What’s baking at Baking Business?

This press release (below) is listed as Most Viewed on the Baking Business website, a news and information resource for the wheat industry. (I signed up for their website for free; you can, too. It helps to know what they’re up to!)

They may be ignorant, but they’re not stupid. They’re sizing up the arguments to get ready to launch their media battle.

Whole wheat foods attacked in new diet book
BakingBusiness.com, Aug. 25, 2011
by Josh Sosland

EMMAUS, PA. —A broadside attack on all wheat-based foods is looming with the upcoming publication of a new book published by Rodale Inc.

While wheat and other grain-based foods have been placed under intense siege from a range of diets over the past decade and earlier, including Atkins, South Beach and gluten-free, none has been quite as direct as in the new book “Wheat Belly: Lose the Wheat, and Find Your Path Back to Health.”

The 304-page book was written by William Davis, who like Robert Atkins is a cardiologist. Rodale, which has published other diet books that include “The South Beach Diet” and a series of “The Biggest Loser” books, also publishes health related magazines, including Men’s Health and Runner’s.

Publicity released by Rodale in connection with the September release of the new book touts the benefits of a wheat-free diet as including:

o Weight loss of 20-50 lbs in the first few months
o Alleviation of metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes
o Recovery from intestinal woes like colitis and celiac disease
o Marked improvement in overall cholesterol and L.D.L. counts
o Improvement of bone density and reversal of osteopenia
o Cessation of skin conditions from psoriasis to oral ulcers and hair loss
o Reduction of inflammation and rheumatoid arthritis pain

Rather than focusing on “refined grains” widely maligned in the nutrition community, Dr. Davis is highly critical of whole wheat products.

Excerpts from promotional material issued in connection with the book follow:

“Think America’s obesity epidemic is the result of too much fat and sugar and too little exercise? What if the real culprit were the ‘healthy whole grain’ products aggressively marketed to us by food companies and endorsed as “heart healthy” by government agencies? In his explosive new book Wheat Belly: Lose the Wheat, Lose the Weight, and Find Your Path Back to Health (Rodale Books, September 2011; ISBN: 978-1-60961-155-2; $25.99 Hardcover; 304 pages) renowned cardiologist Dr. William Davis makes the case that wheat, the world’s most popular grain, is also the world’s most destructive and dangerous dietary ingredient.

“In Wheat Belly Dr. Davis exposes the shocking truth about modern-day wheat and its effects on brain and body —exaggerated blood sugar surges (two slices of whole wheat bread — yes, whole wheat bread — have a greater impact on your blood sugar than a candy bar), bone cartilage damage, acne and rashes, heart disease, diabetes, and even neurological disorders (including delusions of schizophrenia). Informed by decades of clinical research and backed by case studies of men and woman who have experienced life-changing transformations in their health after waving goodbye to wheat (Dr. Davis has put over 2,000 of his at-risk patients on a wheat free regimen and seen extraordinary results), ‘Wheat Belly’ is an illuminating look at a familiar food as well as an affirmative life plan for regaining health and losing unwanted pounds.

“The notion that a foodstuff so fundamentally ingrained in the human experience can be bad for us is unsettling. But this is not the same grain our forbearers [sic] ground into their daily bread. Wheat has changed dramatically in the past 50 years under the influence of agricultural scientists who have genetically altered it beyond recognition with little or no questioning of whether these agricultural “evolutions” are compatible with human health. In “Wheat Belly,” Dr. Davis reveals modern wheat’s connection to everything from weight gain, diabetes, and heart disease, to neurological disorders like dementia.

“Dr. Davis examines the fact that despite all our best efforts (eating ‘better,’ exercising more), we’re heavier than ever. Once upon a time someone weighing over 250 pounds was a rarity, today it’s a common sight. Wheat bellies — the result of years and years of consuming foods that trigger insulin (the hormone of fat storage) — are everywhere. Ironically, the national trend to reduce fat and cholesterol by eating ‘more healthy whole grains’ is what has made us fatter and sicker, all the while making the food industry richer and richer. Wheat has become the national icon of health thanks to the actions of Big Food and government agencies such as the U.S.D.A. and other ‘official’ opinion-makers like the American Heart Association, the American Diabetic Association, and the American Dietetic Association. Under their directive, most Americans now consume foods made with wheat flour at every single meal and snack — to dangerous results.

