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Messages - tpbeebejr

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General Discussion / Re: NMR blood test
« on: April 11, 2014, 12:23:03 AM »
Dear Bellamouse:
You might want to check out the WB book (again). It has an entire chapter devoted to cholesterol and lipids. It gives a good explanation of most of the issues you raised. Good luck.

General Discussion / Re: GMO Research Issues
« on: April 11, 2014, 12:15:42 AM »
I finally had a chance to read most of the excellent report on GMO that you posted above. It has helped me to move even more in the "against GMO" direction. The report is scholarly and, as you said, evidence-based. Although it is somewhat long, I agree with Rita and others here that is is a must-read.

General Discussion / Re: GMO Research Issues
« on: March 31, 2014, 10:38:44 PM »
I see this as two truths in tension with each other, yet both nevertheless true:

1.) Dr. Norman Borlaug's development of semi-dwarf wheat has helped to save billions of lives in developing countries. These people would have starved had it not been for this crop.

2.) Dr. Norman Borlaug's development of semi-dwarf wheat has helped to kill and sicken millions of people in developed countries. These people would be much better off without this food in their diets.

General Discussion / Re: GMO Research Issues
« on: March 28, 2014, 04:14:11 PM »
Just to stir the pot a little, read about Dr. Norman Borlaug, the Nobel Laureate (1970 Nobel Peace Prize):

Dr. Borlaug's research led to the development of the high-yield semi-dwarf wheat that is widely agreed to have saved over a billion people from starvation in developing countries. This is the same wheat that Dr. Davis calls "Frankenwheat" (or at least that is what Dr. Oz recently said he called it when Dr. Davis was a guest on Dr. Oz's TV show), and the same wheat that is killing so many of us in the developed countries.

Regarding the term "GMO," remember that one form of genetic modification goes all the way back to the monk Gregor Mendel, who used selective breeding ("crossing" one plant with another) to "genetically modify" peas and other plants. Our beloved "Beefsteak" variety of tomatoes (and many other plants) is the result of this kind of genetic modification.


General Discussion / Carbonated water and bowel flora
« on: March 28, 2014, 03:54:12 PM »
I love carbonated water (not sweetened, just carbonated) like San Pellegrino, etc. I drink about 2 liters (about 68 ounces), often more, every day. I got tired of paying so much for Pellegrino, so then I tried the Soda Stream system, using only their carbon dioxide (CO2) bottles and not the various sugar/flavor packages. Then I got tired of paying $20 for a new CO2 bottle every 2 weeks. So I set up my own home system with a lifetime supply of CO2, which uses used 2-liter plastic beverage bottles, and a few items that can be bought on ebay. The whole thing cost less than $100, and it is literally a lifetime supply of CO2. The tank pressure hasn't budged from about 700 psi in 2 years of daily use.

I am asking about carbonated water because of the chapter in Dr. Davis's WB book in which he talks about the negative effects of acidic drinks. I am wondering if there is a consensus here on simple  carbonated water (no sweeteners - just water with dissolved CO2), since the pH can be around 3. A pH of 3 might seem quite acidic compared to water's neutral pH value of 7.0, but consider the fact that the pH of gastric (stomach) acid can be around 1, and the pH of the stomach's contents can vary from 1 to 5, depending on what is being digested, how long it has been digested, and how much buffering the stomach has produced in response to the digestion process.

Regarding the effect of carbonated water on teeth, I found the following: (

According to a 2001 study published in the Journal of Oral Rehabilitation, “sparkling mineral waters showed slightly greater dissolution than still waters, but levels remained low and were of the order of one hundred times less than the comparator soft drinks.”

I am curious about our members' opinions about carbonated water, mostly from the perspective of practitioners of the WB lifestyle. Is there some evidence that it negatively alters our bowel flora?

It used to be thought that carbonated water was helpful for digestion (selzers). As a scientist, it seems fairly unlikely to me that drinking carbonated water at a pH of 3 will have a significant negative impact on the pH of one's stomach, given the natural buffering capacity of the stomach and its ability to deal with the buffering of acids that are 10x (pH 2) and 100x (pH 1) more concentrated. What is the consensus here?

