Some Facts on Gluten
Until recently, many people have been content to eat white bread. Now many people have discovered what our ancestors knew: whole grains are more nutritious by far! However, much of the knowledge of how to prepare them properly to eat was lost in just a few generations. Thanks to people like Sally Fallon, Paul Leatham, and others,this knowledge is here with us in the United States again.
The ‘methods of preparing grains’ are related to the rash of gluten intolerance, wheat allergies, etc. being diagnosed at the present time in the USA. We literally jumped back to use whole grains without the know how of how to do it.The fact is: Yes! our white flour diet is not good, but whole grains need to be prepared the proper way for them to be easily digested, and their multiple vitamins and minerals made available.
According to Sally Fallon’s research, all whole grains should be fermented so the lactobacilli(good bacteria) can break down or predigest,or begin to digest the hard to digest protein gluten.Then it is not as hard for the body to do it. White flour contains plenty of gluten, just no fiber or natural vitamins and minerals.But it also does not contain phytates or anti -nutrients which were stripped off with the bran. Before you think “Oh, I guess it is better to eat white flour products” please realize that white flour has been stripped of all nutrients and 4 measly synthetic vitamin were added back in the processing. Whole wheat flour, freshly ground ,on the other hand, has so many vitamins and minerals they don’t even know how many. But it is about 20+. So with white flour you get none of the nutrition and all of the gluten, un-soaked I might add, and none of the bran who’s fiber quite naturally helps to move the grain thru the intestinal tract plus other benefits too.
What is gluten? Gluten is the protein in grain. It is found in the endosperm of the kernel of wheat. It is found less in the grains rye, barley, oats, than in wheat. Millet and rice grain contain no gluten. Gluten is difficult to digest. It is actually 1 of 2 of the hardest to digest proteins found in human food. ( the other is the protein in milk). Gluten is also what develops when bread dough is kneaded and gives structure to the bread and makes it rise.
Quoting from Sally Fallon’s book Nourishing Traditions p.429: ” Scientists have learned that the proteins in grains, especially gluten, are very difficult to digest. A diet high in unfermented whole grains particularly high-gluten grains like wheat, puts an enormous strain on the whole digestive mechanism. When the mechanism breaks down with age or overuse, the results take the form of allergies, celiac disease, mental illness, chronic indigestion and candida alblicans overgrowth. Recent research links gluten intolerance with multiple sclerosis. During the process of soaking and fermenting, lactobacilli break down gluten and other difficult to digest proteins; in effect they predigest the grains making their nutrients more readily available.”
Once we started using white flour in this country, we were left with the gluten, and some starch, and 4 synthesized vitamins out of the naturally rich wheat kernel. What a gip extrordinaire! When this happened, and since this happened, each generation of Americans has become less healthy. A weaker body has more trouble digesting the gluten. However,here is hope on the horizon. Whole grains prepared the proper way as taught on this website and in Sally Fallon’s book can be eaten by people who are celiac diagnosed and gluten intolerant. There are other body troubles (called diseases) that are also related–probably many.People having these malfunctions can also benefit from the use of mineral rich soaked whole grains and raw and near to raw vegetables in the diet.Mineral rich broths made from meat without hormones and chemicals can also provide aid and succor to the distressed.See Sally Fallon’s book (above)
Now you know more about gluten than you ever did? I hope so!