Author, Wheat Belly (2011)
Medical Director and Founder of the Track Your Plaque Program
Vice President for Cardiology for Obesity PPM
BA, Biological Sciences, University of Missouri
MD, St. Louis University School of Medicine
Married with Children
Dr. William Davis's 'Wheat-loss' Diet
The 700 Club
Dr. Davis practices preventative cardiology in Milwaukee. He says, “Americans are plagued by obesity on a scale never before seen in the human experience.” He attributes that rapid rise to wheat, and its consumption in almost every product in various forms. He knows from personal experience. Dr. Davis had what he calls “a long and personal relationship with wheat.” Growing up he ate a lot of processed food. For breakfast, he would have Trix, Lucky Charms, and Fruit Loops. For lunch he would have various sandwiches with a Ho Ho or Scooter Pie for dessert. Family dinners would usually consist of TV dinners with battered chicken and some kind of bread or breaded dessert.
In his freshman year of college, he gained a spare tire around his midsection and felt tired all the time as a result of all-you-can-eat dining. He battled this effect for 20 more years and drank gallons of coffee to try to stay awake. In 1999, he saw a vacation photo that his wife had taken. The picture showed he had gained 30 extra pounds. He found that he was advising his patients to stay healthy while he was not. While experimenting with his diet, he found that the days he didn’t have any wheat products for breakfast he felt better. His lab tests showed he had high triglycerides, etc. and that he was diabetic. Even though he was jogging almost every day this did not help him with weight loss or his diabetes. This compelled him to search out the foods that caused his blood sugar to rise most. Surprisingly he found that these foods contained wheat, not sugar. After eliminating wheat from his diet, he lost the extra weight, was no longer diabetic, and was healthier. He also began seeing similar results with his patients.
Dr. Davis says that today’s genetically altered wheat is very different from the natural wheat from years ago and produces unexpected results in the body (the extent to what it does to the body has not been fully researched yet…) Some results in the body are diabetes, acid reflux, asthma symptoms, IBS, and other digestive problems. Dr. Davis says this is why people can exercise a lot and still not drop weight. He has found how to eat without wheat and tells his patients how to eat in a healthier way.
TODAY’S WHEAT – A DIFFERENT CROP
The latest health advice tells us to eat more healthy, whole grains. The truth is wheat can bring your blood sugar level up as much as eating a candy bar or drinking a soda. Dr. Davis says people who are eating “more whole grains/wheat” are consuming 400 more calories per day. They are weighing more and spending more money. Dr. Davis says over 80% of the people he meets today are pre-diabetic or diabetic. To help his patients reduce blood sugar, he has asked them 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. This is even true for whole grains. These “whole grains” raise blood sugar more than table sugar or a Snickers bar. Dr. Davis says this is true for even organic, multigrain, sprouted–it makes no difference. Today’s wheat all comes from the same genetically altered plant, which research is still finding out about all of the health effects. Scientists manipulated this wheat to be a higher yielding crop without checking if it was safe for human consumption.
Two slices of whole wheat bread raise blood sugar because of amylopectin A. This chain of branching glucose units containing wheat increases blood sugar more than other complex carbohydrates. Gram –for- gram, wheat products are no better and are often worse than even simple carbohydrates such as sucrose. Eliminating wheat means eliminating the amylopectin A of wheat, the form of complex carbohydrate that actually increases blood sugar higher than table sugar and candy bars. Dr. Davis says you don’t want to replace it with the rapidly absorbed carbohydrates of powdered rice starch, cornstarch, potato starch, and tapioca starch. In other words don’t replace wheat calories with rapidly absorbed carbohydrates of the sort that trigger insulin and visceral fat deposition.
When you eliminate wheat from your diet you can lose up to a pound a day…even if you’re eating a lot of nuts, protein, cheese, etc. You can lose weight faster than you think. When some of his patients returned to see Dr. Davis a few months after he told them to go wheat-less, they showed lower blood sugar, often enough for pre-diabetics to be non-prediabetics. However, other results they described took him by surprise: weight loss of 25 to 30 lbs over several months, marked improvement or total relief from arthritis, improvement in asthma sufficient to dispose of 2 or 3 inhalers, complete relief from acid reflux and irritable bowel syndrome symptoms, disappearance of leg swelling and numbness. Most of the patients reported increased mental clarity, deeper sleep, and more stable moods and emotions. Dr. Davis witnessed even more incredible experiences like a 26-year old man incapacitated by full-body joint pains who started to jog again, pain-free. Also there was a 38-year old schoolteacher who, just weeks before her surgeon scheduled colon removal and ileostomy bag, was cured from ulcerative colitis and intestinal hemorrhage–and stopped all medications. Witnessing these results was when Dr. Davis knew he had to share what he found out about wheat.
REAL FOOD SOLUTION
The solution to “wheat belly” and all the adverse effects of wheat is to return to real, singular foods (non-processed foods). Here are three things Dr. Davis says you can do now to stop “wheat belly”:
No “wheat.” - Eliminate all forms of wheat from your diet (even so-called “healthy whole grains”)
Limit other carbohydrate exposure – Watch your intake of cornstarch and cornmeal, rice, potatoes, snack foods, desserts, legumes, gluten-free foods, fruit juices, soft drinks, dried fruit, other grains
Eat real whole foods (vegetables and meat [if you are not vegetarian]) – if you eat this way you don’t need to count calories, fat, etc. When you take the wheat away all other dietary tips are pointless. Your body will have appropriate hunger, it will burn calories properly, and you won’t have spikes in blood sugar, cholesterol, etc. Eat vegetables, some fruit, raw nuts, meats and eggs, dairy products, and use oils generously. Water should be your first choice for beverages -100% fruit juice in limited quantities, teas and coffee – red wine for health benefits.
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