Niagara Gazette

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January 28, 2014

NATURAL HEALTH: Can modern wheat be the culprit of your sickness?

Niagara Gazette — Are you wondering why so many people are becoming sensitive to wheat? Isn’t it supposed to be healthy, especially if you are eating whole grain? I’m sorry to say, most individuals would benefit if they completely avoided wheat — even if you don’t have Celiac’s disease.

Wheat is not what it once was. It has now been so genetically altered your body does not recognize it. It has been altered in order to feed the masses (people, cows, chicken, farm raised fish, etc.), grow faster, and be resistant to insects and drought. This causes the body to react defensively, which results in the form of inflammation. If you were living in Italy, for example, you may not be affected, as they have banned the altering or genetic modification of their food. Good for them I say. I wish we were that smart, for we’d be far less sick.

It is estimated that 90 percent of the North American population is in some way, sensitive to wheat. Gluten is a binding agent that gives dough its stretch and thickens soups, salad dressings and other commercially prepared foods. As far back as the 1970s, researchers noticed that when wheat was removed from the diet, psychiatric conditions such as schizophrenia would improve markedly.

By 1985, most of the wheat in our grocery stores came from a semi-dwarf strain that does not resemble the three-foot, amber waves of grain you may be thinking of. I’d like you to note that shortly after this altered wheat dominated our food, we got very fat. Type II diabetes and heart disease numbers soared, and they still are. This evil form of wheat almost acts as an appetite stimulant.

Did you know that two slices of whole wheat bread raise your blood sugar higher than 6 teaspoons of table sugar? Diabetics beware! People who eat bread, crackers or other wheat products for breakfast, lunch and dinner are doomed to an almost certain issue with abdominal and visceral fat, as well as the likely diagnosis of type II diabetes. If you have already been told you are insulin resistant or suffer from metabolic syndrome, as far as I’m concerned, you are already diabetic unless you eliminate wheat and curb that sweet tooth.

Wheat is now an effective appetite stimulant. If you or anyone you know wants to lose weight, this would be one of the most important ingredients to eliminate. Unfortunately, the obvious places like bread, pizza and pasta are not the only places it is found. Twizzlers, taco seasoning, frozen dinners, and granola bars are just a few more hiding places. If you were a food manufacturer, wouldn’t you want people craving more of what you’ve got?

Hopefully you are now giving this some thought. In practice, I have seen the elimination of wheat result in the resolution of gastritis or even Barrett’s esophagitis. I have seen thyroid conditions resolve, hair grow back, depression lift and even a successful pregnancy after years of infertility. I cannot deny what I see. So many individuals suffer from unexplained anxiety. Remove the wheat and see what happens. Other benefits include a reduction of appetite, joint pain, inflammation, blood pressure and triglycerides.  Energy soars and sleep improves.

Unfortunately, many of my patients fail to see results when they dramatically reduce the amount of wheat consumed. It must be an all-or-nothing approach to be effective.  Your body cannot differentiate a crumb from a bagel. A crumb will inflame you just as much. Glutenfreegluten.com is an excellent and informative website that will help you succeed at becoming wheat- and gluten-free.

Please experiment! Try an exclusive month of eating wheat- or gluten-free. You will be pleasantly surprised.  Email your results to journeyiihealth@gmail.com. Eat real, single ingredient foods. Nuts, healthy fats, grass-fed beef, wild fish, organic chicken and turkey. Vegetables and fruits make your options unlimited. You can do this!

Catherine Stack is a doctor of naturopathy and a certified nurse midwife. Her practice is located at Journey II Health in Niagara Falls. Contact her at 298-8603 or at her website at www.journeyiihealth.com.

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