Unlucky Charms

Are there any HEALTHY breakfast cereals?

Simple answer: No.

Let’s consider the most common ingredients in breakfast cereals: wheat flour, corn, high-fructose corn syrup, sugar. In effect, they therefore contain sugar, sugar, sugar, and sugar. That ain’t good. It explains why the glycemic index of breakfast cereals are all exceptionally high, usually 70 and above. (Sucrose is 59-65, depending on the study you look at.) Breakfast cereals for kids, such as Apple Jacks and Corn Pops, can be as high as 25-37% sugar by weight.

How about those coarser cereals with whole grains like oats, millet, buckwheat, etc., such as muesli? Same issues. Followers of the Wheat Belly conversation understand that whole grains are wrongly called “low” glycemic index; they should really be called “less-high” glycemic index. If, for instance, a bowl of sugary cornflakes raises blood sugar from 90 mg/dl to 190 mg/dl, but a bowl of muesli raises blood sugar to 170 mg/dl–it’s not low, just less high. This is true even if there is no added sugar.

The wheat component of cereals, of course, carries all the excess baggage unique to wheat, including appetite stimulation by the gliadin protein via binding to the brain’s opiate receptors, direct small bowel destruction by wheat germ agglutinin, abnormal bowel permeability from gliadin, and unique allergens such as alpha amylase inhibitors and omega-gliadins.

Breakfast cereals are big business. They have come to dominate breakfast (and snacking) habits. Why else would they dominate an entire supermarket aisle, floor to ceiling, and generate some $11 billion in annual sales?

Breakfast cereals by definition, in all their various shapes, varieties, flavors, colors, and marketing angles, are all grains with optional sugar. As we have previously discussed, grains all represent various degrees of compromise in health. That’s why I call grains the food of the desperate or the ignorant.

It should come as no surprise that there is no such thing as a healthy breakfast cereal. After all, the whole notion of breakfast cereal originated with William and John Kellogg who, in the late 19th century, operated a sanitarium in Battle Creek, Michigan, where you would stay for a month or two and receive four enemas per day, along with three meals of gruel to “cure” your lumbago, rheumatism, or cancer. One day, while preparing gruel, William was called away, only to return hours later to find his gruel on the table, dry. Being frugal, he wondered if there was a way to salvage it; putting it through a roller, a lightbulb of inspiration went off: thus was flaked cereal invented. So the notion of breakfast cereal started with two men who believed that four enemas a day cured cancer.

For anyone missing the crunchiness of a breakfast “cereal” without the health issues, see the Coconut Almond “Granola” recipe here in this blog or the Grainless Granola recipe in the new Wheat Belly Cookbook. No grains here!

This entry was posted in Glycemic index, Wheat-containing products. Bookmark the permalink.

68 Responses to Unlucky Charms

  1. Antonia says:

    Dr. Davis- have you come across any research about the gluten levels or glycemic index of sprouted wheat? there is some speculation from the videos ive watched from the weston a. price foundation that if wheat, along with other grains and legumes are soaked or sprouted first, most of the gluten is broken down. of course, i dont expect mainstream science or nutrition to study this, but im very curious is levels have actually been measured. would sprouting effect glycemic index? thank you so much- and to anyone else who knows about this!

  2. Mama D says:

    This is so true. I haven’t eaten cereal for years, but my daughter still eats what she thinks are “diet” cereals – like Special K. So many young women are fooled by the packaging to believe that there is such a thing as a healthy cereal. A quick read of the ingredients will show you just how much sugar in various forms the processed cereals contain.

  3. Drae says:

    In all my research on diets and nutrition, nothing quite floored me as much as learning that some cereals had a higher glycemic index than some candy bars! From our “friends” at Harvard Health

    http://www.health.harvard.edu/newsweek/Glycemic_index_and_glycemic_load_for_100_foods.htm

    This list linked above shows a Snickers bar as having a GI of 51. The list also shows a number of cereals, including a few that most people would call “healthy.” Their GIs are even higher than the candy bar! Even Cheerios (not listed) has a much higher GI than Snickers.

    It’s enough to make me wonder if Snickers bars were just fortified with Folic Acid or some Zinc then we could call them healthy and a vital nutritional component too important to exclude from the diet – especially for pregnant women!

    (A little cereal factoid: the very first commercial jingle debuted on the radio on Christmas Day 1926 for Wheaties.)

