Wheat Tooth

Evie encapsulates the peculiar appetite-stimulating effect of wheat that trumps all other appetite effects, “sweet tooth” included.

I’ve been on the wheat-free plan for four months and have had good results with loss of 12 pounds, total resolution of digestive/intestinal issues, cessation of food/carbo cravings, and diminished arthritic pain.

I am 70 years old and have fought Carbo Hell for most of my adult life. It was called a “sweet tooth” in my day, but I think it should be changed to a “WHEAT TOOTH,” as without wheat, my addictive compulsion to eat the terrible chemical laden sugar bombs pushed by the food industry just up and disappeared.

As a retired mental health counselor, who worked in a MICA (mentally ill/chemical abuser) program, I was well aware of the hypoglycemic and emotional ravages of abusing alcohol and drugs. I also intellectually understood the similar effects of simple and refined carbohydrates, even grains and fruits, but I was powerless to resist the call from Little Debbie and Pepperidge Farm myself.

I was, myself, so frequently depressed and often irritable and anxious, but saw little to no relief from cutting out sweet treats. Every evening at 5 pm, the blood sugar dropped and I, like a food zombie, began my craven search for that evening’s simple carbo of choice. Ice cream, some cookies, a piece of pie or cake, even candy. Somehow, despite my heavy research into the bad health effects of high blood sugar and hyperinsulinemia, no matter that I ate sweet-free all day, every evening I would, sooner or later, find myself with some decadent goodie. Every morning I would wake up in an extremely depressed mood (hypoglycemia?) with very negative thoughts. So, when Wheat Belly arrived into my sphere of awareness, I just did it.

Wow. As long as I “Ate no wheat, I craved no sweet.” Even if I had a little rice or grits occasionally, I was just not hungry. But each time I’d relapse and have a slice or two of sourdough toast, I’d be ravenous that evening again and would wake up next day practically suicidal. I now know that cutting out all the junk sweets and simple carbs, though healthy in itself, is not enough for me. I must abstain from wheat in all its manifestations as for me it is the “gateway food,’ if you will, to Carbo Hell with all its many ill effects, both physical and emotional. Thank you, Dr. Davis for helping me.

Evie experienced exactly what I have witnessed countless times: What people perceive as a “sweet tooth” was really a desire for sweets and carbohydrates triggered by the gliadin protein of wheat. Spinach doesn’t do this; olives don’t do this; beef liver can’t do this–only wheat.

Recall that the gliadin protein of wheat, this modern form of the protein changed by the manipulations of geneticists, triggers appetite and causes people to consume, on average, 400 more calories per day. Appetite is triggered specifically for carbohydrates, such as chips and cookies, not for steak, salmon, and asparagus.

Another interesting aspect of Evie’s experience are the emotional consequences of wheat consumption: Not only did it trigger cravings for junk carbohydrates, but also negative thoughts that seem to go beyond the self-loathing of lost impulse control. (Especially interesting coming from a person with the professional sophistication of a mental health counselor.) This would be consistent with the mind effects of gliadin that can trigger depression in those susceptible. (Time and again, these gliadin effects, often profound influences over mood and behavior, raise the question: How many societal problems–violence, crime, family discord, drug abuse–are really the consequence of this ubiquitous disrupter? I don’t have an answer, but I suspect it is a substantial contributor, one that can be remedied.)

Rarely does the impulse to consume sweets–a “sweet tooth”–persist in the aftermath of wheat elimination: Lose the wheat, lose the sweet tooth.

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Comments & Feedback...

  1. Brenda

    Would you recommend wheat as an appetite stimulant? I’m having a hard time keeping my 97 year old mother eating. She seems to have lost her good appetite.

    • Boundless

      > Would you recommend wheat as an appetite stimulant?

      Absolutely not. It’s akin to the bad advice of yore: “smoke to lose weight”.

    • Have you tried bone broth? Although it may not pack on the pounds, it’s nutritious and easily digested. My mother ,at 92, insisted she felt “full” all the time, and she probably was, given the laundry list of drugs she was prescribed. However, bone broth was something she never turned down.

  2. Boundless

    > Lose the wheat, lose the sweet tooth.

    You might add:
    “… keep the teeth, and the gums.”

  3. Tina Bock

    Yesterday I got glutened and I want to share what happens to me. First, brain fog, then need to stretch bc my stomach feels really uncomfortable. Then breathing becomes shallow. Then plummet into deep depression while it feels like smoldering coal is in your stomach. At night, insomnia, followed by gluten hangover in the morning. Stay away from wheat people! It affects your whole being.

    • Jimmy

      Hi Tina,
      I’ve gone through this myself when I accidently ate something that had some hidden gluten in it.
      Like at a friends house having a meal there. You never know what may have some flour in it. But I want to be a cordial guest so I say I can’t have any gluten. Most of the time it’s ok though.

  4. Abigail

    I’m on week two of wheat free and hoping I lose some weight. I’m feeling a little discouraged. But I don’t want to go back to the wheat insanity. I do notice a measure of self control that was certainly not there beforehand. I just hope it translates into weight loss, as I really need to lose quite a bit.

