Shockingly, a lot of people who have allergies or digestive problems when eating wheat in the U.S, ended up not experiencing any symptoms while eating pasta in Italy.
It has left many parents in confusion wondering why wheat is causing an autoimmune reaction in children. There is something not right about our wheat going on. This goes far past gluten, non-organic, and hybridization, because wheat doesn’t cause these symptoms on those who consume wheat in other countries.
What indeed is going on with wheat?
For quite some time, GMO wheat has been secretly invading the North American food supply. It makes sense for the experiences I was hearing about.I had thought immediately it couldn’t be the gluten or wheat hybridization. Gluten and wheat hybrids have been consumed for thousands of years. It just didn’t make sense that this could be the reason for so many people having problems with wheat and gluten all of a sudden, in the past 5-10 years.
Finally, I started researching the issue for myself and to find some facts. The good news is that the reason wheat has become so toxic in the United States, is not because it is secretly GMO as I had feared (thank goodness!). The bad news is that the problem lies with the manner in which wheat is harvested.
Wheat harvest protocol in the United States is to drench the wheat fields with Roundup several days before the combine harvesters work through the fields as withered, dead wheat plants are less taxing on the farm equipment and allows for an earlier, easier and bigger harvest.
Before a harvest, application of the herbicide Roundup or other herbicides containing the deadly active ingredient, glyphosate, to wheat and barley has been suggested since 1980. It has become the normal routine over the past 15 years. It’s often utilized as a drying agent 7-10 days before a harvest.
Dr. Stephanie Seneff from MIT, who is versed in the subject, and who I recently saw present on the subject at a nutritional Conference in Indianapolis, desiccating non-organic wheat crops with glyphosate just before harvest came into vogue late in the 1990′s with the result that most of the non-organic wheat in the United States is now contaminated with it. Seneff explains that when you expose wheat to a toxic chemical like glyphosate, it actually releases more seeds resulting in a slightly greater yield: “It ‘goes to seed’ as it dies. At its last gasp, it releases the seed” says Dr. Seneff.
As of 2012, 99% of durum wheat, 97% of spring wheat, and 61% of winter wheat has been treated with herbicides. This is an increase from 88% for durum wheat, 91% for spring wheat and 47% for winter wheat since 1998, reports the US Department of Agriculture.
Here’s what Keith Lewis, a wheat farmer, has to say about the practice:
I have been a wheat farmer for 50 yrs and one wheat production practice that is very common is applying the herbicide Roundup (glyposate) just prior to harvest. Roundup is licensed for preharvest weed control.
Monsanto, the manufacturer of Roundup claims that application to plants at over 30% kernel moisture result in roundup uptake by the plant into the kernels. Farmers like this practice because Roundup kills the wheat plant allowing an earlier harvest.
A wheat field often ripens unevenly, thus applying Roundup preharvest evens up the greener parts of the field with the more mature. The result is on the less mature areas Roundup is translocated into the kernels and eventually harvested as such.
This practice is not licensed. Farmers mistakenly call it “dessication.” Consumers eating products made from wheat flour are undoubtedly consuming minute amounts of Roundup. An interesting aside, malt barley which is made into beer is not acceptable in the marketplace if it has been sprayed with preharvest Roundup.
Lentils and peas are not accepted in the market place if it was sprayed with preharvest roundup….. but wheat is ok..
This farming practice greatly concerns me and it should further concern consumers of wheat products.
It isn’t just happening in America, but The Food Standards Agency in the United Kingdom reports that use of Roundup results in glyphosate residues appearing in bread samples.In the Netherlands, use of Roundup is completely banned with France about soon to follow through.
Using Roundup as a desiccant on the wheat fields prior to harvest may save the farmer money and increase profits, but it hurts the health of the consumer who eats the contaminated wheat kernels. The herbicide industry still labels glyphosate as a minimally toxic chemical to humans.
In the journal Entropy, published research argues by exploiting how glyphosate can disrupt physiology. Authored by Anthony Samsel and Stephanie Seneff of MIT, the paper examines glyphosate’s inhibition of cytochrome P450 (CYP) enzymes, an often unseen component of lethal toxicity to mammals.
The current view is that ghyphosate is not harmful to humans or any mammals. This view is harmful to the farming community who knows little of the toxic chemical. In fact, the active ingredient in Roundup lethally disrupts the all important shikimate pathway found in beneficial gut microbes which is responsible for synthesis of critical amino acids.
Friendly gut bacteria, also called probiotics, play a critical role in human health. Gut bacteria aid digestion, prevent permeability of the gastointestinal tract (which discourages the development of autoimmune disease), synthesize vitamins and provide the foundation for robust immunity.
Roundup significantly disrupts the functioning of beneficial bacteria in the gut and contributes to permeability of the intestinal wall and consequent expression of autoimmune disease symptoms
Glyphosate inhibits cytochrome P450 (CYP) enzymes produced by the gut micro-biome. CYP enzymes are imperative to human health, because they detoxify chemical compounds, xenobiotics, that we are exposed to daily.
Humans who are exposed to glyphosate through use of Roundup in their community or through ingestion of its residues on industrialized food products, are much susceptible to the damaging effects of other chemicals and environmental toxins they face.
What’s worse is that the negative impact of glyphosate exposure is slow and unnoticed over months and years as inflammation gradually gains momentum.
Here are the consequences of glyphosate exposure:
In a nutshell, Dr. Seneff’s study of Roundup’s ghastly glyphosate which the wheat crop in the United States is doused with just days before harvest uncovers the manner in which this lethal toxin harms the human body by decimating beneficial gut microbes with the tragic end result of disease, degeneration, and widespread suffering.
If you think you have no issue digesting wheat, still avoid the wheat that is laced with pesticides!
You Must Avoid Toxic Wheat No Matter What
It is highly advised you refrain from consuming conventional wheat as it contains excessive levels of glyphosate, even if you already have a sensitivity to wheat or gluten. There is data going around that point to the amount of glyphosate applied to wheat is closely linked to the increase in cases of gluten intolerance and celiac disease.
Dr. Seneff says these increases aren’t based on genetics, but due to environmental factors, as not every symptom is treated by phasing gluten from your diet. You will end up with a sensitivity to wheat if you continue to eat conventional wheat.
How to Eat Wheat Safely
Obviously, if you have a sensitivity or allergy to wheat, you must avoid it. If you aren’t celiac or gluten sensitive and would like to consume this food safely, you can do what we do in our home.
We only buy organic, preferably low gluten, unhybridized Einkorn wheat for breadmaking, pancakes, cookies etc. But, when we eat out or are purchasing food from the store, conventional wheat products are out of the picture.
What Are You Going to Do About Toxic Wheat?
What was your reaction to excessive amounts of glyphosate being used in our wheat crops? And how did it make you feel knowing that your health is at risk all because farmers don’t know any better yet.
What about Roundup is used as a pre-harvest desiccant like sweet potatoes, sugar cane, rice, barley, dried beans, peas, seeds, sugar cane, and sugar beets? Will you be purchasing these crops in organic for now on?
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