  4. Lori Miller says:

    The nuts and chocolate in the Snickers bar give it some fat and protein. Add a bit more protein to the Snickers bar, and you could call it an energy bar.

    Sad to say, but a “healthy” breakfast of yogurt, juice, fruit and a bagel is a breakfast of sugar. It’s probably more sugar before 9:00 am than I eat in a week.

    • Drae says:

      I have actually gotten through to a pair of dear friends by explaining to them that, in terms of their blood sugar, candy would be a better snack for them than crackers. This prompted them to ask me for a copy of my glycemic index list and since then I have seen them making different choices for their lunches. They’re not on Wheat Belly yet, but I’ll take incremental steps in the right direction.

      • Loekie says:

        I love chocolate with nuts. Is it good food?

        • Boundless says:

          See:
          http://www.wheatbellyblog.com/2011/11/chocolate-for-adults-only/

          The problem with “chocolate” is the added sugar. Darks of 80% and higher are usually not a problem for 1 or 2 squares per meal window. If no % is listed prominently, you may assume the product has way too much, and may even be primarily sugars.

          Chocs using safe alternative sweeteners are even less of a problem, but as the fat in cacao is largely omega 6, don’t over-do it.

  5. Pingback: Trying Not to Let American Food Kill Me | Good Times Manifesto

  6. Todd says:

    What about Gluten Free Rice and Corn Chex?

    • Drae says:

      Just because it’s gluten free doesn’t make it healthy. The glycemic index of Rice Chex is 89, just like white rice. The GI of Corn Chex is 83.

      Link: http://lowcarbdiets.about.com/od/whattoeat/a/glycemicindlist_2.htm

      So, you’d still do your pancreas a favor by opting for a Snickers bar over the Chex. Or better yet, have some peanut M&Ms – their GI is only 33!

    • Boundless says:

      > What about Gluten Free …

      Pure cane sugar is “gluten free”. The more prominent the GF is on the box, the higher the likelihood that it’s high glycemic junk.

      Treat “Gluten Free” as a warning notice until you have learned how to rear and interpret NF (Nutrition Facts) panels and ingredients lists in a WB context. If a product has an NF panel, ignore it at your peril.

      >… Rice and Corn Chex?

      Most rice products and any corn products are way too high in fast (blood sugar spiking) carbs at any reasonable portion size. All rice flour-based products need to be avoided entirely.

      What you are looking for is 15 grams net carbs per total meal or 6-hour period, and less than 50 grams per day. Net carbs is total carbs minus fiber carbs. The subtext of Dr. Davis’ base article here is that exactly zero packaged cereal products meet this requirement.

      Processed foods in an optimistic healthy future will of course be gluten free, but they will also be low-carb, high-fat, low omega 6, trans-fat-free, fructose-free, soy-free, MSG-free, non-GMO, organic, etc. – which is to say that packages are more likely to promote what they DO contain rather than what they don’t.

  7. Michael says:

    Here’s a great BBC documentary that backs up what Dr Davis is saying about breakfast cereals. They have played us for suckers for generations. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HWknrAYel5U

  8. Brenda A. Pelletier says:

    I turned to Cheerios to lower my cholesterol about 6 years ago….In winter I eat Oatmeal and Cheerios in Summer. My #s went down from 203 to 149…but all the bubbles in my tummy turns out to be a little tiny amount of wheat in the cheerios. Soooo disappointed. I did leave voice mail on the phone saying they need to remove the wheat. No reply :-(
    So what do I eat instead?

    • Drae says:

      I just googled “paleo breakfast.” There were over 8 million results. I’m sure there is at least one link in those 8 million that will give you some ideas.

    • Lori says:

      I like dessert for breakfast: Dr. Davis’s brownies, custard made with stevia or splenda, or a small piece of dark chocolate and some nuts. Traditionalists might prefer eggs, ham or bacon.

    • HS4 says:

      Leftover dinner for breakfast can be very good. There are lots of recipes for breads based on almond (including in WBCB) or coconut fours. These breads are low carb, high fat, and usually taste great when toasted and buttered, perhaps with cheese or avocado. Eggs are always great for breakfast; try them different ways to keep it interesting (fried, egg salad, scrambled, poached, etc…) with fresh vegetables and/or cheese. Even a salad for breakfast can be very refreshing. WBCB has a recipe for a gluten free hot cereal. All of these ideas can keep breakfast interesting.

