Health & Wellness

Why I am gluten free series, Part Three: Science!

I have a confession to make. I splurged on gluten-digesting enzymes and took them to Europe. And chowed down on bread: pasta, pizza, croissants, baguettes, pita. IT WAS AH-MAZING. My body got a little inflamed and water-heavy for a bit, but it was oh-so-worth it.

But I did a trial run before the trip at a local pasta joint and the evening did not end well.

What the heck is the difference?

Because of the way the seeds are genetically modified here, there’s also a new ingredient in our wheat products that acts like an antibiotic by destroying the bacteria in our gut. And because of how the wheat in the US is harvested, it has a heck of a lot more gluten than European countries.

First, let’s start with the seed. There’s this one company (Monsanto) that has a stronghold on all of the seeds in the country. They want their crops to grow big and strong, and they don’t want other plants to grow big and strong around them. They genetically engineered herbicide-tolerant crops (which also includes peanuts, soy, and corn, by the way) so they could then spray glyphosate (Roundup) on them and not faze them, but kill all of the other weeds around them.

This glyphosate was sold as harmless because humans didn’t have the shikimate pathway, only plants were supposed to. What has now been realized is that our gut bacteria have the pathway, and so the glyphosate can penetrate them and kill them as if they were weeds. And they’re really us! The last time I ate a Reese’s Death Pumpkin (inside joke – they’re the Halloween cups), I got dizzy an hour later and almost fell over at my standing desk! Mass genocide of my GI tract!

And in spraying the crops with glyphosate, Monsanto discovered that the wheat will push out more heads in an act of trying to preserve its life! This increases overall wheat production, but it also increases the amount of gluten that the heads contain.

It’s a lose-lose situation for me. And, really, for all people, whether they feel it or not yet.

Of course, not many scientific studies have come out linking cancer and what not to glyphosate, but they’re starting to leak out that Monsanto has been writing most of the papers that the various Environmental Protection Agencies (US and EU) had written saying it was safe.. and those are being thrown out. Europe is close to banning its use (just this month they’re holding a hearing to rid themselves of Roundup… they’ve even banned the Monsanto lobbyists form the EU Parliament). And of course, western doctors still prescribe antibiotics to people which also kill your gut bacteria just like glyphosate, so there aren’t many studies that say losing your colony is a bad thing.

But I know what I’m feeling. And I know what I’ve learned. And I will continue to keep learning… and probably sharing with you anything new I find out.

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