Often people are looking for a silver bullet, a special herb or remedy, that will magically save them from their tiredness, depression or aches and pains. They want to know about the latest B vitamins or therapy that can help pull them out of their funk. They may want to exercise but simply don’t have the energy. They want to laugh and enjoy life but cannot find the right answer.
Now here is something novel. Sometimes what you STOP doing or what you eliminate from your routine can have greater value than anything you are actively adding into your health regime.
Many years ago I decided to find out what my friends meant about the harmful effects of gluten foods. I had heard about adverse reactions to gluten by people with Celiac disease and this was fairly well understood. But what I did not know was that many more of us were allergic to this substance even without the extreme disturbances experienced by those suffering with Celiac.
Refined wheat is a glycemic food which means it causes a sudden rise in blood glucose levels. This stresses the pancreas into producing an excessive amount of insulin to balance out the suddenly elevated sugar levels. Since the pancreas overreacts with too much insulin, we actually become depleted in sugar, and we end up with a net loss of glucose or energy. So the consequence is that glycemic food drains our energy, making us feel fatigued.
Besides being a glycemic food, which can lead to hypoglycemia, insulin resistance and diabetes, wheat is also made up of a protein called gluten. Many of us have a silent allergic response to gluten which can go undetected our whole lifetime. This has a devastating affect because it can translate into an auto-immune response, an overreaction to gluten that causes tissue damage.
We are experiencing an epidemic of auto-immune conditions ranging from Lupus and Fibromyalgia to Rheumatoid Arthritis, Osteopenia and Thyroid conditions. Auto-immune is characterized by an inflammation located in a particular part of the body-either bones, glands, or tissues etc. It’s incredibly distressing to be plagued by an auto-immune condition and equally difficult to settle it down. By comparison its incredibly simple to cut out gluten, especially when a simple saliva test can detect gluten sensitivity.
We realize it can be a challenge to our thinking when asked about our daily consumption of wheat products. Most us have been blithely eating it our whole lives as it is ‘engrained’ in our culture. To suggest that our dietary habits might be contributing to our low energy or auto-immune conditions may be difficult to accept since our social fabric and lifestyle is wrapped around eating pizza, pasta, pancakes etc.
To be questioned about our habitual wheat consumption can be seen as a blow below the belt. The very mention of it as a source of our problems can come as a surprise and generate shock waves. “What? No more English muffins? or crackers and cheese? Yikes!” What a devastating thought. Some would rather die than part ways with their favorite bran muffins or bagels, and life isn’t worth living for them.
But maybe life hasn’t been a whole lot of fun while we have been ‘enjoying’ our wheat. Maybe the impact of gluten on our inability to lose weight, our hormone and serotonin levels, and the damage done to our immune system, could use a little review? Just a thought.
(To learn more on this subject Dr Mary has put together a technical review at this link…http://www.mypassion4health.com/articles/gluten_sensitivity.html