Health News · Nutrition

Why I’m choosing Gluten Free & Wheat is an opiate?!

Screen Shot 2016-07-30 at 9.19.30 AMOne of the things that I’ve gotten into this summer is listening to podcasts at work. I’ve always enjoyed background noise while working, but i’ve never realized how much I love learning until this summer. Throughout my internship, I have been in a constant state of “needing to know how things work” (in my case, how cells grow efficiently, how to manufacture drugs and drug products for other companies, and the pharmaceutical industry regulations) so I can be more productive in my job itself. But outside of work, whenever something is related to health, fitness or nutrition – whether it is harmful or helpful- I always google it and research to learn about it on my own. Podcasts are extremely helpful for me because it does the dirty work and gets to the facts quickly, I love listening to experts share data about nutrition and how to benefit my own health…

“Wheat is an opiate,” Dr. Davis, cardiologist and author of Wheat Belly stated. It got my attention, IScreen Shot 2016-07-30 at 9.17.43 AM was intrigued. It came from a podcast I was listening to on my drive home from Bloomington. I’ve been searching about digestive health, the thyroid, gluten, and wheat for the past few weeks. Little research has shown that wheat and whole grains are healthy, but a multitude of research has proven gluten free diets are more than just a tool for weightloss. The effects induce weightloss, but the reason that people have celiac disease is because it is a serious condition and causes very unwanted symptoms. From a foggy brain, bloating and digestive issues, to brittle fingernails, fatigue, soreness, hormonal disruption, menstrual cycle issues, anxiety and depression– gluten can sure cause debilitation.
But how is wheat an opiate?! Dr. Davis goes on and shares that wheat 50 years ago wasn’t genetically modified and that modern wheat has turned into an opiate. “Ever since the genetics of wheat changed, people started getting shorter, fatter and sicker.”

Screen Shot 2016-07-30 at 9.20.45 AM“Wheat is addictive in the sense that is comes to dominate behaviors. If you don’t have any for several hours, you start to get nervous, foggy, and desperately seek another “hit” of crackers, bagels or bread. It causes a withdrawal syndrome characterized by overwhelming fatigue, mental fog, inability to exercise, depression and can be provoked by administering an opiate-blocking drug like naloxone. This opiate is is not like the high of heroine, but it binds to receptors of the brain that makes us hungry. This is caused by a protein gliadin that was altered by geneticists in 1970’s to increase yield. Gliadin//wheat is a potent appetite stimulant.”

This really made me think. It made me mad and a bit discouraged.
And here is what went through my mind throughout the rest of this podcast:

  • I believe that big business is great, the reason that they want to have higher yield is to profit and succeed. But the overwhelming amount of advertisements, the overwhelming amount of sugar and fat they put into food just to make it taste good- just so they can make more money…it makes me sad. In turn that increases obesity, increases sickness and unhappiness.
    • Screen Shot 2016-07-30 at 9.28.39 AMAND WHEAT!? it makes sense, wheat is in EVERYTHING. check the nutrition labels of your foods and read the ingredients. At the bottom it will say “Contains: wheat” if it has wheat in it.
    • Twizzlers, the candy- even has wheat in it! It’s basically addicting sugar bread. You find poultry items, candy, dairy, all sorts of products with wheat in it, where it makes no sense to have it. But it does make sense with Dr. Davis’s explanation of its addicting effect and why I struggle with stopping at just one piece of bread at a restaurant or just a few pretzels or only 1 serving of cereal. 

      quiche's instead of oats for breakfast is a great grain-free idea!
      quiche’s instead of oats for breakfast is a great grain-free idea!
  • And second, why don’t doctors have a thorough education on nutrition. not just the basics – “fiber is good for you. eat your fruits and veggies. also make sure to have whole grains in your diet. limit fat. fat is bad.” again this could relate to big business and its effect of needing medicine = big money business and help both the doctor and the company making the medicine. But really…
    • 1. I truly believe that nutrition and exercise are the key to optimizing health. Stop injecting people with medicine and covering things up temporarily. There is a root cause why the body is revolting and not performing correctly. Eating the right way- whether its higher fats, lower carbs, more veggies, less grains, paleo, or gluten free can cause a profound effect on the way one feels. Add in some aerobic exercise like light Screen Shot 2016-07-30 at 9.30.06 AMintensity biking for 30 minutes a day to get the endorphin high of exercise and that is the cherry on top! Exercise regulates bodily functions and nutrition stimulates the proper fuel and energy to live life.
    • 2. Fat is so good for you. (if you’re eating the right types and amounts). While i don’t promote eating cheesecakes and high fat steaks every meal, stop the low fat diets. Eating fat provides satiety, regulates body functions and helps hormonal balance. Dr. Davis shares that there is more evidence of cardiovascular disease due to the overwhelming consumption of grains and wheat and there is little evidence that truly proves fat is the culprit of the cardiovascular diseases. 

Screen Shot 2016-07-30 at 9.27.19 AMI could go on and on about this matter, but my take home message for you is to do your research and think about how your body has been functioning. Whether good or bad, take note of what foods make you feel bloated, gassy, and uncomfortable and what food provides long lasting energy that doesn’t make you want to reach for the bread bowl. Ive been eating gluten-free for a week now and i have had little to no bloating, great amounts of energy and I am even trying to ween myself off of caffeine and coffee except for my morning coffee! My main reason to stop eating gluten was for menstrual cycle reasons and i have no say in how gluten removal has affected that, but i will keep you updated with that information after I have more experience with eating gluten free.

–>Check out my gluten free grocery haul from last week here on my channel:

–>I’m off for my workout, grocery shopping and to enjoy the rest of the day. But I’ll share my GF meal prep in a blog soon incase you need ideas and how I’m going about my meal plans to stay satiated without wheat or gluten in my diet (: 


3 thoughts on “Why I’m choosing Gluten Free & Wheat is an opiate?!

  1. Thanks for the read. Since you are getting into podcasts and in to gut health, I highly recommend Found my Fitness by Dr. Rhonda Patrick. She only puts one out about every month or so but they are incredibly well researched (and it takes me about that long to digest everything she has in each episode). Not affiliated in anyway, just a fellow ‘student’ like yourself.

  2. Excellent post! I’ve asked the question why doctors are not taught more about nutrition for many years. Even as a nurse, we were not taught much about it and I’ve gained the bulk of my nutritional knowledge on my own over the years.

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