- Focus on whole, minimally processed, nutrient-rich foods. This means you’ll be eating plenty of lean protein and plants — including grains. It’ll also help you limit refined grains.
- Make sure your grains are thoroughly cooked. Cooking food drastically reduces its lectin, phytic acid, and protease inhibitor content. For example, fully cooking kidney beans knocks their lectin content from 20,000-70,000 units down to 200-400.
- Try sprouted and fermented breads. To take it further, grains that have been sprouted (e.g. Ezekiel bread) or fermented (e.g. sourdough) have even lower levels of phytates, lectins, and protease inhibitors. This increases mineral bioavailability and also tends to boost the protein quality of the bread.
- If you suspect a problem with gluten, get tested. Go see your doctor, and get help implementing a gluten-free diet if you test positive for celiac disease.
- Zero in on wheat. While whole-grain wheat is likely still mildly beneficial for most (sprouted wheat might be even better), this appears to be the grain with the most problems and fewest advantages. If you’re having GI issues, it’s reasonable to see if avoiding wheat helps. Here again, talk to your doctor.
- Try other grain options. Variety is good. We’ve given you a list of whole grains in the beginning of this article. Try some others you don’t normally eat. Have fun expanding your horizons.
- Consider an elimination diet. Food sensitivities do exist, though we don’t know with what frequency. They’re linked to GI problems and a host of other conditions throughout the body. The gold standard for uncovering a food sensitivity (grain-related or otherwise) in which you systematically remove and then reintroduce foods in your diet, making note of any changes in symptoms.
- Stay sane. Diet extremism leads to stress, unhappiness, and, unfortunately, weight gain and health problems. Tune out the “great grain debate” and use that energy to cook delicious food — and eat it with beloved friends — instead.
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Posted on 11/29/2016 at 10:41:00 AM