    • Dr. Davis says:

      All you have to do is check a 1-hour after-meal blood sugar after a bowl of Cheerios to see how awful this stuff is: sky-high blood sugars.

    • eema.gray says:

      There are numerous “granola” recipes available usually based on nuts or coconut.

      Ii personally prefer hot breakfast and have found that sweet potatoes or pureed pumpkin make a good base to work from. I add nuts, dry fruit, cream, and/or chicken stock to make a porrage the consistency of oatmeal and heat it until bubbly. Takes about 5 to 8 minutes, much less if I’ve mixed a bowl at the start of the week and just need to heat it up in the morning.

    • Shirley says:

      I had a nice chunk of lean uncured ham and sauerkraut this morning. Yesterday eggs and hummus.

  9. Janine says:

    No more cereal for me. I’ve switched to hardboiled eggs & spinach salad for breakfast (no dressing) … or a green smoothie. Recently I found a cereal called “Holy Crap: The world’s most amazing breakfast cereal” (made in British Columbia) and the contents are – Chia, hulled hemp hearts, buckwheat, cranberries, raisins, apple bits & cinnamon…all organic. I mix it with warm water and a tablespoon or 2 of greek yogurt and top with a banana. I’m new to this no-wheat way of eating (loving it!) … is this cereal as healthy as the label reads? :)

    • Dr. Davis says:

      That’s about as close to benign as I’ve ever encountered, Janine.

      Do you have a carbohydrate and fiber count on it?

      • Boundless says:

        > Do you have a carbohydrate and fiber count on it?

        http://holycrap.ca

        12-4 (8 grams net) per 28 grams (2 tbs) suggested serving size. However, the complete serving also includes “Mix 2 tbs with 4 tbs of almond, soy or hemp milk.”, so the total net carbs will be a tad higher. My question would be: is this a realistic serving size?

        • Sharon B. says:

          Boundless, yes, it doesn’t sound like much (only 2 Tbs.?), but their own site says that the chia seeds would be reconstituted by adding water, and we know what happens then!

          And yes, as Barbara mentions below, there’s that “pricey” consideration. I would just try mixing my own chia and hemp (purchased from Nutiva).

      • Barbara says:

        From the Holy Crap Cereal web site the nutrional label on the cookie recipe:
        Serving size: 38 grams
        Total carbs: 14.4
        Total fiber: 3.0
        Net carbs: 11.4
        Water, almond milk, yogurt etc. is added for cereal.
        Web site says that the chia expands to 9x its size and that the 38 grams, or 2.5 TBS is indeed a portion.

        Sounds good, but rather pricey.

      • Erica in RSA says:

        Surely the banana that she puts on top of the cereal will be pushing her carbs way too high for one meal.

        • Janine says:

          It doesn’t sound like a lot to eat with only 2 tablespoons, but after adding the water, yogurt and, even without a banana, it’s surprisingly filling. It might cost more but because I’m naturally eating less, by going “wheatless” it’s not really a concern.

  10. Geoffrey says:

    Wheat news out this morning:

    British scientists say they have developed a new type of wheat which could increase productivity by 30%.

    The Cambridge-based National Institute of Agricultural Botany has combined an ancient ancestor of wheat with a modern variety to produce a new strain.

    In early trials, the resulting crop seemed bigger and stronger than the current modern wheat varieties.

    It will take at least five years of tests and regulatory approval before it is harvested by farmers.

    Some farmers, however, are urging new initiatives between the food industry, scientists and government.

    They believe the regulatory process needs to be speeded up to ensure that the global food security demands of the next few decades can be met, says the BBC’s Tom Heap.
    Primitive grains

    One in five of all the calories consumed round the world come from wheat.

    But despite steady improvement in the late 20th century, the last 15 years have seen little growth in the average wheat harvest from each acre in Britain.

    Just last month, cereal maker Weetabix announced that it would have to scale back production of some of its products due to a poor wheat harvest in the UK.

    Now British scientists think they may have found the answer to increasing productivity again.

    Around 10,000 years ago wheat evolved from goat grass and other primitive grains.

    The scientists used cross-pollination and seed embryo transfer technology to transfer some of the resilience of the ancient ancestor of wheat into modern British varieties.

    The process required no genetic modification of the crops.

    • Boundless says:

      There doesn’t seem to be any additional detail available at http://www.niab.com yet. They seem to be saving it up for the upcoming BBC show, which would be consistent with a pure PR push.

