Gary first joined in the wheat-free conversation about a year ago: There has been no turning back.
If you lose 55 pounds, earn the envy of friends and neighbors, look like you did 30 years earlier, while losing a multitude of health problems . . . is there ANY reason to go back to a life plagued by “healthy whole grains”?
I was one of the earliest people to begin Wheat Belly, beginning this lifestyle the very week the book came out. Another 6 weeks will mark a full year that the 55lbs I lost following Wheat Belly has stayed off. I finally resized my wedding ring, as it would constantly slip off, having been reluctant to do so because no weight-loss attempt I had ever tried in the past ever worked beyond a few months! I now weigh what I did when I was 16 or 17 years old, after over two decades of obesity since gaining that first “Freshman 10” in college. With the benefit of hindsight, I now chuckle about my initial fears: life without bread? I don’t have to worry about fat? I can enjoy eggs for breakfast? Is this going to send my blood profile through the roof? I just cannot help but laugh: I did all of this without hunger, without working out, without counting calories, merely avoiding a handful of foods and eating all I desired of the other gazillion things to eat!
People always gasp at my weight loss (I look like a different person) and naturally ask how I achieved it. They first say, “I could never give up bread!” Frankly, that ultimately proved to be so easy. I fought cravings the first week, but I just kept some almonds and dark chocolate chips handy, experiencing how just a few nuts could amazingly satisfy any craving. The most remarkable thing about eating this way was how quickly my appetite changed, settling down to a point where hunger and cravings and cycles became non-existent, perhaps for the first time in my life. And then the weight starting melting away! You can tell people about this, but until they experience it firsthand they have no idea just how profound it is!
I have helped many people get started on the Wheat Belly lifestyle, and follow the blog and Facebook page often. I always tell people getting started to just pick a time frame of 2-3 weeks and just dive in and not commit beyond that. Believe it or not, for so many people that is all it takes to reap many benefits – not just weight loss, but health benefits like improved skin, improved digestion, reduced or eliminated joint pain, eliminated acid reflux. A few weeks was all it took for me to decide I was never going back! After all, it doesn’t cost anything – no “special shakes” to buy, no repetitive meals like grapefruit 3 times a day, no 5 a.m. workouts before work. I also suggest to people getting started to not worry about trying to find or make “substitute” bread products, rather I recommend they just reconnect with real foods: meats, fish, vegetables, nuts, olives, cheese, eggs. I waited almost two months before I decided I would enjoy a wheat-free treat like almond flour cookies or muffins.
My life is so different now. I have more energy than ever, and am so hopeful and excited knowing that my next 48 years will be filled with active adventure and fun, instead of doctor’s visits, statin drugs, diabetes, and stiff and achy joints.
Gary experienced a dramatic reduction in hunger and cravings by cutting out wheat, contrary to the endlessly repeated advice from the USDA and other “official” providers of nutritional advice to eat more “healthy whole grains.” This is because he stopped being exposed to the gliadin protein of wheat, the appetite-stimulating opiate. Free of the bonds of appetite-stimulation, Gary was free to begin his journey of incredible weight loss and once again seize back the health he had lost. “Healthy whole grains” be damned!
Gary makes an excellent point: Just reconnect with real food. Go back to the foods we’ve been told to avoid, like eggs, meats, and full-fat dairy. When you’ve mastered this big first step, then move onto the recipes that allow you to recreate pizza, chocolate chip cookies, and muffins–minus wheat, no gluten-free booby-trapped junk carbohydrates, no sugar–just delicious and healthy!