April 23rd, 1979

“Hey, Stan: You’re not going to believe this!”


“One of the food science guys, Finkel-something or other down in R&D, told me they had this funny thing happen in one of their taste tests.”

“What’s that?”

“So they get, like, 15 women in a room to taste their new baked whatevers. The ladies eat them, say, yeah, yeah, they’re okay. Not a whole lot better or worse than other stuff on the shelves. But Finkelstein notices that, after they’re all finished, they all start asking for more–every last one of them!”

“So what’d he do?”

“So he gives them more! You know, he’s got tons of this stuff they cooked for other taste tests. Well, they’re talking and talking and talking. Before you know it, these Mary Janes have eaten something like three, four times the usual amount!”

“No kidding? What the heck?”

“That’s not all of it! So they’re all packing up their purses and fixing their lipstick, when they start grilling Finkelgruber to find out when and where they can start buying his stuff!”

“Wait a minute here. You mean to tell me that they didn’t think it tasted all that good . . . but they still ate a ton and wanted more?”

“Yeah! That’s it! Don’t you get it? It doesn’t taste all that different, but there’s something in the ingredients that turns on their appetite!”

“Gold mine! Ka-chingggg! Wait: So what’s the ingredient?”

“So I grill Finkelnuts on just what the heck is in the food. He hems and haws, talking about some new process they’re using, but he says he’s not really sure—except that they have a new supplier for flour. The supplier says they’ve been getting flour from some new sources that they’re growing from a new strain of wheat that’s supposed to be higher yield but cheaper. So they just switched over.”

“Alright. This is too big to just let go. Tell Finkelman to do it again, but try another test food but use the same flour. If it works, man, this is golden: Eat more of this flour, the ladies can’t control themselves. You know what this means if we take it on the market?”

“Oh, yeah!”

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61 Responses to April 23rd, 1979

  1. Uncle Roscoe says:

    I suppose if it helps people to think of corporate America is evil – then it is easier to boycott the junk food – then fine, joke away.

    The basis of survival is self reliance. Western society has lulled its inhabitants into abandoning self reliance, and replacing it with reliance on social institutions. When our tires need air, we return our cars to dealerships. When we need our clothes altered we either take them to tailors or rely on a social institution to “recycle” them. When our diets make us sick, we rely on the medical profession to provide us with life-long drugs.

    Our addiction to social institutions is complete. But is this addiction justified?

    The answer is a resounding ……..”NOooooooooo”.

    We have been ripped off so frequently and blatantly that we pay extra for insurance …….another social institution which provides us with nothing but a false sense of security, that these needs will be covered without our involvement. Reliance on insurance companies has ripped us off so completely that we are demanding that government become our ensurer. And government is the very institution capable of quashing our needs ……the ultimate ripoff artist.

    We”re so reliant on social institutions that we build our tort laws around them. So we SURELY have some vetting process to ensure that only entities which hold our fiduciary interests above their own interests survive and become social institutions ……..Right?

    WRONG. Nothing can be farther from the truth. The concept of social institutions and our abdication of individual responsibility is a blatant and irresponsible copout. Nothing about the structure of food or seed companies warrants any reliance or confidence whatsoever.

    The entire point? The Westerner social institution paradigm is vapor. We can”t rely on profit-motivated food companies any more than we can rely on the guys who sit around their lunch rooms. But we never could. The social institution paradigm is the addictive process which addicted our entire society to the opiates and sugars of dwarf mutant wheat.

    And that”s what this blog is all about.

  2. Murray Braithwaite says:

    A new hydrid wheat has been developed!
    Any guinea pigs ready to try this one?

    “Researchers report breakthrough on salt-tolerant durum wheat.” March 11th, 2012.

  3. Neicee says:

    If we want to engage in controversy via debate and argument we can all hit the political or social justice websites. Dr. Davis has been gracious enough to provide this avenue for us to learn from each other and gain his expertise when he comments. We have many posters where they suffer life threatening issues. To highjack a thread for whatever reason is offensive to me. I got the joke, didn”t need it explained to me, and frankly – thought it was a hoot. Thanks also to Uncle Roscoe – always shedding a new angle on things.

