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Are you addicted to wheat?

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As if there aren't enough addictive substances in the modern world, go ahead and add wheat to that list.

That's right--the staple grain of the American diet may actually be addictive, according to a recent segment on "Dr. Oz." Unfortunately, this addiction can lead to drastic health problems that one may falsely attribute to something else.

Dr. Oz's guest was William Davis, who has authored the books The Wheat Belly and "Wheat Belly Cookbook: 150 Recipes to Help You Lose the Wheat, Lose the Weight, and Find Your Path Back to Health.

Frankenwheat

According to Davis, the wheat we consume in this day and age is so scientifically altered by modern crop production that the human body doesn't know how to break it down properly.

"The wheat of today is nothing like the wheat of 1950, 1960--that is the wheat our moms or grandmothers had. So it has been changed, and this new crop has implications for human health that were never anticipated," David said.

Moreover, Davis says that wheat affects the brain much like pleasure-inducing drugs--sans the pleasure.

High on wheat?

"There is a protein--a protein unique to wheat, called gliadin, and gliadin has the potential to bind to the opiate receptors in the human brain, just like heroin, just like morphine."

The problem, says Davis, is that "it doesn't provide relief from pain, it only stimulates appetite."

Eliminating wheat from the diet, Davis says, can result in weight loss, lowered risk for heart disease, lower cholesterol and improved mood. Recommended alternatives include things like gluten-free bagels, lettuce wraps instead of sandwiches and wheat-free grains like brown rice or quinoa.

Source: Dr. Oz
Source: Examiner