About the Author

Who had the audacity to write such an against-the-grain book exposing “healthy whole grains” for the incredibly destructive genetic monsters they’ve become?

That’s me, Dr. William Davis, cardiologist and seeker-of-truth in health. Over 80% of the people I meet today are pre-diabetic or diabetic. In an effort to reduce blood sugar, I asked patients to remove all wheat products from their diet based on the simple fact that, with few exceptions, foods made of wheat flour raise blood sugar higher than nearly all other foods. Yes, that’s true for even whole grains. More than table sugar, more than a Snickers bar. Organic, multigrain, sprouted–it makes no difference.

People returned several months later and did indeed show lower blood sugar, often sufficient for pre-diabetics to be non-prediabetics. But it was the other results they described that took me by surprise: weight loss of 25 to 30 lbs over several months, marked improvement or total relief from arthritis, improvement in asthma sufficient to chuck 2 or 3 inhalers, complete relief from acid reflux and irritable bowel syndrome symptoms, disappearance of leg swelling and numbness. Most reported increased mental clarity, deeper sleep, and more stable moods and emotions. I witnessed even more incredible experiences like the 26-year old man incapacitated by full-body joint pains who started to jog again, pain-free. And the 38-year old schoolteacher who, just weeks before her surgeon scheduled colon removal and ileostomy bag, experienced cure–cure–from ulcerative colitis and intestinal hemorrhage–and stopped all medications. That’s when I knew that I had to broadcast this message. Wheat Belly was the result.

I’m not promoting drugs, fancy medical procedures, or costly equipment. I’m not promoting a process that makes a pharmaceutical company rich or helps a hospital gain more revenue-producing procedures. I’m talking about a simple change in diet that yields incredible and unexpected health benefits in so many more ways than you’d think. And it’s not just about celiac disease, the destructive intestinal disease from wheat gluten that affects 1% of the population. It’s about all the other destructive health effects of wheat consumption, from arthritis to acid reflux to schizophrenia, caused or made worse by this food we are advised to eat more of. It’s about being set free from the peculiar appetite-stimulating effects of the opiate-like compounds unique to wheat. It’s also about losing weight–10, 20, or 30 pounds is often just the start–all from this thing I call wheat belly. The key to understanding wheat’s undesirable effects is to recognize that the total effect on human health is greater than the sum of its parts.

In addition to writing, speaking, and practicing preventive cardiology in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, I am Medical Director and founder of the Track Your Plaque program for heart disease prevention and reversal. This program was articulated in the book, Track Your Plaque: The only heart disease prevention program that shows how to use the new heart scans to detect, track, and control coronary plaque, as well as the online program by the same name (www.trackyourplaque.com). Wheat elimination along with the nutritional principles articulated in Wheat Belly serve as the cornerstone of my heart disease prevention efforts used in the Track Your Plaque program, as well.

While I’m not writing or cooking my unique wheat-free recipes, I can be found biking, sampling wines with my wife or competing with the boys on XBox, walking my two Boston terriers, or watching my tennis pro daughter, Lauren Davis, in her tennis matches around the world.

1,647 Responses to About the Author

  1. Bonnie says:

    Dr. Davis,
    I purchased your book, “Wheat Belly,” as an audio book to listen to on my daily walks. I found it very enlightening and interesting. I understand the print book contains sample menus and recipes. The audio book does not contain these items but still costs more than a print book. How can I obtain the sample menus, etc.? I am trying to follow the diet, but it would be much easier with the sample menus and any other help that is in the print book.
    Thank you for your assistance.
    Bonnie

  2. Katlyn says:

    I am going to a college in England for 2 months. They feed me while i’m there but i know that being gluten free will be near impossible, what alternatives can i take? If the only option I have is pasta for supper, what do i do???! Just eat the sauce perhaps? Should i start consuming wheat again to maybe get my body used to it before im faced with a breakfast of deep fried bread?
    Please help!

    • Carole says:

      This made me laugh! We do have low carb and gluten free options in Ye Olde England too :) And I don’t remember the last time I saw anyone eating fried bread, either.

      Surely the principles are the same as whenever you are in a situation where catering is out of your control: choose the best options you can. Choose the protein; ask to skip the carbs and add some salad or veg. If there ARE cooked breakfasts on offer, then great. You get to start with scrambled egg, mushrooms (if you can eat them), etc. If there aren’t – you could even buy some Flaxseed from any major supermarket to keep in your room for breakfast.

      Welcome to England. Hope you have a great stay here :)

  3. Greg says:

    Hello Dr. Davis,
    I am 5 days in now on the Wheat Belly diet, I have a few questions about food. Why can’t we eat vegetables out of a can? Also, can we eat peanut butter or not? I have seen/read mixed comments about this. If so, what kind. Thanks so much for responding!!
    Greg

    • Dr. Davis says:

      Hi, Greg–

      You can eat vegetables out of a can. Minimizing the use of canned foods is a BPA issue, as cans are lined with a BPA-eluting resin.