    • I am on my 4th month of wheat-free living, and though I have 60-80 pounds to lose, I gained 5 pounds the first month. I have just recently lost that 5 pounds, but no more. It can be discouraging sometimes, but then I remind myself of the benefits: better sleep, no acid reflux, fewer bellyaches, fewer headaches, no bloating at all, a bit more energy, joint aches gone, back pain gone, my red blood cell count went up (I was anemic – not any more!), and a jaw tumor has shrunk in half. The exterior things (weight) will happen, but the interior cell changes are most important first. Good luck and keep up the good work. It gets easier.

      • Abigail

        I am extreeeeeemely anemic, so thank you for that encouragement. I have so many health issues going on and I just want to get healthy so very much. My doctor says I don’t have the metabolism yet for weight loss but it’s so hard to wait!

    • Boundless

      When weight loss isn’t happening, start by making sure you know the numbers for your net carb intake per day and per meal or six-hour period. Net carb is total carb minus fiber carb. Targets are 50 grams net per day; 15 grams net per meal. If you don’t know the numbers, they’re usually higher than you might guess. For most people, just eliminating gluten-bearing grains, and changing nothing else, leaves their diet highly glycemic.

      if you are on target for net carb consumption, then see:
      http://www.wheatbellyblog.com/2012/10/i-lost-the-wheat-but-didnt-lose-weight-2/

      • I couldn’t agree more…..in the “olden days” I would have a smoothie after my morning yoga practice……chobani yogurt, fresh fruit and coconut water. When I checked the carb count, I was shocked…..net carbs would be 20 – 30 depending on the type of fruit I added and it was from sugar!. I have since changed my ways and only eat full-fat, plain, unsweetened yogurt sparingly, if at all……and have found other alternatives for my morning sustenance. I encourage you to download a carb counter…..it may be your new best friend!

    • Elizabeth

      Anna, hang in there!! It takes some time to reverse your cravings. I’m finishing up week 10 on this and it’s all good. Do I sometimes miss my old “friends”? Yup I do!! I hate that stores put all the snacks and sweets at the check-outs. BUT in the long run I keep thinking how healthy I’m becoming w/o all that wheat and sugar in my system. Keep coming to these blogs for your inspiration and hope!!!

      • Boundless

        > I hate that stores put all the snacks and sweets at the check-outs.

        With rare exceptions (usually due to an independent store management that actually is thinking about what customers really need and might have forgotten), those products are all “impulse purchase” items. The makers of those goods probably pay a premium (in the form of excess discounts) for that product placement.

        My attitude is that once I queue up, any more products I see are presumed to be trash or grossly uneconomical items I do not need (as are most products at eye level everywhere in the store – they pay for placement too).

        Loud broadcast commercials, inflated search results, bent product “review” sites, forum astro-turfing, heck, advertising generally … learn to interpret it skeptically, or entirely tune it out, because it’s 90% useless noise. This blog is one of the few places not infested with warped commercial messages.

        But on the checkout snacks specifically, once you fully grasp where human nutrition needs to be, you’ll mentally class that junk with cigarettes (which also used to be checkout impulse items). Most of the current checkout snacks contain exactly 0 ingredients suitable for human consumption.

        As diet trends shift, however, expect to see GF junk show up at checkout. Will sane paleo snacks ever show up there? That would be a marvel.

        Eat checkout snacks and you’ll be “checking out” sooner than you expect :).

        • HS4

          You make some very good points, Boundless! I have seen a few (a VERY few) check-out snacks that are not totally hopeless (some brand of nut bar – it’s all nuts w/some dried fruit, no junk) but that’s so rare as to be nearly meaningless. I think you’re right, though, that we should expect to see GF check-out snacks in the future but they’ll still be junk food.

    • Jimmy

      Hi Abigail,
      Just keep you carbs down to 50 grams per day. Make up the lost calories with health whole fats like coconut oil, butter, ev olive oil, and animal fats. This way you won’t be hungry as you would be if you restricted calories.
      To keep track of you carb intake you can enter in all the foods you want to have during the day and it will calculate the carbs, protein, and fat in grams for you.
      This is at myfitnesspal.com.
      But I wouldn’t go lower than 50 grams per day like the Atkins Diet advises as that to much shock on the body.
      I lost 52 lbs since October 2012, but I stayed at 50-100 grams carbs per day.

      • Suzanne

        I would like to argue that as many carbs a day as 50 grams can be far too many for someone with damaged metabolism. It might “chock” your body at first but only for a matter of days and then you´ll feel absolutely fine and your body will thank you. Forget everything about substitute bread or cake or whatever and koncentrate on a low to moderate dose of proteins, a higher amount of healthy fats and vegetables and aim for about 20-25 grams a day. Drink plenty of water, especially to begin with. If you get headaches or become a bit dizzy at first have some water with a teaspoon of salt (and eat something). Check out dietdoctor.com for reasons why you don´t lose weight :-)

        • HS4

          I’ve also found that making sure my food is well salted when following a very low carb regimen is very important. My sister, when starting her VLC eating felt very bad on an early day, until she realized that she needed salt – she ate some salty canned fish and a handful of olives and immediately felt better. The kidneys dump sodium on a low carb regimen; that accounts for some of the ‘carb flu’

  5. Doug

    Dr. Davis, God bless him, started me on my wheat free life 6 months ago and the changes have been typical of a lot of people posting on this site, no more acid reflux, joint pain, acne, spiking of insulin, etc, lost 35 pounds. I think that quantity of weight loss in such a short period was in part due to the fact that I never dieted before along with the complete elimination of grains, sugars and most starches.

