Let’s go way back. The only grain you would find is wild grain. Then, about 10,000 years ago, we began to plant and cultivate grain, mainly to keep up with the demands of people gathering and living in the same area.
To make grain edible back then was a lot of hard work. The process was most likely first sprouting the grain, then mashing it with rocks and finally cooking in the sun or over a fire.
Today’s grain is not the same.
Today, the process looks quite a bit different. Grain is sent to the mill, where a bulk of the nutrition is removed and only the starchy carbohydrate is left.
The remaining substance is what we call flour, and the main benefit is that it pretty much remains pest-free, because there is nothing in it that pests want… You think we’d take that as a cue.
Actually, we realized this back in the 1940s and began to add vitamins and minerals back in to flour.
On top of our modern way of processing, we are now using genetically modified seeds, synthetic fertilizers, and chemical pesticides. All this makes grain resistant to drought and pests. And actually, no other animal wants to touch it other than us.
How about some Roundup® in your oatmeal?
A common harvesting protocol in the US is to drench wheat fields with Roundup® several days before, which allows for an earlier, easier and bigger harvest.
Dr. Stephanie Seneff of MIT, who has studied the issue in depth, found that almost all non-organic wheat in the US is now contaminated with glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup®.
As you can probably imagine, ingesting this chemical causes all kinds of problems, including gut dysfunction, chronic disease, and mental disorders.
Historically, grain was only eaten in dire circumstances.
Even when grains were more nutrient-dense and not treated with chemicals, history leads us to believe they were still only consumed when other foods were not available.
You may have heard of Ezekiel bread, where the recipe is actually spelled out in the Bible. If we look at the context, the book of Ezekiel was not a pleasant time. Actually, right before the recipe was given, a prediction is given that Ezekiel’s city is about to be destroyed. So the bread, in this case, is simply a means of survival.
Then there’s the story of Moses and God’s people leaving Egypt. These guys left slavery, and while on their way to the abundant land that God was giving them, they got caught up complaining about everything, which resulted in an 11-day day journey lasting 40 years.
They were in the wilderness this whole time, where there was nothing to eat, so God graciously rained food down from heaven for them to survive. The food was called manna and it resembled some sort of bread. Funny thing is, they ended up getting tired of manna and complained for something else to eat.
So, stories in the Bible show us that there are times where grains may be necessary to survive, but there is no indication that we should eat them otherwise.
In other words, grains may be linked to tough times, but they are not linked to times where life is thriving.
3 Grain Substances You Could Live Without
Aside from everything we have already talked about, there are actually three substances in grains that we could live without.
- Phytates bind to dietary minerals and prevent their absorption. In other words, they get the nutrients, not you. Phytates are also found in nuts and seeds, but in lesser quantities. It is the amount of phytates in grains that cause the problem.
- Gluten usually doesn’t cause a problem in small quantities. But, modern technology has increased the amount of gluten in wheat so much that wheat is about 80% gluten.
- Lectins are so small and hard to digest that they tend to accumulate in your body, causing damage to the lining of your gut. Lectins can also cause your body’s hunger signal to be suppressed, making you think you are hungry when you aren’t.
Isn’t whole grain better than process grain?
Even after all of this, you may still be asking yourself, “Isn’t it okay to eat whole grains, as long as I stay away from processed grain?”
This is definitely a valid question. And, there is a health benefit to swapping white flour product with whole grain. But the real health benefit is to get rid of grains all together.
Mark Sisson, author of The Primal Blueprint, says “Apart from maintaining social conventions in certain situations and obtaining cheap sugar calories, there is absolutely no reason to eat grains.”
What he is really saying is that there is really no good reason to eat grains.
The Bottom Line
Our bodies may be able to survive on grains, but they do not thrive on grains.
Of all the habits you can develop regarding your health, dropping grains is probably the one that will pay off the most.
So, trade the grains for lean meats, quality fats, and organic fruits and vegetables. You won’t regret it!