      WB followers will have noticed the complete lack of any statement about food safety. Perhaps more telling is that a statement of nutritional value is likewise absent.

      Then we have “They believe the regulatory process needs to be speeded up …”. The existing process has utterly failed to protect the population from the multiple hazards of the existing strains. The regulatory process has declared itself to be irrelevant. All that remains is for individuals to arm themselves with information.

      • Bea Pullar says:

        There is more information about NIAB’s development of new wheat including a brochure on Synthetic Hexaploid Wheat.
        http://www.niab.com/uploads/files/NIAB_Synthetic_Hexaploid_Wheat.pdf
        Towards the end of the brochure they say:
        “What next for NIAB SHWs?
        The synthetic wheat project also opens up a new model for translational science in the UK, with a partnership agreement already in place between NIAB and three commercial wheat breeders to allow exploitation of the research outputs in commercial breeding programmes, accelerating its uptake and transfer onto UK farms.
        This means that there could be a variety on-farm from 2019 onwards.
        However, it usually takes 7-10 years from first cross to the variety being grown by farmers), so it is more likely to be from 2022 onwards.”

        The news article from May 13 2013 provides a little more detail.
        Last year when I was in the UK I read an article about their research funding and intentions to develop wheat for arid regions in Africa etc.

    • Dr. Davis says:

      You can appreciate how misleading the “no genetic modification” label can be. It is not uncommon for the techniques that fall outside “genetic modification,” especially the techniques of mutagenesis and hybridization with distantly related grasses, to introduce many unique genetic characteristics of uncertain consequence for humans. Be sure that these changes will NOT be scrutinized, since they never have been in any other strain of wheat in past.

      • Boundless says:

        There’s more up at NIAB on the new UK hybrid:
        http://www.niab.com/news_and_events/article/282
        “The synthetic wheat programme involves crossing durum pasta wheat with wild goat-grass using traditional crossing techniques in the glasshouse combined with tissue culture in the research laboratory to guarantee seed germination. The resulting hybrid plants produce the ‘synthetic’ seed which is then used in crossing programmes with current varieties.”

        Goat grass is even less of a human food than wheat ever was. Sounds like they are doing embryo rescue to keep these deliberate demented defectoids alive.

        Still no discussion of nutritional content or food safety, no surprise.

      • Boundless says:

        A little more info up at NIAB. See the PDF linked from my username above.

        This quote shows the mindset of Big Grain:
        “When the resulting small plants are strong enough they are treated with colchicine to double the chromosome number, and then grown on in pots to produce mature plants and ultimately, seed. The process does not use GM technology.”

        The linked article is still completely silent on food safety and nutritional content.

        There’s some related Q&A at:
        http://www.senseaboutscience.org/pages/what-would-your-super-wheat-look-like.html

        Question #8 was about nutritional value. The ‘answer’ starts with:
        “I’m not sure what is meant by “nutritional value” here.”
        and then wanders off into rhapsody about “… you should think of wheat as an energy food.”

        Question #7 was actually 3 three questions from celiacs. The answers make it clear these researchers are entirely clueless about the toxin the are tinkering with:
        “It may be possible to alter the specific proteins in gluten to reduce their potential to cause coeliac disease. This could be done by GM or by genome editing if we new the exact changes to make but we don’t know this. However, these changes could influence bread making quality.

        “It is possible of course to process the flour of a normal wheat and so produce a gluten free flour. But as MB points out, you won’t be able to make a loaf of bread with it (ok for crackers and biscuits). The question is whether biscuits made with gluten free wheat flour would taste any better…”

        • Thanks for posting Boundless….interesting when they broke down wheat into a nutritional context, it was 10 -13% protein, 10-15% water and the rest being starch and then admitted that “the protein quality is not too good (lacks lysine)”, saying we’re better off getting protein from other sources……so where do they think this energy boosting ability is coming from?

  11. Dawn says:

    What about fiber one (original)? I need to eat a lot of fiber.

    • Boundless says:

      General Mills Fiber One?
      #1 ingredient is wheat
      #2 is corn
      #3 is wheat again
      … then some possibly harmless stuff, and in the caboose …
      Aspartame

      That the “fiber carb” figure may not be credible hardly matters.

    • HS4 says:

      Many people very successfully replace fiber from grains with high fat, moderate protein, low carb meals. If ‘regularity’ is still an issue, magnesium supplements work very well (I mostly use magnesiuim citrate, but there are many other salts available.

