’t find this article a “must read”. Interesting yes. Must read, no way. The only foods I can think of off the top of my head to DEF stay away from, from bite one, is stuff like McDonalds, etc., but we’d be comparing oranges to apples. I’d hardly call McDonalds “food”…it just fills your gut and your arteries with crap you don’t want EVER! Trust me….I… Read more »
Tim
4 years 2 months ago
Have you tried eliminating grains? I did and saw some amazing results. I lost forty lbs, saw my allergies almost disappear, and my asthma completely resolved. My allergist still refuses to believe that it has anything to do with grains, even though every time I have beer or some pizza I will wheeze for a day or more. To her, like you, it is simply too unlikely. There must be some other explanation. I.e. ‘That Tim guy is a crazy nut.’ (I won’t dispute that part.) I tried the conventional wisdom of eating ‘heart healthy whole grains’, bags of veggies… Read more »
Do not eat grains
Do not eat grains
4 years 1 month ago
For the sake of your health I would suggest you reconsider your position on this subject. Besides corn there are no grain foods that we eat today that are unprocessed. I challenge you to find a grain (other than corn) and try to eat it in its natural state. you’ll either swallow it whole in which case it will go straight through you like fiber or you’ll be booking yourself into the dentist to get your chipped teeth fixed after trying to chew it. even if you did get to the contents within the grains shell you would not enjoy… Read more »
Frances Arnold
4 years 1 month ago
Arejay, Congratulations on making it through what sounds like an awfully scary and traumatic experience! I’m happy you’ve chosen to pay attention to your diet. It’s definitely smart to avoid McDonald’s. However, it sounds like you’re informed by old recommendations. Saturated fat has not been proven unequivocally to raise cholesterol and clog arteries. Your body produces almost all the cholesterol it needs, and you actually absorb <10% cholesterol from foods. Chronic inflammation promotes arterial plaques, and this is something you must address with a good diet. The only true "bad fats" out there are hydrogentated oils. Stress and healthy social… Read more »
Don Loffray
Don Loffray
4 years 1 month ago

Watch this 6 part video. About 45 minutes altogether. See if this new information changes your mind.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9VklT8uL8yo&feature=player_embedded

Vincent Jackson
Vincent Jackson
4 years 20 days ago

A popular book “wheat belly”, refers to evidence the wheat plant has been re-engineered in order to produce more in a shorter time in short in the name of profits. This may partially explain why for centuries we did not have issues eating grains and now we do.

Maria
3 years 11 months ago

Oh dear! Whose bible have you been reading? Even my doctor is telling his patients to ditch the bread. But if you ARE intent on having bread, perhaps read ‘Nourishing Traditions’ by Sally Fallon.

Bob
Bob
3 years 8 months ago
You might be ok with a few oats now and again. Be sure to by the organic gluten free ones. You can actually pick oat and eat it raw, so it would qualify in the sphere of “what we used to eat.” I think you really need to find a good “health” practitioner where you live. I don’t mean a “sickness” practitioner. Sickness practitioners (otherwise known as doctors) make their money when your sick. They have no financial incentive to keep you well. I beg you to take more responsibility for your health and become informed.
ROBERT
ROBERT
3 years 7 months ago

I eliminated grains about 6 weeks ago after reading Wheat Belly. All my cravings are gone and this is the best i have felt in years!

J
J
3 years 7 months ago

I say your asthma is a result of you believing from the get go the grains would help. In other words placebo. Just listened to an asthma study were placebo and medicated patients felt same exact results. In other words I don’t believe you either.

Tina
Tina
3 years 4 months ago
To the comment posted by “J” (Feb. 6, 2012) in response to “Tim’s” comment about his allergy disappearing and that being the placebo effect – that’s untrue. I went off gluten last year because I had been tested years earlier only to discover, after an 8-week detox/reintroduction of nearly everything, that I am wheat sensitive, but had, sadly, fallen back off the wagon with my pregnancies. Within a few years I was diagnosed with asthma, experienced itchy, flaking ears, was chronically bloated, and felt an overall lethargy, not to mention the severe mood swings and bouts of depression. Thus, I… Read more »
Sandra
Sandra
3 years 3 months ago

Give us this day our DAILY bread? Like you said, you can’t believe everything you read.

Paul
Paul
3 years 2 months ago
Marie Minton
Marie Minton
2 years 7 months ago

Do Not Eat Grains…knows what he/she is talking about; sounds like Dr. Jason Fung, an internist in Toronto, Canada who has done an extensive review of most of the published scientific evidence in the last 50+ years. See his 6-part YouTube Video Lecture series “Aetiology of Obesity.” He is having great success treating his Type 2 Diabetes patients with a combination of intermittent fasting and the paleo diet principles of cutting out processed carbohydrates and vegetable oils.

M
M
2 years 2 months ago

Without those grains, and other glutenous high GI starchy carbs, cholesterol would be burned for energy, along with fat and protein… Then there would be no need for oatmeal to lower the bad cholesterol. Just sayin’.

SwampSoldier
SwampSoldier
1 year 11 months ago

“daily bread”= Word of God (in the context you’re referring to)

Xin
Xin
2 years 1 month ago
“…so the harmful effects are mostly limited to folks with a compromised gut flora or pre-existing digestive issues.” The issue here is that, given the plethora of intestinal-barrier-loosening substances in foods like wheat (its proteins demonstrably act on zonulin, which loosens tight junctions), and the contributions to this damage by dairy, and processed foods. (via, to give one out of tens of examples, indigestible large molecules)… it is very likely that many people have compromised guts to some noticeable degree. The issue is that statements like this cause folks who have not officially been told or “diagnosed” as having damaged… Read more »
Xin
Xin
2 years 1 month ago
Also, while I did not really touch on it all, the gut is a very complex system. Hormones, immune barrier, an entire microbiome… and constantly processing our energy and nutrients. There are many other effects on the health of the digestive system than just intestinal barrier loosening and gut flora problems, although both are HUGE in and of themselves. Inflamed intestinal lining, overgrowth of undesirable microbes.. all such things are very likely quite common. Not knowing about a health problem does not equal not having it. Since most health issues are a continuum (and do not just become significant when… Read more »
Alex
Alex
11 months 23 days ago

you really need to go watch vegan gains on youtube. low carb diets are not healthy or sustainable. this data is cherry picked.

Rob
Rob
5 years 4 months ago

Hello all,
I recently discovered this blog and have found it very interesting. There is a growing body of evidence that suggests a link between grain consumption and chronic degenerative diseases. I’m interested in the link between lectins from grains (specifically legumes) and neurodegenrative diseases such as dystonia and other movement disorders. Does anyone out there have information about this or know of anyone who has successfully treated their dystonia by adopting a Paleo-diet? Thanks….

Lynda
Lynda
4 years 9 months ago

Ah, grains, ie. cereal grains, are not legumes. Peas, beans, alfalfa, carob, soy, peanuts. They are plants in the Fabaceae family. Cereal grains are grasses in the monocat family Poaceae.