    When talking about brain hijacking by wheat in its many disguises, depression, seizures, addiction, we are battling this enemy on surprising fronts not the least of which may be the puffed cereals enjoyed by so many. After reading Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon I watched some of the youtube lectures by her. In one of those she references two rat studies showing the effects of consumption of puffed cereals. I work in the agriculture world and I relayed this information to a co-worker who has many more years in the industry than I and was shocked to find out that he knew about the study. I was told that it was common knowledge in the industry.

    The study was never published, surprise, surprise, but in a nut shell here it is: They took three rat groups, fed the first water and rat chow, the second water and a brand named puffed cereal and the third group was fed water and the box the cereal come in.

    The first group lived a normal life, the third group died of starvation but before the first rat in the third group died all the rats in the second group died, many from seizures and showed drastic behaviour changes.

    These products are extruded at high temperatures and pressures and who know what changes occurs during this process !

    The moral of this story is that if it comes in a box then don’t eat it and please God, don’t feed it to your kids.

    • Doug

      My understanding is that to puff the rice they are subjected to pressure which causes the rice to explode. If it’s in a box, don’t eat it. The two experiments used both wheat and corn with similar results. I don’t think rice would fair much better. Not a chance I want to take.

    • Boundless

      > What about Rice Krispies?

      One serving is 28 grams net carbs, of which 3 grams are pure sugar. Minimal protein and zero fat. Entirely apart from puff damage, it probably makes a great rat poison, if that’s all they eat.

  6. Mike

    I hate to belabor this subject, but I tried to contact Wheat Free Market Foods and the phone number I have has been disconnected. A few weeks ago you said that some news from them was imminent, but nothing so far. Can you please supply us with their phone number? (Their Facebook site is many months out of date). Since I do not cook I’m really looking forward to be able to purchase some wheat-free bread and other foods.

    • Culinary Adventurers

      Dear Mike,
      Please learn to cook if at all possible my friend! Cooking is delightful! Making your own meals sharpens your palate, adds incredible diversity to your diet and can keep you healthier and stronger. You will find yourself enjoying food more and appreciating the great recipes and skills of other cooks. Where to start? Ask a friend to show you how to make something they enjoy cooking (wheat free of course). The whole world eats, go see what they love to prepare for their friends and families, their tribes and elders! At the very least find out what interesting meals are offered by cultures from every continent! You don’t even have to cook many foods! From olives to nuts to veggies, cheese, and fruits – many can be eaten in their natural state or as simply preserved. If for any reason you cannot cook, look at cookbooks and recipes anyway – or ask someone to read them to you. Ask questions! You’ll learn the many simple ingredients can make food taste better and you’ll become more aware of interesting techniques even if you don’t try them yourself. Sometimes great improvements in flavor come from only a few simple ingredients. Open up to the tastes of food as it is prepared and enjoyed around the world. Thousands of published recipes that include wheat can be easily adapted and enjoyed with out the wheat. Set sail Mike, there is a world of delicious food awaiting you! In most cases it cannot be found in a box. Home cooking doesn’t come from a factory. Bon Appetite!

    • Jimmy

      Hi Mike,
      Start out making something simple and good, like a roasted chicken with the skin on.
      Cover with melted butter, fill cavity with a quartered lemon and a split garlic bulb. Season generously all over with salt & pepper. Bake at 425 F for 1.5 hours for a 5.5 lb bird. And presto, you have a great meal.
      Or how about grilled hamburgers with grilled portabello mushrooms?
      Just don’t use lean meat. The fat is what gives great flavor.

      • JillOz

        Even simpler – start with boiled eggs, salt and pepper and some avocado with olive oil and sauteed mushrooms.

        Tasty!! :)

        • HS4

          And believe it or not, Scotch Eggs are the easiest thing in the world to make and they can make hard boiled eggs a little more special. One pound of ground meat (turkey, beef,or pork) will make 4 Scotch eggs. Just mix the meat with any group of sausage-type seasonings you like. For example, there is a recipe for homemade turkey sausage in the WB cookbook; or use the Italian sausage seasoning mix from Mel Joulwan’s great paleo cookbook “Well Fed”, which I used earlier this week because I had the mix on hand. She also has her own mix of suggested spices for Scotch eggs (and the Well Fed cookbook is where the recipe for the Scotch eggs, with apologies to Mel for the mods), below, is from:

          Mix the seasonings in very well into the raw ground meat and then divide it into four parts, forming large balls. Flatten each ball and then wrap it around one hard boiled egg until it’s covered (if meat sticks to hands, just wet them a little). Place wrapped eggs on parchment covered baking sheet, bake at 375 F, for 25 minutes; then increase to 400 F for 5 to 10 minutes until meat is ‘crispy’. That’s it – and this very English food was originally meant to be picnic food so it’s good cold or room temperature (though personally i don’t think the beef would be good cold; the other meats would though).

