Is bread paleo?
If you know anything about the paleo diet, you do not really need us to answer this question for you. Maybe you are just refusing to accept the truth because you are a life-long bread lover, and you are finding it rather hard to break that bond.
In both cases, we are sorry, but bread is not paleo.
So, if you ask us, can you eat wheat bread on paleo, the answer is no. Period.
Why is that so? Are other types of bread ok? We will answer these questions and help you understand the paleo diet a little bit better. Stay with us!
Why Is Bread Not Paleo?
The answer might be quite obvious for those of you who are well acquainted with the paleo dieting program. People who are only starting this diet might not fully understand why bread is not considered paleo, though, and that is why we will try to make it crystal clear for everyone.
It would be best if you dive a little deeper into the reasons why bread is not ok while you are on the paleo diet. If you understand why you should or should not eat a specific type of food, you will be able to accept it more easily and really start to change your eating habits for good.
If you consider the restrictions to be only temporary and count the days until your diet is over and you can go back to devouring a few slices of wheat bread with every meal, you are bound to fail. The healthy diet you choose should become your way of life. You are bound to make a few mistakes every now and then, but if you know what is good for you and eat that for the greatest part of your diet, you should be fine in the long run.
For this very reason, you should try to learn as much as you can about the paleo approach to nutrition – it is the only way you can make an informed decision whether or not it can work for you.
Every healthy diet, including paleo, will need you to remove some food altogether. Sometimes, the reasons behind that are apparent. If you are not sure how such changes will affect you, you can introduce them and see if you notice any difference for better or for worse. It will require some mindfulness or even note-taking, but it is the only bullet-proof method to be sure why some food does not work so well for you and how it affects your lifestyle, health, or weight.
For example, eating wheat bread will most probably result in bloating and stomach pain. Some people even report joint pain while few develop allergy-like symptoms.
How Come Bread Has Been Considered A Staple Food For So Long?
Bread is believed to be one of the oldest foods people have ever eaten. But let’s think about what bread is made of. You need flour and water to make the dough and then bake it.
In order to make flour, you have to grow grains. This is where we come to the facts we are interested in – grains have been grown for about 10,000 years since that was about the time of the dawn of agriculture. In Scandinavia and England, it is even less than that – only about 5,500 years ago. Humans have been around much longer than that, and they had to eat something, right?
The Paleo diet supports the notion that grains are not meant to be eaten by humans since our ancestors did not originally eat them either. We are not sure if scientists would be able to confirm this fact or not, but we are quite positive that they would agree that the soil and the way that we grow and prepare our food today are all a whole lot different from way back then.
Modern food is hugely different. It is highly processed and packed with additives. Bread is no exception. A recent study confirms that bread contains anti-nutrients that can be problematic for us. Here is what commercial white bread is made of:
The paleo approach to nutrition has been designed with the idea that we need to heal our bodies from the inside out.
The recommendation that we should eat seven to nine servings of grain-based foods is a thing of the past. We do not spend nearly as much time on our feet as our ancestors. Only a few spend their days hunting and gathering while most stay in the office or at home. We drive rather than walk.
What Happens When You Eat Wheat Bread?
1. Blood Sugar Spikes And Insulin Surges
Wheat bread, or better to say most types of bread, move through your body relatively quickly. It results in blood sugar spikes and high insulin levels. Your body is taken on a roller coaster ride from being hungry to feeling full and energized and then down again.
Wheat bread is a high glycemic index food, and that is why it creates an insulin response. Your sugar levels come up almost as soon as you eat a slice of bread, and your body produces more insulin in an attempt to lower them.
If this happens too often, it can lead to diabetes. Even if the worst-case scenario does not happen, you are sure to feel:
- Mood swings
- Increased appetite
- Inability to concentrate
Even if you choose whole grain bread that contains more nutrients and fiber, it will digest rapidly and cause more-less the same blood sugar reactions and insulin surges.
Part of the problem is the fact that many whole-grain pieces of bread sold in grocery stores and supermarkets today are not really whole-grain bread.
2. Grain Intolerance-related Diseases
Grain intolerance is quite common these days. The bad news is that it can be linked to many diseases such as:
- Joint pain
- Skin conditions
- Celiac disease
- Heart diseases
- Mental disorders
3. Reduced Mineral Absorption In Your Body
Phytates found in grains bind to minerals in food. Therefore, valuable minerals, such as zinc, cannot be used by your body. It is a clear negative.
4. Lectin-induced Inflammation In The Digestive Tract
The plant structure of grains includes lectin proteins such as gluten and others. Research has shown that these lectins cause inflammation in the digestive tract. They also contribute to a process called leaky gut syndrome, which is linked to cell death.
If you suffer from this syndrome, all the food you eat can flow out into your blood through the small holes in your digestive tract. It then deposits in different organs and causes various health issues. The food particles are not recognized by your defense systems, and they are thus attacked or destroyed. If it continues for too long, you can end up with an autoimmune disease.
Grains are acidic foods. If you eat such food too often, there will be an acidic reaction in your body. How will you know? You will feel aches, pains, and fatigue.
What is an antidote? Green veggies! Paleo recommends eating copious amounts of green vegetables.
If you go paleo and eliminate all grains from your diet, you will undoubtedly eliminate most of the problems listed here as well.
The Bottom Line
Most of you already knew the answer to the question if you can eat wheat bread on paleo, are we right? It is common sense. It is in your best interest to stay away from “white carbs” in any form, bread included.
Even the so-called “whole-grain” products found in grocery stores and supermarkets are rarely 100% made from whole grain. Sadly, sometimes they contain as little as 1% of whole grain and are still labeled as such.
Food companies tend to overuse catchy buzzwords such as “whole grain,” “organic,” and “natural.” Their only goal is to sell their products.
Besides that, even if you do find a real whole-grain product, you would not benefit from it that much. Grains are not very high in vitamins and minerals. Most nutrients you can obtain from grains can also be found in meat.
The paleo approach to your nutrition recommends eating vegetables and healthy fats. Those should be the primary sources of your energy. It would be ideal to eat grass-fed meats and organic veggies since it is the healthiest way to provide your body with everything it needs. Refined grains will give you only empty calories.
If you think waving good-bye to wheat bread forever is too drastic, make a one-month test. We are sure you can manage that long! This challenge is sure to convince you that you are much better off without wheat bread in the first place!