Lindsey
Lindsey
4 years 7 months ago
My husband and I recently embarked on a “healthier” alternative lifestyle just over a month ago…and when I say alternative, it’s due to the fact that it is not your average American diet including cereal, pasta, bread and “whole grains.” In fact, we eliminated grains completely and have been enjoying lean protein, vegetables and some fruits. In this past month, I have lost 11 lbs. (that I have been trying to lose the past two years) and my husband has lost 18 lbs. Now, I’m not promoting this as a “diet plan” because while that certainly was a nice side… Read more »
Mike C
Mike C
4 years 6 months ago
It really is amazing to me that our government pushes everyone to eat something so bad for you just so they can make billions of dollars a year. They know its bad for us, they just dont care. I am a veteran and after 1 particular tour in Iraq i all of a sudden had asthma. I was sent for tons of tests that came up inconclusive and they ended up giving me an inhaler an advair neither of which helped. After 2 years of using meds that didnt work and all types of tests nothing worked and i felt… Read more »
Shake
Shake
4 years 4 months ago
Gave up gluten because daughter gets rashes and who knows what else internally and have noticed improvements in my health as well. For instance, with my last pregnancy i didn’t gain as much weight or get swollen ankles and stuff. But i also don’t eat meat, except wildcaught seafood and eggs. and i don’t eat dairy. also don’t eat HFCS. so i’m questioning if it’s the gluten free that is responsible for me being healthy. Also i eat a lot of rice and corn because it doesn’t have gluten. Is rice and corn restricted in this diet? what about beans?… Read more »
piedade
piedade
4 years 1 month ago

What if you are a vegetarian? How do you fill up? On vegetables? I read an article on how soy has been transformed and we should not eat it?

Ashwin
Ashwin
4 years 1 month ago

Hi Rob, I have dystonia. I read on one dystonia forum of a forum member adopting this diet and seeing significant changes.

Valentina
2 years 6 months ago

You are right, I discovered it couple of days ago and Mark changed my life!

About paleo diet treatment and proof that it can cure is myself! It changed me, I feel more energized a lot better since I started it.

Arrepentios!!!!
Arrepentios!!!!
4 years 11 months ago

Arrepientanse hippies, todo lo que comen les hace da~o porque viven en una vida llena de pecado y por eso tienen miedo de comer lo que Dios creo para nuestro bien….ustedes le dicen malo a lo que Dios dice bueno. Estan enfermos por pecadores NO por comer gluten o granos. Arrepientanse!

Martine
Martine
4 years 10 months ago

LOL

cálmate wey

Chris
Chris
2 years 5 months ago

Bien dicho Martine. Jaja!

Marion
4 years 8 months ago

god didn’t create modern grains, people did by taking entirely inedible grasses and turning them into edible, albeit indigestible grains like wheat etc.

Kuwanna
4 years 7 months ago

I have been learning more about the paleo diet from a friend of mine. My experience is in veganism and macrobiotics, and as I am learning more about our excess grain consumption as a society, what you say Marion really makes sense to me. You can pick an apple or pluck a lettuce leaf and it is ready to eat, but wheat or rice pulled from the ground are certainly not!

Joy
Joy
4 years 7 months ago
while I am on the fence about the whole grain issue I have to say Jesus Christ did eat bread did he not? I mean cavemen didn’t eat “salads” they didn’t eat fruit salads either. They didn’t eat nearly many of the things we eat today. They just weren’t available. So should we assume eating chinese, italian are bad too? I think the problem with the whole grains is that they are “bulking” up too much of most peoples meals. too many carbs and fiber. Instead of a bowl of cereal maybe some eggs and a piece of toast? Or… Read more »
frenzy
frenzy
4 years 4 months ago

god didnt make the computer you’re sitting at.
or the polyester your wearing.

oh, and if it’s cotton you’re wearing, well remember, just like grains, cotton plants were harvested too.

this article is bogus.

Sam Scott
Sam Scott
2 years 14 days ago
Some thoughts on Jesus and bread: He was penniless, itinerant, and spent much time preaching among the poor — saying “daily steak” would have been unrealistic and cruel. The Roman Empire was known for its free public bread, so He might have been using a common turn of phrase for “sustenance”. He was either the Son of God, and could have eaten uranium if He wanted to… or an ordinary man who grew up poor and couldn’t have known anything about nutrition. Either way, He had no reason to avoid bread. His theme was all about getting into Heaven, not… Read more »
Marion
4 years 8 months ago

and honestly, calling us hippy sinners? and that we’re only sick because we’re sinners? i can only presume you’re joking, otherwise take your zeal and stuff it where the sun don’t shine!

Erik
Erik
4 years 5 months ago

I think you have missed the fact that humans has been around for more than 100 000 years. Jesus christ was born 2012 years ago.

Anyone who believes in the christian god please explain why god was slacking at least 98000 of those years before he decided to sacrifice his son?

Tee Dee
Tee Dee
1 year 4 months ago
I’d like to see one theist show any historical proof that “Jesus” even existed. Careful records were kept of everything back then, yet not a single shred of evidence exists; and you can’t count the bible as it was clearly written by men and shows many inconsistencies and outright contradictions. Not to mention that the “Jesus Story” was told for hundreds of years before his supposed arrival. They just changed the names of those born of a virgin, having 12 followers, performing healings and ‘miracles’, being killed and rising again in 3 days. Those stories were told about Horus, Mithra,… Read more »
Pancho
Pancho
4 years 3 months ago

Quién dice que dios existe? Edúcate, por favor.

Rich
Rich
4 years 2 months ago

Jesus Christ never existed.

Twicenow
Twicenow
3 years 1 month ago

@rich You’re wrong, there’s evidence that He did, in fact exist.

Marck
Marck
4 years 1 month ago

hahahaha your comment is hilarius.

diogenes
diogenes
4 years 14 days ago

He seems to have had an impact, nonetheless. “AD” and all that…

Digo
Digo
4 years 6 months ago
Ok. Grains are bad, too much sugar is bad, a bit of sugar is bad, salt is bad, milk is bad, gluten is bad, egg is bad, meat is bad (acoording to some people), being vegetarian is bad (according to other people), everything you like is bad and what you don’t like, but got used to them, became bad. The problem is not what we eat but how we eat. How we mentally accept food as a good thing – or not. How we don’t feel guilty when we eat some things, how we start creating all kind of illness… Read more »
ediddy
ediddy
4 years 5 months ago
I think we were meant to eat meat, veggies, and fruit, and even some dairy. I don’t think there is anything wrong with eating eggs (mainly because I don’t believe modern science is on our side, and anything approved by the government is a sham and a lie and a way to put more money in their pockets). Life IS enjoyable without grains. My life is a living HELL with grains. If you have never felt the feeling of a thousand hot burning sharp razor blades traveling slowly through your intestines, and the sudden diarrhea at the worst possible times,… Read more »
Erik
Erik
4 years 5 months ago

I don’t think we were MEANT for eating anything specific. We have evolved and so our bodies has had more time to adapt to eating meat, veggies and fruit.

mick
mick
4 years 4 months ago

What you’ve just said is one of the most insanely idiotic things I have ever heard. At no point in your rambling, incoherent response were you even close to anything that could be considered a rational thought. Everyone in this room is now dumber for having listened to it. I award you no points, and may God have mercy on your soul.