          This recipe is actually a great deal easier to make than it sounds – make up a bunch, refrigerate and you have some very easy meals or snacks. Before serving, cut through the Scotch egg to reveal the the lovely interior. I’ve been making mine with ground turkey thigh meat, but because turkey in general is very low fat, I’ve also been making sure to eat each one with a good bit of olive oil; tastes great.

  7. Linda

    My experience has been that wheat free virtually eliminates negative self-talk. At first I thought it was my imagination, or simply coincidental, but no when I slip and eat wheat, the depressing self-talk returns and magically disappears when I go grain free.

    • Bing

      Sounds like how my racing heart and anxiety behaves. On wheat it’s there almost all the time, off wheat it’s nearly gone. Takes a couple of days to decrease again after I had some wheat containing food, which I obviously try to avoid.

    • Janet

      That is so true. When I have wheat now, I recognize the negativity I used to have along with the anxiety and hair trigger temper. Along with a low depression. Not fun. It is very interesting to have put a finger on my behavior and thoughts that had for years in one degree or another bedeviled me. The calm in my brain and mood is a wonderful experience. Things that used to bother me, my kind of ADHD nervousness and constant activity became who I was, but now that this has lessened, I am having to get used to this. LOL. Clutter used to drive me around the bend–but now–what the hell. Most of it is cooking clutter now because I actually cook, so if this is the small byproduct of true healthy eating, so be it.

  8. Liz

    This is exactly my experience. I’m still sorting through my pantry and finding foods I THOUGHT were safely wheat/gliadin free but in reality are serious triggers. The sugar binges cause psychological problems that I am only recently learning to watch for. On the days when my diet is squeaky-clean, so is my mind. But if there is a sneaky protein in there somewhere, I find myself obsessing, anxious, nervous, unable to sleep, and fearlul. Playing “CSI” to find the miscreant is not as much fun as it sounds, though. Search labels with a fine-toothed magnifying glass before you put that item in your cart! As Dr. Davis says, “Why buy stuff with labels in the first place?”

  9. Brian

    I’ve been off the wheat for just over a year. The results I got during the first few weeks caused me to wonder what else am I consuming that’s doing me more harm than good? I eleminated caffine, chocolate, alcohol, and milk thinking I would stay of these products for a few weeks and re-introduce them one at a time. The wheat was such an obvious toxin but the other items it was hard to judge. I lost my taste for alcohol so no problem staying of that, chocolate was tougher than I ever imagined but I have taste every second day or so and I limited milk to only milk cultured with Kefir. I would be very interested to hear what other people eliminated from their diet in addition to wheat and what was added in your diet to imprive health. Currently I’m seem to have constant sinus pressure which could be our spring weather or I’m still eating somethings I shouldn’t.

    • Rhonda

      I also eliminated all sugar, dropped fruit down to less than one serving a day and added in coconut oil, chia seeds, hemp hearts and a lot more leafy green veggies than I used to eat. I still sometimes have sinus troubles though if I have been having a lot of eggs (which other people have also mentioned) so maybe you could try dropping eggs for a while to see if that’s the problem? I still eat them, just not every day.
      P.S. a square or two of 95% dark chocolate covered in a layer of coconut oil is a delicious treat and more than satisfies my chocolate cravings! :)

    • Boundless

      > I eliminated caffine, chocolate, alcohol, and milk …

      The main problem with chocolate isn’t the choc; it’s the added sugar. Modest amounts of high-%-cacao (like 85% and up) are not a problem from a carb standpoint, and chocs sweetened with safe sugar alternatives aren’t a carb problem at all.

      The fats are apparently primarily omega 6, which means don’t go overboard, and of there’s a laundry list of other exotic chemicals that might pose problems for specific individuals.

    • Jimmy

      I eliminated peanuts from my diet as they would cause severe cramping in my left leg and foot.
      I use coconut milk as a creamer for coffee instead of milk.
      For alcohol, I can drink a few Miller High Life beers without any negative reaction.

  10. Karen

    Any suggestions on sweeteners? I was excited about stevia because it’s natural…but I’m finding stevia very bitter….Are people out there baking with splenda or something else?

    • I have been cooking with maple syrup for years. I can replace maybe a quarter of it with stevia, which is healthier and saves money, but not much more. I rarely use honey, sometimes use agave. And most of my chocolate recipes can be made with chickpea flour instead of wheat – though I’m still using spelt.

      • Boundless

        > I have been cooking with maple syrup for years.
        > I rarely use honey, sometimes use agave.

        Search on “Goodbye Fructose” using this blog’s search.
        Alternatives: http://www.natureshollow.com/

        > … though I’m still using spelt.

