Sunday, April 29, 2012

Book Review: Wheat Belly by William Davis

This book changed my life. In fact, it may have SAVED it.

I had read some negative reviews about it, so I was skeptical about it's value. But I found it to be well written, easy to read, and very informative.

Davis uses a lot of light humor, which makes for an easy and enjoyable read, but he also includes a lot of excellent information. He explains the technical reasoning to support his positions in a way that is not difficult for a lay person to understand.

Wheat Belly argues that many of the health problems facing Americans today can possibly be caused by eating too many grains, and modern wheat in particular. These problems include obesity, heart disease, diabetes, accelerated aging, and of course, celiac disease.

I almost skipped the chapter on Celiac disease thinking, "I don't have that". But I read it anyway. I'm glad I did, because I now realize that I DO have that! That is why I say this book may have saved my life: It is estimated that only 10% of Celiac sufferers realize that they have the disease and if untreated it poses a hugely increased risk of abdominal cancers.

Cancer has been a concern of mine since I can remember. Nearly all of my family members that are no longer living have had cancer (and a couple of the ones that ARE still living...). I have also had a lot of abdominal and digestion-related troubles, so I was eager to "fix" these by giving up wheat and gluten.

The one complaint that I have about Wheat Belly is that it leads you to believe that if you give up wheat (and other gluten-containing grains) all your problems will be solved and your wildest dreams will come true (okay, so that is an exaggeration, but you get the picture). I am finding that this is just not true. Healing your 'gut' takes time, and it may be several months before you actually see dramatic results of your new gluten-free lifestyle.

I have had fewer problems with gas and bloating in the 3 weeks since I stopped eating gluten, but I can't say that it has stopped completely. I also have not lost any of the spare tire around my belly yet. But my DH (dermatitis herpetiformis - an itchy skin condition associated with celiac disease) has cleared up almost completely, and I have hope that my system is working hard to heal itself and repair the intestinal damage inflicted upon it by years of undigestible gluten exposure.

I recommend Wheat Belly to anyone who wants to learn more about the effects that eating grains has on the body. The last portion of the book also contains a sample menu and lot of good grain-free recipes.

Buy Wheat Belly at

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