    I have been having a hard time locating useful and reliable information about how wine and distilled spirits such as vodka might fit into the Wheat Belly lifestyle. For several years I have almost always had one glass of red wine (250 mL, or one-third of a typical wine bottle) with my evening meal. I believe it to be a civilized custom to have wine with meals. Dr. Davis seems to endorse red wine at the bottom of page 213, while of course rejecting beer due to its wheat content. He seems to be silent on distilled beverages (e.g., vodka). Of course, I am talking about alcohol in moderation (one glass per day, at most).
[/size]I came across the following article at the URL
[/size]Alcohol & Carbohydrates: Five Myths[/b]
[/size]by David J. Hanson, Ph. D.[/b]
[/size]The author of The Low Carb Bartender: Carb Counts of Beer, Wine, Mixed Drinks and More argues that the subject of alcohol and carbohydrates is usually presented by the media in a misleading or incorrect manner. Bob Skilnik’s reference book lists the carbohydrate counts of over 1,000 beers, 400 wines, and more than 200 mixed drinks.
[/size]The author says that descriptions of alcohol and its effects on blood sugar or the metabolization of carbohydrates found in low-carb diet books is usually wrong. To correct this misinformation he has corrected the top five myths about alcohol and carbs.
[/size]1. The liver does not metabolize alcohol into sugar. On the contrary, most people will experience a dip in their blood sugar (glucose) levels when consuming alcohol. Alcohol is eventually broken down by the liver into acetate, and finally into carbon dioxide and water---not sugar.
[/size]2. Non-alcohol beers do not contain less carbohydrates than regular-brewed beers. In fact, they are all higher in carbs than a typical beer, some almost double in carbohydrate content. Unfortunately, there are too many websites that incorrectly claim that NA beers are both alcohol-free and low in carbohydrates.
[/size]3. The glycemic index (GI) of beer, wine, and distilled products is zero. The urban legend that alcoholic beverages have high GIs, has been floating around the diet book circuit for years. If you're on any type of diet or practice a lifestyle that monitors the glycemic index or gycemic load of food and drink, you can still enjoy a libation or two.
[/size]4. There are carbohydrates in all wines, even the driest styles, despite what some wine appreciation websites might tell you. The only alcoholic beverages that can possibly have a zero-carb content are distilled products. Fermentation will always leave some residual sugar behind in the form of carbs.
[/size]5. There is no sugar in rum. Alcohol is derived from high-carbohydrate fermentables such as sugar, molasses, potatoes, or various grains. If you understand the processes of fermentation and distillation, you'll know that the end result of distillation is ethyl alcohol, a zero-carb liquid.
[/size]As a scientist, I know that points 2-5 above are true, with the following caveats, by number.
[/size]2.) No caveats.
[/size]3.) Beer must have some very low (but nevertheless non-zero) GI due to the suspended and dissolved non-sugar carbohydrate solids.
[/size]4.) No caveats.
[/size]5.) This is true for plain old regular rum. But today there are all kinds of flavored rums with added sugars.
[/size]So what do you all think about how wine fits into the WB lifestyle?

Wheat Free Recipes / I like Pomi Chopped Tomatoes
« on: March 07, 2014, 03:38:14 PM »
These are the ones in a box, and they are stocked in my regular food market. They claim to be 100% BPA-free and 100% GMO-free, with no added preservatives, no artificial flavors, no salt, and no water added. And they taste great - like real fresh tomatoes! [size=78%]Of course, you can just chop up your own fresh tomatoes, and I often will do that. But you can keep these boxes (unopened) in your cupboard for a long time and use them when you don't have fresh tomatoes available. The box I have now says it expires in 02/2015. Once opened and refrigerated they claim to be good for 10 days. I use them for pizza and "pasta" sauce. One ingredient is listed: tomatoes.[/size]

Here's the nutrition information, FYI:

Serving size: 1/2 cup (125 g)
Servings per container: 6

Per serving
Calories: 28
Calories from fat: 0

Total fat: 0 g
   Sat fat: 0 g
   Trans fat: 0 g
Cholesterol: 0 mg
Sodium: 5 mg
Total carbs: 6 g
   Dietary fiber: 2 g
   Sugars: 4 g
Protein: 1 g

P.S. I have no conflicting financial interest in Pomi whatsoever;-)

Wheat Free Recipes / Re: Wheat Belly Cook Book recipe for pizza
« on: March 07, 2014, 03:09:32 PM »
Thanks for the update, Jan.

