Saved by an angel

Kory posted this inspiring story of life turned around with wheat elimination:

You have changed my life and it didn’t take long.

I was pushing 195 lbs, which is huge for a woman who is 5’4″. I hid it well, though: most people just thought I was pregnant and kept asking when I was due.

I am a lifeguard, so I am always swimming and active, but my belly just kept growing. I went to a popular weight loss company for help. I said I was hungry; they said fill up on “whole fibers,” so I bought steel-cut oats, wheat germ, and put it in everything, but my weight just went up–even when I was working out 5 times a week for an 1.5 hrs, plus swimming 3 times a week!

I ended up in the hospital one night with my belly hurting sooo bad I thought I was going to explode. Test after test came back and nothing was found. A nurse (an angel) came in to check on me and quietly asked if I had heard of “The Wheat Belly” book. I read it and started right away. I have lost over 35 lbs, my arthritis is gone, and what’s more important than the weight loss is that I have gone from a size 16/18 to an 8/10. My doctor is amazed, as are my family and friends. It only took a month and half to lose 30 lbs. The tummy was flat within a matter of weeks.

My husband loves how I look and feel. THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!

I can’t stop talking about your wonderful life-changing book. I will never go back! I only wish everyone could experience what I have! I am looking forward to the summer for the first time in many years!

Isn’t that wonderful? Kory makes an important point: Yes, wheat elimination can yield substantial weight loss from visceral fat–30 pounds and several inches–but the health benefits are what really matter. The relief from arthritis means that inflammation has been reduced or turned off. The loss of visceral fat means that measures like blood sugar, insulin, HDL, triglycerides, small LDL particles, c-reactive protein and other inflammatory mediators, blood pressure, and estrogen have improved across the board. It means that she has reduced or eliminated the risk for metabolic syndrome, diabetes, dementia, breast cancer, and heart disease.

Yes: Eliminating the food we are all told to eat MORE of–“healthy whole grains”–transforms health.

Wouldn’t one big collective “I’m sorry” be nice to hear from the USDA, the U.S. Dept of Health and Human Services, the Academy for Nutrition and Dietetics, the American Heart Association, the American Diabetes Association, and the Surgeon General’s office? “We’re sorry: We were wrong. We should never have provided such advice based on misinterpretation, misperception, and naivete about agribusiness and agricultural genetics.” Ah, but then watch the legal fireworks start with such admissions of wrongdoing. So guess what: It ain’t never gonna happen!

This is why it is so important for everyone to review the facts, consider the arguments, then make your own decision–because the right answer will NEVER come from the agencies that got us here.

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Comments & Feedback...

  1. allisonK

    They don’t have to say they were wrong, why don’t they just say “New research shows that….”

  2. Dr. Davis:

    I have Asperger’s Syndrome and schizoaffective disorder (like schizophrenia, but non-violent, yay) and also suffer from depression. I bought your book a year ago but every time I start, I end up eating grains within a few days. I think it’s because I eat to make myself feel better when I’m depressed.

    Has anyone ever found signs of mental illness/neuro disorders being exacerbated by wheat consumption? When I can stay “clean” for a few days I do feel like my mind is clearer, but I also know that correlation is not causation.

    Thanks for your time.

    • Emily Deans, M.D.psychiatrist in Massachusetts searching for evolutionary solutions to the general and mental health problems of the 21st century. Here is her site.

      Excerpt from her Psychology Today article mentioning work of Oxford nutrition and criminology researcher, Bernard Gesch is found here:

      A link for info on Gesch is:
      “Gesch began working with young offenders in the 80s as a social worker. He would invite groups over for home-cooked meals, (the goal being that the atmosphere would help them open up and share their troubles) and Gesch noticed that after a while, the kids would be “transformed…

      …becoming healthier and often abandoning the antisocial behaviors that had gotten them into trouble. He began to believe that shedding their scattershot diets of junk food was central to the behavioral shift, perhaps even more so than the family-like socializing. ”

      Finally he was able to obtain funding for his 2002 study, now replicated, and at the same time Gesch gathered data for a second paper on how food choices of prisoners affected actual daily intake of nutrients. He found (not surprisingly) that, when they got the chance, prisoners would buy food like peanuts, chips, candy and cookies from the prison store, which would add to their daily intake of omega-6 oils, trans fats, grains, and sugar. In addition, though the prison diets were designed by institutional dietitians, most had suboptimal amounts of vitamin D (even compared to the lowly 400 IU recommended for people with little sun) and selenium, and the vegetarian and Muslim menus often had some suboptimal B vitamins and total calories.

