Book Summary: Wheat Belly by William Davis, MD

For those that would love to read this book, but don’t have the time … I’ve summarized it for you!  Some very interesting information indeed!

Wheat Belly is a provocative look at how eliminating wheat – even so-called healthy whole grain wheat – from our diets is the key to permanent weight loss and can offer relief from a broad spectrum of health and digestive problems.

Drawing on decades of clinical studies and the extraordinary results he has observed after putting thousands of his patients on wheat-free regimens, Dr. William Davis makes a compelling case against this ubiquitous ingredient.”

Chapter 1: What Belly?

  • A wheat belly represents the accumulation of fat that results from years of consuming foods that trigger insulin, the hormone of fat storage.  Unlike fat in other body areas, it provokes inflammatory phenomena, distorts insulin responses, and issues abnormal metabolic signals to the rest of the body.
  • Most will say something like “I don’t get it.  I exercise five days a week.  I’ve cut my fat and increased my healthy whole grains, yet I can’t seem to stop gaining weight!”
  • For most Americans, every single meal and snack contains foods made with wheat flour.
  • Why only pick on wheat?  Because wheat, by a considerable margin, is the dominant source of gluten protein in the human diet.
  • Wheat has unique attributes those other grains do not, attributes that make it especially destructive to our health.
  • Whole wheat bread increases blood sugar as much as or more than table sugar, or sucrose.
  • After removing grain for 3 months from my diabetic/overweight patients, the diabetics became non-diabetic and many of them had lost twenty, thirty, even forty pounds.
  • Other cures: acid reflux disappeared, cramping and diarrhea gone, energy improved, greater focus, sleep was deeper, rashes disappeared, rheumatoid arthritis pain improved, asthma symptoms improved.

Chapter 2: Not Your Grandma’s Muffins: The Creation of Modern Wheat

  • Exceeded only by corn, wheat is the most consumed grain on earth, constituting 20% of all calories consumed.
  • The wheat of today is not the same grain our forebears ground into their daily bread.  It has changed dramatically in the past 50 years under the influence of agricultural scientists.
  • Pure strains of wheat have been hybridized, crossbred and introgressed to make the wheat plant resistant to environmental conditions, such as drought or pathogens, such as fungi.
  • Genetic changes have been induced to increase yield per acre.
  • During the 19th and early 20th centuries, as in many preceding centuries, wheat changed little.
  • That all ended in the latter part of the 20th century when an upheaval in hybridization methods transformed this grain.
  • Wheat has undergone a drastic transformation to yield something entirely unique, nearly unrecognizable when compared to the original, and yet called by the same name: wheat.
  • Small changes in wheat protein structure can spell the difference between a devastating immune response to wheat protein versus no immune response at all.
  • The first wild, then cultivated, wheat was einkorn, the great granddaddy of all subsequent wheat.  Einkorn has the simplest genetic code of all wheat, containing only 14 chromosomes.
  • Shortly after the cultivation of the first einkorn plant, the emmer variety of wheat (the natural offspring of parents einkorn and an unrelated wild grass, aegilops speltoides or goatgrass) made its appearance in the Middle East, including 28 chromosomes.
  • Wheat did not evolve naturally in the New World, but was introduced by Christopher Columbus in Puerto Rico in 1493, spanish explorers in Mexico in 1530, Bartholomew Gosnold to New England in 1602, and shortly thereafter by Pilgrims who brought wheat with them on the Mayflower.
  • Wheat has been modified by humans to such a degree that modern strains are unable to survive in the wild without human support.
  • No animal or human safety testing was conducted on the new genetic strains that were created.  So intent were the efforts to increase yield, these products were released into the food supply without human safety concerns being part of the equation.
  • Wheat gluten proteins undergo considerable structural change with hybridization.
  • Genetic differences generated via thousands of human-engineered hybridizations make for substantial variation in composition, appearance, and qualities important not just to chefs and food processors, but also potentially to human health.

Chapter 3: Wheat Deconstructed

  • The modern wheat foods of today, such as Twinkies, Cinnabon pastries and Dunkin Donuts would not be possible with the dough of ancient wheat.  An attempt to make a modern jelly donut with ancient einkorn wheat would yield a crumbly mess that would not hold together.
  • Wheat starches = complex carbohydrates (glucose).
  • Candy, soft drinks, etc = simple carbohydrates (sucrose).
  • Glycemic Index (GI) = measure of glucose level increase from carbohydrate food.  Foods with carbohydrates that break down quickly during digestion and release glucose rapidly into the bloodstream tend to have a high GI.
  • GI of *whole grain bread: 72, *white bread: 69, *Mars Bar: 68, *Shredded Wheat cereal: 67, table sugar: 59, *Snickers bar: 41.
  • Aside from some extra fiber, eating 2 slices of whole wheat bread is really little different, and often worse, than drinking a can of sugar-sweetened soda or eating a sugary candy bar.
  • Wheat products might be regarded as a super-carbohydrate because it is a highly digestible carbohydrate that is more efficiently converted to blood sugar than nearly all other carbohydrate foods, simple or complex.
  • Glucose is unavoidably accompanied by insulin, the hormone that allows entry of glucose into the cells of the body, converting the glucose to fat.
  • The higher the blood glucose after consumption of food, the greater the insulin level, the more fat is deposited.
  • This is why eating a 3 egg omelet that triggers no increase in glucose does not add body fat, while 2 slices of whole wheat bread increases blood glucose to high levels, triggering insulin and growth of fat, particularly abdominal or deep visceral fat.
  • The consequences of glucose-insulin-fat deposition are especially visible in the abdomen – resulting in, yes, wheat belly.

Chapter 4: Hey, Man, Wanna Buy Some Exorphins?  The Addictive Properties of Wheat

  • While you knowingly consume coffee and alcohol to obtain specific mind effects, wheat is something you consume for “nutrition”, not for a “fix”.  But it is easy to underestimate the psychological pull of wheat.
  • Wheat can dictate food choice, calorie consumption, timing of meals and snacks, influence mood and behaviors, dominate thoughts.
  • When people stop ingesting wheat products, 30% experience something that can only be called withdrawal: fatigue, mental fog, irritability, inability to function at work or school, depression.
  • People who haven’t experienced these effects find it hard to believe that something as pedestrian as wheat can affect the central nervous system as much as nicotine or crack cocaine do.
  • Dr F. Curtis Dohan observed that the people of New Guinea virtually had no known cases of schizophrenia prior to the introduction of Western influence.  Once beer made from barley and corn were introduced, he watched the incidence of schizophrenia skyrocket sixty-five-fold.
  • Autism has gone from being rare in the the mid-twentieth century to 1 in 150 children in the twenty-first century.
  • Gluten is one of wheat’s main proponents.  Gluten is degraded to a mix of polypeptides.  Once having gained entry into the brain, wheat polypeptides bind to the brain’s morphine receptor, the very same receptor to which opiate drugs bind.
  • Wheat is an appetite stimulant: it makes you want more both wheat containing and non-wheat containing foods.

