Thursday, October 11, 2012

Wheat Free For Me...

Several months back, I told you that my husband is Paleo. I've tried multiple times to eat like him and failed miserably. I like bread. I didn't want to give up bread. I had intense cravings, didn't understand why I would deprive myself, and didn't really see a negative effect from eating non-Paleo. Plus, I figured eating multigrain, whole wheat, organic bread? Healthy, right?

I saw Dr. William Davis, the author of Wheat Belly, in the news. He kept popping up. In Women's Health, on Good Morning America, etc. And he was talking about well-researched dangers linked to wheat. Yup. Wheat.

Wheat, as Dr. Davis points out, is no longer wheat. It's not what our ancestors ate, heck, it's not even what our grandparents ate. It's been modified, cross-bred, spliced, into something very scary.

I'd advise you to check out the book, or his blog, and decide for yourself what is the answer for you. But for me, the book clicked. Wheat is behind our skyrocketing obesity rates. Dr. Davis has found links where wheat causes diabetes, heart diseases, acne, IBS, possibly even autism and some cancers.  Scary yes, but c'mon, that can't be right, wheat is heathy for you, right? And I don't notice any ill effects from it. He must just be talking about celiacs, right?


Dr. Davis explained how the unique form of gluten and the specific carbohydrate found in current wheat posses the ability to 1. open your intestines to allow all form of manner into your bloodstream that shouldn't be there, and 2. actually permeate the cerebral linings and effect your brain. In fact, wheat is able to act almost like an opiate, giving you a high, causing you to seek more.

And, plain and simple, two slices of whole wheat bread increase your blood sugar more than two tablespoons of pure sugar!  It spikes your glycemic index, is more digestible than any other carbohydrate, so you crash much faster, and can interact with your body like an opiate.

Suddenly, my cravings made sense. Why I couldn't break free and was cranky when I tried to go Paleo. And it scared me. Yeah, I want to get rid of my wheat belly, the visceral fat around my middle that grows with every "healthy" whole wheat item I eat. But more importantly, I want to avoid the scary consequences. The things wheat does to our bodies.

So I decided to go wheat free. Not Paleo mind you, because strict Paleo-ists will not eat dairy either. I see nothing wrong with dairy, especially full-fat cheeses. Yes, full-fat. The government has declared a war on fat, pushed "healthy" whole grains, and yet obesity rates have grown and grown. Seriously, read the book.

I'm about 5 days in. I've definitely had some painful moments. I went cold turkey. Threw away everything in the house that had wheat in it. The first few days, I was hungry. My body was seeking that high again. I had headaches. Yup, actual withdrawal symptoms from the removal of wheat. By day 5?

By day 5, I'm a bit amazed. I'm already feeling more regular. Hunger is no longer a craving, even when I feel hungry, I'm not panicked. My skin looks clearer already. Really.

I'm still feeling a bit of the withdrawal. A bit sluggish and cloudy. Workouts are a bit difficult right now as my body adjusts. It's relearning what to burn. Food is actual fuel now, not a weird toxin.  But I'm sleeping faster and better. It's easier to wake up.

I know there will probably be a few more difficult days, but I'm doing this for my health. For my health while pregnant. For the health of future children.

I'm not a doctor by any means. I can't tell you what to do. But I do suggest you pick up the book, research, and decide for yourself. And if you do decide to quit, stay strong. It's not fun, but you won't regret it.

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