      Just want to mention here Schoenthaler’s randomized controlled trialfrom 2000, of 80 six-twelve year old schoolchildren who had previously been disciplined at school in “working class” Hispanic neighborhoods of Phoenix – Schoenthaler notes that previous randomized controlled trials of supplementation of the RDA for prisoners resulted in a 40% decrease in number of violent acts – his results were a 47% decrease in violent acts among the supplemented kids compared to the placebo controls. I’d call that more replication. And a call for some serious multivitamin/multimineral/EFA supplementation action on a large scale in institutions such as prisons, especially where relatives are often not allowed to bring in outside food.

      Of course, nutrition is only a part of the larger problem of violence and crime. But in institutions, it seems like a relatively 30-40% controllable part, if only common sense would prevail.

      In the larger picture, yes, nutrition affects the brain. We need to be eating nutrient-rich, wholesome, real food the vast majority of the time, and any government or economic intervention that affects our food will also affect our brains and behavior. It behooves us all to consider carefully what we feed ourselves and our children. Personally, I trust the track record of evolution more than the USDA, a government agency designed to promote the consumption of American-produced grains. The stakes are high. My only advice is – do your reading before you pass judgment.”

      If eating wheat makes you feel crazy and depressed, you are right!

      The other psychiatrist’s blog that I enjoy reading is Dr Ede:

    • Susan

      If you notice that you feel better, why do you need anything else? Personal laboratory.

      In order to get through the initial cravings, I had to ramp my fats way up. Once you are wheat-free, it becomes progressively easier, at least it did for me.

    • sharonv

      I remember reading about a study done a long time ago, in days before patients had rights. It might have been in ‘Why We Get Fat’. Anyways, a group of schizophrenics in a hospital were put on a diet tat excluded wheat, and their syptoms lessened. Not right away, not 100%, and not for all, but many showed a significant improvement. When put back to their regular diet, they regressed back to their starting points.

    • allisonK

      My husband has depression and when he can stay off it for a few days he feels much better, but has the same problems as you, he can’t seem to stay away from it for more than a few days. He hasn’t yet been able to stay off of it for long enough for the cravings to go away, but here’s hoping.

      I have epilepsy and find my symptoms improve quite a lot when I avoid wheat (and other starches and sugars) and in fact almost never have simple partial seizures anymore. A few tonic clonics here and there, but only 3 in the last year, which is awesome! I find it very hard to stay away from it as well, especially when it’s everywhere. Like she said above, up the fats, and otherwise, it’s really just willpower, which is really tricky sometimes. Stick with it, you will feel the super wheat cravings subside, and feel much better without it than you ever did when eating it to feel better. At least that’s how it works with me, but it’s very hard to remember that when I’m having a major wheat craving.

    • Drae

      Shelly – there is absolutely a link between grains and mental health, including schizophrenia. For one, schizophrenics have a reduction in symptoms when wheat is remmoved from their diets – and this comes from medical papers. In addition, there is a direct link between depression and vitamin D and EFA deficiencies. Now when I eat foods I shouldn’t, I not only pay for it in the bathroom later, but I can tell my mental health has likewise taken a blow. I’ll feel “weepy” over stupid things like a cat food commercial. But after a few days of avoiding the foods I should be avoiding, I feel just fine.

      You really won’t know how these foods are affecting you until you can stay grain-free for more than a few days. You really need a few weeks before you can truely notice the difference, and then noticing how you feel when you try a wheat/grain item. That’s what will likely convince you to keep them out of your diet for good. Good luck!

    • Amanda

      Shelly in order to keep wheat free you have to get ready first. You have to get it out of the house first, then you have to eat! In my list (because I have a huge appetite) eggs, lots of them, vegetables, lots of them, chicken, fish…
      I try to cook larger amounts of food, so I can carry for lunch, I put everything in my lunch bag: my protein, fruits, vegetables, banana chips, etc. I’m never short of good food, but it takes a while to get organized…Do not give up.

