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Is Wheat Bad For You?

Published 6/10/13

What Is Wheat?

We’ve all heard it, that wheat is good for you. That we should choose wheat bread over white bread, but is this true? Recent research has proven that modern wheat is far from the wheat that our ancestors have thrived on for thousands of years. Throughout the years, scientists have created a “super” wheat plant that produces high yielding wheat crops but they have never tested to see if this modern wheat is actually good for human consumption. Today’s wheat is an extreme carbohydrate that results in elevated blood sugar levels which in turns leads to insulin spikes that then leads to chronic inflammation and excess fat around the belly area. Not only does this super-carbohydrate result in you gaining weight, it can also increase your risk of getting one of many inflammatory diseases such as heart disease, diabetes, fatigue, arthritis, and even dementia.

Wheat and Celiac Disease

Wheat is also a natural source of gluten, which is a protein composite that gives "chewiness" to doughs and allows them to rise and keep their shape.  A significant percentage of the population is affected by celiac disease, an autoimmune disease that makes it difficult for their bodies to process the nutrients from food.  Celiac disease is a genetically inherited disease and it tends to run in families.  Symptoms from celiac disease can range from mild to severe and the only cure for celiac disease is to eliminate gluten-containing foods from the diet.

Wheat is Addictive

If someone told you that wheat has the same effect on your brain receptors as opium, would you believe them? Well, you should. Today’s wheat is an extremely addictive complex carb as a result of a special protein that the wheat has called gliatin. This gliatin protein increases your appetite resulting in incessant hunger and cravings for more products and refined carbs from wheat. CBS News did a report that stated the addictive characteristic of wheat could result in people consuming an extra 440 calories per day, which, with no real surprise, ultimately leads to weight gain.

Why Harvest Unhealthy Wheat?

Could farmers go back to growing wheat that is more natural and more similar to the wheat our ancestors thrived on? Yes, they definitely could but they most likely won’t, why? Because modern day wheat is the highest yielding strain of wheat in history and in turn results in higher profits for farmers. Harvesting healthier wheat would be much better for society, but this would most likely come with a financial hit for farmers. This healthier grain would be more expensive to grow and would not yield as high as profits. And just like with most industries, money rules over everything in the farming industry.

Wheat Isn’t Completely Evil

The dietary fiber found in wheat, especially in wheat bread, helps reduce blood pressure. This fiber also helps lower the “bad” low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL) levels. When LDL is unregulated, it can result in the blockage of arteries and potentially lead to a heart attack. The magnesium also found in whole wheat contributes to stronger bones. Just like calcium, magnesium is important when it comes to keeping your bones strong and dense. 50% of your body’s magnesium is housed inside your bones. A single serving of wheat provides about 15% of your magnesium daily value. 

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