Chapter 5: Your Wheat Belly Is Showing: The Wheat/Obesity Connection

  • I’d go as far as saying that over-consumption of wheat is the main cause of the obesity and diabetes crisis in the United States.
  • 34% of adult Americans are overweight and another 34% are obese.  Less than 1 in 3 are normal weight.
  • The real upward acceleration of obesity started in the mid-eighties, and during this time, the cornerstone of all nutritional directives was “Eat more healthy whole grains.”
  • The low-fat, more-grain message also proved enormously profitable for the processed food industry.  It triggered an explosion of processed food products.
  • Wheat flour, corn starch, high fructose corn syrup, sucrose and food coloring are now the main ingredients of products that fill the interior aisles of any modern supermarket.
  • The extremes of blood sugar and insulin are responsible for growth of fat specifically in the visceral organs.
  • Visceral fat produces inflammation signals responsible for diabetes, hypertension, heart disease, dementia, rheumatoid arthritis and colon cancer.
  • Belly fat is a special kind of fat, in effect, an endocrine gland much like your thyroid gland or pancreas.
  • The essential phenomenon that sets the growth of the wheat belly in motion is high blood sugar (glucose).  High blood sugar, in turn, provokes high blood insulin.  High blood insulin provokes visceral fat accumulation, which causes tissues such as muscle and liver to respond less to insulin.  This so-called insulin resistance means that the pancreas must produce greater and greater quantities of insulin to metabolize the sugars.  Eventually, a vicious circle of increased: insulin resistance, insulin production, deposition of visceral fat, insulin resistance etc, etc, ensues.
  • Foods such as salmon and walnuts has no effect on blood sugar.
  • Aftermath of high insulin levels causes irresistible hunger as the body is trying to protect you from low blood sugar.
  • Visceral fat is also a factory for estrogen production in both sexes.  Women = higher risks for breast cancer.  Men = larger breasts or “manboobs”.

Chapter 6: Hello Intestine.  It’s Me, Wheat.  Wheat And Celiac Disease

  • The most dramatic evidence of failed adaptation to wheat is celiac disease, the disruption of small intestinal health by wheat gluten.
  • It is impossible to talk about the effect of wheat on health without talking about celiac disease.
  • Not having celiac disease at age 25 does not mean you cannot develop it at age 45 and it is increasingly showing itself in a variety of new ways besides disruption of intestinal function.
  • The connection between celiac disease and wheat consumption was first made in 1953.
  • Gluten elimination yielded dramatic cures.
  • About 1% of the population is unable to tolerate wheat gluten, even in small quantities.  The lining of their small intestine breaks down from it, leading to cramping, diarrhea and yellow-colored stools that float in the toilet bowl because of undigested fats.
  • 50% experience: cramping/diarrhea/weight loss; the other 50% experience: anemia, migraine headaches, arthritis, neurological symptoms, infertility, short stature, depression, chronic fatigue; or later in life as neurological impairment, incontinence, dementia, gastrointestinal cancer.
  • The increase in celiac disease has been paralleled by an increase in type 1 diabetes, allergies, and autoimmune diseases such as multiple sclerosis and Crohn’s disease.
  • The protein of wheat gluten has the unique ability to make your intestine permeable, allowing various components of wheat to gain entry into the bloodstream.
  • What happens when foreign compounds get into bloodstream? Autoimmunity, your body’s immune system attacking healthy organs.
  • Wheat proteins are able to pick the lock on any door, allowing unwanted intruders to gain entry into places they don’t belong.
  • Conditions associated with celiac disease: Dermatitis herpetiformis, liver disease, autoimmune diseases, diabetes, neurological impairment, nutritional deficiencies.
  • Thinking of celiac disease as just diarrhea, as is often the case in many doctors’ offices, is an enormous and potentially fatal oversimplification.
  • All is not lost if you have celiac disease: You appreciate food more.  You eat foods because you require sustenance and you enjoy their taste and texture.
  • It’s not a burden, rather a liberation.

Chapter 7: Diabetes Nation: Wheat And Insulin Resistance

  • Because of wheat’s incredible capacity to send blood sugar levels straight up, initiate the glucose-insulin roller coaster ride that drives appetite, generate addictive brain-active exorphins, and grow visceral fat, it is the one essential food to eliminate in a serious effort to prevent, reduce, or eliminate diabetes.
  • Health conscious people who follow conventional dietary advice to reduce fat and eat more “healthy whole grains” consume approximately 75% of their carb calories from wheat products.
  • The adoption of grains into the human diet was followed by archaeological evidence of increased infections, bone disease such as osteoporosis, increased infant mortality and reduction in the life span, as well as diabetes.
  • People who reduce fats but replace lost fat calories with “healthy whole grains” have resulted in: weight gain, obesity, bulging abdomens of visceral fat, pre-diabetes and diabetes on a scale never before witnessed.
  • Only during the last half of the 19th century when sucrose (table sugar) consumption increased did diabetes become more widespread.
  • If national wheat consumption is averaged across all Americans, the average American consumes 133 pounds of wheat per year, or a bit more than half a loaf of bread per day.
  • In addition to increased consumption of wheat, we also are eating new, high-yielding dwarf strains and new gluten structures not previously consumed by humans.
  • A Paleolithic or Neolithic human breakfast might consist of wild fish, reptiles, birds or other game, leaves, roots, berries, or insects.  Today it will more likely be a bowl of breakfast cereal consisting of wheat flour, cornstarch, oats, high-fructose corn syrup and sucrose.
  • Nobody becomes diabetic by gorging on too much wild boar they’ve hunted, or wild garlic and wild berries they’ve gathered … or too many veggie omelets, too much salmon, or too much kale, pepper slices, and cucumber dip.  But plenty of people develop diabetes because of too many muffins, bagels, breakfast cereals, pancakes, waffles, pretzels, crackers, cakes, cupcakes, croissants, donuts and pies.
  • Carbohydrates trigger insulin release from the pancreas, causing growth of visceral fat; visceral fat causes insulin resistance and inflammation.  High blood sugars, triglycerides, and fatty acids damage the pancreas.  After years of overwork, the pancreas succumbs to the thrashing it has taken from glucotoxicity, lipotoxicity, and inflammation, essentially burning out, leaving a deficiency of insulin and an increase in blood glucose – diabetes.

Chapter 8: Dropping Acid: Wheat As The Great pH Disrupter

  • Veer up or down from the normal pH of 7.4 by just .5 and you’re dead.
  • Acids drive pH down, triggering a panic mode response from the body to compensate.  The body responds by drawing from any alkaline store available, from the bloodstream and the bones.
  • The body is happier being slightly more alkaline.
  • Major dietary source of acid: carbonated sodas like Coke.  Also, any food derived from animal sources generate some acid challenge.
  • Vegetables and fruits are the dominant alkaline foods in the diet.
  • Hunter-gatherer diets of meats, veggies and fruits, along with relatively neutral nuts and roots, yield a net alkaline effect.
  • The modern human diet of plentiful “healthy whole grains” but lacking in vegetables and fruit is highly acid-charged, inducing a condition called acidosis, which takes a toll on your bones.
  • Until recently, osteoporosis was thought to be largely a condition peculiar to postmenopausal females who have lost the bone-preserving effects of estrogen.  It is now understood that the decline in bone density begins years before menopause.
  • Grains are the only plant product that generates acidic by-products.
  • Grains such as wheat account for 38% of the average American’s acid load.
  • If wheat and other grains are responsible for tipping the pH balance towards acid, what happens if you do nothing more than remove wheat from the modern diet and replace the lost calories with other plant foods such as veggies fruits beans and nuts?  The balance shifts back into the alkaline range, mimicking the hunter-gatherer pH experience.