John
John
4 years 4 months ago

Very good points;

JW
JW
4 years 3 months ago
“ediddy”, there were better, less flamey ways of putting that. Really, though, the fact that the debate is so vitriolic is ridiculous to begin with. Different people have different dietary tolerances for different things. For instance, I’m apparently one of those 70% or more of people who can tolerate at least small amounts of cereal grain. (Remember: only 1% have celiac and 29% of that study were non-celiac with the signs of resistance showing up; that sounds soooo scary, doesn’t it? Until you realize this means 70% of people don’t have any problem at least passing gluten!) This doesn’t mean… Read more »
Joe Cushing
Joe Cushing
3 years 4 months ago

Actually, when it comes to eggs, modern science is on our side. It’s been nearly 3 decades since eggs were shown to at least not be harmful to us. Unfortunately they have not been able to break through the propaganda against them, even though the propaganda has long since stopped. I see eggs as beneficial because when people eat eggs for breakfast, they are not eating a bowl of cereal. Now if we could get them to not have toast with those eggs.

anon
anon
3 years 1 month ago

How you feel when you eat grains is the way some people, myself included, feel when they eat meat.

Without meat it’s pretty difficult to eat a reasonable amount of calories unless you also consume grains and/or legumes.

Also, last I heard modern science was saying that eggs -are- healthy.

elisa
elisa
4 years 5 months ago

I love your comment

Kim
4 years 3 months ago

Great( and very valid) comment!

Rich
Rich
4 years 2 months ago
I see this differently. I don’t care how bad you BELIEVE something is for your body. If the substance in question isn’t bad for the human body, it won’t hurt you. The power of your MIND is hurting you in such a case. PLACEBO effect! The proof to all this is in the results. I am going to give up grains and see what the results are. I will see how my body changes in it’s appearance. I will see if I feel better. I know my father ate tons of candy and tons of bread. He also smoked and… Read more »
Lisa P
Lisa P
3 years 7 months ago
I do have to say that the toxic ingredients that are in our processed foods here in the US are not allowed in Europe. The same companies that make our everyday American processed crap foods, make a less processed, non toxic version in Europe. I suspect the cigarette industry does something similar. Why would they do this? They are socialist and their government is responsible for their healthcare. Prevent illness, save money. Here in the “land of the free”, our government and their agencies approved those very same ingredients that are banned in Europe. Everyone gets sick, big corporations such… Read more »
Valentina
2 years 6 months ago

I love your comment!

Sandra
Sandra
3 years 3 months ago
Yes, we live a stressful life but folks in Japan aren’t exactly stress free and according to the article you linked to they live a lot longer than we do. I have to believe the difference is in what we’re eating. Many people think European and Mediterranean diets are pastry, pasta and pizza, but those things form a very small part of their meals. With fish, meat and vegetables forming the largest part and grains composing a much smaller part. In the US, thanks to the USDA, for most people, grains compose the major part of their diet. Scientists have… Read more »
Patrick
3 years 3 months ago

Hey, if you have not tried jumping off a cliff from 300 feet without a parachute, “If you haven’t tried it, knocking it doesn’t mean a thing.”

Yvonne
4 years 5 months ago
What are we going to do, which most of the people we know and love would probably throw stones as if we tell them not only should they not eat grains, but no nuts and no seeds. I, fortunately, met Wil Spencer of Body Electrician and I learned from him most of what you share here. I was having unbelievable digestion problems, IBS etc. Spent $1,000s on all manner of probiotics, but when I eliminated the grains etc., with days I saw immediate improvement. Now I a working on repopulating my gut and restoring it after all the damage I… Read more »
matthew gibb
matthew gibb
4 years 3 months ago

I can see where the real problem is.We have very limited choices in an industrial society.Everyone is time starved and grains like corn,rice,potatoes and noodles give us the necessary boost.I still eat fruit,but that is usually for breakfast.I would think expanding the variety of what you’re eating would lead to a healthier life.Problem is most everything is refined and put in bright packages for long life.Real food seems harder to come by everyday.

Genghis
Genghis
3 years 8 months ago
“Apart from maintaining social conventions in certain situations and obtaining cheap sugar calories, there is absolutely no reason to eat grains.” This is a presumption based upon the authors (limited) knowledge in relation to all of the effects, energetic and in terms of process that eating a grain has on the body. He just doesnt know all of the reasons TO eat grain. This doesnt mean that he is correct in his presumptions. I will look at each though. “You need the fiber!” his retort amounts to because I feel like it and because I said so. One study cited… Read more »
Martin
3 years 7 months ago

Is there reason why you would recommend eating grains?

Albert
Albert
3 years 5 months ago

The evidence is right here on this board. People are giving their testimonies and yes grains are not good for us.

I have just been on this plan for the last four days and I can feel the difference (not eating at night, sleeping well, lost 1lb and just feel good).

It works and they only way to know is to try it with:

• No grain
• No sugary drinks
• No smoke

All equal healthy weight loss.

Jennifer
Jennifer
3 years 3 months ago
I have been doing this as well for about 4 days now. However, I can not say I feel good! I’ve had a dull headache the day after I started, sweaty and very tired. I suspect that it’s just my body rebelling from the lack of sugar, starch, wheat and grains, and that eventually I will start to feel better. I will say on a positive note though, I am not always hungry. Generally when I’d eat before I’d be hungry again in an hour. Now however, I eat and am satisfied for hours, sometimes I don’t even need to… Read more »
thixotropic
thixotropic
2 years 9 months ago
Those phytates and lectins DO have a purpose in grains. To keep them from being eaten or digested! Phytates: to make that grain INdigestible, so that when the grains are eaten by birds, they will be pooped out intact. We’d poop them out intact too, if we didn’t grind and cook them, but they will still bind to the minerals in our food and shut down production of pepsin, amylase, and trypsin, 3 different digestive enzymes. These things really don’t want to be digested! Lectins: Insecticides; they’re poisonous to everything except birds and rodents. While soaking and rinsing does remove… Read more »
Julia
Julia
1 year 11 months ago

Wheat was originally domesticated for beer making. Bread was an afterthought and a byproduct of that endeavour. In the form of beer, the wheat was much more digestible and nutritious because of the fermentation process than the way it is typically eaten now.