      Enjoy your peanut butter, but try to get the natural variety without added sugars, high fructose corn syrup, or any hydrogenated oils.

  4. Jane says:

    Dr. Davis,
    I am curious to know if any of your patients that have quit eating wheat were already vegetarians (and continued to be) or have all of your patients been meat eaters. I want to determine if it is only the wheat or the wheat along with meats that compounds the problem. If vegetarians are among your successes, would you be able to provide a percentage of those vs. the meat eaters?
    Thank you.

    • Marjorie says:

      I am a vegetarian (7 years) who started the wheat belly and a yeast- free diet three weeks ago. I’ve lost 3.5 pounds and an inch off all my measurements. I am eating more eggs and fish than I have in the past. Oddly, one of the reasons that I started this is because I had noticed that my dog seems healthier since she has been on a grain-free diet. Also, although I was limiting calories and exercising, I was not able to lose any more excess weight. I thought I was doing the right thing eating whole grains, but I am now starting to feel better.

      It does seem hard to find enough variety to eat without meat and with wanting to also limit dairy. I do not want to eat any poultry, beef, pork, etc. Actually, eating fish bothers me, but I am pushing through because I feel I need other sources of protein. Perhaps how to add variety to a vegetarian wheat-free lifetstype is something Dr. Davis would address.

      • Dr. Davis says:

        I fear, Marjorie, that vegan/vegetarianism inevitably involves compromises. It means a higher carb intake in the form of legumes, while maximizing all other remaining foods, such as nuts, seeds, avocados, all coconut products, chia, mushrooms, etc.

        But I believe you are better off with your fish and whatever else you will compromise on from the animal world, including shellfish. And plenty of eggs.

        For the last 2.4 million years of life on earth, vegan/vegetarianism is something that only appeared over the last few years, a style of eating that departs from our evolutionary adaptation. Unfortunately, we have nonsense to deal with in this area, such as the China Study.

  5. patricia says:

    Dr. Davis,
    I am in the midst of reading the Wheat Belly book and realize that I am on the way to having diabetes. I am however, writing out of concern for a friend who has well advanced diabetes and has been told that the doctors want to start “cutting until they find somewhere to stop”. This is their actual words to his parents ! They are planning to remove his toes a week hence. I don’t know if he has complete gangrene but I Know if it were me I’d be wanting to fight to keep my little piggies! Do know of anyone in Canada who would be able to help him along the lines of what you prescribe for your patients? He is in Saskatchewan Canada and he may not survive his next healthy crises. The doctors just keep prescribing pills and the like but other than that, have nothing to help him with except surgery and more meds.
    Thanks for any suggestions you may have.
    Patricia

    • Dr. Davis says:

      If you have access to anyone in the naturopathic community, Patricia, that may be your friend’s best bet to break out of this mold of more drugs, more drugs, more complications, more cutting. Unfortunately, if he is undergoing amputations, his disease is extremely advanced and only so much can be accomplished at this point.

      This is why it is so important to broadcast these messages BEFORE such awful things start happening.

    • Ellen says:

      Has your father already had his surgery? After I read your comment, I googled and found this site. Have no idea whether their product would help your dad, but the before-and-after pics are impressive, esp. of the gentleman who had no toes and whose foot was turning black and they were going to do a BK (below knee) surgery. http://www.reversegangrene.com/A.htm

  6. Rick says:

    I went off wheat several months ago quite on my own and completely unaware of Dr. Davis’ work, in my quest to alleviate my chronic rhinitis. In addition to a marked improvement in my ability to breathe, I have noticed decreased hunger, a bit of weight loss (necessary in my case) and no more fluctuations in my energy level. (I no longer feel ragingly hungry, as I often would in my wheat-eating days!)

    I am therefore delighted to learn of Wheat Belly and of Dr. Davis’ clinical validations of the numerous negative assertions surrounding wheat consumption, assertions which I landed on quite by happenstance. My allergist will be rather disgruntled when I wave the book and refute his claim that the improvements were “in my head” and not on account of removing wheat from my diet.

  7. Kate says:

    Dr. Davis,
    I CANNOT eat ANY soy, or phyto-estrogen plants, beans, flax, etc. Have polycystic liver and kidneys, and “estrogen in any form FEEDS liver cysts” so it’s not for allergy reasons.

