There’s still a debate in the nutrition community on whether wheat and wheat products are actually good for humans. The rise of celiac disease, a severe aversion to gluten, along with the common allergies to wheat in almost everyone tends to support deleting wheat from nutritious diets.
Even with the positive nutrients in wheat, one thing is certain: Most breakfast cereals are not good for you. The reason is the industrial processing that the wheat goes through to become your favorite cereal. Here’s how the “extrusion” process is explained by Sally Fallon Morell, M.A., in the March/April ’11 Well-Being Journal:
“Giant corporations take the grains from the farmer, paying a pittance for them, make them into a slurry and put them in a machine called an extruder. The grains are forced out of a tiny hole at high temperature and pressure, which shapes them into little o’s and flakes, or shreds them or puffs them. These are then subjected to sprays that give a coating of oil and sugar to seal off the cereal from the ravages of milk and to give it crunch.”
The extrusion process destroys much of the grains’ nutrients, including the fatty acids, and amino acids like lysine are damaged and mutated. In fact, Morell claims the process turns the proteins in grains into “neurotoxins.”
And listen to this: In the early ’60s researchers at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor divided 18 rats into three groups: Group 1 got cornflakes and water, group 2 got the cardboard box the cornflakes came in and water, and group 3, the controls, got rat chow and water. The rats in group 3 remained in good health throughout the experiment, The rats eating the cardboard eventually died of malnutrition, but they lived longer than group 1, which was getting the cornflakes. Apparently there was more nutrition in the box than in the cereal inside it. Think about that the next time you treat yourself to your favorite breakfast cereal.