        Then you’re still using wheat.

    • Doug

      We were all a newbie once Shirley, don’t sweat it. My only advice would be to start. Start reading, start watching the youtube clips, Dr Davis is on there, and most importantly, start cooking with real foods.
      On youtube try:
      Dr Davis, Mary G. Enig, Sally Fallon,
      The truth about saturated fats,
      Pure, white and deadly by John Yudkin (describes his view of the dangers of sugar consumption)
      The oiling of America

      • Doug

        I forgot
        Fat Head – the movie, you can rent it on iTunes.
        Your local library can be a wonderful source of this material too if your budget is tight.

    • JillOz

      HI Shirley,

      the first thing I did when i found out about good fats was to switch to coconut oil for cooking.
      First and easiest thing you can do.

      And when you buy fast food (burgers, sandwiches and such) eat the contents, throw away the bread).

      :)

      • Boundless

        > And when you buy fast food (burgers, sandwiches and such)
        > eat the contents, throw away the bread).

        In many cases, throw away the contents, and just eat the box. It’s less harmful.

        All seriousness aside, in many chains now, you can order a bun item “naked”, and they’ll hold the buns.

        Do check the chain’s web site for ingredients. All too often that “meat” is meat only in the legal sense, and is padded with fillers you are trying to avoid, like wheat, sugar, soy. If you think I’m exaggerating, see:
        http://www.tacobell.com/nutrition/ingredientstatement
        Item: “Seasoned Beef”

        The actual meat may be laced with hormones and antibiotics, and at the lower rent chains, depending on how long it’s been since the last scandal, may not actually be from cattle.

  11. Janzo

    Go Evie! I have had the same experience in losing my sweet tooth, and it is the Number One reason I LOVE being on Wheat Belly. I have been chained to carbs and candy all my life, I could never cut them out, and I could never moderate my intake either. But now .. “MEH”! They just don’t interest me. That one factor alone will keep me on WB .. aside from the lack of depression, physical tension and pain, and near-normal glucose readings!

    • derp

      In the midst of an ocean of sick people and very few pointers on how to reverse it, another critic is precisely what the world need right now, isn’t it?

      She has a number of points regarding argumentation of paleo folks that is based on an oversimplified or even completely wrong understanding of pre-civilisatory nutrition. She is right on that part. She is wrong on the part that it is a meat-based diet (even if, how is that bad, exactly?) and it is a diet for men. Both are nonsensical, even counter-factual statements that me facepalm.

      If you look her video through, you will see that she is actually in favor of the diet itself. I can understand her arguments (she’s a professor in evo-bio), because often enough we see people doing the right things and defending it with wrong theory.

      The really nasty one in the critics department is Marlene Zuk, with her book “Paleofantasy”, which consists of a lot of strawmen arguments and is full of wrong accusations. She’s definitely not interested in constructive criticism, furthering overall knowledge in the dietary scene or making sure people get healthy. She sounds like “angry ultrafeminist vegan” in disguise, nothing more.

      • JillOz

        Hi derp,

        I’m sorry if I gave the impression that she was putting down the Paleo diet. It does give that impression by the title, but I found her analysis very interesting.
        Whether she points out the length of our intestines and what it means is one thing, but I don’t think she came out as anti meat, merely that we don’t necessarily ahv an imperative (like lions) of living on it.
        Doesn’t mean we’re going to give it up, does it?
        She also pointed out the defense mechanism of some vegies. Doesn’t mean people will forgo the carrot either!!
        It’s a question of how best to assimilate potential foodstuffs.
        She came out in favour of whole food eating etc at the end of the talk, and other sensible conclusions.

        It’s hardly a comprehensive coverage of the whole subject, but certainly a tempting glimpse into the area of archeological analysis of past diets.

        There’s a lot of mutli discipline mixing going on and that can only add to more accurate info.

        BTW, she did not say that the Paleo diet was for men, but pointed out the representations of people on it are usually men. probably because most Paleo recommendations come from the gym/body-building area.

        Incidentally, not that she is guilty of this, but you will find a lot of anti Meat material around.
        While some people genuinelt can’t process it, mauch of it comes from UN assocated groups and the UN itsefl that wants the Western world to go vegetarian on the pretext of helping the environment. It’s a massive con and
        (i need more vegies myself) and terribly UNhealthy.

          • Anna

            I am 95% veggie plus pastured eggs, pastered ghee/butter, & wild salmon but do not think everyone needs to eat like me. Many of us on the plant strong side would be extremely happy if the omnivores would eat meat from farms like Polyface/Joe Salitin (sp?), & other permaculture farms. It’s the factory farmed meats that are destroying our environment & our health.

      • JillOz

        Should I point out that I’m a feminist??
        Like all the “isms” you have your edgy loony to sensible factual.

        You might consider that many people who are angry and who are vegetarian, are probably too low on cholesterol, over-grained and hungry all the time!!
        Hence their anger, however they rationalise it!!

        Meat eaters who eat too many grains and not en ough oil or vegies are often also angry! Not a pretty team!