Chapter 9: Cataracts, Wrinkles and Dowager’s Humps: Wheat And The Aging Process

  • No one has yet identified a visible age market that would permit you to discern, to the year, just how old someone is.
  • Advanced glycation end products (AGEs), is the name given to the stuff that stiffens arteries, clouds the lenses of the eyes (cataracts) and mucks up the neuronal connections of the brain (dementia).
  • The older we get the more AGEs can be found in the kidneys, eyes, liver, skin and other organs.
  • AGEs have no useful function and are useless debris that result in tissue decay as they accumulate.
  • Some AGEs enter the body directly through the food we eat.
  • They are also a by-product of high blood sugar, the phenomenon that defines diabetes.
  • The higher the blood glucose, the more AGEs will accumulate and the faster the decay of agin will proceed.
  • Diabetes is the real-world example that shows us what happens when blood glucose remains high.
  • While eggs don’t increase blood sugar, nor do raw nuts, olive oil, pork chops or salmon, all carbohydrates do – from apples and oranges to jelly beans and seven grain cereal.

Chapter 10: My Particles Are Bigger Than Yours: Wheat And Heart Disease

  • In biology, size is everything.  In countless situations in nature, bigger is better.
  • The Law of Big also applies to the microcosm of the human body.  In the human bloodstream, low-density lipoprotein (LDL), follow the same size rules as shrimp and plankton.
  • Large LDL = 25.5 nanometer or larger
  • Small LDL = less than 25.5 nanometer
  • LDL particle size determines whether the LDL particle will accumulate in the walls of arteries, such as those of your heart, neck or brain, or not.
  • In my personal experience with thousands of patients with heart disease, nearly 90% express the small LDL patter to at least a moderate, if not severe, degree.
  • The drug company explains this phenomenon as “high cholesterol”.  But cholesterol has little to do with atherosclerosis.
  • It’s not about cholesterol but about the particles that cause atherosclerosis.
  • One crucial group of particles is very low-density lipoproteins, or VLDL.
  • A series of changes in the bloodstream determines whether VLDL will be converted to big or small LDL particles, and diet has a very powerful influence over this.
  • Recently is has become clear while increased intake of fats does indeed deliver greater quantities of triglycerides into the liver and bloodstream, it also shuts down the body’s own production of triglycerides, so the net effect of high fat intake is little or no change in triglyceride levels.
  • Carbs, on the other hand, contain virtually no triglycerides.  But they do possess the unique capacity to stimulate insulin, which in turn triggers fatty acid synthesis in the liver, which floods the bloodstream with triglycerides.
  • High insulin levels efficiently transform carbs into triglycerides, which are then packaged into VLDL particles.
  • Anything that provokes an increase in blood sugar will also provoke small LDL particles.  Anything that keeps blood sugar from increasing such as proteins, fats, and reduction in carbs such as wheat, reduces small LDL particles.

Chapter 11: It’s All In Your Head: Wheat And The Brain

  • Wheat’s effects reach the brain in the form of opiate-like peptides, called polypeptide exorphins.
  • Exorphins cause your brain to instruct you to eat more food, increase calorie consumption and desperately scratch at the bottom of the box where there’s nothing else left.
  • Among the most disturbing of wheat’s effects are those exerted on brain tissue itself, on the cerebrum, cerebellum and other nervous system structures, with consequences ranging from incoordination to incontinence, from seizures to dementia.
  • Between 10-22% of people with celiac disease have nervous system involvement.
  • High blood sugars occurring repeatedly over several years damage the nerves in the legs, causing reduced sensation, diminished control over blood pressure and heart rate, and sluggish emptying of the stomach, among other manifestations of a nervous system gone haywire.
  • Study of 35 gluten-sensitive patients with “peripheral neuropathy”: 25 on wheat/gluten free diet improved over 1 year; 10 controlled participants who did not remove wheat/gluten only deteriorated.
  • In one particularly disturbing Mayo Clinic study of 13 patients with celiac disease, dementia was also diagnosed.
  • The addictive properties of wheat, expressed as overwhelming temptation and obsession, obstructed by opiate-blocking drugs, are not directly due to gluten, but to exorphins, the breakdown product of gluten.

Chapter 12: Bagel Face: Wheat’s Destructive Effect On The Skin

  • If wheat and its effects can grasp hold of organs such as the brain, intestines, arteries, and bones, can it also affect the largest organ of the body, the skin?  Indeed it can.
  • Any dermatologist can tell you that skin is the outward reflection of internal body processes.
  • The body’s reaction to wheat expresses itself through the skin.
  • If an abnormality due to wheat is expressed on the skin surface, then it usually means that the skin is not the only organ experiencing an unwanted response.
  • Acne is nearly a universal phenomenon in Western cultures, affecting more than 80% of teenagers, and up to 95% of 16-18 year olds.
  • Some cultures display no acne whatsoever: Kitavan Islanders of Papua New Guinea, the hunter-gatherers of Paraguay, natives of the Purus Valley in Brazil, African Bantus and Zulus, Japan’s Okinawans and Canadian Inuit are curiously spared the embarrassment of acne.
  • Evidence suggests it’s because of diet, not genetics.
  • Cultures without acne consume little to no wheat, sugar or dairy products.
  • As Western influence introduced processed starches such as wheat and sugars into groups like the Okinawans, Inuits and Zulus, acne promptly followed.
  • Most treatments today are aimed at suppressing acne eruption, not in identifying causes.
  • Insulin stimulates the release of a hormone called insulin-like growth factor-I, or IGF-I, in the skin.  IGF-1 stimulates tissue growth in hair follicles and the dermis, the layer of skin just below the surface.  Insulin and IGF-1 also stimulate the production of sebum, the oily protective film produced by the subaceous glands.  Overproduction of sebum, along with skin tissue growth, leads to the characteristic upward-growing reddened pimple.
  • Of course, wheat, with its uncommonly high glycemic index, triggers higher blood sugar than nearly all other foods, thereby triggering insulin more than nearly all other foods.

Chapter 14: Create A Healthy, Delicious, Wheat-Free Life

Foods to consume in unlimited quantities

  • Vegetables
  • Raw nuts and seeds
  • Healthy oils
  • Full-fat cheese
  • Meats and eggs
  • Non-sugary condiments (mustard, horseradish, salsa, etc)
  • Others: flaxseed, avocados, olives, coconut, spices, cacao

Consume in limited quantities

  • Non-cheese dairy: milk, cottage cheese, yogurt, butter
  • Fruit: Berries are best
  • Whole corn
  • Fruit juices
  • Non-wheat/non-gluten grains
  • Legumes
  • Soy products

Consume rarely or never

  • Wheat products
  • Unhealthy oils
  • Gluten-free foods: those made with cornstarch, rice starch, potato starch or tapioca starch
  • Dried fruit
  • Fried foods
  • Sugary snacks
  • Sugary fructose-rich sweetners
  • Sugary condiments

135 responses

  1. Thanks, Lisa. Awesome summary. I have shared it with my online circles.

    One caveat on your “foods to consume” list – when shooting for weight loss, unlimited quantities of full-fat cheese and nuts are going to slow or halt your progress.

