Is Bread Really the “Silent Killer”?

And what’s in the mix with starch, gluten, and more?

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I am no doctor, nor have I ever played one on TV or anywhere throughout social media. I’m just an all-around health-conscious guy who is always seeking out, researching, and willing to share any information regarding attaining and maintaining optimum physical, mental, psychological, emotional and spiritual health. So, before you implement anything I say, write or suggest here or anywhere, on any of my blogs or posts on, Facebook, Twitter, or LinkedIn, etc, you should always first consult with your physician, psychologist, therapist or clergy to ensure any such suggestion is the proper path for you. Because we’re all different.

With that said, it’s getting so that you don’t know what the eat anymore, right?

I mean, for real.

Vegetarians tell you to stay away from meat. Vegans take it a step further by suggesting the dilution of all things dairy from the diet. And everybody these days is recommending to pretty much stay away from any and all processed foods, whether they are boxed, bagged, wrapped or canned.

At the other end of the spectrum, there are a few dividing sectors of the spiritual set who claim that all food (and drink!) is healthy for you as long as it is “blessed” and/or served with love.

I like that one. That one really works for me, significantly more so than say, intermittent fasting (which we’re just gonna’ have to save for a post all its own).

But switching back and forth from selective meals to eating and drinking whatever I want has worked for me ever since I was a little kid. As I look back on my ingesting and digestive habits and choices on the more p, it almost seems like I was ahead of my time.

From a very early age, like 6 or 7 years old, I was never big on breakfast. I would usually have only a glass of juice, and not orange juice like the rest of the crowd. But grape juice, but that was mostly because I was a fan of The Flintstones TV show, and during the original run of that now-classic animated series, Pebbles Flintstone, infant daughter of Fred and Wilma, was always drinking grape juice because Welches Grape Juice company (owned today by Promotion in Motion, Inc.) was a sponsor of the show.

Come to find out, all these decades later, not eating breakfast, and giving your stomach that early morning extra free time to digest the evening meal from the previous 10 or 11 or so hours before is a good thing. While grape juice, processed or freshly-made, is a healthy choice because of the resveratrol ingredient in grapes (which helps some validate their taste for wine).

Who knew?

Apparently, I did — at 6 years old.

But I’m also the guy who soon became addicted to McDonald’s hamburgers, or any kind of hamburger. Again, there was some pop-culture reference involved.

The character named “Whimpy” on the old Popeye cartoon used to eat globs of hamburgers on a regular basis.

That was me.

Sort of.

Whenever I’d visit McDonald’s in particular, I would order three hamburgers, an order of fries, and a small coke. And maybe, at times, add an apple pie.

And it took me a long time to break that habit, which I finally did when I decided to restrict red meat from my diet.

But, apparently, according to various findings and research over the years, it wasn’t so much the red meat or any meat that is the issue with general digestion, but the bread that many times goes along those with those burgers, or chicken or turkey sandwiches. And ultimately, the gluten which is in that bread.

Following are two excerpts from online articles that will help with further understanding the bread/gluten connection:

The first excerpt is from an article by health advocate Ty Bollinger published September 30, 2016 on his wonderful site, According to Bollinger:

Bread: it’s something of a cultural pastime that most all of us grew up eating, and a hallmark of the meal plate since time immemorial. Heck, bread has even been codified as a pinnacle of human achievement that only the greatest of the great innovations could ever hope to match, let alone surpass. “The best thing since sliced bread” being the famous marketing catchphrase coined by the Wonder Bread company that encapsulates the high esteem with which people all around the world regard this most cherished food.

But sadly, a typical loaf of bread made with wheat flour today isn’t the same as it once was. In times past, bread represented one of the most basic forms of complete nutrition, readily available and affordable to practically anyone. Today’s commercial bread, on the other hand, has been reduced to little more than a “cheat day” junk food… a fluffy loaf of tasty (but empty) calories and carbohydrates that many people now avoid for health reasons.

So what changed?

For one, the wheat flour used to make most of the bread products at your local supermarket has been heavily processed and refined, meaning it’s been mostly or entirely stripped of its nutrient content. Then, to create the illusion that this flour is still somehow healthy after all that it’s gone through, manufacturers “enrich” and/or “fortify” it with synthetic vitamins and minerals that, as I’ll explain shortly, do nothing for the body in terms of nourishment.

A revealing study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition back in 1971 found that the milling process alone denatures or destroys nearly half of the nutrients naturally found in a whole wheat berry within the first 24 hours following extraction. After 72 hours (three days), nearly all of the nutrients are lost, including most of the B vitamins, vitamin E, and fiber that are present in the bran and germ of wheat kernels.

The second excerpt is from an article by “Jessica” that is published on, which labels the gluten ingredient in bread as the real culprit to one’s optimum health, and not bread alone, as it is generally defined. According to Jessica:

Gluten is a protein found mostly in wheat and also in rye, oats, and barley. So, all products containing wheat or these other cereals contain gluten. It is the staff that makes the bread chewy. Gluten is one of the main ingredients of the American staple food. How would you make those wonder breads and extra-large bagels without gluten? However, recent research shows that gluten can have significant health impact; so much so that it has been marked as the culprit in being one of the causative factors of as many as fifty-five diseases including osteoporosis, schizophrenia, epilepsy, lupus, arthritis, irritable bowel syndrome, multiple sclerosis, anemia, and even cancer.

The problem of gluten intolerance ranging from mild sensitivity to full-blown celiac disease has recently been brought to light by a series of research papers. In order to understand the dimension of the gluten problem, you should know the following:

  • Celiac disease is diagnosed in one in every one hundred Americans. This means celiac disease affects three million Americans every year, though many may remain unaware of it. In addition, there is [a] milder form of gluten intolerance which has not yet developed into celiac disease. Taken altogether, one-third of the American population may be said to be suffering from some form of gluten-related problem.

Like every other topic under the sun these days, there is a dearth of information available “out there” online and everywhere that is for or against pretty much anything open for discussion.

My best advice is, again, to see what works best for you — because we’re all different; to always check with a health professional of any applicable sector; and to keep on reading and researching and validating whatever you read and research.

In the meantime, below are a few solid online resources for maintaining physical health.

Happy Healthy New Year!

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This article is intended for informational purposes only, and should not be considered medical advice. You should consult a medical professional before making any significant medical decisions.

That said, if you have enjoyed what you read here, or found the information useful, please recommend, share and follow me here on Medium, where I write about a variety of different topics on a regular basis.

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Herbie J Pilato writes about pop-culture, stays positive, and hosts THEN AGAIN WITH HERBIE J PILATO, a TV talk show on Amazon Prime and Amazon Prime UK.

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