    I NEED a ‘bread’ recipe or pizza dough recipe (hopefully both), and the ones I saw on Dr. Oz’s site give after your appearance on his show, had flax and garbanzo bean flower (estrogenic), so I was bummed out! ANY suggestions? Recipe/ies??
    Thanks a ton!
    Kate

  8. Kate says:

    I went gluten free last August, and only had rice pasta, brown rice, and then homemade bread with Sourgum, tapioca flour, potato starch, etc. The things you said (on Dr. Oz’s program) not to eat, as they are like white flours…..ANYWAY, before I began that bread, I definitely was HUNGRY after stopping wheat!!!!!!!!!!!
    Am I the only one??? I ate meats, fish, eggs, proteins like that, and good whole veggies, and some fruits. Kept with GF OATS for breakfast, and was ALWAYS HUNGRY!?????

    Any ideas?
    Kate

  9. Charlotte says:

    I am a 54 y/o nurse, average weight and health, but have suffered from classical migraine with aura since puberty and horrible IBS since the births (C-section x 2) of my children.
    I have just purchased your book and begun to read it, as I have suffered years of uncomfortable “wheat? belly”, abdominal pain, gas, and bloat. I have seen numerous GI Docs,, had colonoscopies, etc, I have tried numerous diets (no dairy, no coffee- for 6 months) etc. to no avail. I have never been able to stay away from grains though. i eat healthy whole grains. Are the organic, kosher, whole grain fully sprouted wheat berries in Manna breads also considered “bad” and part of your wheat free diet? Why? Isn’t there any type of grain/ bread/ cracker I can eat? I do avoid yeast and gluten.

    Thank you.

  10. Hi Dr Davis,

    My name is Claudio Carrara from Ottawa, Canada.
    About a year ago I sent you my health research document entitled “My Pursuit of Optimal Health”. It was sent to you contained in a USB “stick”/memory vault. I don’t know if you ever received it.

    But anyways, the reason for this message, is that I have packaged the Conclusion presentation into a video and put in on you YouTube. Conclusion 2 of this video is about carb reduction and specifically grains, sugar, and starches I learned from your other website over the last 4-5 years. A lot of this information I have used on myself and family/friends with great cholesterol and blood glucose results. It even contains an audio clip of yourself talking to Jimmy Moore about Small LDL. Anyways, here is the link if you ever have the time to watch it:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-F9ZwMfVYoM

    I have about 4 video presentations from my document that i will be putting onto YouTube in the future for the purpose of health education in various areas..

    Thanks,
    Claudio

  11. Tony in Toronto says:

    Dear Dr. Davis,
    I am bringing to your attention an article by Leslie Beck, a nutrition columnist, in the Globe & Mail (Toronto) from February 19, 2013.
    Very satisfying that only one the day after the article appeared, readers wrote in with rebuttals to Beck’s article, with wheat-free success stories similar to my own. I simply can’t count the ways that I have benefitted by going wheat free. The shrinking of my belly is only the start.
    Here’s the article:
    http://www.theglobeandmail.com/life/health-and-fitness/health/is-wheat-free-the-new-atkins/article8788871/

  12. Sarah says:

    Dear Dr Davis
    Is there any evidence to show that eliminating wheat helps with sinusitis? I have been a chronic sufferer for some years, having to resort to anti-biotics from time to time in order to relive the symptoms. I am reluctant to have surgery, as I believe that while this may bring relief, it will not be a permanent cure.
    Thank-you

    • Dr. Davis says:

      Yes, many people have experienced relief. Not to say that everybody obtains relief, but there is nothing lost in trying the wheat-free path.

  13. stan bass says:

    I’m 68. I’ve run distance since 1977. vietnam era vet. retired regional director for LA company. No I or II dirbetes. no other usual diseases. no high blood pressure, and a lifelong low pulse. I am a distance runner, since 1977. more than 130 long distance races. I disagree with your probably generalized statements about exercize bars and drinks. although I stopped Power Bars and clif bars, i went back to gatorade and promax bars, simply because I know beyond any doubt that they dramatically help both my performance and recovery. I think you probably know this is so, given that your wife is a strong exerciser. Why in the world don’t you make the fact that these bars “get burned totally” by strong, efficient exercisers, and therefore, are not bad for us? I’m a klutz (no golf, no basketball, etc.) and now a slow runner, who just loves the Sacred Earth. And I just think you need to consider your advice to WELL people as well as to sick people. Thanks.