    • The answer is YES. wheat or something in it can affect your mental health. I have spent the last year and a half slowly descending into confusion, delirium, apathy, social anxiety, diminished ability to think critically or logically, inability to remember things, horrific fatigue…. and after blood tests and MRIs, ct scans and sonograms, nothing was working.

      Fora totally unrelated reason I wanted to cleanse my body so I did a week of vegetables only. I felt so good, I thought perhaps I had an allergy, anything I added back made me feel fine until I added wheat.
      I went from feeling out of control, like I was going insane, to feeling like my old self again, and then some!!! I don’t know why this suddenly developed, but I felt so crazy I thought perhaps I had a brain tumor, I couldn’t understand it. And I STILL don’t understand why wheat ended it, but I know I found it out because my desperate tearful prayers to God for help this May when I just couldn’t take it anymore were finally answered….

  3. James

    [cynical mode ON]
    Governmental Health-Care programs are not about making people healthier and consequently happier, they are about “sickness management”: keep the mass rather sick and dumb, sheepish and unquestioning. The advantages for the “powers-that-be” are obvious: no mass critical thinking, no rebelling spirit, profitable markets (big-pharma, big-agro), maintenance of status-quo: profits always to the same pockets.
    [cynical mode OFF]

    People: WAKE UP goddamn it!! Get healthy (mind and body – anyway, same thing, no need to split one’s being) and make people around you healthy as well. Grass-root is key here!

  4. Geoffrey

    just got this quote off webmd:

    How Do Oats Help?
    Oatmeal is full of soluble fiber, which we know lowers LDL levels. Experts aren’t exactly sure how, but they have some ideas. When you digest fiber, it becomes gooey. Researchers think that when it’s in your intestines, it sticks to cholesterol and stops it from being absorbed. So instead of getting that cholesterol into your system — and your arteries — you simply get rid of it as waste.

    I’m on a hunt to find the research that oatmeal lowers cholesterol, I’m not yet convinced and wonder if they controlled for the foods that were eliminated from the participant’s diets. What foods did the oatmeal replace? Maybe eliminating those foods, probably high sugar, high wheat foods, lead to the cholesterol changes.

    Fiber becomes gooey when digested and then “absorbs” the bad cholesterol into the goo and then it slides out? Yeah right!

    • James

      Dietary cholesterol prevented from entering your bloodstream ?? A good thing ???

      These people must be joking! Our own biological cholesterol “monitoring system” is good enough for that. If your cells do not produce enough of their own chol, dietary chol. will be allowed. If your cells are producing what they need, dietary chol. will be rejected. No need of fibers for anything, and you also have to question the relevance of fibers in a healthy diet of whole foods: it may be that eating fiber rich foods when eating poorly (SAD) helps because you are actually eating more whole foods and less junk in this way. Otherwise, useless, especially insoluble fibers that will bulldoze through your gut … to each his own.

    • Boundless

      > I’m on a hunt to find the research that oatmeal lowers cholesterol …


      Dietary cholesterol is almost completely irrelevant.

      Total cholesterol is largely irrelevant. What needs to be measured (and 99% of the time is not) is small LDL particles, which are provoked by an excessively glycemic diet.

      And oats, in any form, excel at excess blood sugar, perhaps the worst of the non-gluten-bearing grains.

      weMD may be enthusiastic for oats because oats appear to reduce a highly symbolic and widely worshipped number that doesn’t matter, yet oats cause massive real problems that are blamed on things other than what they should be looking for.

  5. ML

    I have been wheat free for about 3 weeks now and have already seen positive changes, for one thing i am not as anxious as i was and feeling much lighter in body and spirit. I realy want to get my 12 year old son weaned off some but i think that will be a big challenge!

    • Teresa

      I love the way you phrased that…”lighter in body and spirit”. I dropped wheat on February 22 after a colonoscopy to diagnose colitis. I figured I’d give it a shot before taking the steroids the doctor prescribed. I didn’t expect the dramatic results that I got in such a short amount of time. Within just a few days I lost my belly bloat and was completely symptom free. (Never did fill that steroid Rx.)

      What I didn’t expect at all was the psychological effects that came along with the physical relief. I had been on anxiety meds and suffered from SEVERE insomnia for several years. WIthin three weeks of being wheat free I was off the meds (simply forgot about them) and sleeping like a baby. I just feel more even, I guess is the best way to put it.