      Topics like this are also discussed on our wheat free forum. Go to http://www.wheatfreeforum.com and browse around for the discussions.

    • VibeRadiant says:

      Spinach has fiber.
      Nuts have fiber.
      Tomatoes have fiber.
      Cuccumbers have fiber.
      Brussel Sprouts have fiber.
      Asparagus has fiber, to name but a few.
      All one ingredients natural foods have fiber. I think the beleif that we “need” grains to meet our fiber intake is outdated and obsolete, especially when it makes us sick.
      I was told when I was diagnosed with IBS 19 years ago that I needed to eat a lot of fiber, but when I ate WW breads and other such foods, I suffered for hours in the bathroom.
      Since I had my wheatectome, no more painful BMs.

  12. Andy says:

    This is why I stick to oatmeal in the morning! I am not surprised that all cereal is generally unhealhy. Sugary cereals have been forcefully marketed to my demographic since I was a young girl. Now that I have a little boy of my own I am going to avoid this sad excuse for a meal at all costs. Breakfast is too important to be wasted on this misguided product. Remember to read your labels! Thanks for the information.

  13. Drae says:

    I think a cereal discussion is as good a place as any to share (again) that modern diets are also extremely unhealthy for our dogs and cats. Our pets are every bit as capable of developing illnesses similar to those humans develop from poor diets, grains, and processed foods. To learn more, here is an informative (and short) video I hope all pet owners will watch:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CVIqDg8c47g

    There are a number of books on DIY raw pet foods, and I recommend checking out the Steve’s Real Food website, where you will find testimonials for pets that rival the stories Dr. Davis shares with us.

    • eema.gray says:

      For those who can’t or won’t make food at home,

      Taste of the Wild, Blue Buffalo (Wilderness line), and Nutro are some reasonably common brands that are exclusively grain free or have grain free line up. Taste of the Wild is the cheapest of the three mentioned but also uses the widest variety of protein sources, which I as a discerning cat owner appreciate. Our cat was the first of the family to go grain free and it made a huge difference in her behavior. We’re still dealing with a slightly overweight kitty but she’s calmer, more social, and she doesn’t shed near so horribly as before. Also, she doesn’t need to visit the liter box as frequently.

      • barbp says:

        Keep in mind that those pet foods that come dried in bags are still processed and full of preservatives. There’s nothing like a clean, raw diet for optimal pet health. And if you’re eating clean, unprocessed, grain-free foods yourself, it doesn’t make sense that your pet would be eating processed food 24/7, if you stop to think about it.

        • eema.gray says:

          Pet nutrition was an area of interest to me long before applying the same to the humans in my family.

          While I agree with you, I’ve also found that cats, particularly, cannot be reasoned with. They like what they like and they will literally starve themselves to get it. Same goes for a liter box. They like what they are accustomed to and will forget a liter box habit overnight if the texture or smell changes too drastically. You cannot sit down with a cat and explain to her why she will no longer have crunchy kibble in her dish. You cannot explain to her how this raw chicken and those fish bones are so much better for her. Cats just do not work in this manner.

          People who have lived for a few decades may be “set in their ways” but they can also understand the explanations and make a decision to change their ways. Animals are different in that regard. /you can explain until you are blue in the face. You can effect gradual transitions in diet (or liter box content). But some cats will never, ever transition fully to a raw diet. Same with dogs, although the canine is generally somewhat more flexible in regards to change than the feline.

          I would be much happier if my cat were on a BARF diet. It would cost less than what I have to pay for a mix of Blue Buffalo and Taste of the Wild. I’ve tried to transition her to raw in the past and I will keep trying but at seven years old, having worked on this for five of her seven years, I do not envision her ever being a BARF cat. My cat cannot be the only such cat who enjoys her eggs and canned fish but stubbornly refuses to give up her kibble. Therefore, it’s good to let people who may not be aware of the options know of the high quality kibbles that have come to market in the past few years.

      • Drae says:

        I once again must protest. Cats evolved eating a diet consisting of 70% moisture, but you are giving them a modern, highly processed diet of dry food that leads to chronic dehydration.