  4. tamm says:

    After cutting wheat and sugar, make sure your diet doesn”t get too alkaline. At least have some black tea. Trust me.

    • Neicee says:

      Dr. Bailey does a skincare website – drbaileyskincare.com where she has an article about the Alcaline Mediteranean Diet and also Alcaline Diet. I have an acquintance suffering life threatening cancer and she is trying to go totally alcaline? Old concept that needs total research because some people have found it useful. As far as the black tea, does 3 12-cup pots of coffee a day count? ;)

  5. Grace McGran says:

    I recognized the piece as fictional humor immediately. Like Mary, I was envisioning a scene from the movie, a sort of Mad Men meets Network meets Dr. Strangelove satire.

    Unfortunately, I feel a little too much kinship to those women with their lipsticks and purses and their 4th helping of Gutbuster Gluten Delights. Yeah, Stan, I know what it means alright. I just wish I”d known what it meant 30 years ago when you guys didn”t have this conversation and I still weighed 125 lbs.

    I”m laughing, but it hurts.

  6. Al Reford says:

    Strange that this fictional tale created such controversy. Given that research into new wheat strains have been going on intensively since at least 1943 it is logical to assume that at some point food corporations saw the correlation between new wheat strains and people eating more and more of food with no or little nutritional value that increased food sales exponentially and increased health issues exponentially as well. This created profit opportunities when the people buy the food as well as soon as the health issues appear.

    So either it is all a big coincidence not planned by anyone or it is a series of deliberate criminal actions that deserve to be explored. I agree with Christine and Linda that getting proof of what actually happened is a great idea. I would also remind both of them that we are still fighting the tobacco industry when the first rumours of their illegal and despicable actions surfaced in the 1960s. So they have continued their practices for over 50 years. I suggest the food and medical industries will do the same. So a little humour that exposes actions not yet provable in a legal sense is a great way to engage people. It certainly has kept many of us going during the tobacco wars.

    It will take industry whistleblowers to get the proof. This will take years. I loved the tale and Dr. Davis THANK YOU. I have lost 13 lbs in 8 days. I feel better. I am not hungry constantly and I find what I am eating satisfying and I feel energized after a meal NOW. I will keep turning people onto your book. Thank you for sharing your research in such a great way. Glad you have a great sense of humour.

    • Dr. Davis says:

      Thank you, Al.

      Yes, getting the evidence of such behavior will be very tough, perhaps impossible. I keep hoping that someone from within the industry steps forward and blows the whistle. As time passes, I am finding it more and more difficult to accept this situation as just a series of incredible blunders.

  7. Louise says:

    I enjoyed reading this post..thought it was funny and also not far from the mark in the industrial, corporate world of food.
    Dr. Davis, I am hoping you will respond to the recent study out from Harvard that got lots of media attention, linking red meat with cancer and heart disease. Now that I don”t eat any wheat, other grains or starchy foods, i am relying more on red meat ( grass fed) along with poultry and fish and the lower carb vegetables. But I do have red meat just about every day.. Should I be worried or is this another case of correlation does not mean causation and maybe it”s the wheat and potatoes people are eating with the beef that”s the real problem?

    • Dr. Davis says:


      The study was, in a word, silly.

      Gary Taubes and Zoe Harcombe did admirable jobs of dissecting it apart. See the blogroll at the left navigation bar of this blog for their blog addresses.

  8. Amanda says:

    So what kind of breads are ok to eat?! Please someone help me out.

    • Louise says:

      Bread that you make yourself from ground almonds

    • Pilot Mark says:

      Try ground flax seed recipes. It works for tortillas and substitutes for other flour made items. Lots of good fiber compared to carbohydrates.

  9. Pingback: Whistleblowers wanted | Wheat Belly Blog

  10. VibeRadiant says:

    I came across a Youtube video with an excerpt from the 1960s where the voice over says that scientists fixed the glutens in flour. I think Dr Davis is right about a conspiracy. If interested check out TRUTHstreammedia (starts at 2:41).