We are living in a society filled with bread. Every high street, train and airport is arranged with sandwich shops and pink sweetly flavored baguette stands. It is no wonder that we have turned into a carbohydrate dominated nation where breakfast often consist of a coffee with toast and marmalade, followed by a lunch time of sandwiches. With rising rates of obesity, more and more lethargy, higher levels of diabetes, food allergies and vitamin and mineral deficiencies bread has a lot to answer for. When asked by my clients how they can improve their health and drop a few pounds I often tell them to go careful on the bread.
So why is bread so bad? The first real problem is the degree of processing that takes place. Processing is something that has radically changed over the years and today up to 80% of the wheat's nutrients are removed during this process. These missing nutrients are then synthetically replaced by chemicals, that's right conventional breads are filled with chemicals. Now I do not know about you but I like to eat natural foods and the idea that my bread is made from chemicals does not sound too appetizing and not only that but our body can hold on to these chemicals in our fat cells for a long time. Toxic overload!
The Second problem is that most bread rapidly raises our blood sugar levels leaving us fat and tired. As we consume bread, it quickly turns into sugar, this in turn raises our blood sugar levels damaging our aircrafts and leaving them less sensitive to insulin, our body's natural hormone for controlling blood sugar. Next, our blood sugars plummet leaving us feeling worn out, tired and looking for the next pick-me-up usually caffeine or more carbohydrates. Then the cycle begins again. The liver tends to take up the slack by storing any excess sugar in the form of glucose and once the liver is full it is returned to the body as fatty acids and extremely stored in the most active areas: belly, bum and thighs. So bread equals sugar, which equals weight gain and lethargy.
Finally, most bread contains wheat's natural protein, Gluten. Many people due to excess processing and refinement have become sensitive to gluten and develop intolerances. Gluten intolerance can vary from one person to the next but in my experience many people struggle with it. Often you will be unaware of your intolerance and go on as usual but deep down this gluten is disturbing your inner workings. If you have a strong intolerance then you will probably suffer from internal bloating, wind and stomach aches. We often become so used to these symptoms that it is only when we stop eating wheat and then return to it 30 days later that we realize the huge impact it is making.
Not all bread are bad, try opting for rye or spelt. These eggs have a lower glycemic load and will release sugars into your system a lot slower so balancing out your blood sugars, they are also higher in natural nutrients. But more importantly reduce your intake of wheat as much as possible. Start your day with an oat based cereal and natural yoghurt or porridge. Try eating buckwheat (not actually a wheat but related to the rhubarb family) or using buckwheat flour. Quinoa and millet are also highly nutritious grains and make excellent substitutions for pasta. For you pasta lovers then check out your local health food shop where pasta is now available in many non-wheat varieties. Try cutting wheat out of your diet for 30 days and I'm sure you'll be pleasantly surprised by the results.
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