        Maybe you should, you know, WATCH the video…

    • HS4 says:

      Might I suggest that a good place to have a discussion of wheat (or grain) free pet foods would be on our wheat free forum? That way it will be much easier to keep track of the discussion and for other people to find the topic later. Just go to http://www.wheatfreeforum.com, register if you haven’t already done so, and start a topic. If you need help contact the moderator, Rita, who also set up the forum for us all to use.

    • Sula says:

      Hi Drae
      I would love you to join the wheat belly forum and i started a “topic” on pet food. Please check it out. Your insight would be greatly appreciated. Heres the link.CHEERS!
      http://wheatfreeforum.com/index.php/board,1.0.html

  14. James says:

    My kids (2 y.o. and 3.5 y.o.) are on egg omelet and pastured organic beef sausages, and they drink water. Sometimes I give them some berries, or occasional nut flour pancakes but the staple is eggs and beef. My 2 y.o. is also a big fan of bacon (which I moderate) and Italian ham. I also feed her with some French rillettes and raw milk cheese from Normandie on occasion (still breakfast).

    But cereals / cornflakes and crap like that ? no way! My 3.5 y.o. experienced some before we turned “primal” and he still talks about them but he asks for eggs and sausages instead. Good boy :)

    As for my wife and myself, we have no breakfast, just some home-made bouillon / bone broth.

    • JIllOz says:

      I do an egg dish that is known as shakshuka (origin Israel).

      Basically it’s eggs poached in tinned or fresh tomatoes. Incredibly easy.
      heat some coconut oil in frypan, pour in some chopped tomatoes -tinned or fresh – and poach the eggs in the juice.
      Takes a few minutes, season and eat. Very tasty and quick.
      If you need to feed a few people, you can poach one or two eggs per person the juice and pulp of one or two tomatoes per person in a large frypan or skillet. Very adaptable for large families!
      A filling, nutritious and tasty breakfast. Sometimes i add tinned tuna with the oil for added protein/bulk. That’s really good on a cold day.

      Season with herbs or salt/pepper.

      • Neicee says:

        I’ve been known to throw in a few black olives, and an assortment of other things like scallions and garlic. Never tried the added tuna but I’m going to now! Thanks for the tip.
        P.S. I can’t seem to ever let a recipe alone. Change it every time I do it.

      • HS4 says:

        This sounds very interesting, JillOz, thanks! It’s not too far off from a huevos rancheros which my husband loves. I just saute (in coconut oil) some bell pepper, onions, tomatoes, salsa and when the vegetables are nearly cooked, crack in an egg or two, cover and let it cook. Sprinkle cheese and/or chopped scallions on top and serve. The spicier the salsa, the spicier the whole dish.

      • James says:

        Yeah, I know eggs and tomatoes very well, my mother used to make it every week when I was a kid. I know it under the same name. Maybe you can add pieces of bacon :)

  15. Susan says:

    How long can your body be safe to have blood sugars above 250 while losing weight. I lost nothing until I weaned myself off meds then started losing like crazy. But blood sugar and BP started going up soon after. Since I have a lot of weight to lose is it ok to have those high numbers for an extended period if time? I tried explaining the fatty acids in the blood stream during weight loss to my Dr. But as expected she had no idea what I was talking about.

  16. hitfan says:

    I went wheat free in February of last year. My primary motivation was to try anything–anything to cure my psoriatic arthritis. Going wheat-free, I noticed some initial improvements at first for my PsA pain. But it came back a few months later since the benefits were short-lived. Since I had to replace my wheat calories with something else, cheddar cheese was the thing I ate a lot more of. I love cheese.

    Two weeks ago, I woke up with unbelievable pain in my hands after having eaten a copious amount of cheddar cheese the day before. So I eliminated dairy from my diet, hypothesizing that perhaps the very thing that I loved was the cause of my detriment. My main staple is now carrots, vegetables and fruit with a modest amount of meat to fill me up.

    I can say that my good days outnumber the bad ones since then. I’m crossing my fingers and hope that my PsA will continue to improve.

    I might go back to eating cheese one day, but for now I’ll see how far and how long I can go dairy-free. If I do go back to eating the delicious orange stuff, it will be in moderation and not as part of a major staple of my diet!

    Vegans, gluten-freebees, paleos, Atkins fanatics who come from differing viewpoints and ideologies seem to all be in agreement that vegetables are the best and healthiest source of nutrition.

    I don’t discount the wheat-free life style–I did lose weight and my dental hygienist has noted that my teeth are much easier to clean as a result of dropping wheat from my diet. I’ve even come up with an almond-flour pancake mix so that I can enjoy that comfort food.

