“There is absolutely no nutritional reason to eat grains and there are, as you’re about to learn, many reasons to avoid them.”
The debate really isn’t whether or not grains are good or bad for humans. The debate is really marketing and money vs science and logic. I am constantly being asked “How are grains bad for me?” What about the question “How are grains good for me?” Most people already believe they are good. Why? Because that’s what we have been marketed to believe.
The largest section of the old food pyramid was grains. Now grains take up one of the biggest parts of “MyPlate”. The government says grains are good for us and should be a large part of our diet. Is this because the government has done extensive research proving that grains are healthy for humans? Or, could it be because of the enormous agriculture industry that produces massive amounts of grains that need to be sold?
Let’s first answer the question, how are grains good for me? Let me start by saying this.
There is NOT a single nutrient found in grains that you won’t get more of when eating the innate diet plan. This is very important. There is nothing in grains you don’t get more of from eating fruits, vegetables, nuts, meats, and eggs.Download My Innate Food List for FREE
In fact humans don’t have to eat grains at all. If you look at human history we existed on virtually a grain free diet for 1.7 million years. We only started eating grains since the agricultural revolution 10,000 years ago.
It’s important to point out the grains of today are very different than they were even a couple hundred years ago. Or even 30 years ago. The hybrid and/or genetically modified grains of today the government pays farmers to grow (Drives me crazy!) have exponentially higher amounts of anti-nutrient proteins such as gluten. We’ll dig deeper into this later.
But humans are living longer than ever and grains must be a big part of that? Actually, in most parts of the world whenever grain based diets were first adopted as a staple food replacing innate foods, there was a reduction in stature (people got smaller), increase in infant mortality (more kids died), shorter lifespan, increase in osteomalacia and other bone mineral diseases, and an increase in cavities and enamel defects. There was also a decrease in brain size!
I have to go off on a little tangent quick. People often like to bring up the fact that on average people today live longer than our ancestors, and somehow they think our current diet is the reason for that. Our ancestors lived to about 42 years old, but that number is deceiving. Giving birth in the woods is dangerous. Could you imagine it? Not only giving birth outside but then staying outside every minute of every day.
Because of this, infant mortality was high. Add that to the fact you didn’t have emergency rooms to save you after a trauma. Hunting large game with a spear can be dangerous…
Still, many of our ancestors lived to a ripe old age. When you have a bunch of people living into their 80’s and a bunch dying very young, the average is 42. It’s not like everyone was falling apart in their 30’s and then dying.
When humans first moved to crowded cities with high grains diet, life expectancy actually dropped to about 20!
In every instance, the big jumps in life expectancy are not because old people are getting older, it’s because less children are dying.
For the first time in a long time, life expectancy actually went down last year. The way health is deteriorating, we are going to live longer than our kids!
Here is another tangent that should blow your mind. Life expectancy in the US is about 77. Functional life expectancy, when you can still take care of yourself, is about 64!! Ponder that for a second. How often do we have these big plans for retirement? If you don’t take care of yourself, your retirement consists of eating, watching TV, sleeping, and going to doctor appointments.
But whole grains have fiber and we need lots of fiber!? It is true humans need to eat more fiber, but there are two types of fiber. The fiber in grains is very different than the fiber in fruits and vegetables. It’s the fruit and veggie fiber humans really need. I’m sure you know fiber helps with healthy poops. Fiber is a great pipe cleaner.
Fruit and vegetable fiber is also food for probiotics, the healthy bacteria living in our guts. More and more evidence is surfacing showing how important these little bacteria are to keeping us healthy. The fiber in fruits and veggies feed these bacteria and when they are abundant and healthy, probiotics inhibit bad bacteria from growing. If you see the word prebiotics that just means probiotic food – aka fruit and veggie fiber.
I will concede that any fiber is better than no fiber, but fruit and veggie fiber is far superior to the fiber found in grains.
But humans need carbohydrates and grains are a great way to get them!
