17 Jun #90 Fatal Conveniences™: White Bread: Bleached Out Nutrition
I grew up eating sandwiches made on Wonder Bread, full of processed meat and cheese. Thank goodness those days are over. Or are they? That white bread you buy at the grocery store may look appetizing, but what is it doing to your health?
Welcome to Fatal Conveniences™.
Grains are good for you. Bleaching grains and taking out the nutrients is not.
America has an obsession with sandwiches. And although sandwiches can indeed be healthy, it all depends on the bread. White bread has been a staple in lunchboxes and dinner tables for over a century. How we got here isn’t entirely clear, but the details are enough to make anyone’s head spin.
In this episode, I’ll go through the history of commercial bread and why in the world they started bleaching it. I also break down the dangerous chemicals and preservatives in white bread and what each one does to your body. I’m not asking you to cut out bread altogether. By all means, enjoy those carbs, just stop paying money for toxic mushy dough. Grains are good, as long as they’re organic, fresh and not leached on all their healthy nutrients. Bake your own, or support companies that pride themselves on making natural, whole grain bread products.
Other info in this Fatal Conveniences™ segment:
- The history of white bread
- Good grains
- Necessary nutrients in grains
- ADA and why you should steer clear of it
- Healthy alternatives
Darin: It’s that time of the week for another fatal convenience. This is a bite-size segment that addresses some of society’s fatal conveniences and the steps you can take to avoid becoming a victim of them. I define fatal conveniences as the things we may be doing because the world we live in makes us believe we have to, tap water, shampoo, sunglasses, food. I dive into the hidden truths behind some of our everyday choices that could not only be harming us but even killing us, so let’s dive in.
Darin: Hey, everybody, welcome to the show. I’m stoked. I’m getting back into these fatal conveniences after the layoff while we were filming. It’s always astonishing and surprising to me as we dig in. To find out, I learned something all the time, I learned a little bit of history, I learned some science behind some of these things. I started with these fatal conveniences with some knowledge. And every time I dig, and I look under the hood at these things, it always blows me away. And if I can inspire you to make some changes, that literally is what it’s all about. And most of you if you’re on the health journey, you probably will know that eating white bread, commercially white bread, is a bad idea. There are so many ways. So let’s just know that you refine everything, the bran, the endosperm, the fiber, the nutrients you sift all of that out, and you have a white bleached chemicalized flour that they then use a fast-acting yeast to hurry up and rise, slice it for you, put it in a plastic bag, which is a whole nother thing, and then give it to you. Okay, let’s give some context to it. So there’s always this idea that the whiter the food, processed food, the worse it is. And you can even say that with poultry. Poultry is horrible for you as well, but we’re just going to stick with these refined foods. This is very interesting. You know, obviously, we all grew up, I grew up with Wonder Bread, Bologna, and Velveeta cheese in plastic and slathered on mayonnaise, and then boom, that’s in our lunch box. And I grew up on that stuff. Thank God, I am not eating that stuff anymore. I hope you’re not either. And I hope you’re not giving that to your kids. So the earliest breads made with grain, the research we dug into goes back to 800 years before Christ. The Mesopotamians refined this process by using two flat circular stones. They stack them on top of each other and ground the grain, AKA that was the first milling. These stones were continuously rotated, and they led to creating the first flours, and finally ground that flour. But then we started taking over, we started sifting out the bran, we started sifting out the germ layer, the endosperm, all of this stuff, the nutrients. Literally, were just sifting it away, removing that. And then we started with this weird idea because we didn’t like all the colors and some fascination with white clean foods thinking it was clean, we sort of bleaching this stuff. So for hundreds of years, the finest white breads were sold in whole loaves to be cut at home. You know, that was like the French baguette. You buy it, you take it. It’s white inside, so that’s refined grain still. But in 1917, a jeweler, Otto Rohwedder created the first mechanization of the bread slicer. And then it was finally installed in a factory in 1928. And then boom, within two years 90% of the store-bought bread was sliced at the factory. So we can see now the conveniences that started to set in during that time, perfect bread, always the same color, always uniform, sliced together. And that was really dubbed the first American bread and Wonder Bread took over it. It literally was deemed the perfect loaf of bread. And of course, we all ate it back in the day in the ’70s and ’80s. Man, we just consumed the hell out of that. So what’s the convenience? Obviously, you just go to the store, you buy the bread, it’s always tasting the same, it’s always sliced for you, it looks the same. So the white bread is the convenience of the flavor, the consistency, the taste, and the affordability. It was so cheap because there’s nothing in it. All the bakeries use the white flour, sifted and refined. And white bread then, because it was so devoid of things, it was causing nutritional challenges they needed to then fortify. And so then they fortified typically with the main ones, iron, niacin, thiamin, riboflavin, and folic acid. So the thing is, it already had all those things in there and more, and then we had the bright idea of just sifting it all out and adding it back in. Is that just the weirdest thing ever? We are absolutely weird humans. Well, listen, there’s so much science around this. So when you’re buying cheap bread and white refined bread, you’re basically