What’s the real problem with wheat? Yes, it’s important to be on the watch for gluten sensitivity and allergies spawned by hybridization, but the real problem with wheat—we’re talking of the conventional kind—is the way it’s harvested. Many conventional farmers spray wheat with Monsanto’s herbicide Roundup 7-10 days before harvest. The now withered, dead wheat plants are easier to “round up,” pun intended. Not only that, farmers can harvest the wheat earlier and gain bigger profits from a bigger harvest. According to expert Dr. Stephanie Seneff of MIT, spraying wheat with Roundup causes the wheat to release more seeds, thereby making for a higher yield! Unfortunately, it also makes for disastrous consequences for consumer health.
The Noxious Nature of Roundup
Roundup is an herbicide that contains a deadly toxin called glyphosate. Farmers began using it with gusto as a drying agent for wheat and barley in the late 1990s, and today the majority of conventional wheat is contaminated. According to the US Department of Agriculture, in 2012 99% of drum wheat, 97% of spring wheat, and 61% of winter wheat was treated with herbicides such as Roundup. And it’s not just America with tainted wheat supplies. The United Kingdom uses Roundup as a wheat desiccant as well. Fortunately, other European countries are a bit more diligent regarding consumer health. Roundup has been banned in the Netherlands, with France following suit.
Herbicide companies like Monsanto declare their products safe for human consumption…going so far as having sales agents drink Roundup straight up during their presentations! According to Dr. Seneff, glyphosate is perhaps “the most important factor in the development of multiple chronic diseases and conditions that have become prevalent in Westernized societies.”
Monsanto declares glyphosate safe because it kills weeds through a mechanism called the shikimate pathway, which is absent in humans…but not in the bacteria humans depend on for gut health! Research shows that glyphosate impairs the shikimate pathway of beneficial gut bacteria that are responsible for synthesizing essential amino acids. Glyphosate inhibits cytochrome P450 (CYP) enzymes, a varied group of enzymes that are responsible for ridding the body of toxins. Bad bacteria is then allowed to overgrow and take over, flooding the body with toxins and jumpstarting chronic inflammation. Over months and years of conventional wheat consumption, our intestinal walls break down and the symptoms of autoimmune diseases start to appear:
- Gastrointestinal upset
- Heart disease
- Multiple sclerosis
- Even Alzheimer’s disease!
Remember, you might not see or feel the effects of herbicides, but they are brewing a health disaster beneath the surface. If you aren’t gluten intolerant, then you don’t have to avoid wheat entirely, just forgo the conventional varieties contaminated with glyphosate, and only eat organic, low-gluten wheat.