There is a well-known saying about computers: “garbage in, garbage out.” The same can be said of your body. It’s no use thinking of the food you choose to eat as if it were a dead fuel. Yet most people do. It is an assumption which results in all our dreadful degenerative diseases, from high blood pressure and atherosclerosis to cancer, chronic fatigue, mental confusion, weight gain and the other conditions for which we are urged to swallow dangerous pharmaceuticals, believing that we are doing the right thing. Here’s what you need to know about starches such as grains and cereals. We’ve been taught that these foods are wholesome, salt of the earth fare. The smell of freshly baked bread celebrates home and comfort. It brings us a superb form of fiber to protect from constipation—or does it? Here is my advice: If you value your health and strength, cut down on or even eliminate grains and cereals from your diet. Your body was never designed to handle them. Sounds revolutionary? It is. But following this advice can not only help make you well and get rid of excess fat. It can restore lost vitality to your life.
BACK TO THE FUTURE
Here’s why. The genes you have inherited from your ancestors matter. It can take 100,000 years or more for the human body to make a single, natural alteration in its genetic structure. It is not true that your distant ancestors wandered through forests munching on wild fruits like gorillas. For thousands upon thousands of years, they were dwellers in grasslands. They walked bipedally and lived mostly by digging up starchy tubers, roots and corms, which have something in common with today’s potato and taro. Neanderthal man relied on these starchy plants for more than 250,000 years, also hunting and eating herbivores and fish. What scientists now call the Paleolithic diet consisted of 15 to 20% of these carbohydrate foods such as tubers, rhizomes, roots and corms, along with between 50 and 70% fatty animal foods, as well as insects, eggs, birds, reptiles, and creatures from lakes and the sea. Depending upon where these early humans lived in the world, some also gathered foods such as coconuts. Sweet fruits such as those we eat today were non-existent. So were grains.
GO WILD, GO FREE
At the top of the human food chain, our Paleolithic ancestors were characteristically tall and strong, with incredibly healthy teeth. Their high-meat-high-fat foods together with a relatively small percentage of these vegetable carbohydrates created an amazingly health-giving human diet that has hardly been seen since. They hunted mammoths and fought for their right to them with wild animals who also hunted and ate them. Whether our political and religious leanings like it or not, it still is their protein-oriented, flesh-based diet that remains the healthiest for us today. On such a diet that the forces of natural selection have refined and moulded us to function best. To put it another way, we have been genetically programmed to eat this way for hundreds of thousands of years.
HERE COME GRAINS
The agricultural revolution began some 10,000 years ago. With the coming of agriculture, man shifted away from his high-protein, low-carb diet. Gradually cereals, fruits, and starchy vegetables began to play a big part in human nutrition. Their bodies suffered for it, as ours still do today. By 4000 years ago, when the agricultural revolution was in full swing, a lot of physical degeneration had taken place. Men and women had shrunk in height. Dental decay and malformation of the jaw had become widespread. Disease epidemics began to shorten the human lifespan. This moment in history marks the very beginning of what nowadays are known as the diseases of civilization, including obesity. It’s hard to imagine a more different scenario from the healthy, nomadic ways of our ancient hunter-gatherer forefathers. Anthropologist Kathleen Gordon at the Smithsonian Institute in Washington DC describes this well when she says, ‘Not only was the agricultural “revolution” not really so revolutionary at its inception, it has also come to represent something of a nutritional “devolution” for much of mankind.’
WHAT’S THE PROBLEM?
What’s wrong with grains and cereals? Plenty, and we are not told about it. For generations, we’ve believed that grains and cereals are good for us. Sadly, the truth is that there are plenty of reasons not to eat them often—and, for many people, not to eat them at all. Most grains can cause humans toxic effects. For instance, corn—the domesticated form of the teosinte grass—can create pellagra. Many of us are starch-sensitive as a result of toxins created by our gut bacteria as they try to digest starches.
Our 21st century bodies have never been genetically adapted to thrive on them. Research affirms this fact.
Grains and cereals contain anti-nutrients to protect them from predators such as birds and insects. They can exert negative effects on human metabolism. These toxins can include lectins and alpha-amylase inhibitors, which behave like allergens.
Lectins are especially important anti-nutrients found in many places, especially in grains, legumes, seeds and nuts. They can trigger digestive problems such as nausea, diarrhea, bloating. Your body creates antibodies in response to lectins which can, in turn, launch an attack on your own body, causing autoimmune issues like celiac disease, lupus and multiple sclerosis.
Lectins damage the walls of your intestines, creating “leaky gut” so that large particles of food cross the intestinal barrier to enter the bloodstream directly, creating food sensitivities and overwhelming the immune system so it starts attacking your body causing eczema, weight gain, depression and migraine.