I "discovered" a way to make the extremely sticky crust extra thin, and therefore crispy and not gummy when it is all cooked (I put discovered in quotes because I'm sure that I am not the first one to do this). First, I lay out the batter on a bottom sheet of wax paper, trying to get the blobs as even as possible. Next, I put on a top sheet of wax paper. Next, I use a rolling pin to work out the lumps and thin things out, working from the center to the outside. I tried to make things about one-quarter inch or thinner with the rolling pin.

To make an edge around the crust perimeter I reached between the sheets of wax paper with a wooden spoon having a flat end. I used the spoon as a pusher to slightly thicken the crust at the edges. While using the rolling pin, some of the edges will get ratty, and the spoon can be used to pretty things up a little.

This time I also decided to use a pizza stone and to cook directly on it. In fact it is a 20-inch by 20-inch smooth ceramic tile that I bought as a sample from Home Depot and never used. It worked great, but anything ceramic would work well. I think the key for a crisp crust is to have the cooking surface already hot when you put the dough on it. So I had my "pizza stone" in the over during the whole oven pre-heating time. I also upped the temperature from 400 F to 450 F for the first 10 minutes.

To put the sticky dough onto the hot pizza stone is a little tricky. First I spread white flour all over my hands and the countertop to prevent sticking.  Just kidding. Wanted to see if anyone is still paying attention to my long post.

To put the sticky dough onto the hot pizza stone I first flipped the thinned dough onto its top (so that my crust edge will be on the correct side at the end) while it was still between the two sheets of wax. Next I removed the wax paper from the upward-facing bottom side of the crust. At this point it was possible the hold up the single sheet of wax paper with the dough stuck to it in a completely vertical orientation.

With the oven and pizza stone at temperature and already open, and the rack with the pizza stone pulled as far out as is safe, I used the wax paper to guide the dough onto the pizza stone. This was very easy. After the dough was flat, I then peeled off the last sheet of wax paper from the now-upward-facing top side of the pizza crust. There was no need to hold the dough down. It seemed to stick nicely under its own weight to the pizza stone. I let the crust cook for about 10 minutes at 450 F. It was golden brown and crispy.

To finish, remember to turn the heat back down to 350ish, added your toppings, and cook for another 5-10 minutes, depending on your toppings.


General Discussion / Re: Anyone else test blood sugar for fun?
« on: March 01, 2014, 11:52:45 PM »
Randall, I also test my blood sugar, but it's a bit of a long story why I do it. Here's the short version. I had pancreatic cancer 1.5 years ago. It was the less aggressive 5% variety (neuroendocrine carcinoma) that killed Steve Jobs, not the highly aggressive 95% variety (adenocarcinoma) that killed Patrick Swayze. Mine was detected very early totally by accident. I had *curative* surgery in 2012 that removed my spleen and about 75% of my pancreas. I was very fortunate. It has now been about 18 months and I feel like I am finally about back to 100%.

Since I lost 75% of the organ that makes insulin, I decided to keep an eye on my blood sugar levels, an idea that my surgeon supported (although he seemed totally confident that the remaining 25% of my pancreas would do just fine in making enough insulin). He has been correct so far. My blood sugar levels are typically between 105 and 120 mg/dL, which is just below borderline (120) for today's standards. Since quitting wheat (15 Jan 2014) the levels seem slightly lower. I am waiting a little longer to collect enough data to say this with statistical significance.

The nice thing about testing oneself is that one can determine one's own glycemic index for any food!

Wheat Free Recipes / Re: Fat Bombs...a nice, filling treat!
« on: February 28, 2014, 10:11:30 PM »
Hey LibbyMe:
I just made my first batch of your Fat Bombs today. They turned out excellent. I added a half-cup of chopped peanuts. Even my wife liked them! Thanks for the recipe.

I ended up using two ice cube trays as the forms, with 1 Tbsp in each compartment, making a total of 32 servings. I calculated the components per 1-Tbsp serving:

Each 1-Tbsp serving (w/o any chopped nuts) contains:
11.9 g fat
1.3 g protein
0.8 g fiber
0.8 g net carbs
110 calories

Introduce Yourself to the Wheat Free Forum / Re: New member - Hello
« on: February 28, 2014, 02:00:05 PM »
P.S.....As a chemist and educator, if you run across a reputable textbook on food chemistry, would you mind passing it along? I'm embarking on a fermenting journey and am interested in identifying the hierarchy of bacteria in the process.