  12. Jen

    I’ve really noticed the appetite decrease with giving up wheat (the last month or two). It was very enlightening to discover this information which explains the compulsion so many of us have to keep eating and eating (and the bad stuff). It is really noticeable and pretty amazing to experience. But I’m wondering if sugar has some of these addicting characteristics? I made the most awesome ‘healthy’ chocolate chip cookies with blanched almond flour, dark chocolate chips, coconut oil, small amount of grade B maple syrup, an egg, real vanilla (all the quality stuff for ingredients), good quality baking soda and unrefined sea salt. They are so good and I have to say that they can be pretty addicting too. It’s hard to stop with just one – though I don’t have the compulsion to eat them out of the blue. Yes, I know, I shouldn’t have much sugar in my diet, but I’m not going to get rid of it completely and I’m really happy to have this recipe for a fairly healthy treat. Thoughts?

    • Boundless

      > But I’m wondering if sugar has some of these addicting characteristics?

      Absolutely. There are whole books about the evils of sugars. Sugars, by the way are
      part glucose
      which becomes blood sugar directly and rapidly, the basis of our mistaken glycemic metabolism) and
      part fructose
      (which is something that humans are dramatically less well adapted to).
      The sugar industry knows this, and is saying nothing.

      The shift to HFCS (high fructose corn syrup) over the last few decades is doubly troubling:
      1. Increases the fructose-v-glucose content (see below), and
      2. The corn is almost certainly GMO, carrying novel other risks.

      > … small amount of grade B maple syrup …

      Switch to Nature’s Hollow sugar-free.

      See
      http://www.wheatbellyblog.com/2011/11/goodbye-fructose/
      for a discussion of the metabolic hazards of this monosaccharide. In addition to what’s in the base article, it is also known that fructose does zero for appetite (eating it leaves you hungry), and it is unsuited for a ketogenic metabolism or borderline keto diet (which is what I consider the WB advocacies to represent).

    • Rhonda

      Sugar Nation is an excellent read if you are interested in learning more about sugar’s addictive qualities and reasons to give it up.

    • Sula

      Read Gary Taubes, he is my hero… along with Dr. Davis ( of course.)
      I haven’t eaten sugar or grain in months. But, I bake all the time. I usually use Dr. Davis’ Yellow cake recipe but change the flavor to whatever I have on hand; cocoa nibs, lemon zest and poppy seeds, a handful of currents, a grated carrot and some walnuts… I usually double the recipe and make it once a week. I even make cream cheese icing!
      You see I like cake, for breakfast, and lunch…. and desert after supper. So cool that I can now do that with no guilt. Imagine a nutricious food called cake!
      Thank you again Dr. Davis.

      • Dr. Davis

        Yes, I revel in that fact, too, Sula: Eating cake while experiencing NO health consequences except good nutrition! Imagine that!

      • Wheatless in Seattle

        I’m with you, Sula (and Dr. Davis!). I made WB Chocolate Chip Cookies for breakfast on Saturday morning (because I had run out of carrots so I couldn’t make the Carrot Muffins)! The cookies were great with French Roast Coffee. I know there is some sugar in the 65% dark chocolate chips, but I only ate 3 cookies because they were so filling. No worries about waste, though; the remainder have been frozen for future ‘meals’.

    • Jen

      Thanks for the comments and info! I will look into an alternative sweetener (though I only use 1/4 cup of maple syrup in the recipe), but I think these type of treats will always be somewhat addictive (at least a little) since they are soo good. But at least you can feel better not consuming wheat or another starchy flour when using almond flour as a substitute….

      BTW, a tip about blanched almond flour. I found blanched slivered almonds from Trader Joe’s (2.99 for 8 oz) and I put them in a coffee grinder, and boom….blanched almond flour in about 15 seconds. It really works and it’s less expensive and fresher than buying almond flour in a store or online. I believe most slivered almonds are blanched (the ones from TJs actually say blanched almonds, but they look like other slivered almonds I’ve noticed).

      That yellow cake sounds good, I’ll be looking into that. :)

  13. Patti

    I have been wheat free for 5 months. I’ve lost 10-13 pounds. I keep fighting with the three pounds, and my sugar indulgences brought on by premenstral cycle. For awhile the sugar thing goes away and then it comes back. I must be eating something that is triggering the sugar cravings but I am unsure what it is. Last week I decided to go really low with my carbs by only getting them from vegetables. I felt great for 5 days, then bam, I needed sugar. I started out with an apple, and then moved on to chocolate. I do not crave wheat products, I am very surprised by this, but sugar still is a problem. And the sugar substitues just don’t do it for me. All in all I love not eating wheat because of all the positive physical changes.

    • Dr. Davis

      How about oodles more fat, Patti?

      More fat from your poultry (skin, dark meat, boiled bones), pork, beef, fish, olive oil, coconut oil, etc.?

    • Geoffrey

      I know those cravings, and I’ve been off sugar now for about 3 months and they are gone. At the beginning you just have to ride them out. Do something to distract yourself, it’s really only a few minutes you need to get through, a little hurdle. go for a walk, get out of the house, etc…

  14. JillOz

    HI Dr Davis!!

