Here’s a little quickie on wheat and why it is not as good as we think.
Wheat today is totally different from the wheat harvested hundreds of years ago. From what I have researched, 80 to 90% of the common foods we eat, especially packaged, restaurant food, and thickeners, have some kind of highly processed wheat product/gluten in them.
All grains should be sprouted* before they are consumed, which makes them more nutritious and easier to digest. Sprouting gets rid of the toxin, (phytic acid), that is naturally occurring on unsprouted grains and keeps your body from properly digesting it along with the minerals it contains. 1
Wheat is processed by taking away the nutritious wheat germ oil and bran, where most of the vitamins are. What’s left is the empty starch of the grain which has no fiber and no nutrition. They call it ENRICHED FLOUR. (See my vitamin article for more information). This by-product of wheat is then bleached and used for flour in pasta, breads, crackers, and many of the foods we love.
Processed flour is one of the many products I like to call ‘White Trash’. This group includes white flour, (pasta, bagels, pizza, etc.), white potatoes, white rice, and white sugar. All these products have little to no fiber, no minerals, and quickly flood the blood stream with sugar when digested. This causes a myriad of problems.
Many enjoy processed carbohydrates because they are a ‘comfort food’, but the only thing they comfort is our growing waistline. That’s because all processed grains and simple carbohydrates, (white trash), turn into sugar quickly, which contributes to increased appetite, weight gain and decreased immunity! 2 In addition, most of us never give our bodies a break from processed wheat. Some studies indicate this can lead to allergies or food sensitivities. 3
Symptoms of food allergies or sensitivities can be fatigue, holding on to unwanted body fat, skin problems, brain fog, indigestion, migraines, and many other problems.
Many lose weight and increase energy just by eliminating all wheat and gluten from the diet for 90 days. Today there are so many gluten free products, it isn’t that difficult to eliminate wheat. You can also get a blood test that will show which food your body is sensitive to. Check out www.ALCAT.com
So instead of white rice, eat wild rice. Beans are another high fiber food like kidney, black or navy. Yams and sweet potatoes, (especially if the skin is eaten as well), are another good option along with Quinoa, pure Buckwheat flour products, lentils, Amaranth, sorghum, millet and of course all the green vegetables you can eat. If you are not sensitive to glutean, the best option is sprouted, whole grain wheat. Ezekiel bread for example is in many grocery stores and is organic, sprouted grain bread that is quite delicious.
Here’s one of many great websites for gluten free products that naturally have a lot of fiber and are minimally processed. http://www.celiac.com/glutenfreemall/allprods.php
Remember, try to eat more organic unpackaged foods, and if you are not used to eating fiber, increase it slowly in your diet to avoid abdominal gas as your body grows accustomed to more fiber. The more fiber you eat the more water you need to drink.
Remember, fiber is the ‘antidote’ to sugar as I said in my Newsletter on sugar. The best option for fiber is at least 2-3 grams of fiber per serving.
Hope this gives you some ‘food for thought’!
Yours in health,
Jill Coleman RN
2. LA Times: A Reversal on Carbs by Marni Jaresen 12/20/10
3. Your Hidden Food Allergies are Making You Fat; Rudy Rivera, MD/Roger Davis Deutsch