“‘Wheat Belly’ is a truly groundbreaking and eye-opening book that is sure to have people talking.”

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Comments & Feedback...

  1. Ang

    I posted this on an older blog, but am really hoping you can point me to a “support group” thread of people who are losing weight by being wheat-free.

    I have been wheat-free for 9 days after reading the article in Woman’s Day (which I NEVER pick up — don’t know why it struck me that day to read it). I cannot believe the PROFOUND DIFFERENCE in my life.

    I have spent 43 years in the throws of what I will call a “food addiction” problem. The CONSTANT fight to win the battle of not -eating too much, not-eating the wrong foods, not eating, exercising more, etc. has taken a toll on my life and is time wasted I can never get back. But my husband described this best when he said “it’s like you’ve been a wheelchair and can walk again.” Cravings have been ELIMINATED. I mean COMPLETELY ELIMINATED. The ability to recognize ACTUAL HUNGER is so foreign to me that when, in the past eight days, it happened, my husband and I were GIDDY. I actually KNOW when I am hungry. I have NEVER KNOWN what hunger felt like.

    PERFECT EXAMPLE: We were at a ballgame and there were few options available and I was, as my husband, GENUINELY hungry. So I ordered a sauage and peppers without the bun and the fries that came with it. Now, I have NEVER EVER EVER LEFT FRIES on a plate and called them a “trigger food” for me for years. But, with out the wheat trigger in my life, I easily knew when I was full and, lo and behold, half the fries were left. NOW LET ME BE CLEAR: I am not saying I’ve replaced bread with french fries, I get that carb-porn/fried or otherwise can be problematic and I am eating plenty of vegetables, lean meats, brown rice and healthy choices, but when I was in a situation where real genuine hunger and VERY limited choices made a poorer choice the only option — without WHEAT, I was able to eat like a NORMAL human being, recognizing the signs of FULL and not feeling depriviation or the need to “WILL” myself not to finish the fries. I have NEVER had that ability!!!!!!

    Oh — and i’ve lost eight pounds in the eight days.

    Dr. Davis — have you ever had any long-term “food paralytics” — who have been trapped by an inability to manage food issues experience such dramatic changes? Can you put them together in a support group somewhere.

    And I am just 8 days in , so I am not a success story yet, but if this keeps up, I will endorse your books as the solution for MANY,MANY people!!!

    • Linda

      I am not Dr. Davis, but I do want to provide you with a link to what might be considered a support group. About.com has many sites devoted to all kinds of subjects, and as you might imagine, one of them is devoted to those of us who follow a low carb lifestyle. The posters at this site follow either Atkins plan, or South Beach, or some form of both.


      If you are not familiar with Tom’s site, also known as Fathead, here is a link.


      Sounds like your initial steps into the LCHF way of life have been very successful! Good for you!

    • Hi, Ang–

      I have no doubt that your initial experience will continue for, oh . . . 50 more years!

      Your story is absolutely wonderful. I am going to post in the Success Stories of proud wheat-free people!