    • Boundless says:

      > If I do go back to eating the delicious orange stuff, …

      What commonly makes commercial cheddar cheeses orange is added annatto. Allergic reactions are reportedly rare, but can be severe enough to cause people to take steps to avoid this food colorant. When you re-challenge, start with cheeses having little or no additives.

      Uncle Roscoe had more words on annatto at:
      http://www.wheatbellyblog.com/2012/01/diabeti-illuminati/comment-page-1/#comment-6847

    • Barbara says:

      Hitfan,

      Many years ago I had a bout with psoriasis. It was on the arch of my foot and swelled enough that I couldn’t walk without being in alot of pain. Someone recommended a book called Healing Psoriasis by John Pagano, DC. I hobbled down to Barnes and Noble to buy it because I didn’t want to wait for Amazon to send it. Excellent analysis. Worth a read so you understand what is happening to you.
      Explanations are clear and geared to the average person. Basically he says to drink at least 48 oz of water daily with fresh lemon or lime in it. Eat vegetables, green leafy in particular, for 80% of your diet, 3 which grow above the ground to every one that grows below the ground. Probiotics, etc. Avoid nightshade veggies like tomato and peppers. Limit wheat! There are many other helpful explanations and ideas. This book is published in many languages!

      I was rather desperate and followed all of the recommendations, including herbal teas. Relief within a few days and completely gone within a month. This was well worth the cost of the book ($17) and cost of the teas!

      Boundless is quite correct in that annatto can cause an allergic reaction, especially when your system alkaline/acid balance is already compromised. Healing psoriasis comes from rebalancing your system. Hope this helps you.

      Please come back and tell us your progress!

      • hitfan says:

        Congrats on your progress.

        If I were to categorize how I’ve been eating, I’d say I’m doing the paleo diet. I still eat red meat and eggs.

        And I noticed positive results after only 2 days of giving up cheese and dairy. But I didn’t start to become confident about this decision until yesterday. And this morning, I had only slight stiffness in my hands.

        I think my case is somewhat unique because I did eat quite a bit of cheese. Far more an the average person, I would say.

      • Alice C. says:

        My son (16 1/2) has psoriasis and I started him with the wheat free diet first and a little later the instructions from Dr Pagano’s book (as much as possible). It’s been almost four weeks now with no visible improvement. Thanks for sharing your experience and it gives me encouragement. However, he will go away in July and it would be very difficult to follow the diet if he isn’t healed by then.

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  18. Wheatless in Seattle says:

    Growing up in the 50s and 60s, I hated cereal with cold milk. The two worst offenders to my taste buds were Wheaties and Raisin Bran. They both made me gag. Luckily, I had a mom that cooked breakfast nearly every morning and didn’t like milk herself, so she didn’t push the cereals except on those days when she just didn’t want to cook another breakfast. Once I was out on my own, I never bought cereal and only rarely had milk to use in various recipes. I did, for years, eat oatmeal, but I ate it plain. Now, of course, I’m not eating hot or cold cereals. I love WB Carrot Muffins, though, and often defrost one or two for breakfast. So, I guess if we pay attention to our taste buds, they’ll often tell us what we shouldn’t be eating anyway.

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  20. Susie says:

    HIDDEN WHEAT!!!
    I love to make a nice breakfast for my family on the weekends…….usually it is the easiest meal for me as I sticks to eggs and fruit and some bacon or sausage and occasionally some skillet potatoes. The kids wanted shredded hash browns with cheese…..so to save time I bought a couple bags of shredded potatoes – fried these up with some butter and olive oil and onions and jalapenos. I have had potatoes several times since giving up wheat on 2/25/13 – and have had no problems – but I usually go with fresh potatoes. So I added a scoop of hash browns to my plate. Within an hour the pains rushing through my stomach were unbearable and I had to run to a bathroom at a grocery store. The rest of the day my stomach was pretty much a mess. I read the bag of potatoes after the fact – listed in bold print ‘May contain common allergens such as soy and wheat”. LESSON LEARNED…..READ LABELS EVERY TIME.

    Without any formal testing – I am fairly confident that I have either a wheat allergy or intolerance. It’s funny how when you pay attention – your body actually gives you signals and tells you what is good and bad for you. It is also scary to think about all of the hidden wheat in our diets. Who would of thought to look for wheat in POTATOES?