punching your pancreas like a professional boxer. Many scientific studies show that processing and commercializing bread making had a definite impact on nutrition and public health, and the production and the efficiencies, the extended of shelf life, the additives, and then you quickly had lobbying, and so then you didn’t have to disclose all of these additives. And we have, again, all this stuff in the show notes. Well, I’m not going to spend a lot of time on the refined grain part of it. It goes down to this, no fiber, no control of insulin. If you’re eating a bunch of meat with your bread, now, you’re also creating a perfect storm where you’re gumming up the receptors for the insulin as well as including a huge amount of glucose in your blood. So now you’ve just created a perfect storm and you’re creating and manifesting type two diabetes. Harvard School of Public Health did a lot of glycemic index on this stuff and it’s absolutely connected to manifesting and the bell curve goes right along with diabetes increases, and the amount of white bread was increased, and then bread just was demonized. And on top of it, they started using fast-acting yeast, which they didn’t need to use the slow-acting anymore because they took out the germ, the endosperm, and all of the other nutrients that normally the slow-acting yeast and the fermentation process, you’ve heard that before, fermentation process allowing the conversion of the anti-nutrients into the nutrients that were then healthy for you. And that was a minimum of a 36-hour yeast that they use. But then they didn’t use that anymore, they use a fast-acting, which allowed for the bread to rise quick because it didn’t have all those nutrients that you needed. So it led to huge amounts of weight gain. And the interesting thing is symptoms of depression. So this was research in 2015 from the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, and they found this direct link between the consumption of refined carbs like exactly the biggest culprit, white bread, and depression in post-menopausal women because it just slammed their hormonal response and caused blood sugar levels to drop to just ridiculously low levels, which would lead to bigger mood swings, bigger fatigue, and bigger symptoms of depression. Then it gets into the chemicals that they’re using with the white bread, bleaches, come on. I don’t even have to say anymore. You already know where I’m going. So the bleaching of this stuff that whitens all of this stuff and softens all of these things, this is such a bad idea. The first chemical is azodicarbonamide. Yes, that is a mouthful. It’s called ADA, that’s the first chemical. This ADA chemical substance approved for use as a whitening agent in all cereal flours and dough as a conditioner as well and in breadmaking. It helped to make the pigments be more natural, it took out the grays. This ADA, and the crazy thing is it can oxidize with these pigments and that’s what’s creating the whitening part of this. This ADA also acts as a general-purpose blowing agent in the industrial production of rubber and plastics, and is used to manufacture rubber soles, artificial leather, and guess what? Your freaking yoga mats. So according to the FDA, this is considered safe as a food additive. Are you out of your mind? So there was a maximum level, 0.004 or 5%, but the EU says, “You know what? That stuff’s radical and we’re banning it.” And the Americans just blew this off because what it does is it reacts when it’s heated. So okay, you’re studying it out the way that you’re actually using it, and they come up with the percentage, thanks, FDA. And then when you’re heating it, it creates what’s called a semicarbazide and urethane. And urethane is anticipated to be a big human carcinogen, and this is according to the US Department of Health and Human Services. So this semicarbazide was shown genotoxicity in some animals due to the risks posed by the ADA. Europe banned this chemical as a blowing agent in food in all forms in 2005, then they just used ascorbic acid and it apparently did an okay job there. So this is chemical number one that’s in there. By the way, it’s not listed. They don’t have to list it. It’s part of the processing part of it. So what I’m telling you, you can’t even flip around going, hey, I got to find white bread that doesn’t have it. Guess what, most of it does. The next one is calcium propionate. And this stuff is interesting. I had no idea what this was. It’s a commonly used food preservative, of course, because they want this to last forever. Calcium propionate, manufacturers add this to many different types of products including bread, animal feed to get shelf life, frosting, puddings, jams, jellies, cheeses, to prevent the growth of mold. They just want to kill your food. That’s why you have to eat whole fresh food. This stuff is such an experiment, it’s unbelievable. It was thoroughly vetted by the US Food and Drug Administration and it deemed as generally recognized as safe. Great, guys. Thank you. And then a study conducted by Dr. [00:12:57] director of the [00:13:01] Center for Metabolism Research at Harvard, found that this ingredient may disrupt the metabolism. Here’s the thing, when the FDA comes in and says it’s generally recognized as safe, they don’t look at all of these things. They don’t look at metabolism. They don’t look at heat interactions. They don’t look at other things that they’re adding to the food. They don’t look at the chemistry that’s going on in the food when it’s cooked and used. They’re not looking at all of this stuff. It’s impossible. So when this other doctor, Dr. [00:13:37] studied this, it disrupts the actual metabolism triggering the body to produce what, more glucose blood sugar. So not only are you punching your insulin in the freaking face, this chemical, this calcium propionate is also adding to the punch and making this glucose metabolism and you now are sprinting face first in insulin first and pancreas first for type two diabetes. So it goes on and on and on in this research, and they found overwhelming studies that this is directly linked to messing up your metabolism and