Sometimes the best lessons come in the form of criticism.
The occasional negative “review” of Wheat Belly on Amazon, for instance, reminds me that:
1) The Wheat Lobby is watching. At least some of the book’s critics oddly never posted anything about any other book before but occupy jobs in the wheat industry. Of course, anyone in the wheat industry has as much right to say what they want as you and I do and they’ve chosen to do so about Wheat Belly.
2) The counterarguments against the concepts detailed in Wheat Belly are, well, silly. Even during on-air debates with PhD nutritionists, I thought I was arguing with children, with their level of understanding of these comments somewhere below rudimentary. I’m happy to argue each issue, point by point, but comments like “Well, the USDA says it’s good!” just don’t hold water.
As representative of #2, witness:
This is a terribly misleading book. A healthy life for most people means a balanced diet and plenty of exercise. Blaming one of the world’s oldest staple crops for rising obesity rates is scientifically unjustified and, frankly, laughable. Common sense would deem this author incredible.
Another commenter, cmartel2, then posted this response:
I’m not sure I’d agree. Read the book. Dr. Davis’ issues with grain lie in our modern era tinkering with its genetic composition and the effects this has had on our bodies.
I’ve exercised and eaten reasonably healthy most of my life (i.e. avoiding lots of red meat, generally limiting portion size, rarely eating any junk or fast food, and if so, a grilled chicken sandwich). Still, my weight climbed gradually to 207 pounds at 5 feet, 11 inches in height. I wasn’t obese, but I wasn’t ideal, either. Once I cut out all wheat and most grains (I still rarely treat myself to some Thai food over rice on a rare occasion) from my diet, the weight just started falling off. I didn’t even try or I had a week at work where I was so busy I couldn’t make it to the gym (working 70+ hours per week) and I ended up losing weight. I’m less hungry, and I have more energy.
My weight has dropped from 207 to 169 pounds over the course of 5 months. There haven’t been any flashy gimmicks I’ve followed. I’ve replaced a lot of my carbs with almonds or fruit. I guess I’ve also greatly limited my consumption of potatoes. Make no mistake, I eat until I’m full.
I really don’t have anything else to attribute all of this weight loss to. I’m just a 33-year old guy who said goodbye to wheat and most grains. Higher fiber may have played a roll. I’m still taking the same old fish oil. Still the same D-supplement. Still eating chicken and fish. Still going to the gym 2-3 times per week with 30-40 minutes of cardio.
Thanks, cmartel2, whoever you are!
Critics, as well as most dietitians and people in the nutrition community, have failed to recognize that what they thought was wheat is no longer available. Traditional wheat has been replaced by the high-yield, semi-dwarf strains that we know are genetically removed from the wheat of 1950. Just as corn in 2012 is very different—glyphosate-resistant corn, Bt toxin corn, etc.—from the strains of 1950, certainly different from traditional teosinte, so has wheat been transformed to something almost unrecognizable.