Why Grain Free

[dropcap]E[/dropcap]ating grain-free is the elimination of all grains including wheat, rice, corn, barley, rye and oats from the diet. Celiac sufferers and those with wheat allergies and other digestive conditions have difficulty tolerating grains which contain gluten such as wheat, rye, barley and sometimes oats. Some celiac sufferers and those with other digestive conditions, also have difficulty tolerating grains that do not contain gluten such as rice and corn, especially those whose digestive systems are already very damaged. Many people find that they need to eliminate all grains from their diet to feel better. People following a paleolithic or caveman diet reject all grains in favor of more nutrient dense foods such as meat, vegetables, fruits and nuts that the human species naturally evolved to eat.

While many gluten-free bakeries rely on alternative flours made from sorghum, rice, corn and potato as a replacement for wheat flour, we prefer to use almond flour which is an extremely nutritious food, high in protein, antioxidants and healthy mono-saturated fats. Choosing goods made with almond flour rather than those containing less nutritious flours is a better option for those with celiac disease who can have difficulty absorbing enough nutrients from their diet.

Many people suffer from wheat allergies, sensitivities and even celiac disease and do not know it. The prevalence of celiac disease is on the rise as awareness of the disease rises and more people are being tested. Infact, silent celiac disease – displaying no clear symptoms–is now the most common form of the disease. These people suffer from “mysterious” digestive distress on a daily basis such as gas, bloating, stomach cramps, diarrhea and heartburn, and conditions such as anemia, osteoporosis and chronic fatigue which are the result of malnutrition from poor absorption of nutrients. When these people eliminate grains, especially gluten from their diet, their digestive complaints disappear, their energy levels rise and they feel better.

While mainstream medicine continues to dispute the evidence of positive health effects of eating a grain-free and low-sugar/low GI diet, thousands of people worldwide are experiencing significant relief or improvement from Crohn’s disease, irritable bowel syndrome, chronic fatigue, epilepsy, Autism, arthritis, ADD, Schizophrenia, auto-immune disorders, Metabolic Syndrome X, insulin resistance and many more illnesses and disorders by eliminating grains and sugar from their diet and basing their diet on meat, vegetables, fruits and nuts.

Did you know?

[dropcap]D[/dropcap]espite the US dietary recommendation to eat plenty of wholegrains, grains – even wholegrains, are non-essential foods in the human diet. You’re not missing out on anything by not eating grains! Grains do not offer any nutrients that you can’t obtain from other foods in higher quantities! Even fiber is available in large amounts from vegetables, fruit, nuts and nut flours such as almond flour. There is no nutritional requirement for grains in the human diet. Robb Wolf addresses this issue in detail. So, why are we constantly told to eat grains?

A Little-Known Secret:

[dropcap]T[/dropcap]he message to eat more wholegrains is pushed by the US government because of their financial links with the sugar and grain industries. Politicians fund the grain and sugar industries and in return are elected into office by the them. Talk about hidden agendas.

Did you know that grains are routinely fed to cattle for the specific purpose of fattening them up? By the time these poor animals are 6 months of age their bodies are racked with disease from the grains they are fed and they would die if they weren’t slaughtered for meat. This is another reason that large amounts of antibiotics are routinely fed to cattle – to treat the diseases caused by the grain-heavy diet they are fed. In contrast, cattle that are allowed to graze on fresh grass remain lean and relatively disease free. While many humans can digest grains, like the cow’s digestive tract, a human’s digestive tract is not designed to handle a high-carb, high grain diet over a long period of time. Allergies and auto-immune problems such as celiac disease often appear in middle age as the gut lining becomes damaged and thus more permeable as a result of a diet high in wheat and other grains.

Contrary to the ‘politically correct’ low-fat dietary doctrine that is still promoted in our society, research throughout history (see Gary Taubes books “Good Calories, Bad Calories” and “Why We Get Fat” for an excellent overview of this research) has shown that fats and plenty of animal protein are good for you especially if they’re derived from sources such as grass fed, organically-raised meats and butter, nuts and coconut oil. Instead, it is the consumption of refined sugars and high carb starches (yes, excess wholegrains) as well as processed oils that sets us up for for diabetes, heart disease, obesity and auto-immune disorders. Despite the public health message to eat more wholegrains and less fat, the rates of diabetes, heart disease, and obesity and its associated problems are higher than they were decades ago in the US? Clearly something is wrong here.

Loren Cordain’s journal article “Grains, society’s double edged sword” and Robb Wolf’s book “The Paleo Solution” both provide an excellent overview of this topic.

Grain-free for weight loss!

[dropcap]G[/dropcap]rains rate high on the Glycemic Index (GI) and their consumption sends blood sugar soaring. Grain-free goods, being low on the GI index allow for stable blood sugar and therefore easy weight loss and weight maintenance. That’s good news for dieters who still like to enjoy a tasty treat. A low GI/ low carb diet is also beneficial to epilepsy sufferers and worldwide the ketogenic and low GI diets are now used as a therapy for epilepsy in children and adults with excellent results. White Lion is proud to be associated with the LGIT program at MGH to make low GI baked goods available to patients on the program. Our biscuits, buns and crackers are recommended by dietitians and neurologists working with LGIT patients.

A short biology lesson: When the bulk of our diet is comprised of grains and sugar (carbohydrates) our bloodstream is constantly flooded with glucose. Glucose in large amounts in our blood is damaging to our body. When our blood is flooded with glucose our body needs to constantly release insulin to redirect the glucose out of the blood and into our body cells where it can be used or stored. When the body’s muscle cells and liver have stored all the glucose they need, the rest of the glucose is delivered to the fat cells where it remains stored as fat. Insulin is the fat storage hormone – it delivers glucose to our fat cells where it is stored as fat! Continued insulin stimulation (through continual consumpton of grains and other carbohydrates) also means that insulin locks the door shut so fat can’t escape our fat cells and so prevents it from being released in our bodies for fuel. This means we don’t lose weight – even with calorie restriction! Eliminating grains and refined sugar from the diet dramatically lowers insulin production allowing for easier fat loss without the severe calorie deprivation and hunger associated with typical high-carb/low-fat diets.

Stable glucose levels are associated with less hunger, fewer mood swings and improved well-being and may be the critical factor preventing sezures in epileptic patients following a low GI and/or ketogenic diet.

With this philosophy in mind White Lion Baking Company have developed products that are grain-free, gluten-free, refined-sugar free, natural, nutritious and, best of all, delicious! Our products use only natural almond flour (ground blanched almonds), coconut flour, arrowroot powder – all non-grain sources. We do not use rice, corn, xanthan gum or refined sugars — which, traditionally, have been the backbone of gluten-free recipes. Instead we have developed fine tasting natural recipes that are good for the body and for the soul — scrumptious for any eater, gluten-free or not.

 An excellent resource can be found at:

http://whole9life.com/2010/03/the-grain-manifesto/