Field of wheat Vital Force Clinic St Louis

Why is wheat making people sick?  I think about this a lot and I’m going to break down some of this.  There are a lot of theories out there, but overall many people feel better when they don’t eat wheat.  I’m going to go over 3 theories of why this is happening and my opinion on it:  Wheat belly/leaky gut theory for sensitivity, Blood sugar regulation, and intestinal flora die-off.  Feel free to comment and let me know what you think, and if I missed something.

Wheat Belly/Leaky Gut:

I definitely think there is something to this theory, and most WOE (way of eating rather than saying diet) do something to help the intestinal flora.  But overall the theory is that the gut in injured by the gluten protein for some people.  This then causes the gut to “leak” nutrients and toxins into the blood stream and we can become hypersensitive (and our immune system sorta attacks us).  Overall what they recommend is avoiding wheat (sometimes all grains) and added probiotics (fermented foods or a pill).  Some WOEs that have helped people are Wheat Belly and GAPS (gut and psychology syndrome) and Paleo.

Blood Sugar Regulation:

Wheat is a carbohydrate.  So many people don’t react well to carbohydrates.  Overall these diets restrict wheat, grains and sugars.  People tend to lose weight and get more energy by highly restricting carbohydrates, eating moderate protein, and higher amounts of health fats.  One fallacy is that some people overeat on the protein.  Too much protein actually does effect our blood sugars negatively.   The most famous of these WOEs is Atkins.  Paleo or Primal eating is a mixture of this and Grain Free but allows for fruit.  I absolutely think this works to help people lose wight and by default it restricts wheat, but since people may not realize that the grain restriction is what is making them feel better, when they cheat, they assume the blood sugar spike is what causes bloat, weight gain and feeling icky.  It actually could be their body reacting to wheat or grain product they eat.

Intestinal Flora Die-off Theory:

So some more research is going into what certain foods do to our intestinal Flora.  There are definitely some apposing views on this… Pro and Con.  The theory goes like this.  Some wheat is harvested a week or so after the entire field is sprayed with roundup (glyphosate) to kill the wheat so it can be harvested.  I don’t think all farmers do this, but some do.  So very small amount of the herbicide roundup can be detected in the flour that is used to make the products.  When consumed the roundup will destroy some beneficial bacteria in the gut which changes the way our gut makes and digests certain nutrients.  This has a detrimental effect on the whole body.  There is no trendy diet with this theory other than avoiding any product or produce that has been sprayed with glyphosate.

So i think there could be truth to all these theories.  This is why someone who doesn’t have Celiac Disease still benefits from a wheat free diet.  In my opinion a more primal diet is better which avoids many grains.  Celiac disease is something different from these theories of sensitivity.  What do you think?  How do you feel when you are off wheat or all grains?  I know I feel better with less body pain, my energy goes up, my mind is sharper and I definitely don’t have as much bloating in my gut.  Share your story in the comments.

Thanks for reading!
Dr. Bagley

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