    I’ve told some friends about WB to the point where we have a bunch of inside jokes about it.:)
    One of them wrote this poem:

    WHEAT – DON’T GET ME STARTED:
    Author: Prodos

    Oh Prince of Darkness
    Your scheme is exposed
    Your buns and bread rolls
    Shall all be deposed!

    The innocent lives
    You callously take
    Down your serpent of dough
    That’s kneaded and baked!

    Oh Satan be warned!
    Now don’t get me started!
    Your croissants and pastries
    Are the Hell you’ve imparted

    On the feeble of spirit
    And the flesh soon departed
    Oh Satan be warned
    Now don’t … get me … started!

    • Dr. Davis

      Hey, that’s precious, Jill!

      Let’s post as a blog post for others to enjoy! And thanks to Prodos.

  15. Jeanine

    I’ve been all over the blog and books but haven’t seen this particular issue addressed. Will the wheat-free way of life lead to the bad breath (ketosis I think it’s called) of low carb diets? I haven’t noticed it yet (went wheat/grain free 2/4/13), but I remember when friends went on Adkins I could barely stand to be around them. I don’t want the same to happen. I think I’m ingesting about 50-100 grams a day. Thanks!

    • Jacqueline

      Actually after I went wheat free (August of 2012), my breath got tons better. When I was a wheat eater I constantly had sinus drainage and tonsil liths(sp?) that smelled incredibly bad. After being grain free for 4 months my new doctor inquired if I still had tonsils. Trust me that wouldn’t have been a question she would have had to ask previously, as they felt like footballs in my throat!

    • Boundless

      > Will the wheat-free way of life lead to the bad breath
      > (ketosis I think it’s called) of low carb diets?

      What you are wondering about is [mostly harmless] acetone in breath, resulting from a deep ketogenic diet (ketosis).

      I’m going to say “no”. Wheat-free per se doesn’t necessarily imply ketogenic metabolism, and the companion WB advocacies for low carb aren’t low enough.

      As I understand it, you need to go below 20 grams net carbs per day for acetone to be likely. The WB target of 50 grams per day is comfortably above that, and your reported consumption is even higher.

      I’ve been following this blog almost since its incep, and don’t recall anyone reporting ketosis-related issues. You may be the first to even ask about it. This is actually a bit surprising, because I would have expected at least a few people to think “well, if low carb is good, even lower is better” and gone into deep ketosis by accident.

      • Doug

        ‘at least a few people to think “well, if low carb is good, even lower is better” and gone into deep ketosis by accident’

        I did, as witnessed by my wife and sister, about a month back; roughly 5 months into being WF. More by accident than anything else. Always been a big fan of meat……

        Typical of my personality, if some is good, more is better, but it was easy to come back out and the breath recovered. Eating more veggies now. Big veggie soup for lunch fan now ;-), made with bone broth of course.

          • Doug

            The word symptoms invokes the idea of disease but I would argue against that idea. What I did see and have seen every day is a release from pain, inflammation, a vicious insulin cycle, etc… in fact more benefit than I would have believed possible. I played a father – son hockey game last week with 8 other fathers, all of whom were younger than me and almost all where sporting their own WB’s. The difference was striking. I haven’t played in 10 years but I could have stayed on the ice for the full hour, in fact I had to stay on the ice for several extra shifts as the rest of the dads were looking like candidates for a defibrillator. I’m on the short bus to 50 years old but the next day it felt like an ordinary day (ordinary now at least! ) no pain, no aches. I can’t recommend WB enough.

        • Yes, symptoms was not the best choice of words…..was just curious if you had anything, other than the breath issue, to indicate nutritional ketosis. I seem to be maintaining a diet of 25-35 net carbs (many dats lower) and under 90g protein per day…..no fruit, no sugar, lots of healthy fats. I’m working on a better plant/animal protein ratio…….have ordered a ketone monitor but it hasn’t arrived…..am anxious to test myself and get a better understanding of this ketogenic state and how it applies to me. The bottom line is that I have more energy than I have ever had and started rollerblading again after a two year hiatus!

    • Geoffrey

      I’ve been wheat free for a long time and there’s no bad breath, not sure why that was happening to people on Atkins. If anything my breath is now better. There’s less garbage down there to create bad smells. Once you off the grains and sugars, your system gets purer and purer over time – not stinkier!

      • Boundless

        > I’ve been wheat free for a long time and there’s no bad breath,
        > not sure why that was happening to people on Atkins.

        Atkins “induction phase” targets less than 20 grams net carbs, which is sufficiently deep ketosis to trigger breath ketones.

  16. Sifter

    Dr. Davis,
    I’ve been told that Israeli wheat products don’t use genetically modified wheat. I recently had some ‘Yehuda’ Matza over the Passover holiday. Is it possible that some foreign wheat products would be ok if not from genetically modified source? thank you….

    • Dr. Davis

      You’ve been told wrong, or at least told half truths.