Thanks for your comments, Jan, I will see what I can find about the chemistry of fermentation and the organisms involved. I haven't looked, but since there has been such an explosion in home brewing over the last decade, perhaps there are several good books out there that even focus on the organisms involved.

Introduce Yourself to the Wheat Free Forum / Re: New member - Hello
« on: February 28, 2014, 01:49:32 PM »
>>   " & chemo-mutagenesis..." <<

Thanks for your thoughts, Boundless. I agree with all three of your bullet points. But I am not familiar with the intentional practice of creating random gene mutations by energy and chemicals. Do you have some sources that you can point me to for my edification? On its face, this sounds like a stupid way to effect a desired change at the gene level.

General Discussion / Re: Acronyms
« on: February 28, 2014, 01:40:13 PM »
Am I correct that WFMF stands for wheat-free and meat-free?

Wheat Free Recipes / Wheat Belly Cook Book recipe for pizza
« on: February 28, 2014, 12:38:03 AM »
Today I tried my first recipe from the Wheat Belly Cook Book. I made the pizza on page 155, with some substitutions for the toppings. On half of the pie I used tomato sauce, while on the other half I used basil pesto sauce (Kirkland brand, 5 net grams of carbs covering one-half of the pie). As toppings I kept the shredded mozzarella, provolone, and kalamata olives, but instead of the prosciutto (which I love, but didn't have on hand), I added half of a chopped yellow bell pepper, about one-half-inch of a purple onion, diced, and lots of chopped fresh spinach.

It was my first experience with pizza crust using the All-Purpose Baking Mix (described on page 19 of the WBCB). Although the taste of all the toppings was great, the "crust" did not turn out to my liking. Its taste was acceptable, but I really wanted something harder and crunchy. The "crust" seemed too soft and gummy. Next time I plan to use a higher temperature (450 F instead of 400 F) for the first 10 minutes when the crust is cooking. And I also plan to use about 50% less of it so I can make a thinner crust that still fits on the baking sheet.

Do any of you have any tricks for how to make a crunchy, rather than gummy, crust?
Wheat-free since 15 Jan 2014

Introduce Yourself to the Wheat Free Forum / Re: New member - Hello
« on: February 26, 2014, 09:33:26 PM »

As a scientist, you'll be a great asset to the forum.
Jan, I am not so sure about how scientists are viewed in this forum. I see a lot of scientist bashing here, especially in the discussions on GMO topics. Perhaps some blame is warranted, I'm sure, but not as a general general rule like scientist = bad.

I am a chemistry professor, so I teach students and direct scientific research carried out by students and funded by the federal government. My research specialties are surface chemistry and biomaterials. We are working on the development of an understanding for what it will take to promote the re-growth of neurons. It is basic research, so we aren't implanting anything in anybody yet. But we hope to contribute to the development of an implantable biomaterial bridge that someday (more than 10 years away in all likelihood) allows nerves to re-connect after a spinal cord injury, or cells in the brain to regrow or heal after damage from neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimers, Parkinson's, MS, ALS, and others.

The GMO problem is an interesting moral issue for me to ponder as a scientist. If we assume that all GMO = bad (for the sake of argument here), then I wonder how much the bench-level scientists are to blame. I think that decisions about what directions a large agribusiness company will go in are made by high-level lawyers and business gurus, not the scientists. Don't get me wrong: scientists can't use the same lame arguments that the Nazi death-camp functionaries used during the Nuremburg trials after WW-II. But I would guess that bench-level scientists often don't even know how their small piece of the work fits into the whole big puzzle that might be the development of a new GMO strain of sweet corn, for example.

Introduce Yourself to the Wheat Free Forum / Re: New member - Hello
« on: February 26, 2014, 09:05:47 PM »
Thanks, Barbara. I'll try the probiotics. As for the water, I weigh about 165 lbs., so 165/2 = 82 ounces of water. I carbonate my own water and I drink a 2-liter bottle every night (about 68 ounces). Add that to what I drink during the day and I think I am drinking enough water. Thanks for the advice on the probiotics.