Sandra
Sandra
2 years 6 months ago
I don’t follow blogs directed at vegans and try to convince them that they are all demented. I find it odd that so many people who are against the Primal or Paleo diet are skulking around on a blog that is written for those of us who are, or who are interested in living the Primal/Paleo lifestyle. For most of us, we eat this way because we benefit from it. It’s not a fad diet for us. From the comments I’m reading here, it seems like a lot of people must get all their information from blogs and then when… Read more »
Wenona
Wenona
2 years 6 months ago

great comments, Sandra 🙂

shrimp4me
shrimp4me
3 years 4 months ago
Human adaptibility is why we as a species have been so successful. There seems to be a very wide genetic variation in what foods we can tolerate/thrive on so unfortunately the only way to find out what foods work best for a given individual is trial and error. I do best on proteins/veggies/moderate fat with some fruit (mostly berries) and Greek yogurt–makes sense given my northern European ancestry. As my ancestors moved north they would have found fewer plants and more animals to eat; adjusting to a higher-protein diet while their skin and eyes faded to adjust to the decreasing… Read more »
Jeremie
Jeremie
2 years 9 months ago

I think the best diet is to eat as many foods that are not processed at all. If they could not eat 20 000 years ago than we shouldn’t eat it. That in my opinion is the best diet.

Angela Anderson
1 year 8 months ago

I am rolling on the floor as I read this, I love it!

Roooo
Roooo
1 year 7 months ago

Vegetables contain anti nutrients too -.- .. and if you soak rice/legumes you remove most of them.. fermentation over 24 hours can remove over 95%

Ca
Ca
1 year 3 months ago
As I read the comments below I find the talk & different believes void of the fact that we ourselves create sick bodies through our diets and lack of physical activities. Then we try to undo what we created through what seems to be extreme diet measures to us. See at birth the average ( key word) person is breast feed (the intended) or feed a fortified substitute ( uh ohh). As toddlers we began consuming cows milk (not intended for human consumption) to accompany cereal, cookies etc and were given fruits and veggies to consume in between meals in… Read more »
dave, RN
dave, RN
6 years 10 months ago

Very well said. When I spoke to one of fellow nurses about my dietary habits and explained that i don’t eat grains or potatoes legumes etc, she said “but how do you get your starches” like it was some sort of required food group. And this from a NURSE. She should know better, but many don’t because they just spit out what they are taught. And therein lies our problem…

JulieD
JulieD
6 years 10 months ago

That’s because she’s learned it from the doctor. 😉

Melissa
Melissa
4 years 8 months ago

Well-we are subject to the media, government and big pharma(which has our gvt in its pocket)..I instruct nurses and med students..they are not physiologists. They are not given enough information on what is dietarily necessary. They are preprogramed before entering study to have the same adulterated view of what is “good” and “necessary” for existance. This includes some cancer meds and many medicines overall. Big pharma, plus government control of the FDA and media..hmm..what makes the world go around? Could it be money? Come on-

James
James
4 years 7 months ago

Thank you, Melissa!! You, for one, are a very aware of what’s going on around you and not hypnotized by our media, government and big industries that capitalize off of the bad health of the public. You also realize the the Federal Reserve is a private banking corporation, not part of the government at all? The Federal Reserve is the puppet master; all of the big industries and the government are far below them. I wonder what their agenda is??? Hmmm, you and I and a few others are well aware but most others are blind to their own demise.

1st world problems
1st world problems
4 years 4 months ago
Hmm, like the “alternative” health industry isn’t worth billions of dollars also? Like that whole area isn’t full of quacks and scam artists trying to part the desperate and ignorant from their hard earned money? C’mon yourself. To be honest you sound a lot like my mum, who didn’t believe in getting pap smears because it’s all about “big pharma” playing on our fears. Hey, she eats all organic, is fit and meditates- what could possibly go wrong? Now she has stage 3 cervical cancer and wont do the chemo- apparently peroxide and mega vitamin C injections do the same… Read more »
Neil
Neil
4 years 7 months ago

You are aware that a doctoral degrees require a compulsory 25hrs of nutrition in between 7-10 years of study. Surveys of American instutions found the majority manage less than 20hrs. Is the suggestion is that Doctors are some sort of authority on nutrition??

Rich
Rich
4 years 2 months ago

Most doctors are non-thinking fools, who only know what they were told in medical school.

Their teachers in medical school, in many cases, were non-thinking fools as well.

Very, very FEW doctors are involved in research.

Some doctors simply look at symptoms and prescribe what they see in a book somewhere.

Doctors have killed more people than you care to count.

Nikki
2 years 7 months ago
Whoa, hold up there. Do you even know how hard it is to get into medical school to begin with? You can’t get in by memorizing things (although it helps) as they place heavy emphasis on critical thinking. Very few doctors are involved in research because a researchers rarely get above 6 figures while doctors get way more usually. Well how else would they know what disorder/disease you have if you don’t look at the symptoms? Those are the only available sources of information and the so called “books” are thoroughly researched to give the best possible guess with the… Read more »
Rachel
Rachel
6 years 9 months ago

Realize that a lot of these nurses are taking this from actual classes, real professionals and researchers, not reading it online where anybody can post anything quite obviously.

Esther Anders
Esther Anders
6 years 8 months ago
Ummm…well Doctors take about a days worth of nutritional classes in the 4-8 years of medical school. That really isn’t good. Look it up. My husband works at a hospital (security) and has been told how much nutrition classes they’ve had, and they’ve said about 8 hours while they were in medical school. Anything over and above that(for them personally has been little to none), they had to learn on their own. But let me ask you, if you’re not taught to learn about nutrition in school to be a doctor or nurse, then why would you think that’s important… Read more »
Stent
Stent
6 years 5 months ago

Dr’s may only get about 8 hours of nutrition training but nurses get an entire semester, we know better.

LittleOne
LittleOne
6 years 2 months ago

oh well said! I always trust the advice of security guards over a medical professional.
Everyone! Relieve the global strain on health systems while solving the overpopulation issue, see security guards and herbal charlatans for all your ailments!

Tyler
Tyler
6 years 3 days ago

Cancer and ‘herbal remedies’ should *never* be used in the same sentence. Anybody recommending such tripe should be exorcised, for they surely have a demon living inside their noggin.

sarabear
sarabear
5 years 8 months ago
this isn’t so much a response to esther as it is to ‘littleone’ and ‘tyler’. it’s so disappointing to see such unenlightenment from people that have managed to stray so radically from the diet ‘prescribed’ by the government and health ‘authorities’ – the same people that want to prescribe you a drug for every ailment, needless to say those which include the ‘conventional’ cancer treatments. if you’ve got enough stomach to make it to the end, i think you’ll be Very surprised with what you find and maybe, just maybe, you’ll be the ones telling all Your family, friends, colleagues,… Read more »
sarabear
sarabear
5 years 8 months ago

lol, with all my ranting, i forgot to post the link [that i hope Everyone will have the stomach, and the patience, to watch to the end – i.e. part 6]
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2DW-twcOQcE
of course, same applies here. don’t believe everything you read/hear/see. do the research yourself.

