Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Wall Street Journal Article on Wheat

"Giving Up Gluten to Lose Weight? Not So Fast. Diet Regimen Effective in Treating Celiac Disease, Wheat Allergies, But Not for Shedding Pounds

This is the evidence that the author provides that ditching wheat won't help you to lose weight:
"The notion that a gluten-free diet can help people lose weight or avoid carbohydrates is a myth. 'Many packaged gluten-free products are even higher in carbs, sugar, fat and calories than their regular counterparts, and they tend to be lower in fiber, vitamins and iron,' says Shelley Case, a registered dietician on the medical advisory board of the Celiac Disease Foundation. 'Gluten-free does not mean nutritious,' she notes."
That's it.

Now I agree that if you eat the gluten-free stuff you'll not lose weight.  What I've seen of it is mostly rice flour, which is not nutritious.

But what if you replace wheat with fruits and vegetables?  Unfortunately there's no discussion of this in the article at all.

The last sentence of the article is really the prize, however:
"Also, for dieters, going back to gluten after avoiding it can lead to stomach cramps, bloating, diarrhea and other symptoms, at least temporarily."
Why on earth would you eat anything that caused those symptoms?   If I gave you an egg that caused "stomach cramps, bloating, and diarrhea", the FDA would call it food poisoning and issue a recall.  But to Miss Beck, the WSJ Health columnist, they're perfectly acceptable side effects of eating wheat.

Now that's nuts.