Wheat Spring

The “Arab Spring” movement has toppled dictatorial, oppressive governments in Libya, Egypt, and Tunisia, and sparked popular uprisings in Yemen, Iraq, and Syria.

Using little more than Tweets and Facebook posts, people in the Middle East accomplished the previously unthinkable: organize and overthrow governments controlled by Pol Pot-like despots who previously showed no hesitation in squashing any popular uprising.

We have a parallel situation here in the U.S., except it’s not a power-hungry, control-obsessed tyrant bleeding the public coffers; it’s an industry hell bent on sustaining a huge revenue stream. They have even managed to co-opt the government into its service. We have the Department of Health and Human Services and the USDA, for instance, through their Dietary Guidelines for Americans, advocating a diet that is dominated by grains (the widest part of the Food Pyramid, the largest portion of the Food Plate).

This message to eat more “healthy whole grains,” I believe, has crippled Americans, triggering a helpless cycle of satiety and hunger, stimulating appetite by 400 calories per day and substantially contributing to the epidemic of obesity and diabetes. And, oh yes, adding to the double-digit-per-year revenue growth of the diabetes drug industry, not to mention increased revenues for drugs for hypertension, cholesterol, and arthritis.

We therefore need to stage our very own “Wheat Spring,” a popular uprising to break the shackles this genetically-altered thing called “wheat” has inflicted on us.

“We have entered the age of empowered individuals, who use potent new technologies and harness social media to organize themselves.
Forbes Magazine
September 26, 2011


This is nothing less than an overthrow of conventional nutritional dogma. There will be battles fought to preserve the status quo; its supporters will scream, yell, and claw to maintain their position. They will, like Muammar Gaddafi, try to take down the very people they were supposed to advise and protect, all in the name of maintaining their hold. But, as Gaddafi’s regime crumbled and the disgraced ruler hightailed it to parts unknown, so will this popular uprising spread the word:

Modern wheat, the genetically-altered product of genetics research containing modified gliadin, glutens, and numerous other components, has no role in the human diet.

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Comments & Feedback...

  1. Susan

    Google this: Who is the FDA Food Safety Czar? Be prepared to be inflamed by what the articles that pop up- just like the inflammation caused by wheat!!!

  2. Dr. Davis:
    What would you like us to do to help show our support? Susan suggested we contact our elected officials. Would you like us to do that? Anything else?
    Thanks SO much for what you are doing!
    Rachel W.

    • Hi, Rachel–

      Thank you for your wonderful support!

      I think that, for the time being, just showing your support here is, in and of itself, great. There will be a time when we take this battle to a different stage, e.g., USDA, HHS, etc. For the present, I appreciate your help in generating a groundswell of support and experiences that demonstrate that this is not just a passing fad, but a powerful movement.

      • Dr. Davis – I did see the renal specialist today and as of now he is saying that I am in Stage I of kidney disease. He will know more next week and will have a definite answer of what stage I am in after I have a bunch more tests and scans on Monday. Tonight I have been looking at kidney disease nutrition and it seems very different from wheat belly. The kidney nutrition is not saying to eat lots of wheat or whole grains (whew!) but some of the proteins and fats are different as well as other things. Now what do I do? Make a road trip to Milwaukee for a conference?! I would think there are a lot of kidney disease people out there like me. Any comments would be appreciated. I know you are very busy. Thanks so much! With appreciation – Rachel W.

        • Hi, Rachel–

          I am obviously not a kidney specialist, but I can tell you what I’m witnessing.

          I meet lots of people with early kidney dysfunction, as evidenced by such things as higher creatinine, lower GFR (glomerular filtration rate, a measure of kidney filtration capacity), and loss of protein in the urine, common phenomena often attributed to hypertension and diabetes.

          To my great surprise, many (though not all) of these people are showing marked improvement–reduced creatinine, improved GFR–with wheat elimination and limited carbohydrate with no specific limitation in protein. I’ve seen, for instance, creatinines of 2.1 drop to 1.4, which is a very considerable improvement in kidney function. However, this remains in the category of anecdotal, since this is hardly a clinical trial.

          Please let us know what becomes of this.

          • Hi Dr. Davis:

            Thank you for such encouraging information. I will continue on with this and let you know the outcome. I feel much more optimistic now! I was really confused and bummed out last night.

            With gratitude – Rachel W.

    • There is indeed, Linda. However, it is a relationship of worsening the disease, not causing it in the first place.

      In my mind, it’s a no brainer to eliminate wheat when intestinal disease is already established. Most Crohn’s sufferers experience partial improvement in symptoms.

  3. tori spinoso

    Ok….all politics aside and all respect meant here……Chris Christie would be the perfect guy to get on board. Can you imagine if he ran (don’t know yet if that would be good or bad), became president, was coached by Dr. Davis, became healthy again and then supported this movement? Watch out wheat industry!!!

  4. I think I need a wheataholics support group. Had bread at lunch and then wanted cereal for my extra 400 calories tonight. It’s so insiduous….

    Sigh. I’m gonna hurt tomorrow.