Actually, there is NO human requirement for carbohydrates. We do require fats and proteins, but the truth is humans can not only survive, but possibly thrive, on a carb free diet.
That doesn’t mean carbs are bad. What’s most important is the TYPE of carb you eat. I eat carbs every day in the form of fruits and vegetables. Every fruit and veggie is a carb and you easily get more than enough carbs from fruits and veggies. I am very active and train hard on a regular basis. It is easy to get adequate carbs to fuel my body with innate diet foods.
I have NO idea how many grams of carbs I eat in a day, or what percentage of my diet is carbs. I just make a conscious effort to add veggies to most of my meals and choose fruit for dessert. I choose to never buy grains.
Again, there is absolutely NO nutritional reason to eat grains! I should add my advice is based on eating a diet that is optimal for humans. Of course if the option is grains or starve, then eat grains. Most people reading this are extremely wealthy relative to world standards and have the ability to choose what foods to purchase.
I must also add when it comes to health “fine” is not good enough for me.
“My kids ate pancakes most days and turned out fine.” I f*ng hate that. I don’t want to feel fine. I don’t want my kid to feel fine. I want to feel great and I especially want my kid’s health to be great. For that reason I eat and feed him great food.
But what about grains in moderation? Moderation is great if you want to feel moderately good, have moderate health, look moderately well…..The whole in moderation line is senseless.
Now for the reasons to avoid grains.
Grains are carbs, carbs are sugars, and the ingestion of sugars causes your body to release a lot of insulin. The repeated release of insulin leads to a myriad of problems, one of which is the fastest growing today, diabetes. The number of people in this country with diabetes is staggering.
You’ve probably been told complex carbohydrates like whole wheat release sugar more slowly and thus produce less of an insulin response. That slice of whole wheat bread produces a greater insulin response than a chocolate bar!! (This doesn’t mean you should eat more chocolate bars) And what does most diabetes diet “experts” tell diabetics to eat? More whole grains….. Yea, I know, it makes no sense.
Humans just aren’t genetically equipped to digest grains. We are unable to break down anti-nutrients such as gluten and gliadin. Neither are cows, which is why they get so fat and sick on feedlots, which is why they have to be fed copious amounts of antibiotics, which is one of the many reasons why you should eat grass fed beef!
How do you make cows fat? Feed them a bunch grains and lock them in a barn so they can’t exercise. How do you make humans fat? Feed them a bunch of grains and lock them in an office in front of a computer so they can’t exercise.
Grains are filled with these anti-nutrients to discourage us from eating them. It’s their defense and survival mechanism. These anti-nutrients cause gut damage which leads to pain, leaky gut, allergies, autoimmune issues, acne, rheumatoid arthritis, colitis, irritable bowel syndrome, etc…
We eat foods that cause these conditions, go to the doctor’s office and get drugs to suppress the symptoms, and then are told to eat more of the foods that are causing the symptoms. Again, it makes no sense.
When it comes to fruit it’s much different. Fruit wants us to eat them and the fruit provides us with loads of vitamins, minerals, and better fiber. We, or we used to, and other animals walk around pooping out the seeds helping the plant to propagate. The seeds are dropped around the forest in a nice pile of fertilizer. Check out this article on what happened when they planted bear poop…..
Consuming grains is bad for your bones. Grains have a low calcium/magnesium ratio and calcium/phosphorus ratio which causes an accelerated loss of Vitamin D. Vitamin D is required for proper bone growth and many other body functions.
Grains also have a very high content of phytic acid. Phytates bind to calcium, iron, and other minerals, blocking their absorption. This is very important. What you eat is NOT what you absorb. It is why a label can be so deceiving!
Grains also promote acidity in the body. This stimulates your body to liberate calcium from bones as a buffer.
Grains are very high in omega 6 fats relative to omega 3 fats, and this promotes inflammation, which is a main factor in all chronic diseases. These high omega 6 fats also inhibit bone remodeling.