    Keep up the great work!

      • Says avoid tapioca flour/starch. I tried brown rice bread to avoid wheat, what’s the problem with tapioca being an ingredient in it???

      • Hi Andrew. I don’t know too much about tapioca flour but if you find out, please come back and let us know! You can also go to the Wheat Belly website and ask the author. I think he’s pretty good about getting back to people.

    • The full-fat appellation is a red herring. Eating fat rather than carbohydrates for energy is actually better for you because you don’t set off an insulin surge, plus fat triggers a true satiety response in the small intestine. You can eat pretty high amounts of other fat sources and do OK.

      Cheese and nuts can cause mineral imbalances if eaten too much relative to other foods. Also, they can trigger autoimmune responses in some people. Especially with so many people already sensitized to wheat–for some reason, gluten-sensitive people can become sensitized to casein, one of the proteins in dairy. And I’m sure nut proteins don’t agree with everybody either, even if they’re not yet going into shock when they eat them.

      There’s a lot more to weight gain and obesity than just filling the tank too full. We’re bags of biological chemicals, not cars. 🙂

    • Hi Lisa. A few questions here. 1. Why does the author think that full-fat cheese is better than yogurt or cottage cheese? 2. What about sprouted grains? In what ways are they different, and how much so? 3. Also, was a bit surprised by the suggestion of “unlimited” quantities of Raw nuts and seeds, oils, Full-fat cheese, Meats and eggs! 4. Which oils are considered “healthy”, and why? I know coconut oil handles heat in a way other oils do not. Are there others? I’ve even cooked w butter to avoid hot veg. oil!

      • Januar, go to the facebook page: wheat belly and Dr. Davis will answer you personally. Everything about sprouted grains, and full fat cheese, meat and eggs. He answers posts by many people.

  2. I agree that dairy will stall weight loss. At least for me it does, so I am down to 1 cup Greek yogurt per day and on occasion a little grated cheese. I am drinking unsweetened cocont and almond milk, which is quite good.

  3. What about the evidence linking high consumption of meat, especially red meat, to a range of cancers.

    This is a high protein diet. Does that carry health risks

    • In my opinion, it’s where you get your meat that matters. I personally buy my meat from New Zealand, where I know all their cows and lamb are grass fed/grass finished, no hormones, treated humanely.

      • This is something I cannot get over. I live in NZ and the idea of livestock raised on anything other than grass us completely alien and really quite scary.

        It’s worrying when profits and production outweigh wellness, nutririon and the wellbeing of the animals that are being farmed!


      • I know Campbell. It is completely scary. Hopefully NZ will keep their wisdom and continuing producing well-treated, naturally raised animals because the rest of the world seems to be losing the plot!

    • It could be high fat or high protein depending on one’s choices. Which specific evidence links high protein, especially red meat to cancers?

      • Check out “Diet for a New America” by John Robbins – “After World War II, scientists began for the first time to compile comprehensive statistics correlating the diet-styles and health of all the populations in the world.

        One fact that emerged consistently was the strong correlation between heavy flesh-eating and short life expectancy. The Eskimos, the Laplanders, the Greenlanders, and the Russian Kurgi tribes stood out as the populations with the highest animal flesh consumption in the world — and also as among the populations with the lowest life expectancies, often only about 30 years.

        It was found, further, that this was not due to the severity of their climates alone. Other peoples, living in harsh conditions, but subsisting with little or no animal flesh, had some of the highest life expectancies in the world. World health statistics found, for example, that an unusually large number of the Russian Caucasians, the Yucatan Indians, the East Indian Todas and the Pakistan Hunzakuts have life expectancies of 90 to 100 years.”

        Well sourced book. Here’s a site with some excerpts –

    • Organic red meat doesn’t cause cancer but unfortunately the chemicals added to non organic have been linked to cancer hence many studies linking red meat to cancer because they don’t use organic grass fed in the studies.

  4. Great article, thank you for summarising! I work out less, and eat more (paleo style) and have lost weight and my eczema is gone. No doubt in my mind wheat was destructive to my health.

  5. Really appreciated your summary, as I am in agreement with most all of the book, thanks.

    Not sure I agree with the skipping of chapter 10 and the scientific talk… Cardiovascular Disease is the number one killer in America. The biggest cause of it, is our diet, not our genetics.

    The role of Lipoproteins, not Cholesterol, is the answer period. Unfortunately, as the book states, very few Doctors actually understand this. This will become more and more prevelant, as more and more data is presented.

  6. Chapter 10 was a great chapter though quite scientific as you mentioned. He talks about cholesterol and explains that the size and type of your blood particles are very important. It can actually be tested and is a good marker for your health. Swallow some of the scientific talk and get the info.

  7. How does the author address the rather large population of people who eat wheat and high carb diets, but dont store large amounts of visceral fat or suffer acne or suffer any of his other medical correlations? I’ve been obese a couple times in my life but never had a belly…even lost weight on an all carb diet. If the author’s hypothesis were true, vegetarians would suffer from wheat belly and other comorbid diseases at a disproportionately high rate.

    Carbohydrates are essential for high intensity and long duration exercise (the slowest but healthiest way to lose weight) but dont let that scare people away from their magical fad diets.

    I dont support the whole low fat revolution, and I dont think wheat bread in all of its processing should have ever been counted among “healthy grains”, but people are far to eager to jump on every bandwagon and new diet that gets published. For crying out loud this man basically says that wheat is a genetic bastardization, but it’s ok to eat Monsanto corn and GMO soy!

    • He doesn’t address this population of people you’re speaking of, but I will say, sometimes disease and degeneration appear at different times for people. For me, I saw major digestive problems at 20, for others they get arthritis at 60, or breast cancer at 45.
      And more importantly, just because someone is thin and acne free and not projecting physical signs, doesn’t mean they’re healthy or not brewing disease within.
      I disagree with you that carbs are necessary for high intensity exercise. Now that my husband and I are both FAT burners, we can exercise and get through our days much more effectively and efficiently. When I burned glucose and ran a marathon, I would get shaky and ravenously hungry. It worked to keep shoveling carbs in, but it wasn’t the best way. Fat burning is supreme!
      Have you tried going grain free? Not carb free … but grain free? I’m almost positive you’d feel fantastic.
      Thanks for reading and for your input! Much appreciated!

      • Well, I assure you that I am completely healthy now. LOL I don’t eat much wheat or flours because they have to be so thoroughly processed before we can digest them. However, yes, the human body prefers carbohydrates and at high intensities it must use carbs as a fuel. The “fat burning zone” is a very low intensity form of exercise and must yield you a very poor time in a marathon. Wait, you say you ran marathons past tense but now that you are fat burning you don’t have to deal with that pesky intense endurance activity? BTW, if you were shaking all the time, it sounds like you weren’t doing your sports nutrition properly back in the day…but I’m glad you have something that makes you happy now.