Food Elements / German barley bread
« on: February 26, 2014, 08:38:46 PM »
I found the following on the [/size] website while looking for information on low-glycemic bread.[/color][/size]"Barley Bread[/font]Opt for barley bread for a hearty addition to a low-GI diet. A serving of coarse bread made with whole barley grains has a glycemic index of just 30, and contains just 7 grams of carbohydrates. The whole barley kernels found in the bread also offer nutritional value, boosting your intake of magnesium and phosphorus, two minerals that nourish your bones."I'd like to hear your comments about this site and about the above barley bread. Thanks,Tom[/color]

Introduce Yourself to the Wheat Free Forum / Re: New member - Hello
« on: February 26, 2014, 08:30:03 AM »
Did you find that even though you are not celiac, that you started feeling better in general without wheat?
Yes, except for the headaches. I seem to have a perpetual headache that is just beginning to subside. But I don't feel hungry all the time, and I seem to have more energy, although this could just be my imagination.

General Discussion / Pasta: what about triticum durum?
« on: February 24, 2014, 02:00:49 PM »
I am new here and I just posted my introduction in the Introduce Yourself section, and then my first post (about popcorn).

Being of Italian-American heritage, the hardest part of going wheat-free for me is the loss of pasta. Some paragraphs in Wheat Belly left me with some questions about pasta. On page 34, Dr. Davis says that "Pasta stands apart from other wheat products,..." and then he goes on to discuss the type of wheat, triticum durum, from which most pastas are made. So what's the deal for durum semolina pasta?

Then I see in a table of the glycemic index and glycemic loads of various foods,

compiled from peer-reviewed scientific articles, that it lists a glycemic index of only 32 and a glycemic load of only 15 for 180 grams of "Fettucini, average".

As I said in my "Introduce Yourself" post, I am not looking for a gluten-free pasta substitute, like my father would be because of his celiac disease. It is my understanding that the substitute rice pastas are just as bad or worse when it comes to glycemic load. Can someone shed some light on the pasta story for me? Again, I am interested in both the scientific facts and the anecdotes of our members.


General Discussion / What's the truth about popcorn?
« on: February 24, 2014, 01:43:18 PM »
I am new here and I just posted my introduction in the Introduce Yourself section. I am trying to learn about popcorn. I couldn't find anything in the Wheat Belly book, and when I used SEARCH here in this forum, I only found one thing about a member that said she cheated by having popcorn at the movies. In one of the responses to her "cheating" post, someone replied that a few cups of non-GMO corn was fine.  I'd like to know more about popcorn - the scientific facts and the anecdotes. Does anyone know where I can find popcorn's glycemic index when cooked/popped in various ways? And what about the GMO aspects: is there a similar story for modern corn (i.e., high-yield GMO corn) vs. ancient corn? Does corn have the same amylopectin-A carbohydrate that gives wheat its high glycemic index?


Introduce Yourself to the Wheat Free Forum / New member - Hello
« on: February 24, 2014, 01:28:39 PM »
I am a new member from the Kennett Square area of PA (southeast corner of PA). After reading Wheat Belly and thinking about things, I decided to try to go wheat-free for a while as an experiment. My father was diagnosed with celiac disease about 18 years ago, and he has been scrupulous about avoiding gluten. He is now doing very well and has become a self-taught expert in avoiding wheat. Because I am around him a lot, in restaurants and in the home, I have also learned a great deal about avoiding wheat.

Unlike my father, where his goal is to avoid gluten, I do not have celiac disease (I had the antibody test done), so I don't really care about gluten per se.  I am basically trying to lose some of the weight around my middle for general health reasons, and because I noticed a very slow but significant upward trend in my weight for the last 5 years (about 2 or 3 pounds per year). Being a scientist, I have carefully documented and plotted my weight, % body fat, and BMI on a daily basis for several years now, and long before I decided to go on a wheat-free diet. I use one of those electronic scales that measures body fat by impedance.

I have been wheat-free now for about 5 weeks.  I started at about 175 pounds, 19.2% body fat, BMI 24.8 (I am 5 feet, 10.5 inches tall, and 53 years old). Since quitting wheat I have steadily (almost linearly) dropped to 167 pounds, 16.4% body fat, BMI 23.6. I think I am almost at my ideal weight, but I intend to continue to be wheat-free forever. I am hoping to learn from others on this forum, and get the kind of support that makes being wheat-free easier.  Thanks!


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