Eating processed grains is like trying to build a house with processed wood. You call the lumber yard, order all the lumber to frame up your house—the two-by-fours, rafters, ply boards, doorjambs, etc. The truck delivers all these materials in the form of sawdust with a note that says, “We just processed all your wood into sawdust as it’s easier for us to handle, load, and deliver. Hope your house turns out fine!” Not even a master craftsman could build an outhouse from all that sawdust.
Processed, refined grains don’t have the material to build and repair your body. They only give you dead calories from the starch, which turns into sugar. And those dead calories only give you energy to burn. Yet your body cannot burn that much energy at one time—therefore, your body has to store the excess as fat. Specifically, when you eat refined and processed grains, your blood sugar rises, which stimulates your pancreas to release insulin to bring it down again. The insulin acts to carry the sugar to your liver, where the excess sugar is converted into stored energy called triglycerides. These triglycerides are eventually stored as cholesterol and then as body fat, and they are deposited into your body’s various “gas tanks.”
For example, one cup of refined breakfast cereal or macaroni, or one slice of white bread, turns into approximately 2½–3 tablespoons of sugar. Your body can’t use that much energy at one time, just like your car can’t use 20 gallons of gas all at once. We have a gas tank for our car, and our body will form its own gas tank to store the excess sugar as fat. Perhaps you can locate your gas tank around your waist, on your hips, under your chin, and even in your blood vessels—especially the blood vessels of your heart.
What’s in your shopping cart? Hidden sugar, no doubt. Just to name a very few: pasta sauce, coleslaw, granola bars, ketchup, yogurt, salad dressing, energy drinks, and, worst of all, soft drinks. Hidden sugar derails your efforts to maintain proper weight, normal blood sugar levels, and general good health. This is another reason eating out is tricky.
The insulin hormone functions to lower blood sugar by turning it into fat. Thus, insulin’s main job is to get your body to make fat. If you want to get rid of fat, you have to get rid of insulin. And to get rid of insulin, you have to rid your diet of nonfoods that spike your blood sugar. Indeed, 40–60 percent of a processed carbohydrate—a nonfood—is converted, via insulin, into fat. So about half of that bagel, cereal, toast, pasta, pop, or candy finds its way into one of your fat tanks!
You can detect if you have high insulin levels from eating processed starches and sugars by being aware of the many physical symptoms. These include physical fatigue, mental fatigue, low blood sugar syndrome, dizziness, bloating, sleepiness, addiction to stimulants, polycystic ovary, high cholesterol, stroke, diabetes, and coronary heart disease.
The telltale sign, however, that processed starches and sugars are wreaking havoc in your body is the high and low blood sugar syndrome. The cycle begins the moment you eat any processed starches or sugars. Immediately, your bloodstream is flooded with blood sugar, and your pancreas swiftly responds by producing insulin. In fact, the overload of blood sugar in your system causes your pancreas to overreact and flood your bloodstream with too much insulin. The overabundance of insulin causes your blood sugar to drop, but by too much. The result: you feel hungry and most likely crave something sweet. If you satisfy your craving by indulging in another processed nonfood, so begins the cycle once again. Over time, you become a slave to this cycle, and your body begins a downward regression of health simply because all those dead, processed nonfoods don’t provide you with life-giving nutrition for repair. Instead, they only give you dead calories, stored as fat, as well as heightened cholesterol and triglycerides, allergies, asthma, obesity, and diabetes. Over 40 years of clinical research by Wolfgang Lutz, MD, showed that high insulin levels are the root cause of disease because the insulin hormone disrupts our body’s biochemical balance.
So what’s the big fat lie? Fat isn’t making you fat and causing disease to wreak havoc in your body, as you’ve been told for too long. Instead, all that sugar in the form of refined, processed nonfoods—convenient, neatly packaged, and highly advertised—is doing the job. That’s in addition to you deciding to stick the garbage in your mouth in the first place. It’s your choice. You have to make the change. Nobody can do it for you.
Fat-Free or Sugar Slave? Most fat-free and low-fat products tend to be high in sugar. They contain plenty of sugar to make up for the lack of tasty fat.