The best way to reduce lectin’s negative health effects is to cut down on your consumption of grains and cereals or even eliminatee these foods altogether.
All grains and cereals are full of phytic acid—a mineral blocker. It prevents your body from absorbing vital minerals such as magnesium, calcium, zinc, copper, and iron.
Finally, there is the fiber issue. We’ve been told we need to eat cereal grains to make sure we get enough whole grain fiber. Yet grain fiber contains toxic proteins, including gluten, and roughage that can actually damage the intestinal wall.
Cut down on grains, cereals and legumes to create a low toxicity way of eating to keep you slim and fit, and protect you from rapid aging and degenerative diseases. This is your first step towards freedom.
What are the safe starches? They include white rice, potatoes, sago, tapioca, and sweet potatoes, provided they are organically grown. Akin to what our ancestors lived on for hundreds of years, these starches can improve your gut health. They also provide useful minerals such as potassium. These foods must be cooked gently so that any natural toxins which they contain are neutralized. Brown rice is not great because the phyten it contains can provoke an immune response. But there are no known auto immune antibodies generated by white rice protein. When it comes to potatoes, you should know that the solanine and chaconine toxins they can contain are generated when potatoes are exposed to light and heat. This is why it’s important to keep them in cool, dark conditions. Any potatoes that have become discolored or not fresh you should throw away. There are other sources of what appear to be safe starches, including buckwheat, amaranth and quinoa, but these have not yet been thoroughly researched. I refer to them as the faux grains. They can be great for baking and to replace the usual grains and cereals. People who choose to use them usually do very well on them. They do not appear to cause weight gain or digestive problems, provided you eat them in moderation. You can make wonderful baked goods from them, such as white rice noodles, pasta dishes, rice crackers to replace wheat crackers, sugar-free muffins, pancakes, and biscuits. To learn more about these delicious safe starches, click here.
Grains and cereals are cheap to manufacture. And they are also highly addictive. For more than half a century, food manufacturers intent on making a profit have been producing a great variety of hyped foods by fragmenting and reducing raw material foodstuffs—including grains and seeds, cereals and legumes—to simple “nuts and bolts”. These are then whipped up into the manufactured convenience foods that most people pick up from supermarket shelves. You know the kind of thing: Ready-to-eat in a minute meals, to cakes, breads and packaged, denatured stuff that makes up three quarters of what most people eat these days. Flour and sugar-based convenience foods full of junk fats have an ultra-long shelf life. Most, in truth, are nothing more than junk foods, devoid of any nutritional value other than calories. The processed fats they contain, together with masses of artificial chemicals used as flavorings, colorings and preservatives, are far removed from the foods you need for health. It is little wonder many human beings today— even those in economically privileged countries—stuff themselves with dangerous pharmaceutical drugs, yet do little more than survive.
STOP EARLY AGING
Our high-carbohydrate, low-protein diet is a disaster for long-term health. Here are just a few of the negative effects of living on it:
Raised serum insulin levels, causing insulin resistance and resulting in metabolic distortions which undermine health and vitality.
Lowered basal metabolic rate, leading to weight gain and low energy.
Increased adipose tissue growth accompanied by a gross reduction in lean muscle tissue.
Acceleration of biological aging.
Development of food allergies or sensitivity, especially to grains, legumes, cereals and dairy food.
Development of over-active immune system and eventual immune failure.
Soaring incidence of degenerative diseases, including heart disease, obesity and cancer.
Such a way of eating brings about serious problems with blood sugar levels and causes endless suffering to people with diabetes. And it never reduces high blood pressure. People who lose weight on such a diet never keep it off. Yet the myths we are fed by the media and multi-national corporations persist. We find ourselves stuck in a frustrating circle of misinformation, temptation and self-blame. I believe it’s time to strip away the false “truths” and get back to basics.
SET YOURSELF FREE
I’ve worked with huge numbers of people who have changed their way of eating—by cutting out convenience foods based on refined flours, grains and legumes, and starchy vegetables—lose their cravings sometimes as quickly as in a few weeks. This feels like they have been set free from a life in prison. Their appetite diminishes, their blood sugar levels stabilize and their life transforms. Before long these people feel uncomfortable when they eat more than their body actually needs. For them, the transition to nutrient-rich-calorie-poor way of eating becomes a graceful, natural experience. They report that they have never felt better, while friends and family tell them they look wonderful. I would never have believed this had it not also happened to me. You will only know what it can do for you when you get yourself into a low-grain-and-cereal way of eating, or even eliminate these foods altogether. I challenge you to find out for yourself.