        And even if you somehow deplete your body of carbs and glycogen and force it to use fat, what do you say to an elite athlete who only has minimal essential body fat stores? Those people cannot be fat burners without risking their lives. If you really think it is most effective to store fat on your body so that you can stress your body into burning it off, good for you, but as an aspiring athlete I have worked very hard to lower my body fat and to improve my performance to intensities where I need higher forms of fuel to perform. *shrug*

        I’m never going grain free because I already perform at a very low carb level (still losing a few pounds) and I need some healthy way to get carbs. It’s funny that you should jump on me as if I’m sick and need some help or diet modification just because I disagreed with you or pointed out that there are grain and carb eating people in the world without big bellies/inflammation or even major sickness. If anything, my diet probably more closely resembles the paleo diet more than anything. I just hear that there healthy vegetarians out there and maybe some incredibly old and impoverished people in Asia who have lived on grain most of their lives. My best friend’s grandmother just turned 105 and my great aunt just turned 86. Both are vegetarians (wheat eaters), don’t have bellies, aren’t on medications and don’t appear to have zit faces. They appear to be beating the odds health wise. Living to old age without medication intervention is a pretty good indicator of health.

    • Actually if you go to the wheat belly facebook page Dr. Davis will answer himself and say no to monsanto corn and gmo soy. I am 100% positive on this one.

      • Apologies to the author if I got him wrong. I was just responding to the summary where it said:

        “Consume in limited quantities

        Non-cheese dairy: milk, cottage cheese, yogurt, butter
        Fruit: Berries are best
        Whole corn
        Fruit juices
        Non-wheat/non-gluten grains
        Soy products”

        I know there is nothing about GMO in the summary, but you can pretty much assume that any corn or soy product you purchase at a commercial grocery store will by GMO unless labelled otherwise. Because of pollen drift, I’m not sure any crops are safe.

        All domesticated food is a franken food compared to its genetic forebears if you use the author’s wheat rationale. Even the animals are genetically nothing like the wild game that ran free a few centuries ago. Why should we be eating anything?

    • “Carbohydrates are essential for high intensity and long duration exercise (the slowest but healthiest way to lose weight) but dont let that scare people away from their magical fad diets.”

      Slowest maybe, but not the healthiest, not by a long shot. Read the book (and others advocating for a paleo-type diet) and take a look at some of the cholesterol numbers.

      Also, this is not a “low-carb” diet, nor are its paleo-type contemporaries. There are sources of carbs other than grains: fruits, vegetables, nuts, berries, and dairy all spring to mind. In the absence of allergy to any of these, all these can provide enough carbs to do literally anything you can do by eating processed grain-based paste, without the MANY detrimental side effects.

      Finally, weight loss IS a side effect of ditching grains, but not the only benefit by any stretch of the imagination, and isn’t the primary one promoted by this author. Some others: loss or even reversal of diabetes (Types 1 & 2), loss of depression/anxiety and other mood disorders, clearing of skin problems, disappearance of sleep problems, even some reports of autism spectrum symptom mitigation and behavioral issues in kids. This doctor is actually a cardiologist IIRC, and used this to help his patients get their cholesterol under control. He THEN noticed this diet also tended to offer weight loss and the rest. So before you dismiss it as a “fad diet,” perhaps you’d like to research your hypothesis a bit more. This author certainly has.

      PS – “For crying out loud this man basically says that wheat is a genetic bastardization, but it’s ok to eat Monsanto corn and GMO soy!”

      This author also specifically says NOT to eat these either, as does literally every paleo-type diet out there. But you’d know it if you actually, you know, read the book or had done even a tiny bit of research before posting your argument against a straw man that doesn’t actually exist. Not trying to be snarky here, but read the research yourself. It’s great to read what you “think;” unfortunately for your position, what you “think” isn’t really supported by the vast amount of science on the subject.

      • Hi Josh,
        As I have already stated, I was replying to the summary posted above which does actually mention eating whole corn and soy products in limited amounts. I am not on the paleo diet, nor do I proclaim to follow any, let’s not call it fad, let’s call it magical or newfangled diet. I was disputing the summary of the wheat belly book. In fact, I’m pretty passionately against “diets” that prohibit whole food groups. I like the philosophy of avoiding processed foods and I probably eat a lot of foods that paleo people eat, but do not mistake that for an endorsement. I simply brought up paleo because I was told I might feel better if I avoided eating xyz. Why do you think people assumed that I am sick or eating wheat simply because I disagree with the spirit of the wheat belly diet?

        Now to address some of your comments. “Weight loss IS a side effect of ditching grains” Yes, yes, it is. Weight loss is a side effect of removing any food group from your diet. And most non-grain carb sources would have to be eaten in huge quantities for carbs to comprise 50-65% of a person’s diet. Either you are in the toilet constantly from eating too much fruit (and veggies though they are low in carbs and very high in cellulose) or as is more likely you simply eat fewer carbs than most conventional dietiticians recommend…hence my calling the diets low carb. Surprisingly I thought some paleo people were ok with white rice. It could be remedied if either of these diets accepted more legumes, but as I recall from the book summary wheat belly doesn’t advocate eating large amounts of beans. That would still be a miserable life for a runner.

        “Slowest maybe, but not the healthiest, not by a long shot.” Are you really saying that exercise is not a healthy or even the healthiest way to lose weight, “not by a long shot”? Exercise improves insulin sensitivity, improves cholesterol panels, is often associated with reduced long-term blood pressure (exercise spikes blood pressure in the short term), reduces risk for some cancers, increases life span, burns calories, build lean muscle and increases metabolism (know many paleo Crossfitters?), etc, etc. I am very well acquainted with the research on exercise. I know most people don’t want to get off their butts, but I didn’t even think that crazy diet advocate people disputed the health benefits of exercise.

        After rereading my post I’m sorry if it seemed I was saying only endurance cardio was best for weight loss. LOL High intensity exercise is kind of the antithesis of long endurance exercise, no?

  8. I totally agree that you’ve done a great job on the summary! I think one of the points Dr. Davis is counting on when he listed unlimited quantities of full fat cheese & nuts, is that once you start this elimination of wheat from your system, your appetite & cravings subside, so you’re not even going to want those unlimited quantities.This has been the case for me. Thanks.

  9. Thank you! I read the book and haven’t looked back. Just yesterday someone asked if I’d lost weight. I don’t know because I don’t weigh myself. I do know that my chronic headaches are gone, I feel good and all I did was to eliminate grains. Win-Win-Win.

    • Dr. Davis explains that Einkorn wheat still causes raises in blood sugar. To summarize Dr. Davis: Trading to low tar cigarettes from regular cigarettes is not good. Even the einkorn wheat is like trading something bad for you (today’s wheat) for something less bad for you (Einkorn). It is still not good for you.

  10. What about this program if you have sub-maximal functioning kidneys? For a variety of reasons, my kidneys do not fully function. My creatinine usually runs between 1.7 and 1.8. Would this be a safe way for me to eat? I’m very intrigued by the program, but do not want to consider it if it will adversely affect my kidneys.

    • I am by no means a medical doctor who can hand out advice regarding your kidneys, but I can give you my opinion.
      Based on what I’ve read and what I’ve experienced through my own health, I don’t see how ingesting wheat/modern-day grains could be helping your kidneys in any way, so I don’t believe removing these from your diet would do any harm. If anything, my opinion is that it could only add to your improvement.

      • Hi Lisa, Thanks for such a fast response to my question, but I’m more concerned about too much protein in my diet. Protein makes the kidneys work harder and too much protein could cause a lessening of kidney function for me. I’m sure that eliminating wheat and modern day grains in and of themselves would not do me any harm.

