Tuesday, August 16, 2011

To Grain Or Not To Grain?

When I tell people we do very little to no grains, people really have an issue with this. They think I might have lost it, if I had it to begin with. As a society, we have been conditioned to believe we have to basically live on grains. If I remember correctly, they recommend eight to 12 servings a day. Grains are to be the base of your diet. I know I used to be in that crowed. Eat more grains, more whole wheat, you will lose weight and protect your heart. Is this true?
Let us take a look at today's grain consumption. By far, the largest grains consumed are simple grains, the white stuff, in the form of bread and pasta. Is this the only place simple grains are consumed? Not even close. How about all the cereals, cookies, crackers, cakes, snake packs, candy, baked goods, this list could go on and on. The largest majority of our food is grains, simple grains. You might say, but Jenn, I eat "whole wheat bread." Read that label. The first ingredient is enriched flour or something to this nature, usually. What this really is, is simple white flour with synthetically added vitamins and minerals. This bread you pay so much more for is not to much different than a bag of white bread.
By know, we should all know there are three layers to grain. The bran, germ and endosperm, with the endosperm being the main  portion used for today's grains. The two portions with the most nutritional value, the bran and germ, are considered by-products. If you are lucky, there might be some of both of these in whole wheat foods. However, most of the time it is just the endosperm with synthetic vitamins and minerals put in. Simple, highly processed flour.
Why is this bad? Well, your body sees this as sugar. The problem with your body seeing all this grain as sugar is that it will spike your insulin levels. Now, what needs to be understood is that weight lose is all about insulin levels, not calories in calories out. When our insulin goes high, like it will after eating grains, our bodies go into a fat storage mood. Then after a time, for some about two hours, our insulin levels drop. We get tired, shaky and cranky. So we then eat more simple sugar through grains and the cycle goes on again. After a time of cycling through these peaks and troughs of insulin, we run the risk of becoming insulin sensitive, causing metabolic syndrome and then onto diabetes, type 2 first and if we continue down this path, type 1 is sure to follow. Those grains sound so healthy know? I did not think so.
If weight lose is all about controlling our insulin levels, and our bodies recognize grains as sugar, would it follow then that if you eat all those grains you are going to lose weight? I am going to leave that question for you to gnaw on. This is a question you need to answer for yourself. It is time to take control of your health and weight lose, this means you need to be engaged in this process.
I know I am asking you to go out on a limb here and go against the grain! I am asking you to think for yourself and question the CDT, the common death trap. I know it is not easy. It took me several months to fully understand all of this and begin to ask questions about what we are suppose to eat. These questions have lead me on a journey and taking a very different road than what we are told we are suppose to take. If this is the first time you are reading this, I am sure you are throwing things at your computer or yelling me, thinking I am an idiot. Give it some time and thought and do your own research. I have provided some great web pages with all the information you could want to know about all this.
With all of this in mind, is there any healthy grains you can eat? Yes, if you do not have celiac or gluten intolerance and if you choose to consume grains. What you need to look for is sprouted whole wheat and if you can sourdough. The reason for sprouted whole wheat is the entire wheat berry is used, all three layers. The ingredients are usually limited to only a few, not a list, that you can read and know what every ingredient is. When it is sprouted it helps with phytates, which binds minerals making them unavailable for you. The fermentation processes helps with gluten to be partially digested by the bacteria. All of the gluten can not be consumed by the bacteria, but it can take care of a lot of it. This is a great option for people with gluten intolerance. If you choose to consume some grains, they need to be at the bottom of your food consumption list, not the top.
I think for know, this little snippet is enough for you to digest and gnaw on. Some of this journey may need to be taken with little steps. We will continue this next time.
Peace and blessings!

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