  14. Brandon Marc says:

    Dear Doctor Davis,
    I have started reading your book and have eliminated wheat significantly. One grain you don’t seem to mention is Spelt. I have read and heard that Spelt is a very good substitute for wheat without all the harmful effects. I would like to use Spelt and Spelt flour to make breads and doughs. Please advise your thoughts on this. Thanks,
    Brandon

  15. Claude moskaluk says:

    I have been totally wheat free for some time at 5′ 8” I was 213 lbs 4 years ago at that time i went low carbs which included no baked goods. 8 months later I lost 45 lbs. It was an amazing transformation. I kept the weight off all this time till I reintroduced baked goods 4 months and I really fell off the wagon, I was happiest at 170 lbs but I was putting on weight I hit 184 lbs, I once again hunkered down got rid of the wheat and lost the 13 lbs i needed to get back to 170 lbs in three weeks. I have purchased the wheat belly cookbook. People I work with always ask what I have done and what I do to maintain, I say wheat free and read wheat belly it works for me and I’m going to keep wheat out of my diet. Great books Dr Davis

  16. Cindy Muncie says:

    Dr. Davis,
    I have 3 children with dysautonomia. Two have tested positive to a whet allergy. Do you think there is a connection with wheat and POTS? This is a debilitating disorder that affects kids going into puberty, is difficult to diagnose and widely unknown to to medical doctors misdiagnosing these kids with psychosomatic disorders. As many as 1in 100 kids have it.

  17. patns says:

    I have just purchased the recipe book which is very helpful. I am sure this question has been answered elsewhere but I’m not sure where to look.
    I am having difficulty figuring out what consists of a serving. For example the flaxseed. cracker recipe makes 40 crakers. The nutritional info says per serving put doesn’t say how many crackers make a serving. It says to cut them to desired size.

    Also what does a handful mean, with the palm flat enough to cover it? About how many ounces of nuts is a handful? I’m thinking about 1 ounce?

  18. Anne says:

    I have just started the Wheat Belly diet and am eating alot of salads & cold slaw with Olive Oil and Vinegar dressin, is this OK?

  19. Rafia Saqib says:

    Hi Dr. Davis,
    Firstly, I would like to thank you for this awesome gift for humanity called, Wheat Belly. I have just finished reading the book and am now reviewing the Appendices. My first response was: “Oh may God, I won’t be able to eat at all! There won’t be any foods that I can eat on this diet!” To my pleasant surprise, as I have been on the diet now for the last 7 days, there are plenty of food choices that can be made. The better part of the diet is that I don’t miss eating wheat or any of its devilish products. I am sleeping better and am able to concentrate better. I am now after my mom to read your book and to learn & apply the principles. You see, my mom suffers from Rheumatoid Arthritis and has just recently been diagnosed with osteoarthritis, with no cartilage in her knees. She is only 58 years old, but she looks like she is already 70! I feel she is going to listen to me and that, one day, be free from the agonizing & life-altering pain that she suffers from.
    Dr. Davis, I also was wondering if you could provide me a little guidance as well. I have a skin condition that involves dermatitis that is ultraviolet ray induced. If I work too long under florescent lights or go out in the sun, my face and hands swell up with fluid. My doctor, who doesn’t quite understand the condition, has been prescribing me Plaquenil & Prednisone (starting dose = 30 mg/day; my current dose=5 mg/day!). My weight problem “ballooned” as I have been taking these medications. It is my hope that the Wheat Belly Diet will help with my condition and free me from these medications one day. Is it possible?
    Thank you.

    • Dr. Davis says:

      Thank you, Rafia!

      I believe there is an easy, inexpensive way to decide whether you and your Mom will experience any perceptible improvements in your rash and her arthritis: Just do it! There is NO downside to wheat elimination, contrary to the fictions propagated by the nutrition community and the grain industry.

      You should have your answers possibly within a few years, certainly within a few months, as inflammatory and autoimmune conditions can require longer than the simpler issues.

  20. David Hough says:

    At age 70 I have recently became a Type 1.5 or 2 diabetic. Starting in October 2012 I began a strict, low-carb diet and have lowered my BG fasting and after meal numbers from the 160’s to less than 100, losing 10 pounds in the process. I also take metformin. My problem is that I also take blood thinners (I have had an aortic heart valve since 2004) and Diovan HCT (all other blood pressure meds had adverse side effects). This trifecta makes following a low-carb diet all the more difficult. Eating just meat is tiresome as I can only consume limited amounts of salads and veggies (Vitamin K has its INR consequences). I am hungry all of the time. My dietician is frustrated as I always ate well (my BMI right in the middle.) I am now concerned about losing too much weight. Increasing my starches would mean relying more on medication. I have relied on the Internet, Dr. Bernstein and others such as you seeking the best dietary solution but can’t find one for my particular circumstance. Any suggestions?

    • Dr. Davis says:

      Yes: If someone is telling you to eliminate green vegetables, get rid of them.

      This is absurd. Yes, green vegetables do contain vitamin K1, while cheese and other animal products contain K2, all of which block warfarin’s action. What I tell my patients is to EAT THEM ALL, but to do so in consistent quantities, more or less, from day to day. This way, you obtain all the health benefits and nutritional latitude of these wonderful foods. Your warfarin dose may be a bit higher, e.g., a couple of milligrams, but that is immaterial. It’s not as if 7 mg warfarin is any more dangerous than 5 mg.

      You need smarter people involved in your health, David. Their advice came from material from 1980.

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