  11. Okay, I can see how excess carbohydrates in general add weight and that the majority of Americans eat too many. Also, that the bread we consume is mostly overly processed but if you also take a look at cultures where healthy bread is consumed at almost every meal, like Switzerland, Italy, or France, you don’t see these kind of bellies on them. I’ve lived in Europe so I was always served bread everywhere I went but it was always digested better. They also get more exercise to burn off the high calories associated with bread products. It could be that Americans simply do not burn of the amount of calories they consume.

    • Just saw your comment Diana. Not sure if you know this (you may by now) but, Europeans frown on GE products, some have even banned GMO wheat like Italy. So, the digestive affects of non-GMO wheat bread will very different…better! Fyi

  12. Where do you buy your products ,we live in a small town and it is hard to find ? Do you have a place on line to buy . I enjoyed reading about all this Ellen

  13. A easy way to present the Wheat Belly lifestyle is to simply say “Eat what you want just so you keep your blood glucose (BG) level under 100” (i.e. tested an hour after eating). No need to “fight” about grains, nuts, dairy etc. most grains will be eliminated simply because they raise the BG beyond the “acceptable” range. A person will also discover how much rice, beans etc. is too much for them.
    I personally have found a great change for the better in my health and weight since discovering Dr. Davis and before Wheat Belly, the “Track Your Plaque” program. We also try to eat: non-processed, organic, free-range, grass fed/finished, unpreserved as much as possible.

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  15. Loved that book and your summary is excellent. If you haven’t already, you should read Gary Taubes’ book “Why we get fat and what to do about it”. I hope our government begins listening to all these folks who back with much scientific evidence that our approved food pyramid is going to kill us.

  16. Trying to find out..Coffee..can I use Splenda or coffeemate?? I am about to start wheat belly love my coffee..cream ok??

  17. Hi Lisa. Thnx for this! A few questions here. 1. Why does the author think that full-fat cheese is better than yogurt or cottage cheese? 2. What about sprouted grains, are they much better? In what ways ‘are’ they different, and how much so? 3. Also, was a bit surprised by the suggestion of “unlimited” quantities of raw nuts and seeds, oils, full-fat cheese, meats and eggs! 4. Which oils are considered “healthy”, and why? I’ve heard coconut oil handles heat in a way other oils do not. Are there others? I’ve even cooked w butter to avoid hot veg. oil! Thnx much, J

    • Hi Januar! Lots of great questions. Let’s see …
      #1. This is what the author says about cheese/dairy: “I believe that adults should limit dairy products, outside of cheese, due to the insulinotropic effect of dairy proteins, the tendency that dairy protein has to increase pancreatic release of insulin. The fermentation process required to make cheese reduces the content of amino acids responsible for this effect.” So basically the author is saying that real, cultured cheese doesn’t spike insulin like other dairy products do.
      #2. Basically sprouting grains increases vitamin content and helps to neutralize phytic acid, an anti-nutrient, which is found in the bran portion of the grain. Phytic acid binds to minerals making them unavailable.
      #4. I use coconut oil, butter and sometimes chicken fat for cooking and olive oil on salads.

      • hey lisa,

        forgot to write and thank u for this, a yr ago! so, thnx! i felt grateful, and now, reading it again.

        i’ve been eating gluten-free, but struggling w being grain free. my skin rashes have gone away! but, i find it hard to do only sprouted w gluten-free. certainly aren’t many (any?) products like that around. w store bought bread, have wondered if i’d be better w a sprouted bread (w some sprouted wheat), rather than a gluten-free unsprouted bread? hmm…

        any further tips? on this, or any other diet related things?


        happy autumn,

  18. Pingback: Breakfast Burdens « An Exploration of the Wheat Belly Mission

  19. Its like you read my mind! You seem to know a lot about this, like you wrote the
    book in it or something. I think that you could do with a few pics to drive
    the message home a bit, but other than that, this is fantastic blog.
    A great read. I will definitely be back.

  20. Lisa,
    My daughter sent me this blog article this morning. I stopped working and read the whole thing and all the replies. Fascinating!
    I quit wheat, sugar and dairy about 6 weeks ago. Just because my daughter and I were talking about how bad we thought these products were for us. I am 65 and in pretty good shape. I’d like to keep it that way. I lost 15 lbs in the 1st 3 weeks. Haven’t checked lately. Waste dropped from 34 to 31″. I am at 175 lbs.
    Everyone in the family, (7 of us), have had various colds and stomach bugs in the last couple of months. I’m the only one who hasn’t gotten sick.

    I’m off dairy because I was under the impression that there is no dairy available that doesn’t have artificial hormones from the cows. Not true?

    We get all our meat from a local organic farm. No hormones.

    I feel great!

    Thanks for your blog. Now I understand more of the “why” I should not eat wheat products.
    I’ll stay tuned to your blog.

    • Lisa,
      I wrote the reply above a year ago, and just recently read your summary again. I have been off wheat and sugar for a year. I eat very little dairy. Mostly locally grown meat, vegetables, fruit. I have lost a total of 35 lbs and weigh 155 at 5’11”. Im now 66. I feel great. No colds. No digestive problems. Lots of energy.

      • Northborobryan, this is amazing news!!!! Oh my heart is full of joy for your health and weight loss and energy. Congratulations and thank you so much for sharing your story. It is so encouraging.

      • Hi Heather, I use raw honey or coconut nectar to substitute for sugar. Of course these too will raise insulin so I use them in moderation, but they are great products and replacements.

  21. Hi there, I bought this book when it was offered by prevention magazine. Unfortuntally I have not had time to actually sit and read it. Thank for your review Lisa. I am starting my research paper for school and Wheat and its destructive properties has intruqued me. Thanks again 🙂

  22. I loved this. I was on a diet of the unlimited consumption foods listed here and lost 40 lbs. And my HYPOglycemia was totally under control. I felt great. This is great info.

  23. It was a very well digested book summary (pun intended 😉 )
    Thank you so much……nowadays i tends to summarise books myself to keep the best ‘bit’s for myself and pass my books onto friends or donate to the library. It is something that I can refer to again and again, and has made my choice very easy to regain my health and vitality.

  24. What about natural Honey consumption? I consume about 12 teaspoons a day ILO sugar and avoid corn syrup as much as possible.

    • Hi Gary. I only consume raw, unfiltered honey. So basically straight from the honeycomb. And even though it’s so natural, I still only consume a small amount, maybe 2 tsp on a regular day. For me, it’s about being balanced, and even honey will spike your insulin and throw things out of whack if too much is consumed.

  25. Pingback: Gluten-free Controversy: Both Sides of the Same Coin | Gluten Free Sociologist

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  27. Thank you for this summary! I am a type I diabetic who discovered through my acupuncturist that I have a gluten allergy. My hair was falling out – I mean, every morning, my pillow case was COVERED in hair, my periods were irregular, I was having lower back and joint pains, none of which could be explained by blood work and test on my kidneys, etc. And, I had been suffering, with no explanation for between 1.5 and 7 years (depending on which symptom we are talking about). I was also borderline hypothyroid. I gave up gluten for ONE MONTH and my hair stopped falling out (after hair loss lasting over a year), and started to grow back! Additionally, my periods regulated to near clockwork, and the joint and back pains were gone! After going gluten free, I realized how bloated and uncomfortable I felt after eating, as well as how “foggy” my brain felt. Now, when I do slip and cheat, I find it extremely difficult to focus on even simple, enjoyable tasks.
    Going gluten free changed my life for the better. Cutting out gluten indirectly caused me to consume less carbohydrates per day. I discovered that my body didn’t need nearly the amount of carbohydrates that I was previously consuming to be healthy and have plenty of energy.
    My Hba1c was most recently 5.8!!! (A HUGE accomplishment for me!) I can’t say enough about how the gluten free approach has improved my quality of life!
    Thanks again for posting this summary!