Niki
Niki
5 years 4 months ago

Stent: 8 hrs means 8 credit hours which is usually two semesters. One semester is 3 to 4 credit hrs.

Aaron
Aaron
5 years 4 months ago

Chiropractors take an entire year of nutrition courses… Not all Dr’s are created equal…

Courtney
Courtney
5 years 21 days ago
Just so you know, speaking from experience, doctors aren’t stupid. There are definitely some bad ones, but most of them really are trying to help. I’ve been lucky enough to get a couple of true professionals. Yes, they have stuck me with needles, and yes they prescribe medicine, but it all has a legitimate purpose. I’m diabetic, and without my doctor I’d be dead. I wouldn’t trust anyone else (outside myself and my family) more with my life. I know you are probably coming from a valid history of bad experience with doctors, but I just wanted to defend them… Read more »
Walter
4 years 10 months ago

I agree. Dr.’s are scaling their patients so they have to return, its all about the money now..

nicole
nicole
4 years 9 months ago

your so stupid

Terin
Terin
4 years 8 months ago

I agree with what you share about food. I am eating a paleo diet and feel great. Please don’t direct people to “herbal doctors” stating they will “take care of it” for serious medical and health issues. Sometimes they can, my friend died foregoing traditional western medicine treatments for herbs. Sometimes herbs work; great! You can’t deny that chemo has saved thousands of lives. It’s a delicate choice; herbal doctors are a great source toward recovery from treatments such as chemo.

Stacey
Stacey
4 years 7 months ago
My dad died just over a year ago from cancer ALL THANKS to the “dr’s” for killing him. We found out to late he could have naturally been cured. I am 32 and both parents are dead from cancer. I have learned a great lesson though, and I know my parents are happy about that. But to know the could have been saved is such a sad thing and I try to tell as many as I can that not all doctors are there to “help” you, and to do your research first. Anything you want is right here online… Read more »
MISS
MISS
4 years 3 months ago

WELL SAID SARABEAR!

Rich
Rich
4 years 2 months ago

You are correct. In many cases, doctors treat SYMPTOMS, not the cause.

You’d be surprised that in Cuba, there is more emphasis on the causes of things than just treating a sympton. Being they are a 3rd world country, we here in the U.S. could do much better if politics and PROFIT$ weren’t an issue!

Sarah
Sarah
3 years 6 months ago

Haha… 🙂 Research? From what!?! Websites like this? Written from the biased and close-minded view of one person. Research is going out into the field and finding your OWN results, with logical and scientific backgrounds, not copying it off cheap crappy websites like this.

Patrick
3 years 4 months ago

“training” or “indoctrination by the meat and dairy industry”
We’ve done the studies, we’ve seen the evidence.

toniolio
toniolio
6 years 3 months ago

Perhaps it was an older nurse? or doctor? do you really think that once they graduated 20-30 years ago they kept up on the research?

I have a B.Sc. Neuroscience, and M.Sc. Physical Therapy… yes, I’m a health professional. And I did LOTS of study on nutrition, biochemistry, exercise physiology. And this post makes sense.

So…. I guess I didn’t pay attention to those “real” professionals and researchers, right?

Loren
Loren
5 years 12 days ago

The YouTube video above has been removed by the user. Why is that?

Adam
Adam
4 years 14 days ago
Dear Melissa, miss registered dietitian, I am also one of those who have read tons of studies/books on the subject of nutrition, though I am not as fancy as a “registered dietitian”. Despite that, I will now do my best to obliterate your naive comments about paleo and grains. You say there’s no evidence that those without gluten sensitivity or intolerance. Dr. Fasano says you’re wrong. http://chriskresser.com/pioneering-researcher-alessio-fasano-m-d-on-gluten-autoimmunity-leaky-gut Now, this is an interview, however Dr. Fasano is the one who discovered that no matter who you are, 100% of human beings release zonulin in response to gluten, specifically the gliadin component… Read more »
sara
sara
6 years 2 months ago
I am new so be gentle but I read some of this stuff and wonder why you people instantly buy into what is said. A lot of crap is out on the market. You can not believe everything you read. You should do your own research and find 3 reliable trusted sources to back up anything that Mark or anyone else says before you but into it. Just my opinion. How do you know what he says is true? Just because he read or conducted a study you do not know the confines of the study etc… spend some time… Read more »
Griff
Griff
6 years 2 months ago
I’ve done the research. I’ve also applied it. You can’t deny the evidence I have – a more than 90 pound weight loss with no effort, cravings, or hunger; cessation of migraines, IBS and arthritis; normalization of blood sugars and cholesterol levels; increased energy; better sleep – the list goes on and on. I didn’t “instantly buy into” anything. 3 reliable trusted sources? Let me introduce you to the shelf of about thirty books on diet and nutrition that I’ve read (and I know there’s thirty or so, because I just unpacked them from moving boxes in my new place).… Read more »
empty
empty
5 years 10 months ago
Completely unwarranted attack, Griff. Your anecdote isn’t a counterargument to what sara suggested. You don’t represent the people she’s talking about; you’ve done your research. Are you everyone that has read, is reading, and will read this article? No. “We’re the smart ones, and we’ll live longer and healthier than anyone else on the planet.” Congratulations. “My statements are founded in science and my own experience over the last eleven months.” As Erin writes below, a lot of the science on nutrition takes a long time to pan out. I bet a lot of your 30 books were based one… Read more »
Griff
Griff
5 years 10 months ago
*shrug* Whatever, “empty”. In addition to the science, I’ve also got the proof of my own experience – so if you choose to eat things that will poison you, that is so beyond “not my problem” that it’s not even in this solar system. The scientific experiment of the last sixty years – of low-fat high-carb eating and health – has FAILED. The science of the last sixty years shows this conclusively. Our grandparents and their parents and their grandparents, all the way back to Grok, ate the way that Primal people do now, and they all lived into their… Read more »
Griff
Griff
5 years 10 months ago

And if you want non-epidemiological studies, start with the Eades’ Protein Power, Anthony Colpo’s The Great Cholesterol Con, and Taubes’ Good Calories, Bad Calories. All of them are chock-full of peer-reviewed, non-epidemiological studies. That should cheer you up.

empty
empty
5 years 10 months ago

Woah, Mark, sorry; did I catch you on the wrong day?

I’m not sure what you’re arguing here. I never criticized what was written above, nor did sara. She just said this: be a little critical before you just accept it as truth.

Despite your inability to properly read my posts, I’ll bite.

