Is Wheat Making You Gain Weight? | Fitbie

Food That Makes You Gain Weight

8 Reasons Wheat Is Making You Gain

Learn how a “healthy whole grain” can pack on belly fat—and what this dietary staple has in common with opiate drugs

The Wheat-Weight Connection

8 Reasons Wheat Is Making You Gain // loaf of wheat bread © Thinkstock

Image: Thinkstock

It’s been drilled into our heads that whole grains are heart-healthy and essential to a diet that keeps us slim and satisfied. But the wheat toast you opt for over a muffin or bagel in the a.m. may not be as smart of a dietary decision as once thought. In his best-selling book Wheat Belly, preventative cardiologist William Davis, MD, argues that the world’s most popular grain, found in everything from lager to licorice to lunch meat, is destructive to weight loss—and overall health.

According to Davis, the compounds found in wheat are responsible for appetite stimulation, exaggerated rises in blood sugar, and the release of endorphin-like chemicals that get the brain hooked on breads, pastas, and crackers, while increased wheat consumption can also be linked to higher incidences of celiac disease, diabetes, heart disease, arthritis, and schizophrenia.

Related: Eat to beat diabetes. This 2-week meal plan can help you drop up to 13 pounds!

If you think this talk about wheat sounds like a new spin on the gluten-free fad, it’s not so simple. While wheat is the dominant source of gluten in the human diet—gluten is what gives dough the ability to be stretched, rolled, and shaped into bagels, pretzels, and pizza crusts and is the culprit underlying inflammatory damage to the intestinal tract in those with celiac disease—it also contains a unique carbohydrate called amylopectin-A, which sends blood sugar soaring higher than table sugar or a candy bar ever could.

This isn’t your great grandmother’s wheat—or waistline—we’re talking about. Amounts of wheat’s destructive compounds have increased over the past 50 years as the grain has been hybridized and crossbred to be resistant to drought and fungi, produce higher yields per acre, result in better baking consistency, and cost less to produce. Not surprisingly, the increase in wheat in the American diet parallels obesity rates that have nearly tripled since 1960.

We took a close look at Wheat Belly, chatted with Dr. Davis, and discovered eight ways that wheat could be wrecking havoc on your weight loss efforts and how going wheat-free can help you slim down.

More: Is wheat making you gain weight? Learn more about the New York Times bestselling book Wheat Belly

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