    • DK

      I have always had allergies and asthma, as early as age four I have memories of struggling to breathe. In my 30’s I decided to walk three miles each day, eat a healthy diet, lose weight and get my asthma under control….and felt the worst ever in my life. I added whole grain pasta, whole wheat bread, bagels etc. to my diet and progressively felt worse. My asthma was out of control(daily medication), the skin rash/bumps on my skin were more defined than ever, itchy I was constantly taking Benadryl. Going to the DR gave me more medications, which seemed to give me more side effects, or only help for a short time. No one was treating what was causing my asthma, headaches, exhaustion, itchy skin and generally unwell feeling, only treating the symptoms! I decided to keep a daily/food journal and record what did, I ate, the time eaten and how I felt through out the day. I’m not sure why, it just felt like a last resort. Come to find out within an hour or two of eating wheat, or corn products (sometimes sooner) my asthma would act up and I would need my fast acting inhailer/allergy meds. Next I cried, (it felt like grieving) I had no idea how to remove wheat and corn from my life, that is all I ever ate…pastas, bread, etc. My comfort food. How do I socially eat with friends at dinners, restaurants??? (it seems to be in EVERYTHING!!!) Still, I thought maybe just a test, I’ll remove it for a few weeks and if there is no difference… nothing lost, nothing gained. To my surprise I had headaches at first, worse than ever…but by week two, I had some really great side effects. Headaches went away, I lost 7 pounds without trying. By the third week, I was still losing weight and my skin was glowing and clearer than ever. By week four, my joint pain and aches that I thought were caused by walking, or ‘doing too much’ went away (no more daily pain meds) and I was sleeping better through the night. By week 8 I lost over 20 pounds, no longer needed daily asthma medication and my exhaustion seemed to disappear. I started this the last week of December, and total I have lost 30 pounds, and feel great. (maintained it too!!!) The skin bumps on the back of my arms are GONE, I’ve had them all of my life and had no idea they could ever just be GONE! (even went to the DERM. several times nothing worked) I’ve learned not to cheat either, immediately my wheezing, mood, itchy skin and exhaustion return with just a slice of pizza. It’s not worth it! I was excited to read your book, and hear that while I stumbled across this by accident, there are others that understand how I felt, and how great I feel now. My children have their mom back, and my husband is excited and noticed all of the positive changes too.

      • Wow, DK. Incredible story!

        It is definitely not worth it. I had to learn the hard way, too. Stay strong!

        I’d like to post your story on the Success Stories page of this blog.

  2. cj

    Dr. Davis,

    Have enjoyed your other blog and will also add this one to my list! As I’m on the go more often than not and always have my iphone with me, I just downloaded your book on the Kindle app and will dive into it tomorrow! I’ve been wheat free on and off for awhile and know I need to be permanently rid of that (and sugar) and have a more paleo/primal lifestyle to regain some semblance of health…….and I will!! My last of any of that was September 1st and I do not plan to add it back in! Thank you for your blogs, your info and everything you do. I know I will love this book and will more than likely be buying some hard copies for family for the holidays!

    • Thank you, CJ!

      Yes, the full benefit of this approach is with long-term adherence, though many of the benefits become apparent within days. For instance, improvement in lipoproteins like small LDL and reductions in glycation (glucose-modification of proteins that leads to cataracts and heart disease, for instance) develop over consistent long-term application of this approach.

  3. Peter

    Dr. Davis,

    Wheat free for a year via Primal Blueprint, through which I found your blogs, and can only say that I feel like I’ve discovered the Fountain of Youth. I am healthier at age 48 than I’ve been in my entire post-pubescent life. I have ordered a physical copy of your book for my paleo bookshelf as much to support your latest campaign as anything else. This message needs to become mainstream and your erudite combativeness will surely help this happen. You go Doctor.

  4. Jim C.

    Congratulations Dr. D! You have caused them to sit up and take notice! Now comes the real fight. Well, I know we are not a powerful special interest group, nor do we have corporate $’s, but as has been shown with SixServings.org, we can make enough noise to draw attention. Time for people to have the info to make an intelligent choice.

  5. I started myself and my husband on the “New Adkins” diet in Jan. 2011. My husband was extremely over weight. He is now down to 190 lbs. (6ft) and is sleeping and moving better. I also lost 15 lbs. as I did not have that much stored body fat. I have been reading your book “Wheat Belly” and one of the things that really struck me was your comment to “eat gluten free but don’t buy gluten free”. Since I have been checking labels for months now it was an eye opener for me and I noticed that many of the Adkins bars have wheat in them. The inflammation in my joints is much reduced and I am on a mission to keep what joint damage I have from getting any worse.
    Thank you, for pulling us back from the brink of wheat death as a nation.

    • Thanks, Geraldine!

      The Atkins people, I believe, made a boo boo when they started added gluten to their products. Yeah, sure, it’s a low-carb protein, but it is essentially poison to most people: inflammation, increasing appetite, mental “fog,” behavioral and mood changes, joint pain and swelling, etc. I’m sure that, if Dr. Robert Atkins were still alive, he would have put a stop this irrational practice.