When I tell people I don’t eat wheat I usually get an unfavorable response. Some people roll their eyes, boy do I love those people. Others simply nod and check out. They’ve heard it before and they don’t want to hear it again. Occasionally, someone will be interested in the why. Why go wheat free?
What is Wheat?
The first question to answer when talking about living wheat free is what is wheat and why is it a problem? Wheat is a seed. Like most seeds and nuts, it has several proteins that are unique to wheat and other grains.
Gluten is a composite protein, a combination of proteins found in many grains and it’s particularly high in wheat. There are other proteins in wheat that a person can be allergic to. In fact there are several thousand proteins found in wheat, it has a unique DNA structure that makes this possible.
So while millions of people are diagnosed as “Gluten sensitive” or with Celiac Disease, it may be entirely possible that you are allergic to one of those wheat proteins. An allergy to a protein isn’t uncommon. There are allergies to peanuts, eggs, diary, fish, and berries. These are all protein allergies. When the protein enters your body, you have an immune response as your body attacks the invader.
When it comes to going wheat free, you may not care so much what particular protein you’re sensitive to. The end result is the same. Eliminate wheat and your health will improve. Before we talk about how wheat affects your body, let’s first talk about the fact that the wheat you and I eat today, isn’t the wheat that people ate 50 years ago.
It’s Not Your Grandma’s Wheat
You might wonder why it seems that within the past generation or two we’ve become a nation of sick people. Why is everyone eliminating wheat and gluten and why are lives changing because of it?