In case you haven't heard, eating whole grains is slowly killing you. I know this goes against Canada's food guide and everything you've been taught, but I'm here to tell you the truth.

Canada's food guide

Canada's food guide is complete bullshit. If you want to get fat and unhealthy, go pick up a copy and follow it to a tee. They'll tell you to eat 3-8 servings of whole grains a day (1)

I basically follow a diet that's the direct opposite of what I was taught in my nutrition degree and medical school. Why? It's not because I like being different and opposing every mainstream view out there, it's because I'm constantly in pursuit of being the fittest, healthiest person I can possibly be

Wheat contains anti-nutrients

Wheat contains phytates (2). Phytates block the absorption of key minerals like magnesium, calcium and iron (2). Low iron? Ditch the wheat; it can inhibit its absorption by up to 50%! (2). It also blocks the absorption of magnesium, (3) a mineral that is crucial in preventing type two diabetes (4). Low testosterone and sex drive? Wheat blocks the absorption of zinc, a mineral that's critical to your sex life and building muscle (5). I take zinc everyday.

"I can't kick the habit"

A lot of people have a difficult time giving up bread and other wheat products. Some of it is lack of willpower, some of it is because it's physiologically addicting. Wheat contains traces of opioids like morphine (6). This is likely part of the reason why so many people are completely insatiable until they get their "bread fix". World health organization states that 2.8 million people die each year from being overweight (7). If you're addicted to unhealthy food you need to address that issue immediately, it could kill you.

"But I don't have celiac disease"

Celiac disease is an autoimmune disorder of the small intestine whereby predisposed individuals cannot tolerate gluten (an inflammatory protein found in wheat). Dr. James Braly, is a family physician and the author of Dangerous Grains. Dr. Braly demonstrates in his book that in order to be diagnosed as having celiac disease, you must have no villi present in the small intestine (8). Villi are small finger like projections in the small intestine that contain enzymes and aid in the absorption of nutrients. Many people however, have damaged villi that are unable to absorb nutrients, yet these people never get diagnosed as having celiac disease because the villi are still present. It is this group of people who suffer from chronic disease, fatigue and arthritis, yet are never diagnosed with celiac disease or an allergy to gluten (8).

Link to Autoimmune Diseases

Wheat has been linked to a variety of autoimmune diseases (8,9) Autoimmune diseases arise from an inappropriate immune response of the body against substances and tissues normally present in the body. They include diseases like hypothyroidism, eczema and lupus. The lectins contained in wheat stimulate antigens on cells that do not normally display them, such as pancreatic islet and thyroid cells (9) . When these antigens are attacked by our own immune system we develop autoimmune diseases.

Ok, but where should I get my carbs?

During the day I rarely eat any carbohydrates besides green vegetables. On occasion I will eat fruit (a handful of berries) before training. After training I eat potatoes and/or organic white jasmine rice to replenish glycogen (carbohydrate) stores. Brown rice is devoid of gluten, but it still has lectins and phytates. Now you know some of the reasons (there are many more) why I don't eat any wheat products. Thanks for reading.


1) Kwon, Nancy. 2006. Food guide gets personal. Canadian Grocer 120, (4): 14-14,
2) Pubmed
3) Bohn T, Davidsson L, Walczyk T, Hurrell RF. Phytic acid added to white-wheat bread inhibits fractional apparent magnesium absorption in humans. Am J Clin Nutr. 2004 Mar;79(3):418-23. PubMed PMID: 14985216.
4) Rodríguez-Morán M, Simental Mendía LE, Zambrano Galván G, Guerrero-Romero F. The role of magnesium in type 2 diabetes: a brief based-clinical review. Magnes Res. 2011 Dec;24(4):156-62. Review. PubMed PMID: 22198525
5) Chang CS, Choi JB, Kim HJ, Park SB. Correlation between serum testosterone level and concentrations of copper and zinc in hair tissue. Biol Trace Elem Res 2011 Dec;144(1-3):264-71. Epub 2011 Jun 14
6) Demonstration of high opioid-like activity in isolated peptides from wheat gluten hydrolysates
7) WHO's Facts sheet: Obesity and overweight
8) Dr. James Braly, Ron Hoggan Dangerous grains 1st edition. Canada. Penguin group inc. C2002. P.208
9) What triggers autoimmunity? The Lancet, Volume 326, Issue 8446,Pages 78 - 79, 13 July 1985

About the author

Mike Hart, MD
B.Sc (nutritional biochemistry), M.D. Nutritional consultant to Tiger Muay Thai (Chiang Mai location). Co-host of the Outlaws of Health podcast. Family doctor. Blending medicine with 21st century nutrition and fitness.