Here’s an interesting piece of news from the baking industry: Almost a third (30%) of American adults say they are trying to reduce or exclude gluten from their diet, according to the NPD Group, which conducted a consumer survey in 2013.
“The number of US adults who say they are cutting down on or avoiding gluten is too large for restaurant operators to ignore,” said Bonnie Riggs, NPD restaurant industry analyst.”
I love this comment:
“According to a poll of more than 200 dietitians conducted by marketing and PR agency Pollock Communications just before Christmas, wheat belly/gluten-free was predicted to be ‘the most popular approach to weight loss’ in 2013, just ahead of commercial diet programs such as Weight Watchers and Jenny Craig.”
Isn’t that great? Us wheat-free folk speak, vote with our pocketbooks and wallets, and the food industry listens. They, unlike the Academy of Dietetics and Nutrition with its head in the sand of nutrition thinking circa 1980, not to mention its allegiances to Big Food, are responding to this booming market trend. And the dietitians in the trenches are recognizing that something really interesting is going on, even if their parent organization are a bunch of knuckleheads.
Hopefully, they will also recognize the essential differences between the arguments articulated in Wheat Belly and the common and awful mistakes made by the “gluten-free” world that relies on junk carbohydrate sources, typically cornstarch, rice flour, tapioca starch, and potato starch—foods that cause weight gain, inflammation, insulin resistance/diabetes, visceral fat accumulation, cataracts, arthritis, hypertension, heart disease, dementia, and cancer. Yeah, don’t go down that path unless making full use of your healthcare insurance is part of your lifeplan.
Wheat Belly is about understanding that modern wheat, via the efforts of the Green Revolution to increase yield-per-acre, was inadvertently turned into a nutritional monster, complete with appetite-stimulating and other mind effects. But it is also about understanding what to replace wheat with: We don’t want to replace a problem–wheat–with another problem–gluten-free junk carbohydrates.
Make no mistake: The Wheat Belly message is making headway. While changes in USDA policy and food advice are surely not imminent, I am certain that many nervous meetings will be conducted behind closed doors. In the meantime, it will become easier and easier for all of us to navigate our restaurants and groceries safely, without fear of getting wheated!