-“Primal” people? Can you define what this means?
– 3 books, out of 30, that’s 10% of your books.

gwen
gwen
5 years 9 months ago

“Our grandparents and their parents and their grandparents, all the way back to Grok, ate the way that Primal people do now, and they all lived into their 80s and 90s, usually in at least decent health. Our parents, on the other hand, ate the low-fat high-carb way, and started dropping like flies in their 40s and 50s from heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and stroke. Hmmm. I see a connection there.”

You think the life expectancy of our parents was 40 YEARS LOWER than that of our grandparents? lol wut? Crazy much?

Dotcom
Dotcom
4 years 9 months ago
“Our grandparents and their parents and their grandparents, all the way back to Grok, ate the way that Primal people do now, and they all lived into their 80s and 90s, usually in at least decent health. Our parents, on the other hand, ate the low-fat high-carb way, and started dropping like flies in their 40s and 50s from heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and stroke. Hmmm. I see a connection there.” Primal, schmimal. The primal diets may have been great for people who were active on the farm or the factory all day, but these days most people are anything… Read more »
Denise
4 years 7 months ago
Thank you! The internet is a good place to get random ideas to make you think. HOwever, it should not be a source of hard and fast rules for anything. Go to the sources, whether diet, history, religion or politics~ick, for your information. And by the by, doctors, nurses & all people in general are characterized both by the diligent and the slackers. It’s our~sick~ so called ‘health’care reimbursement system that waits until people get ill in order to recieve funding to treat. See: Congress subcommittees. The system need to change to a true HEALTHcare system that promotes health~not just… Read more »
Melissa
Melissa
4 years 6 months ago
Listen to this person – do your own research before buying into what anyone else tells you. I am a dietitian and there is absolutely NO research out there from any real source that supports or can even give you a reason not to eat gluten or grains unless you have a gluten intolerance or allergy. Yes, of course a salad full of veggies will have more vitamins, minerals, and even fiber (though it will have different vitamins and minerals), but that just proves this guy couldn’t find a better argument so he wrote something that is obviously true. Also,… Read more »
Rich
Rich
4 years 2 months ago

Well, one of the things I think about is how sick we are today. We’ve got all these government recommendations that are supposed to keep a person healthy and they don’t work.

Don’t even mention FDA, which is a throughly corrupt organization.

I will see what benefit I get from avoiding grains. That will be proof or no proof to me.

Marla D
5 years 4 months ago

I follow a food plan free of grains and other “conventional” starches. I’m a nurse practitioner and have a dietician friend that eats the same way. My husband is a physician and sees no need for grains in the diet either. NOTHING I was taught in “actual classes” said that grains were needed for good health; it was just part of the goverment generated food pyramid. Many things we were taught in school were based on tradition, not hard science.

Barbara Byers
Barbara Byers
4 years 2 months ago
I have been doing a lot of reading on the subject lately. So far, I think the Gary Taubes books are the best for presenting the actual science and a great discussion of the history and the evolution politically of the “low-fat, high carb” diet being supposedly healthy. It is quite eye-opening of an indictment of public health policies being controlled by a few powerful researchers, supported by pharma and big food industries. Biologically humans should be eating meat and vegetables, and perhaps a few fruits. The biochemical reactions that digest food and produce energy and fat in our bodies… Read more »
Yeppers
Yeppers
5 years 2 months ago

I had the exact same thought.

thixotropic
thixotropic
2 years 8 months ago
Because anything taught in “actual classes” is automatically true? And anything online is inherently untrustworthy? That’s a facile presumption. Are my free online classes from MIT educationally worthless because they’re free and online? As was pointed out elsewhere — medical professionals do get some nutritional information, but it (clearly!) isn’t good information. So much for the vaunted supremacy of the classroom. The internet is chock-full of scientific, medical, and educational goodness. You don’t have to go into horrible debt to educate yourself — any halfway decent autodidact will get twice the education of someone just sitting in a class, uncritically… Read more »
Dawn Peters
6 years 6 days ago

Well – did you see this article? – Most medical schools do not meet the min. 25 hrs of rec. nutrition training. http://bit.ly/9b9DLn

Erin
Erin
5 years 11 months ago
So, as a 2nd year medical student, I’d just like to say I had 2 months of clinical nutrition. And if you’re appalled at that, you should also be appalled by the fact that we covered immunology in 2 weeks, microbiology in a month and a half, and genetics in a month. (Although I’d also like to impress upon you the intensity and amount of material that is covered in every hour of class time. Undergrad this ain’t.) There is so much to learn in medical school that it’s impossible to sit in a classroom and absorb it all in… Read more »
Deirdre Knobeloch
Deirdre Knobeloch
5 years 5 months ago

Erin,
Hi, I’m also a medical student and was wondering your thoughts on Primal Blueprint, if you’re doing it, and if so how it’s fit into the crazy schedules we have?
Hope you don’t mind me contacting you. I just found this site yesterday and I wanted some input from someone who understands the demands of med school. Thanks! 🙂
dhknobe@gmail.com

Raven
Raven
4 years 5 months ago
I’m not an RN or a doctor. Having the letters MD, RN, etc after your name or being a nutritionist, or even being a doctor who is well-versed in nutrition is all fine and dandy. In order to truly understand nutrition, you have to be well versed in the digestive processes as well. Scenario: You have a plant-based diet, that is low/no fat and high carb, largely based around grains. This diet has been shown to reverse heart disease, diabetes, cancer, arthritis, yada, yada, yada. You have grain free diets (there are several versions, not just the one mentioned in… Read more »
TotalTripe
TotalTripe
4 years 2 months ago
Raven, are you implying that your digestive tract can somehow figure out what it’s digesting, and change its chemistry accordingly? By what mechanism does it accomplish such a feat? Where did you hear all this business about gastrointestinal confusion? I’d like to hear what these different “digestive processes” are. Does your stomach have different acids that it secretes if it somehow knows it’s eating a vegetable, as opposed to a fruit? Does your intestinal lining change the way it absorbs nutrients based on what you’ve just eaten? I see many wild claims in your post without a shred of explanation… Read more »
Barbara Byers
Barbara Byers
4 years 2 months ago

It is well established that carbohydrates push up insulin levels, some more than others, but they all do it, to a level where it is chronically high. This is not good for anyone. But because of genetic variation in people, some handle it better than others, so some appear not to have any issues with it. But over the course of a lifetime, it is cumulative damage and it is NEVER beneficial.

Maria
4 years 1 month ago
Hi Mark! My family has been on paleo for some time now and I can’t begin to tell you how many amazing turnarounds in health we have all experienced, you know, those little irritating ‘things’ that you just tend to put up with! We turned to paleo after several years of research on my daughter’s health issue, an issue that was not addressed by any of the health professionals we visited here in Australia. We tried all sorts of dietary changes, but paleo was the one that effected the quickest and most amazing results. Just recently my husband had his… Read more »
Adam
Adam
4 years 14 days ago
LOL Raven. You’re close, so close, but yet so so far. Grain and animal proteins all contain amino acids, of which there are 20 essentials, which are all the same. The only difference is the order, which control protein folding/morphology. You can eat grain/meat/fruit in the same meal, and digest them all. Well, by digest them all, I mean digest the meat and fruit because it’s hard to digest proline-rich amines and fiber in grains, so you won’t really be digesting much of that… But good try. Vegetables are one of the hardest food groups to digest, for all mammals.… Read more »
JL
JL
5 years 2 months ago

You said it buddy. You’re a lobbyist.

