Eating grains really goes against the evolutionary grain.
We check everyone's hemoglobin A1C at Second Nature because it shows the degree of glycation in the body. Why is it more important than a regular fasting glucose level? Glycation is a longer range 3 month marker that shows increased inflammation caused by oxidative stress and free radical production versus a quick snapshot in time. We know that subtle elevations in fasting blood sugar and higher long range glucose levels are in fact a risk factor for dementia. Even in individuals without diabetes. This kernal of truth was published in August 2013 in the New England Journal of Medicine.
Lower blood sugar levels means lower risk of dementia. That means eating a lower carbohydrate higher quality fat diet. In a 2012 Mayo Clinic study individuals who ate a high carb diet increased their risk of mild cognitive impairment by 89% compared to those who ate a high-fat diet whose risk was decreased by 44%.
What is glycemic index? Glycemic index measures blood sugar levels between 90 and 120 minutes after eating a food or drink. It turns out that the glycemic index of whole grains is much higher and stays higher than white bread and candy bars.
Some of the top scientists like, Dr. Alessio Fasano, who study foods that contain gluten understand that gluten causes inflammation, increased bowel permeability and chronic brain inflammation in a larger percentage of patients who don't have celiac disease. New theories propose that this inflammatory reaction might occur in all humans who consume grains. Our modern guts have not evolved to break down proteins in grains.
Dr. Marios Hadjivassilou stated, "That gluten sensitivity is regarded as principally a disease of the small bowel is a historical misconception. Gluten sensitivity can be primarily and at times exclusively a neurological disease."
Americans now eat over 100 pounds of sugar each year and that does not include the hidden sugars in processed foods. Over the last 20 years, we were told to reduce and avoid fats. Everything became fat-free and the amount of sugar soared. Today everyone is rushing to buy gluten-free bread, doughnuts, and pizza which is still sugar loading. Even fruit can spike blood sugar levels. One large glass of orange juice, equivalent to 9 teaspoons of sugar, can put you close to your carb max for the day.
Sugar is sugar is sugar. Protein glycation causes higher blood sugar levels that lead to chronic brain inflammation. Read Part III and find out how you can take active steps to protect your brain.