Think, Read, Cook

Because no single way of eating works for everybody.

The Food that Hates My Guts


There it is. Canned spaghetti. Look at it. It’s like worms, writhing in a sauce made of blood. It’s horrid, revolting. It’s a Very Bad Thing.

Okay, I’m not running down the spaghetti because it’s canned – though “out of a tin” is not the ideal way to enjoy pasta. Nor am I voicing such strong objections to it because it looks like the sauce is made with indelible red ink. Lord knows I ate canned spaghetti as a child and enjoyed it, especially with lots of pepper and accompanying toast.

No, the bad thing about this picture, for me, is that the spaghetti is made of wheat flour.

Wheat hates my guts; and it’s not too crazy about my brains, either. I spent ten years on medication before a series of naturopathic adventures made me realize wheat was giving me clinical depression. Not gluten in general. Not rye, barley, or oats; not even kamut or spelt, which are ancient varieties of wheat. No, just modern wheat – the kind that’s everywhere, in practically everything. I can stand the tiny amount that’s present in the soy sauce used to make a stir-fry, but a sandwich or a plate of spaghetti will send me straight to a suicidal hell of my own biochemistry’s creation.


Yeah, there it is. Nodding stalks of dwarf wheat in the good old Sea of Ripening Grain. I was experiencing the power of modern wheat’s brain-altering properties nearly two decades before William Davis, MD wrote Wheat Belly. According to him, the modern variety of wheat contains a chemical which is in effect an addictive natural opiate. Well, I always did get the rare side effects that affect only 0.001% of the population, in everything from prescription drugs to over-the-counter remedies. And it seems I react differently to wheat as well. Far from being an opiate, it makes me think seriously about jumping off balconies and throwing myself under buses. Not good.

It’s not just me, either. Hundreds of people these days, maybe even thousands, are reporting that modern wheat has this effect on them. The new wheat variety saved literally millions of people’s lives in the Third World, so I can’t say I wish it had never been developed. But it hates me, so I can’t eat it.

Reading the labels on every single prepared food product I think of purchasing is one reason why I’ve been making a lot more things from scratch lately. I’ve found wheat in deli meats and canned soups and rice crackers and potato chips and liquorice and chocolate bars and French fries and cooking sauces and tinned gravy and prepared stews and meatballs and sausages and frozen cabbage rolls… and that’s just what I can think of off the top of my head.


Oh, yeah… and bread.


I’ve found two good things have resulted for me from my wheat intolerance. One, I’m making more food from fresh, natural ingredients, rather than buying so many things in packages. This saves me from eating a lot of preservatives and dyes and weird things made in the chemical factory down the street that smells like chicken soup when you go by. And two… if I could just eat everything I wanted to, I’d probably weigh five hundred pounds by now. So in some ways, wheat intolerance is a blessing in disguise.

Got depression? Wonder why? As an experiment, and with your doctor’s knowledge, try going without wheat for a month, and see if it makes a difference.


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This entry was posted on January 24, 2013 by and tagged , , .

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