      NO wheat has been “genetically modified,” i.e., modified via gene splicing. While there have been hundreds, perhaps thousands, of genetically modified strains of wheat, NONE have made it to commercial production.

      Modern wheat is the product of the older techniques that, in many instances, are imprecise, crude, and uncontrollable–often WORSE than genetic modification. They didn’t tell you that part. The situation is the worst with the wheat strains generated by mutagenesis, the induction of purposeful mutations using gamma ray, x-ray, ultraviolet radiation, and noxious chemicals

    • Boundless

      > Israeli wheat products don’t use genetically modified wheat.

      None do, anywhere, yet. Many such strains are pending.

      Note that the industry narrowly defines “GMO” to mean Explicit Gene Insertion.

      As Dr. Davis points out, the toxin called “wheat” today was not the result of that. It was the result of intensive, fast-cycle, Recklessly Random Gene Insertion, a gmo process without a name.

      In both cases, the industry fails to test for long term food safety (and apparently short term – if it doesn’t quickly kill the rats, and meets some nutrient targets, it’s good to go). Had the industry done any sort of food safety testing on wheat prior developing the current strains, they would have abandoned it. The more suspicious among us muse that possibly they have done such testing, and gave all the data and results to the sugar industry to hide it (who gave it to the tobacco industries, experts in such matters).

  17. Sheila

    Been wheat/sugar free for 4 weeks and loving it! Thanks to everybody for their input! I never thought my “crazies” with sugar and carb addition would go away due to abstinence! I am free for the first time in my life! The insane and unexplained addictions have disappeared – even during PMS week! It’s a miracle! Thanks so much to my friend Julie for recommending WB! My weight loss has been 1-1.5 lbs each week and that is so much better than gaining!!! I’m a Dr. Davis and WB believer!!! Thank you! Cheers to sanity and good health!!

    • Dr. Davis

      And cheers to you, Sheila!

      Yup: Big Food figured this out 25 years ago, then proceeded to put it in all your food, making you a hungry, salivating, helpless consumer of junk carbohydrates. You have broken the cycle!

  18. Susie

    I have also experienced this phenomena…..I never understood why I would sit down and eat a meal and was completely full but within an hour (or less) I would have the urge to grab a snack like crackers, cookies or chips. I knew I should not be hungry….but I wanted something else. My mom used to always say..”I’m not hungry but I want something.” I now understand that was the wheat talking!!!! I have been wheat-free since 2/25/13…..and it has been wonderful. Those uncontrollable urges are completely gone. When I’m hungry…I eat…when I’m not – I don’t. It really is that simple. What I am noticing is all of the situations I find myself in where I would have been eating….For example: I made cookies last week for my honey to take with him on a fishing trip…normally I would have tasted the batter a few times, licked the spoon, and definitely would have had a few cookies after they came out of the oven. But I really had no urge to do so this time around. Also – I was at a little party at my parents house over the weekend, mom put out pretzels, banana bread, and crackers and chips……but I had stopped at my favorite deli on the way to her house and I had some olives, bell peppers, almonds, cheese and salami….so I made up a little tray of those Items and that is what I snacked on. I also would have had a couple beers….good IPA’s……but I was happy to have a glass or 2 of red wine instead. I have lost about 12 lbs so far….much more to go. I finally feel in control of my diet and the food does not control me anymore. It’s a very empowering feeling! A much better high than that of Gliadin! I did try a little experiment on Sunday afternoon…..I actually ate a cookie. I wanted to see the effects. Well suffice it to say my stomach was not too happy with me and let me know within an hour. But that was not the worst part. Since going wheat-free I have noticed that my arthritis in my big toe has been much better and has not flared up or turned bright red and has not been bothering me. Well….by Sunday night I could hardly walk on that toe…..it was really hurting all night and all day Monday. WOW…….all from a stinkin little cookie! Needless to say…….the experiment told me what I already know…….WHEAT is an evil master but I am no longer it’s mistress!

  19. Grammie Vi

    Yes, sweet cravings gone and weight going down very slowly since starting 8 wks. or so; after getting Dr. Davis’ book. The other day – ate some carrot cake – avoiding the frosting; then the next day – some legume/grain mix of soup w/turkey – homemade. I thought a little grain would not hurt. Well, my hypoglycemia got worse; I became slightly depressed; then the next day I was so fatigued I dropped into bed and sleep by 8:30pm and slept 11 hrs!! And, bowel “issues” for two days. Can these symptoms all be attributed to my being just a little unwise in my choices???
    If that is the case – then I have become even more sensitive after giving up wheat/gluten. I did not test positive for celiac – but my youngest daughter has. Because of years of digestive issues my Dr. suggested I give up gluten and see how I felt. Then I saw Dr. Davis on Dr. Oz show – thank-you!! and got the book.

  20. Christine

    Dr. Davis,
    I wonder whether Italian imported durum wheat would be any better. How about soft wheat? White wheat? Spring wheat? I am so confused about the variety here. Thanks.
    Christine

    • Barbara

      Good morning Christine,

      A rose by anyother name is still a rose. If you read the book or even just peruse this blog you will understand why.