  28. Thanks for posting this summary. I love bread and eat it every day. I am seriously going to try to give it up and see what happens.

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  30. All very interesting, and no doubt relevant for those who cannot digest gluton and wheat. However, a much better way for permanent weight loss for those of us who tolerate wheat well is The Alternate Day Diet, devised by another doctor, James Johnson. This is NOT a fad diet, it is a lifestyle choice that one adopts permanently, and for many people including me it has achieved the same results attributed to the wheat free diet, particularly losing weight and keeping it off, and the prevention of inflammatory diseases. Doctor Johnson is also a research scientist and the science in his book is sound and well researched. Within months i lost 25 pounds, and now weigh 130, the weight i was in my 20s. Other people i’ve turned on to it lost even more, and mine has stayed off since i started the diet in 2009. My husband also does the diet, not because he needs to lose weight, but because of the numerous other health benefits it provides, including cardiovascular health, inflammatory prevention and longetivity. Dr. Johnson sells resveratrol, which is very good for you, but is NOT necessary for the success of the diet. You don’t need it for the diet to work. The diet requires very little will power, and exercise is not essential. If you’re at all interested in diet and health, buy this book and read it (much more info in it than on websites). In our vastly overweight world, this book deserves to be MUCH more widely known than it is.

  31. I forgot to add that the Alternate Day Diet also cures and prevents diabetes. Once the body weight has returned to normal range, insulin production and hormone functions tend to return to normal too. I suspect the weight loss resulting from removing wheat and all its products from the diet is at least partly responsible for the return to normal insulin levels in Davis’s patients.

  32. Hi Lisa, yes excellent summary of the book. Wish I had found this site before I purchased it 😦
    Wondering if Dr. Davis is ok with all this however since he will sell allot less books this way?
    Maybe for him it’s not about $$$ but about getting the truth out, but there must still be expenses with writing a book. Can you shed some light here for me.
    Thanks, Pamela

    • Hi Pamela,

      I’m happy to say I’ve heard from Dr. Davis and he is in fact completely okay with this summary. He actually posted it to his own personal Wheat Belly FB page, which is how I started to get so much traffic in the first place. I think it’s such a great snapshot of his character and shows how he really does want to help others first and foremost. I don’t know him personally, but he was so kind in the email communication we had.

      And remember, the book still offers more information than I’ve posted here, like recipes and such, so people can still be motivated to purchase it.

      Thanks for stopping by!

      • Hi Lisa,
        Thanks for your prompt reply. Also glad to hear it regarding Dr. Davis’ stamp of approval. Just from what I have read about the man so far, he seemed to me to be the kind of doctor that is more concerned with educating people about their health, then selling books 🙂 a rare thing these days indeed. After finding your site I was feeling a bit guilty about sending people your way rather suggesting they purchase the book. That was my only reason for asking.

        I love this site and will be spending some time here. I purchased the book last week off Amazon, and as you already mentioned yes, there are allot more details, having the book in front of you.

        I am only on day 2 wheat free. My husband and I are doing this together, the kids are still hoping we are wrong and are in denial. My collage age daughter suggested I check him out to make sure he has not lied about his research, like some other popular health advocate she recently learned about in school. I told her I did do some checking, but no skeletons were found lol.

        Thanks for hosting this site!

  33. Ok, this may be a stupid question….haven’t read the whole book yet, but I am still confused on the wheat vs. gluten thing. Where does wheat begin and gluten end? Are there gluten containing foods that do not have wheat in them, and are there wheat containing food that have no gluten in them? I know many people are gluten free but not necessarily wheat free, how is that? Bare with me, still new to this whole idea here.
    Thanks in advance 🙂

    • This is actually a great question. This wheat/gluten thing can definitely be confusing. Basically, gluten is the protein found in wheat, barley and rye, and is what gives these grains their elasticity (think of kneading dough or pulling apart a fluffy croissant). Also, gluten is often found in oats due to cross-contamination so if you have a gluten sensitivity make sure you buy those that specifically say “gluten-free”.
      To answer your other questions, there are gluten containing foods without wheat, like barley and rye, but you can’t really have wheat without gluten. I’ve read in some articles that “wheat starch” is believed to be gluten-free, but even still sometimes it has been cross-contaminated in the processing and can still have some levels of gluten. I guess I don’t really see the point to try and continue eating wheat somehow without the gluten. What would you use it for? And what are you gaining from it nutritionally?
      You say you know people who are gluten free but not wheat free … I’d be curious to know what they’re eating and why. This is interesting to me as I am still learning too.
      Hope this helps!

  34. wowwww!!!!!! How can I imagine not to consume bread??!!! its really hard …
    specially for vegetarians…
    please help and leave me your proposal…

    • Mehrnoush, I can offer one thing that has helped me, it is using GF crackers. Instead of making a sandwich we will make egg sald or tuna salad and eat it on a cracker. The Blue Diamond Gluten Free crackers taste great.

  35. Lisa, still new to this Wheat Belly diet and forum, so I have had some questions. My husband and I have been on the WB diet for over 3 weeks. No cheating. I posted a question on Dr. Davis’ site twice about non typical results and not only did he not respond, but it looks as if my posts were deleted. I guess my question now is, does he only allow positive remarks on his blog? My comments were not meant to be negative, but to get clarification and help as to how long it takes for results.
    Neither of us have seen really any major changes. I have gained 4 lbs. since i started the diet 😦
    I asked what might be happening? Now I cannot post on his blog at all for some reason. So ok, I am skeptical now as to what is going on. Any help?

    • Olive,
      I can definitely say criticism/questions are not a problem w/ Dr. Davis. My guess is there is a problem with the blog site. (I have attempted posts many times that either time out or don’t seem to process for some reason…I copy & try again later)
      You might also try the Wheat Belly Facebook page but remember when you want to see your post under highlights select “posts by others”.
      There are also many WB followers that may offer help/insight.

      • Thank you Roubaix, I will try the FB route. Let me ask you however, as long as you’re here 🙂 if you are doing the WB diet, how long before you started seeing results? So many people have reported results in 8 hours to 2 weeks. We have been on it for almost a month and nothing really noticable?? Just wondering why that would be? We seem to be in the minority rather than the majority. I think we must be doing something wrong here.

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  37. I skimmed through each chapter, and have to agree with some of the blog afterwards that consuming unlimited quantities of cheese, meats, raw nuts, and some oils won’t turn you into Atlas, but Java the Hut — pretty close.

    Just another ripe example of pseudo-science on display. You can make the data say anything you want if you work at it. This guy is your classic carney, snake-oil salesman on the outskirts of the county road looking for some shock appeal, and enough hapless souls in dire need of one more excuse to blame their propagation of fat cells on something other than their sorry, lazy asses that won’t get off the couch.

