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Wheat Sensitivity: A Mystery Solved

 Wheat Harvest 

Bread has been a staple of the human diet for centuries. Isn’t it mystifying, then, that increasing numbers of people are finding out they can’t have it? Something has clearly changed, causing a rise in sensitivity to wheat and gluten, but what? A recent book, Wheat Belly, offers an explanation, reports Matt Sutherland in Spirituality & Health.

The book was authored by William Davis, MD, a preventive cardiologist who has seen irritable bowel syndrome, acid reflux, and a host of other symptoms disappear with the elimination of wheat from patients’ diets. Gluten intolerant himself, Davis did a little research and discovered that, while humans have been cross-breeding wheat since Neolithic times, the stuff we eat today was bred for high yields in the mid-twentieth century. No one thought to check how human bodies would respond to the genetic make-up of these new strains. And though higher yields were meant to feed the world’s hungry, it seems Americans have ended up eating some of the extra, writes Davis. This may be contributing to obesity and diabetes as well as gluten sensitivity.

Thinking of kicking your gluten habit? Sutherland offers some simple ways to avoid modern wheat: eat more vegetables, fruit, nuts, and whole grains like oatmeal or rice. If you’re feeling experimental, try baking a loaf of bread with the grains your ancestors would have used, einkorn and emmer.

Source: Spirituality & Health. 

Image: wheat harvest on the Palouse, Idaho, by the US Department of Agriculture. It is in the public domain. 

annette beach
5/13/2012 12:58:28 PM

Check this website out to purchase einkorn: http://www.einkorn.com/


rachel dowling
5/12/2012 1:56:15 AM

Yeah, it seems like everyone is gluten intolerant lately. Seriously, I know about 5 people who have "come out" as intolerant in the last year alone. It has to be something that we are doing to this "modern wheat." We go through so much bread in our house. I wish I had time to bake loaves of bread. I would have no idea where to buy einkorn and emmer. That's the first I've ever even heard of them.


linda eatenson
4/18/2012 5:01:12 PM

It's our high-speed, high-stress lifestyle that pushes us to grab whatever seems convenient. The marketplace is happy to oblige because it makes big profits for them. Personally, I buy as much as I can from Community Supported Agriculture, and I've adopted the turtle as my role model. (The big ones can live a couple of hundred years. What a deal!)


laura jennings
4/18/2012 1:01:59 PM

Well ... yeah ... I would love to use ancient grains.....so where does one obtain einkorn .... or emmer??? I have enough trouble trying to find spelt. IMHO, the main problem is lack of choice. Go to any marketplace in Colombia or Peru and you will find a dizzying array of fruits and vegetables. Foods are not transported long distances and for the most part isnt frozen. Refrigerators and freezers are much smaller than here. People eat fresher and eat more variety and eat more locally. Why cant we? Why do we have the same ten varieties of veggies to choose from year round and maybe 5 differnet fruits? Have we gotten lazy and apethetic and only take what we are given on our grocery shelves? I dont know. I am still tying to figure this one out.