G
G
5 years 2 months ago

I’m an RN. Here’s a little info for you. Take care.

“Phytic acid, aka phytate, aka IP-6, is one of the most powerful antioxidants found in foods. Some nutritionally-oriented cancer researchers think that IP-6 is probably the most powerful natural anti-cancer sustances. IP-6 is found in grains, beans, nuts & seeds. Wheat is especially high in this cancer fighter.”

“Phytic acid works differently than other antioxidants. Most antioxidants circulate in the bloood, stopping free radicals there. Phytate has the unique ability to work inside your cells, stopping free radicals that are formed duringthe normal process of cell metabolism.”

mehitabel
mehitabel
5 years 2 months ago
I’m not an RN. I think ingested antioxidants don’t hold a candle to our endogenous antioxidants, and in fact researchers have shown shoveling in the plant stuff down-regulates production of the home-grown gold. Catalase, superoxide dismutase and glutathione peroxidase are local antioxidant enzymes produced where they are needed, when they are needed by a cell which needs them to run its power plants safely. Additionally, I think it’s folly to broadly paint anti-oxidants as “good” and free radicals as “bad.” When mitochrondia get hit by enough free radicals it’s a signal to increase production of our own antioxidants. When poster… Read more »
Adam
Adam
4 years 14 days ago
Mehitabel is right, and House you’re usually so smart on your show… Free radicals are made every single time you consume food and process it. Carbohydrate metabolism actually increases free radical proliferation due to the ratio of NADH:FADH2 required for the electron transport chain. And yet the Okinawans of Japan have a high-carb diet and live quite awhile, without much free-radical induced aging, so it is possible that natural free-radical production from organic-style starchy vegetables is NOT an evil thing. That being said, I don’t think that it’s an issue if phytate works as an antioxidant against natural free radicals… Read more »
David
David
4 years 9 months ago

Yeah. We wouldn’t need to fight cancer if we didn’t digest grains.

Mark
Mark
1 year 11 months ago
I am a metabolic biochemist and as you will be aware, there are many potent antioxidants stored within foods, the most potent being polyphenols found in cocoa and green tea. These have been proven in many medical journals to be of the most potent. I even personally conducted a studeny which found they were effective against glioblastoma brain tumour cells. So, the point of my reply?! We definitely shouldn’t be pointing to grains where cancer prevention is concerned. As discussed by Mark Sisson and by myself later on this feed, grains cuasing chronically high insulin levels indirectly leads to a… Read more »
Paul
Paul
5 years 1 month ago

Todd, perhaps you should do a little research yourself. Start with Good Calories-Bad Calories by Gary Taubes…investigate the entire bibliography and substantiate your stand on grains point-by-point; a tip… you will NOT be able to do it. Historical scientific evidence supports that agricultural societies have steadily declined in health and increased in obesity and diseases of Western Culture. You, like so many other absolutely refuse to admit you have been hoodwinked by the government, Ancel Keyes….must I continue? I think not.

Loren
Loren
5 years 12 days ago

People in Asia/Japan (where I live) eat rice/carbs at almost every meal, live the longest of anyone everywhere (Japan has the highest longevity rates) and seem to have very few health problems. Of course, lung and colon cancer are high, but generally, carbs/starches are a large part of their daily diet. So…..I’m just saying: this is all a bit confusing. How does anyone explain the discrepancy of an Asian diet with carbs still produce such long lifespans?

Adam
Adam
4 years 14 days ago
Japan eats a lot of fish (omega-3), and eats many more natural forms of carbohydrates such as rice and sweet potatoes, which are starchy vegetables and are not toxic grains chock-full of antinutrients and gluten (which is an issue even if you’re not gluten sensitive due to zonulin increasing intestinal permeability). High carb diets inherently cause more free radical production during cellular metabolism which may explain the higher rates of lung/colon cancer (or maybe it’s smoking/pollution? I haven’t looked at that data or other factors). Asians therefore may eat similarly in terms of carbohydrate intake to Americans at the moment,… Read more »
David
David
3 years 4 months ago
Japanese and Chinese also eat stripped rice and usually not brown rice. So in the context of phytic acid, it’s not the same as whole grains and brown rice which are pushed here in the US as the preferred types. Well, this is what I have heard- that the anti-nutrients are mostly found n the casing of the whole grains and brown rice. Funny I have a chart from a study published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition and although brown rice produces less of an insulin spike, it’s really not much lower than white rice. So we have… Read more »
Lauren
Lauren
5 years 1 month ago
Hmmm whell it seems that all the no-grainers are a bit sarcastic and cold. I knew guy who ate just like this and he was a pure Power Trip 24/7; he was a big and lean healthy-looking guy, but not mentally!! VERY anxious and Bipolar. I just want to say that grains actually increase and maintain seratoninn levels (the happy chemical) while meat will actually lower it somewhat. And everyone will die one day. I TRULY believe that eating bread will NOT poison you, trust me. 😉 I have tried this no-grain diet and it made me VERY bipolar. But… Read more »
moosen
moosen
4 years 9 months ago

Bipolarism isn’t caused by not eating grains, it’s a genetic disorder…

Joe
Joe
4 years 7 months ago
Bipolar disorder isn’t caused by genetics. It’s a MENTAL disorder and technically ANYONE is a risk to be diagnosed with it. Genetics do SUPPOSEDLY create a higher risk to develop in those whose families have known cases of mental illnesses. Results linking it to purely genetics have never been completely conclusive due to never being able to replicate results. It’s just one of the few items that can affect and cause the development in individuals. Others causes are psychological being from chemical imbalances to structural imperfections of the brain and could even include damage caused from drug use. The other… Read more »
Barbara Byers
Barbara Byers
4 years 2 months ago
Drugs like opium also make you feel good. gluten and some of the other proteins in wheat and grans can actually fit into the receptors in the brain for this. Perhaps not such a good “high” after all. There actually have been a few studies where schizophrenia symptoms were reduced by a gluten free diet. You should really look and understand the biochemistry of what happens when carbs are eaten at a high rate, and what chronically high insulin levels do to your body over a lifetime. It isn’t pretty and sometimes it is subtle so you don’t see it… Read more »
Rich
Rich
4 years 2 months ago
You bring up a very good point that is outside of the general discussion here. That’s ok, I will comment on it. We are ALL going to die one day. Whether you believe that is good or bad makes no difference. YOU ARE GOING TO DIE. I see that as a good thing, because I know there is a spirit inside us that lives forever. Death is the end of our Earthly existence, but not our endless existence. We are just so distracted by this modern sick society. We are taught to FEAR DEATH. The point is: Living healthy in… Read more »
Adam
Adam
4 years 14 days ago
Sigh.. will these people ever stop with these posts? I’ll try to be nice just for you Lauren… Carbohydrates do increase serotonin synthesis. This is fairly benign, ala Thanksgiving dinner sleepyness/contentment. Yet you forgot to mention that serotonin and dopamine are antagonistic, and that upping serotonin will lower your dopamine, which can cause depression and mobility issues. Sounds like a catch-22 of depression with low serotonin or dopamine, eh? But how about balancing the see-saw so that both are in moderate amounts so that you aren’t depressed? Bread WILL poison you, it’s just a matter of dose. A little bit… Read more »
Josi
Josi
5 years 26 days ago

“BTW, paleolithic tribes did not live past 35 years of age and did not live long enough to develop heart disease and colon cancer.”