      I’ve lost ten pounds (wasn’t overweight to begin with though, so this was a nice bonus) and I too am feeling much lighter in body and spirt after two months. It’s a no brainer…I’ll never go back. I have zero desire to eat wheat. It’s no more of a temptation to me than say….rat poison.

      I feel you about the kids though, I have four teenagers at home and although they are enjoying all the new, fresh, REAL foods I am bringing into the house, I don’t see them volunatarily giving up wheat any time soon. I don’t nag them and I still buy the basics that they are used to (in far less quantities) but the tide is turning and if it so happens that the bread has run out (OOPS) but we have plenty of fresh veggies, well…guess what they end up eating?

      • GaryM

        Teresa, my teenaged boys (19 and 17) adopted the wheat-free life about 8 months ago after watching my success. Their acne is gone, they are more pleasant, better grades – they LOVE IT.

        • Teresa

          All of my teenagers have mild to moderate acne and my 18 year uses an Rx to treat hers. So I may be able to use acne relief as a selling point to at least get them to give it a try. I’m convinced that anyone who will commit to being wheat free for just 30 days (or heck, two weeks even) will feel so much better (and in ways they never expected) that they too will never want to go back.

          • Boundless

            Use the Search dialog at left to find:
            The Acne Miracle
            (parts 1 & 2).
            This is also discussed in the book.

            Acne appears to be a totally optional ailment caused by an excessively glycemic diet, and probably aggravated by the toxins in gluten-bearing grains.

          • CrazyCatLady

            I wish I could say the acne was “totally optional.” My daughter has been wheat free with me for the last 6 months but the acne has not improved. It was totally her idea, and I support her, but acne improvement has not been one of the results. She has had other results – like less hunger and craving and overall feels that it is a healthier way to eat.

          • Boundless

            > I wish I could say the acne was “totally optional.”
            > My daughter has been wheat free with me for
            > the last 6 months but the acne has not improved.

            Just wheat-free, or also low-carb? I suspect in many cases it takes both. Acne was a problem even before 1960, when wheat was closer to heirloom, and not nearly as pervasive. And by low carb, I mean the WB targets of 50 net grams/day, no more than 15 per meal.

          • Jeanne

            Something to keep in mind- if wheat free low carb doesn’t resolve acne, removing dairy very well might do the trick!

            I love a good sharp cheddar, but if indulge too much I get nasty cystic pimples on my chin. Ugh. Not a good look for a 50 ish woman! I lay off the dairy and its gone. It’s not an uncommon response to dairy at all.

          • Drae

            Acne? I first noticed an improvement in my acne when I went gluten-free, but the real difference came when I went Paleo. But a few weeks ago, I cracked and had a Starbucks with dairy in it and BAM! Just like that, I had another round of acne. I rather enjoyed being acne-free and it was enough to convince me that I can’t go back to dairy. (Getting glutenated will cause a breakout for me, too.)

      • Pattye

        Teresa, what a wonderful, powerful inspiring story. Thank you, I seriously needed to read this.

  6. Josh

    I’m trying to be 100% wheat free and have been for about 2 months now. I lost 5-10 lbs I’m
    Immediately but keep in mind I was very close to my high school weight already. Anytime I veer off course and eat any type of bread that’s not gluten free I get stomach pains which shows me how bad wheat is for you and once you rid your body of it and then reintroduce it you see the real body reaction. I do still eat steel cut oats as they are wheat free and don’t seem to bother me. Avenin is a protein they have as I understand it so as log as that one is ok, I should be ok. I wouldn’t necessarily lump in steel cut oats with every other wheat product unless I’m missing something.

    • Boundless

      > I wouldn’t necessarily lump in steel cut oats with
      > every other wheat product unless I’m missing something.

      No, but they are lumped in (top of the pile) with every other high-carbohydrate food.

      Wheat Belly isn’t just about wheat. It also advocates low carb. The recommendation is 50 net carb grams or less per day, and 15 net grams per meal or six hour period. Net is total carbs minus fiber carbs.

      That’s not much oats (less than one ounce per meal, and that’s only if the oats is all you eat).

      Steel cut does not reduce the oat carb content (although it is preferable to oat flour, which is probably nearly as effective as sugar in spiking blood glucose).

    • Kory Moffatt

      No wouldn’t either, but for me oat flour gives me severe stomach pains. That’s why I included it sorry if it was misleading. But as someone else mentioned it is high in carbs so if you are trying to lose weight as well you have to be aware of them.