gaining weight. Again, I have this research in the show notes and you can check it out. The study was small and so the initial claims were strong based on this, but they also added the use of propionic acid has increased over time quite dramatically. It actually overlaps with the time where there was a great rise in obesity and metabolic disease. Do you think that’s a coincidence? I think not. The next chemical is chlorine dioxide. They used to use nitrogen trichloride. This was used to bleach the flour in the ’50s, and they discovered, guess what? It was an absolute neurological disorder causing neurological disorder in humans and dogs. So after it did that, they took it out. Now they’re giving you chlorine dioxide. This is crazy. And so now that this chlorine dioxide doesn’t cause the formation of poisonous– so now, of course, it doesn’t cause this poisonous reaction in the body from the nitrogen, but it also now is destroying all of the vitamin E. So it’s interacting with the great antioxidant, vitamin E, that is actually in flour and grains, and it just annihilates it. And I would venture to guess is my opinion that it’s going to annihilate other healthy antioxidants that you have in your body if it’s reacting to vitamin C like that, that’s my point of view. And then the other one is benzoyl peroxide. Benzoyl peroxide is another breadmaking additive that they don’t have to put in on the label, they don’t have to tell you about it. The FDA fast tracks it. It’s generally recognized as safe. And then some animal studies showed that the chemical caused harm again and an antioxidant status directly with your liver. Because most current researches is limited to animal and test tube studies using very high doses of these chemical compounds, most studies in humans are needed to evaluate the safety even more, but it’s not looking good. And the next one is potassium bromate. This is an additive that’s used in strengthening the dough. It also oxidizes with the flour. And this one has been shown to be carcinogenic in rats and being nephrotoxic in both men, experimental animals, when given orally. That’s a lot of chemicals, I get it. But now go to local bakeries that are using whole healthy wheat sourdough fermentation 36-hour old process, it is ancient as it comes, you get the nutrient-rich, natural within the grains, their grains are intact, they are not refined, you get the bran, the germ endosperm, you get all of those things and the fiber, as well as you get the natural B vitamins, you get the natural iron, zinc, magnesium, vitamin E, and selenium and more. So obviously, the main thing is you’re not getting punched anymore in your insulin receptors and your pancreas, and you’re not getting exposed to these harmful chemicals. The other thing is you’re getting the fiber, you’re getting the nutrients, you’re reducing constipation, you’re lowering cholesterol, reducing cancer risk by eating whole healthy grains and breads. And you’re also can reduce the risk of type two diabetes, keeping the whole healthy grains and endosperm, and fibers intact, and that is the most beneficial. And then of course, using the slow-acting yeasts, you’re getting better digestion of all of those nutrients. Wean off the white bread, throw it away, give it away and start to get whole wheat. Obviously, I didn’t say this, but please do not eat just wheat because most of it is sprayed in genetically modified organisms through the glyphosate that’s within the seeds. So clearly, I’m not supporting all wheat or all sourdough or all rye or all of this stuff. You want to swap out, I get it, it’s a little more expensive, but you need to vote with your dollars and spend the money on the nutrients and the nutrition and make your own bread. It’s really cheap. It actually is very, very cheap. And once you get the rising and the fermentation down and the timing of everything, it’s fantastic. And play with it, use different grains, make it with your kids. And that’s a fantastic way to get involved with your food making. Literally, your hands and your brains involved like playing with an ancient fermentation that’s converting nutrients and giving it to you. Alright, that was a long one. Thanks for tuning in, and I love you all, and ditch the white bread, and express yourself through getting whole healthy, full grain bread again.
Darin: Thanks for tuning in everyone. I hope that left you feeling inspired to take a closer look at the everyday choices you’re making and how they could be impacting your health and even the planet. If you want to learn more about life’s fatal conveniences, head over to fatalconveniences.com. You can sign up for the exclusive access to Fatal Conveniences episodes, news, insights, and more. And all this great stuff gets sent each week straight to your inbox, making it really easy. Now, that’s a convenience without the negative side effects. It only takes a few seconds to join. Just fill in the form and take that amazing step towards making better choices. Remember, small changes can have big impact. So, keep diving my friends, keep diving. And if you haven’t had a chance to check out the interview, I released earlier on the week, here’s what you missed:
Tim: Your mind has to be stronger than your feelings. Think about every bad decision that you’ve made in your career, in your life, or whatever. It was probably made when your feelings were stronger than your mind. And we make those decisions because we don’t want to hurt other people’s feelings. So we put our feelings at risk for the sake of other people’s and it ends up manifesting over time. We start to hold grudges against those individuals for the decisions we made over the feelings, instead of going, yeah, you know what, this is what my mind said, I should have done it.
Darin: This episode is produced by my team at Must Amplify, an audio marketing company that specializes in giving a voice to a brand and making sure the right people hear it. If you would like or are thinking about doing a podcast or even would like a strategy session to add your voice to your brand in a powerful way, go to www.mustamplify.com/darin. That’s www.mustamplify.com/darin.