When we wish to lose weight, we find ourselves obligated to reduce the consumption of refined carbohydrates (bread, pasta, pizza, flour, candies, sugar, etc). It is the only way of accomplishing healthy weight loss since this type of carbohydrates turn into glucose (sugar in the blood) and the excess glucose then becomes FAT with the help of the insulin hormone produced in our bodies. For various interesting reasons, which we will discuss further, for many people, the most difficult food to eliminate from their diet and the “biggest sacrifice” is considered to be bread or pasta.
After ten years of experience in helping people recuperate their metabolism and slim down, I have learned to recognize the metabolism problems that “body intolerances” can cause. Everybody knows what an “allergy” is because when someone is allergic to a certain food and they ingest it, the allergic reaction is very noticeable. Allergies produce headaches, itching, and loss of breath, phlegm, indigestion, and inflammation which is immediately noticeable in the body. If a person is allergic to seafood and he or she ingests any, the results can be deadly from the crisis or allergic reaction that it causes.
“Intolerances” are a type of negative reaction that the body has to certain foods which do not necessarily include immune system reactions (itching, phlegm, inflammation, etc.). An “intolerance” is a type of negative reaction of the body, which is less noticeable than an allergic reaction. However, when the body has intolerance towards a certain food and we consume this food, the metabolism will decrease to the point where we won’t be able to lose weight. In other words, “intolerances” make us fat because they weaken the metabolism.
The most common foods that cause intolerance are wheat, soy, and corn. In my experience the food that most prevents people from losing weight is wheat, which is a staple of our daily meals. Pasta, cakes, and other foods all contain wheat as a main ingredient.
Wheat contains a protein called “gluten” which causes trouble for a lot of us when it comes to losing weight. Gluten can cause, for many of us, intolerance that creates constipation, headaches, fatigue, indigestion, gases and accumulation of water in the body (edema). When a person is intolerant to the gluten contained in the wheat, he or she will have trouble losing weight, in addition to the possible emotional imbalances like anxiety, memory loss, disorientation and even depression. In fact, it has been noted that many children and adults who are being diagnosed with the popular psychiatric disease ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) really suffer from gluten intolerance. Many of these adults and children, who are put on a wheat-free and gluten-free diet, begin to act “normal” again.
There is an illness called “celiac disease” which not many doctors can easily diagnose. It is an illness caused by a severe intolerance to the gluten protein contained in wheat. There are families that suffer a great deal with strange illnesses and emotional or behavioral-type problems only because they are unaware of gluten intolerance. Some of them end up drugged with antidepressants which only makes the situation worse.
A very interesting discovery revealed that the gluten in wheat functions as an opiate. An opiate is a substance with effects similar to opium (the source of drugs such as morphine and heroin) with a very addictive power. This is the reason that many people who are obese or overweight are addicted to bread! They see a basket full of bread and their mouth begins to water while something inside screams: GIVE IT TO ME!
I know all about this subject very well from personal experience. When I began my quest to lose weight I discovered that my body is one of those bodies that wants nothing to do with gluten or wheat. Whenever I ate bread or pasta, I felt that my body was heavier and I could tell that my clothes fit tighter. Also, I just could not lose weight no matter what diet I was on. With time I discovered that gluten causes a reaction in my body that forces it to retain water and thus my clothes fit tighter. I realized that if I completely avoided gluten and sauces that contain wheat, I was able to lose weight.
I my book The Power of Your Metabolism I dedicated an entire chapter to the subject of “intolerances”. I have received hundreds of emails from people who were able to finally lose weight after eliminating wheat from their diet. Others have been able to handle their indigestion, headaches, and even thyroid problems since eliminating wheat from their diet. Some experts have concluded that for those who are intolerant to gluten, consuming it could damage the thyroid gland.
Everyone has a different heritage origin. Our ancestors, whose genes determined our own genetic characteristics, were hunters and gatherers as opposed to agriculturists. Hunters and gatherers did not farm the lands and they did not eat wheat, thus their bodies never adapted to it. The origin of wheat is wild and it was domesticated and cultivated by our more modern agriculture ancestors.
In any event, should you discover intolerance to wheat; you still have the majority of every other food you can enjoy. It’s just that if you are intolerant and do not discover it, you expose yourself to failure in all your attempts to lose weight, if you don’t avoid the delicious and tempting “daily bread”.
Frank Suárez, Metabolism and Obesity Specialist