Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Battle of the Bulge: The New Crack?

The couple entered, but there was something significantly missing. Thirty pounds each. 

Apparently, they did not follow similar eating plans. She went to a nutritionist and implemented calorie counting. 

His was much more simple. He just stopped eating mezonos or hamotzi during the week. On Shabbos he allows himself a reunion with challah and cake, since he knows himself enough that going cold turkey wouldn't last. 

"Anything else I ate, and I mean anything else, as long as it wasn't hamotzi or mezonos." 

I have to say, I was somewhat dubious, but the lack of middle (and multiples chins) did not leave me room to argue.

Of course Dr. Oz provided some backup. 

His show featured Dr. William Davis, the author of Wheat Belly, presenting his hypothesis that modern wheat, after being meddled by geneticists, is no friend to the human body (whether in white or whole wheat form). 
He argues that contemporary "Frankenwheat" is poison, which reacts with the body the way sugar does. In the same way we get addicted to the sweet stuff, so to eating wheat begets more wheat consumption. 
Every morning I used to have high fiber cereal, but I did notice that I became very hungry very quickly after eating it. Dr. Davis says that whole wheat is much healthier than white, but we would be better off if it was eliminated entirely. 
To clarify, this has nothing to do with gluten, so gluten-free is not the answer; standard gluten-free flours and starches really aren't good for the body either, so insubstantial and nutritionless that one is back where one started, sugar- and addiction-wise. Dr. Davis cautions not to replace a problem with a problem. 

Thankfully bulghur, while it is wheat, it is apparently from a species that has not been meddled with by scientists, since Dr. Davis gives it his blessing along with other non-wheat grains (in small amounts).

I had been already cutting back on grains when I first saw this story (with the enlightenment of Dr. Fuhrman), so the weight benefits I had already seen. There, I think, is the crux of the matter; it not just that Dr. Davis recommends cutting out simply wheat; his book markets a healthier eating plan in general. If someone was eating badly, they would lose weight anyhow, even with wheat. 

There is enough criticism of his theories that I do not take his admonishments to heart—um, to stomach. But, I have observed that I do not get satisfied from grains, only from vegetables. I could probably sit down and eat an entire loaf of buttered bread, while a few pan-roasted parsnips leaves me purringly content. 
There are many nutrients in whole grains—without oat bran, my life would be empty—but I shall keep them in moderation, focusing more on the greenery to keep me full. 

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