Maybe because of the paleolithic tribes diet their bones appear to be 35 years old being compared to modern mans bones. Perhaps they lived much longer and healthier then we do today.

noxpass
noxpass
4 years 11 months ago

lol, That’s not how carbon-dating works.

JW
JW
4 years 3 months ago
Not even just carbon-dating; more like tree rings, IIRC. Your bones’ internal structure is something that changes over time, no? But you have a record of your whole life in there. For instance, calcium absorption gets more difficult as you age, leading to more brittle bones, and your inner bone structure is also impacted by early environment, leaving clues to it. Likewise, a rough guide is teeth; while there is some variance (both my 12yr molars and wisdom teeth were 3 years “late”), on average, certain teeth come in at certain ages. If some corpse still has baby teeth, or… Read more »
good villager
4 years 10 months ago

Longevity data tend to be distorted by factoring in infant mortality rates (and likely other things affecting these rates). Prehistoric people lived longer than 30-35 years, on average. They foraged and ate a wide variety of things, with little competition for resources. Agriculture was probably one of the worst things to happen to humans, especially women. Diet and life span took a nose dive after that.

Cheryl
Cheryl
4 years 10 months ago

This is untrue. there was fierce competition among human ancestors, and if you read up on evolution, you can see that humans indeed had shorter life spans years ago.

JW
JW
4 years 3 months ago
Little competition? Maybe during the population bottleneck period, but I assure you, there is PLENTY of evidence of prehistoric warfare; wounded bones tell no lies, particularly when they show markings suspiciously similar to the tool marks of the tribe next door… Old-school agriculture IS bad for women, though, but only because high calorie intake from grains lets their bodies fatten up and thus trigger more frequent estrus and less frequent miscarriages… they have more babies, in fewer years, than those leading hunter-gatherer or modern “western” lifestyles. In undeveloped regions (including prehistoric times), this led to a lot of deaths from… Read more »
Barbara Byers
Barbara Byers
4 years 2 months ago

Yes, the anthropological studies look at the remains and can analyse things like height and weight, relative health of the bones, etc. Once agriculture was introduced, which was still thousands of years before medical advances, the stature of the people became much shorter, the bones are more lifely to have malnutritional deformities, the teeth to have cavities, and signs of heart disease start appearing, and these are in populations with similar lifespans.

Cate
Cate
4 years 11 months ago
There’s plenty of nice data out there to support this stuff. In no particular order, here’s some nice data I just pulled off PubMed. UCSF – short term paleo intervention improving blood pressure, glucose tolerance, insulin secretion, insulin sensitivity and lipid profiles. http://www.nature.com/ejcn/journal/v63/n8/abs/ejcn20094a.html and another on glucose tolerance: http://www.springerlink.com/content/h7628r66r0552222/ particularly important for type 2 diabetes: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0002822307019281 http://www.ajcn.org/content/82/1/242S.short (Harvard School of Public Health) high protein diets reducing risk of heart disease: http://www.ajcn.org/content/87/5/1571S.short no improvement, but no damage in terms of heart disease and risk markers for high protein: http://www.ajcn.org/content/87/1/23.short a bit of that ‘I’m fuller longer and don’t get energy dips’… Read more »
whoanelly
whoanelly
4 years 10 months ago

Hope you like colon cancer.

Alex
Alex
6 years 10 months ago

Thanks Mark – I have been slipping lately and this was the article that I needed to read.

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Wyatt
Wyatt
6 years 10 months ago

For my Sustainability class my group is supposed to brainstorms ways we can cut back on food consumption on campus (ASU). One proposition will be to cut outs grains and sugars from campus. consuming only nutrient-dense food will derive undistorted satiation, and ultimately require less calories.

Shane U
6 years 10 months ago

“if your average unhealthy person were to ask for the top three things to avoid in order to get healthy, I would tell them to stop smoking, to stop drinking their calories (as soda or juice), and to stop eating grains.”

You wouldn’t have no added or processed sugar as a top 3?

Kristin J
Kristin J
6 years 10 months ago

Which of Mark’s Top 3 would you have replaced with your suggestion?

Shane U
6 years 10 months ago

Well the more I think about it, my suggestion, no sugar, pretty much covers the no soda suggestion, so I guess that one.

You?

Kristin J
Kristin J
6 years 10 months ago

I like the way Mark presented his Top 3 because many people think they’re eating healthy even while they’re drinking juice. While some foods with added sugars may at least provide a tiny bit of nutrition, sugary drinks are really at the bottom of that list.

While the avid readers of MDA already know this, I think it would be more helpful to newbies who still follow CW.

JulieD
JulieD
6 years 10 months ago

There are plenty of unhealthy people who don’t smoke.

Shane U
6 years 10 months ago

agreed but the statement was if I had to tell people three things to a healthier lifestyle. No one was suggesting that just because you don’t smoke it means your healthy.

Mick C
Mick C
6 years 10 months ago

“If you’re not a smoker, don’t start” — how’s that — {:~)

marci
marci
6 years 10 months ago

This is a perfect reminder- esp with the holidays fast approaching. While I might enjoy a wee bit of quinoa or hummus now and then, my consumption has dropped dramtically over the last 9 months since I’ve been on the PB. Grains really don’t appeal to me any more, thankfully. Excellent post!

Rafi Bar-Lev
6 years 10 months ago

Why cut out hummus? It’s not a grain as far as I know.

It would be nice to get a clarification on this since as an Israeli cutting hummus out of my diet would be very close to impossible.

-Rafi

marci
marci
6 years 10 months ago

Beans are a no-no on the PB- I just threw them in there since some grains & beans are 20% for me!

Meena
Meena
6 years 10 months ago

There’s no reason to cut out legumes, but they are high in sugar (they’re carby). I’m a vegetarian so I eat legumes on days I don’t eat eggs to get my protein in. Also hummus is the sort of thing where a serving is a tablespoon, so you’re not even really eating that much hummus (or shouldn’t be).