  5. What about thyroid function? We take generic thyroid hormone, like Armour Thyroid without the brand name. I checked the book’s index and didn’t see anything about wheat’s impact on the thyroid. Did I miss something? Or is the thyroid gland not affected by wheat?

    • Hi, James–

      There is indeed a connection. There are limited formal data connecting wheat consumption to Hashimoto’s thyroiditis.

      However, I have witnessed shifts in thyroid function in people who go wheat-free, but it has been very variable. This clearly needs more exploration.

      So right now the connection is uncertain beyond Hashimoto’s.

  6. Re: Thyroid

    Thank you Dr. Davis. We thought there would be some connection, and we both take the thyroid hormone, so it will be interesting as time goes by if we need it any more or not.

  7. I write a gluten free blog. My daughter had undiagnosed abdominal pain for years. She had extensive blood tests and intestinal biopsies. Doctors gave us no answers for her pain. In fact, we were on our way to behavioral medicine. She was discouraged because she felt the doctors thought she was crazy. Wheat free diet has alleviated all her pain as well as dark irritable moods she used to experience.

    I haven’t completely joined her on this diet. This blog has encouraged me to press into a wheat free diet with her. I am obese even though I limit limit the “junk” food in my diet. What concerns me most is the arthritis I have in my knees. The pain has been great enough that I’ve quit my job and modified my lifestyle to cope with the pain, insomnia and depression. I am reading your book with my readers, journaling what I eat, and reporting what I experience on my “Life After Bread” blog. I am hopeful that I might be able to improve my quality of life by trying this new diet. It parallels the wisdom of Potatoes, Not Prosac which advocates eliminating refined carbohydrates, increasing protein and stabilizing blood sugar. I am excited about what I might discover.


    • Tori Spinoso


      after reading about your arthritis and then reading your blog, I just have to comment on something you may have already researched. When I eat too much sugar (been avoiding it but rare occasions I indulge in some ice cream) my carpal tunnel acts up drastically. It has been much better since eating no grains or sugar but the other night after a small ice cream and 2 gluten free cookies (shame), it was so numb and painful during the night that I woke up many times. I just noticed all of the sugars in the recipes and thought I woud share that sugar can cause inflamation, too. Although you probably know that:-) But for those who don’t…….

      • Hi, Tori–

        Absolutely. Because wheat is worst should not be construed to mean that sugar is good; it’s bad, too, just not as bad as wheat.

        I wonder if the years of repeated exposure caused tissues to proliferate in the wrist, and the occasional overindulgence are just enough to bring it to the surface.

        I will be releasing a wheat-free low-carb chocolate chip cookie recipe. You will will need to make the chips/chunks yourself to minimize carb exposure.

        • Tori

          It started after my son got heavier and I was (still do) carrying him all of the time. I know the position of my wrist is such that it must irritate it such that inflammation occurs.

    • Hi, Pamela–

      As your daughter experienced, this thing called wheat is so bad at so many levels, most of which are not presently diagnosable with current blood testing technology. We are left with 1) common sense to ask why this thing causes so much sickness in the first place, and 2) the observations we make on eliminating it.

      Remember that Wheat Belly is not so much a diet as an articulation of an explosive and underappreciated problem in our world, made worse by “official” advice to eat more of it. Because I understand that it is not enough to point your fingers at a problem, I do articulate a diet that has worked exceptionally well in my heart disease prevention practice and my related online program. But the principal point remains: Modern wheat is a corrupt, destructive, genetically-altered product conceived by geneticists whose undesirable health effects are only starting to be recognized.

  8. @ Tori
    Thanks… It is possible that sugar aggravates my joint problems. I know it’s terrible for depression and mood swings. Yes, I’ve been moving away from it as well. I’m trying a lot of lower glycemic sweeteners.

    @ Dr. Davis Thanks for responding. I looked at the table of contents of your book, and I realize that the book mostly outlines the problems caused by wheat and why. I am mother trying to feed my child a diet that won’t, so I just tend to naturally think towards the implications for diet. I understand the clarification; I’ll make sure my readers understand as well. The blog is very new. so I don’t have too many regular readers yet.

  9. Raymond Masleck

    I started eliminating wheat from my diet after reading a recent interview with you in Maclean’s magazine . I have dropped 4-5 pounds in two weeks while gradually becoming more rigorous regarding wheat and gluten, and other carb-rich foods. I just got your book and am a bit surprised by the positive emphasis on fat, animal and vegetable. Aren’t you going overboard on the other side of the dietary ship? The dust jacket on Wheat Belly indicates you are reversing heart disease with your dietary regime, but your fellow cardiologist Caldwell Esseltyn says the same thing about eliminating ALL dietary flesh, dairy, and oil-rich plant products. I am not concerned about heart disease, but I am confused.

  10. Raymond Masleck

    After re-reding the Wheat Belly chapter on heart disease I have a better understanding of the arguments around fat consumption. But, the notion of going whole hog, so to speak, on saturated fats based on “new studies” still leaves queasy.