  7. Josh

    One other thing I forgot to mention, my seasonal allergies were impacted as well. When its windy out and the pollen is flying I’m no longer sneezing, connection? :-)

  8. Lo

    That pretty much sums it up for me too. No amount of activity is enough to overcome the toxic food. It makes me so mad when activity is promoted as a way to beat obesity and diabetes and heart disease when the food we eat has more to do with disease than lack of activity. I can lay around all day, but eat healthfully and not gain a pound. Wen I eat the SAD diet, no amount of activity I can reasonably do is enough to overcome the pounds and health problems that pile on.

  9. Loekie

    “Wouldn’t one big collective “I’m sorry” be nice to hear from the USDA, the U.S. Dept of Health and Human Services, the Academy for Nutrition and Dietetics, the American Heart Association, the American Diabetes Association, and the Surgeon General’s office? “We’re sorry: We were wrong. We should never have provided such advice based on misinterpretation, misperception, and naivete about agribusiness and agricultural genetics.” Ah, but then watch the legal fireworks start with such admissions of wrongdoing. So guess what: It ain’t never gonna happen!”

    I can’t believe this. One day it will happen.

  10. I’ve been following a Paleo style nutrition plan for several months now. I gave up nearly all grains, sugar, white potatoes and anything that has been processed. Besides the weight loss, I had some minor eczema on my hands that bothered me for years and has nearly disappeared and this is the 1st winter in years that I made it through without coming down with a case of bronchitis. I realize this is all anecdotal rather than empirical evidence, but I am certainly convinced and happy beyond telling.

    • Boundless

      > I realize this is all anecdotal rather than empirical evidence …

      It’s not anecdotal to you.

      Anyone wondering about the benefits of low-carb grain-free does not need to rely on reports (anecdotes) from similarly situated people. They can try it themselves for a month, and if they doubt the cause of the improvements, can re-challenge with the prior diet.

  11. JillOz

    Really, I cannot wait for the giant class action in the offing to occur.
    The various Heart Foundations, dietitians, data fudgers, etc all are on the radar.
    I keep hearing and seeing ads for arthritis medication, anti urination medication, all sorts of medications to take away symptoms of wheat inflammation, especially the random pain medication, and that doesn’t even encompass the medication prescribed to take away the pain caused by other medications!!

    It is RIDICULOUS, wasteful and abominable that there is so much damage being done to people through “offical” channels, misinformation and basic misunderstanding of obesity, fat and sugar, despite information getting out.

    On the plus side, I saw a book toeday about diets for diabetics and they recommend fats. Didn’t get into it far enough to see if there was a wheat factor but there were some good meal recommendations.

    But there is such a long way to go and so many people suffering needlessly. It’s shocking.

  12. MsG

    I’ve been playing with this idea for some years. It started with Suzanne Sommers books. I love the idea of eating all ‘real’ food but it was never convenient. It took stomach and health issues for me to get serious. I have been eating tums like crazy and taking the strongest acid reducer on the market. The pain and bloating was a nightmare! 3 days with minimal wheat and the difference is astounding. I say minimal because the cravings are bad! All the things Doc says about mental focus are happening. My stomach is so much better that I forgot that acid reducer and didn’t notice until the next day. Amazing! I can’t wait to see how I feel in a week or a month.

    • Dr. Davis

      Wonderful, MsG: Absolutely wonderful!

      You now realize that you were consuming a poison. Minus the poison, multiple health conditions just . . . disappear!

      • MsG

        Thank goodness I found your book because 40 wasn’t feeling so fabulous! Now I’m looking forward to seeing what other positive changes are headed my way.

  13. Dylan

    I have been on the G-free diet since Jan. Since starting the diet I have GAINED 10 pounds in the first month and now I am not noticing any more change in my weight. I am not sure how I am able to see the results that everyone else is showing.

  14. Franny

    I’ve been wheat free for 10 days and have lost 7 pounds. Feel pretty good! The bursitis in my hip is almost gone – a twinge now and then, but nothing like it was. I would like to know if Steel Cut Oats are allowed on the wheat free diet. My husband and I love them. I don’t add anything to mine at all, just the plain oats. Thanks.

  15. Kory Moffatt

    You can have them, but they are high in carbs I am sensitive to oat flour so I can’t eat them without a lot of pain.