The inflammation and damage to your gut can cause leaky guy, which means foreign proteins can leak through the digestive system wall and cause an immune response (eczema, allergies, Rheumatoid Arthritis, acne, etc). Once gluten enters the bloodstream it can interfere with hormonal balance, organ function, and metabolism.
Gluten, a protein only found in grains, causes damage to the cells lining your digestive tract. This disrupts the digestion and absorption of nutrients. Gluten also kills probiotics which can reduce your immunity.
You are probably seeing “gluten-free” on a lot more foods. Why the fuss about gluten all the sudden? People find when they cut out gluten they feel better, look better, digest better, think better, sleep better, and more. I still don’t recommend gluten free wheat products. There is still a lot of bad in that product other than the gluten. Plus, the shit is expensive! Take that money and buy some fruits and veggies!
One thing you’ll notice when you cut out grains, especially those containing gluten, is you’ll have less aches and pains. This one is huge for me. After years of football, wrestling, rugby my body has taken a beating. It is amazing how much my body hurts if I eat any wheat. I seriously just hurt all over. How many people hurt all over and are diagnosed with fibromyalgia or chronic fatigue when the cause is probably their diet? If I followed conventional medical advice I’d be loaded with meds right now. Would my quality of life be better or worse?
Another thing that happens when cutting out grains is a change in facial appearance. The bloated moon face and swollen look disappears. The puffiness around the eyes goes away. You get the jaw line back!
Your head will clear and you’ll think more clearly. For most people I work with that follow the plan, they say the clear thinking and loss of brain fog is more beneficial to them than the weight loss. But when you cut out the grains, you are going to lose body fat!
Gluten also affects your brain. When gluten is digested, gliadorphin is produced; gliadorphin is an opioid that creates the addictive nature of grains. Many times people have a hard time giving up their bread, and this is why.
Sometimes people get withdrawal symptoms such as fatigue, irritability, depression, etc. People will then try and justify bread is good for them because they feel worse when cutting it out at first. The same happens when alcoholics give up booze. Just because your body craves something doesn’t mean it’s good for you!
So my question to you is why? For one, why eat grains when you can get MORE of the same nutrients from the innate diet? Why eat grains when there are so many potential problems associated with them? NONE of which are associated with fruits and vegetables.Get the Innate Diet for FREE!
I would say of the grains, wheat is by far the worst. I avoid wheat completely. I consider the gluten free grains to be a better bad. White rice is basically little balls of sugar. I’d recommend just making extra stir fry and cutting out the rice.
What about oatmeal? Well, it tastes awful. The only way to make it decent is by adding sugar or fruit. Cut out the oats and eat more fruit. Have some nuts with your fruit instead of the oatmeal. A little oatmeal once in a while isn’t the end of the world, but I just can’t for the life of me understand why people feel the need to eat something that tastes so bad.
Speaking of taste, grains don’t taste good. It’s the real food you put on the grains that taste good. A bowl of pasta…meh. A bowl of pasta with chicken marinara on it? Awesome! Just eat more of the chicken marinara! It’s the REAL food that you are craving! A taco salad is a hell of a lot better than trying to eat with that shell that just crumbles all over the place.
A piece of crust? Not good. Dip that crust in a sauce and it tastes great. That sauce full of herbs, fruits, and spices will also taste great with vegetables.
Yea, but I get sprouted grains or ezekial bread! Again that’s just a better bad. Better than regular bread but not nearly as good as avoiding grains and having more veggies and fruits.
If you still want to have a grain once in a while, go with quinoa. It’s a pseudograin, a complete protein and is gluten free. It cooks like rice, tastes better than rice, and is a better option than the others. You can dump spaghetti sauce on it and call it spaghetti o’s.
In summary I just look at it like this: There isn’t a single nutrient in grains I can’t get more of from the innate diet. There are a myriad of health problems associated with grains and NONE with the innate diet.
The choice is simple.