    Once again, missing from the equation…MOVEMENT ! No not the kind from reaching for the chips, or nachos. Where in the chapters did the author mention that well before genetically modified wheat found the store shelves, how humans carried out their lives. For god’s sake, mankind’s lack of obesity wasn’t because of the changes in wheat’s properties; albeit they were too busy busting their asses with physical work and play for fat cells to have a chance of accumulating. Consistent, strenuous physical activity is THE biggest factor than anyone can undertake to maintains all of the body’s systems. You don’t need science or much of a brain to figure that out, but you do need common sense. Food is not your enemy idiot! Is it any wonder that the explosion of the video gaming industry closely parallels the obesity endemic?

    Do we really need one more charlatan pushing another brand of nonsense to anybody willing to cough up a few bucks to feel good about themselves, while blaming the evil wheat growers and processors. Get a life !

  38. Hi Lisa, Just finished reading your summary and wanted to thank you for your work on this. Curious though why your left out chapter 13..? Thanks…

    • Hi Fred!

      Thanks for your thanks:) There’s no real reason why I left out Chapter 13. I guess I was more interested in sharing the “why” rather than the “how”. And it gives people a reason to buy the book!


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  40. I’ve reblogged this summary of Wheat Belly on my site. I’m so glad to have found your blog. Reading this has given me the push I needed to go gluten-free once and for all. I love your blog.

    • Thanks so much A.K. It really makes me so happy when I hear my story and efforts to share what I’m learning is helping someone else.

      This is my goal! Spread the L.O.V.E.

      • Hi Lisa, Just finished reading your summary and wanted to thank you for your work on this. Curious though why your left out chapter 13..? Thanks…

  41. Everything is very open with a really clear description of the challenges.

    It was definitely informative. Your website is very helpful.
    Thank you for sharing!

  42. My son & I have been eating very low-carb for a few months now. But we have not at all been concerning ourselves with the issue of gluten as we had no idea of its importance! Question: Is there a non-gluten substance available with which to make one’s own home-made bread? We have stopped eating potatoes, corn, bread, products we know contain any of those (corn & wheat flour) and we’ve been able – through research – to substitute good foods with bad and to limit carbs. But no-bread eating severely limits the variety we used to enjoy. I’m not much of a cook–don’t like cooking; but am more than willing to make our own bread, from scratch; however, what do I use for flour? I can substitute Spivia(?) for sugar but what non-gluten substance can be used to replace the usual flour?? Would love a reply. Tx. Good job, BTW. –Marty

    • Hi Marty,

      Many people who have given up traditional wheat bread, opt to make bread-like things from things like: almond flour, coconut flour, arrowroot flour, etc. Just google wheat-free bread recipes and a plethora of options will be found.

      Personally, I’ve found to like almond flour the best as many of the others tend to hit my stomach like a rock. But I also don’t consume a lot of it. It’s a treat. I don’t believe eating cups and cups of almonds is all that great either. You might want to check out the new cookbook “Against All Grains” to get more ideas. She also has a website and FB page.

      Good luck!

  43. Pingback: Wheat Belly talk | Nam's Personal Experiments

  44. This is a very clear and helpful summary. I am trying to come up with 3 main arguments based on the book. Can you help me with some ideas.

  45. I started the Wheatless lifestyle after reading Dr Davis book Feb 2013. I have lost well over 60 lbs and my health has improved in so many ways that I am both amazed and deeply thankful. I am 45 years young and I feel fantastic. Lisa, this was a great review of the book. Some things you did not address but you were more detailed and accurate then most reviews I’ve seen.

    • That is such fabulous news Grace. You must feel amazing. There are very few things in life that are more valuable than being healthy, so I can relate to your gratefulness. Yes, I didn’t include everything from the book b/c I still wanted to give people a reason to buy the book:) Thanks for stopping in and commenting!

  46. I stopped eating wheat, sugar and most dairy in Oct of 2012. I weighed 190 lbs at 5′ 10″, 66 yrs old. Just had annual physical on Dec 30, 2013. I weigh 155 lbs, physical was all good. Dropped total cholesterol from 181 to 164, LDL from 102 to 84.
    I have been eating “sprouted” wheat bread from Ezekiel Bread. Any comments about this form of wheat?

    • Northborobryan, I too gave up all the things you mentioned and then some. I have food allergies and I can say with certainty that until I comepletely gave up all forms of wheat and all other grains, my healing kept stalling and backsliding. Stomach problems, female issues, brain fog (in the worst way), poor eye sight, severe joint pain and countless other health issues have all disappeared. My left eye is -25 and my right eye is 20/20 as of last week when I went back to eye doctor. She was completely amazed and asked if I would share my secret. I told her about the books, Wheat Belly Lose The Wheat Lose The Weight and Grain Brain. I also told her about my allergy testing as she took notes. She said she was going to buy both books on her kindle that day. Simply put, wheat is wheat in any form or fashion and wheat is poison so lose the wheat, lose the poison, lose the grain brain, regain your health. Good luck as you find what is best for you on your journey back to health.

      • Thanks Grace,
        I will try to get up the courage to stop the Ezekiel bread. I’ll let you know.

      • You are welcome Northborobryan. I should have mentioned that both Wheat Belly cookbooks has some really good bread recipes and easy to make. All made from ground nuts, seeds, husk. This means you can still eat sandwiches, biscuits, pita, pizza bread, etc because the recipes are that good. At least have a look at them. Also go to They have ready made pizza dough in a bag and flax seed pita, muffin mix, and many other things that will help you. All legal for the wheat free, grain free community. Dr William Davis totally supports the foods at this web store.

  47. Wow that was odd. I just wrote an extremely long comment
    but after I clicked submit my comment didn’t show up.
    Grrrr… well I’m not writing all that over again. Anyway, just
    wanted to say superb blog!

  48. My family and I have embarked on a healthy lifestyle which includes eating “real foods”, fruits, veggies, free-ranged meats, poultries and their eggs, milk, cheeses etc. Basically, we’ve cut out all processed food and have begun to educate ourselves with reading each label’s ingredients. If there is a chemical, it is out.

    However, where our question lies is with the information we’re finding regarding 100% whole wheat, which King Arthur Flour states GMO wheat is not approved for sale or commercial production in North America, So, our question lies with if we consume this 100% whole, Non-GMO wheat, are we in the clear? The Dr. refers to wheat products, does he mean the result of processing wheat with other products/chemicals resulting in what is commonly consumed as bread, pastas, etc? Say, if I buy this 100%, Non-GMO whole wheat flour and mix it with salt, eggs, milk, butter (mind you all of these are chemical free), to create a bread-type food, is this still harmful? Is it the mutation of the seed, having been crossed-pollinated due to the winds of the plains, the reason it is now a harmful substance?

    In short, (and to make sure I’m communicating my point in a clear manner) is the wheat plant, in its non-GMO state, the harmful substance, or is it when it is refined and processed?

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  51. Thanks for the summary Lisa! I got the book for $1.20 at a Hospice store. I started reading it and became very interested in its contents. To my surprise, not only quitting breads, muffins cookies and crackers, but all kinds of other foods is indispensable to maintain such diet. I do appreciate the information, but I think food consumption might be too restrictive following a wheat free program…

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