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Grain of Truth: The Real Case For and Against Wheat and Gluten

3.63  ·  Rating Details ·  93 Ratings  ·  26 Reviews
A Pollan-esque look at the truth about wheat: meal or menace?

No topic in nutrition is more controversial than wheat. While mega-sellers like Grain Brain and Wheat Belly suggest that wheat may be the new asbestos, Stephen Yafa finds that it has been wrongly demonized. His revealing book sets the record straight, breaking down the botany of the wheat plant we’ve hijacked f
Hardcover, 304 pages
Published May 12th 2015 by Avery
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(showing 1-30)
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Jenny GB
Apr 11, 2015 Jenny GB rated it liked it
Shelves: giveaway
I received a free copy of this book through Goodreads First Reads.

After reading this book I really needed to find some bread and eat it. Yafa's descriptions of delicious bread and other wheat products was really getting my taste buds going. I put in for this giveaway because I thought the premise sounded interesting and I thought the book would be a balanced examination of why and why not to eat wheat. I think Yafa mostly succeeded although he has a clear bias towards wheat that he shamelessly p
Apr 12, 2015 Debra rated it really liked it
Shelves: first-reads-won
3.5 stars

I received this book from Goodreads first reads giveaway in exchange for an honest review.

I found this book to be not only well written but interesting as well. When I entered the giveaway I thought this book would be divided up between two sides: The one side for gluten and the side against gluten. I was presented with much, much more than that in this book. The reader is presented with lots of information on wheat, how it grows and makes it's way into bread and many other products av
Tommie Whitener
Sep 13, 2015 Tommie Whitener rated it it was amazing
With references to respected scientific sources, Mr. Yafa exposes the anti-gluten craze as the scam that it is. More than 90% of the population not only tolerates gluten without adverse effect, but actually finds it beneficial. Also, his discussion of artisan breads in general and sourdough in particular has got me baking again. Great book!
Ava Brightly ☕
Jun 15, 2015 Ava Brightly ☕ rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: foodies, fad dieters, hypochondriacs
With all the mixed information about wheat, I welcomed reading a balanced view. But first, I don't recommend reading this while hungry; for those walking past the candy aisle to follow that delicious bakery smell, you may find yourself reading and ready to devour a loaf of bread or five. My proclivities toward bread is the sole reason I do not own a bread machine. I'd weigh 500lbs and not because I was allergic to gluten.

Personally, when someone says something is bad for you, I like to know why,
Lee Galloway
Jul 15, 2015 Lee Galloway rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: anyone who wants to understand wheat and glutten
Several books have come out recently on the wheat/gluten issue. This is the one to read if you want to read a book by someone WITHOUT a preconceived agenda. His overview of the history of wheat alone is worth the price of admission. This author does have his biases (loves sourdough bread, but with good reason, as it turns out), however he approaches the topic like a scientist/historian. What I really like, is that he did this research without any preconceived ideas, so he was open to whatever ov ...more
Jennifer Goins
Apr 13, 2015 Jennifer Goins rated it it was amazing
Dec 21, 2016 Idania rated it really liked it
A thorough and informative read. Definitely makes me feel a little better about eating breads. And I definitely learned what holes lie in current trends and so-called 'studies' about gluten. Extensively cited, and sourced from mostly primary sources of info. Interviews from mill owners, scientists, medical doctors, and bakers. They all give valid considerations of all aspects of the grain we eat and how to use it best.

Bonus: it makes you hungry for some of the great bread bakeries/mills highligh
Joseph Gendron
Mar 13, 2017 Joseph Gendron rated it really liked it
A very enjoyable read and a much needed refutation of the gluten free epidemic and the heavily processed and enriched wheat flour that is ubiquitous in American diets. I have a greater appreciation for the healthfulness of whole grains, especially the heirloom, fermented and sprouted forms. I am still a little intimidated at making and baking my own sourdough, but I am also much better informed now as to the benefit of doing so and my intent to do so remains.
Sep 30, 2016 MaryJo rated it liked it
Yafa is a journalist who investigates the claims against eating wheat coming from the current anti-gluten writers. Those who have read The Third Plate or Cooked will be familiar with some of his sources and arguments. The book is narrower in focus, and, for me, a little less engaging than those two books, although I did stick with it to the end. He argues that for many people who are not diagnosed with celiac disease, it is the way that wheat is processed that causes problems, not the grain itse ...more
Jun 18, 2015 Susan rated it really liked it
Who ya gonna believe? There is so much contradictory information about eating wheat right now, that it is hard to separate the wheat from the chaff, so to speak. Yafa starts out sounding like a spokesperson for the wheat industry, and someone who has had too much caffeine. I was skeptical.

And I still am, but not as much. He does refute much of the popular Wheat Belly and Grain Brain claims. I was pretty skeptical about those, too.

Celiac disease is very serious stuff but not common. Less serious
Heather Bridson
Apr 11, 2015 Heather Bridson rated it liked it
Shelves: first-reads
Ok, this book is really not what I expected. I expected it to be just about gluten and the gluten-free fad going on right now. That is only a tiny portion of this book. This book would be perfect for a class about wheat, its history and useage, but not for a casual read for those not really caring about the history of wheat. Now, don't get me wrong, it is a well written book. It is well researched and written in an easy to understand way. The author did an amazing job teaching me about Wheat, m ...more
Angela Boord
Nov 06, 2015 Angela Boord rated it liked it
Shelves: diet, health
I would have given this book a higher rating if it had been titled as an account of the health and environmental benefits of heritage wheat and sourdough instead of as a balanced treatment of whether or not gluten is really good for you. Most of the book is not involved with the science of whether or not gluten is good or bad or neutral for most people. Claims made by leading gluten-free proponents are bashed -- maybe even fairly, but without the careful reporting of science to back it up, the r ...more
Jun 08, 2015 Ryan rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jen Bojkov
Mar 01, 2016 Jen Bojkov rated it really liked it
Interesting look at the effects of gluten on those with gluten sensitivity. It is important to note- he is not challenging the damage of gluten on those with Celiac's Disease. He does a lot of research and comes to the conclusion that the real problem has to do with how we have come to process wheat in this country and how we have shortened the prep time taking away much of the time needed for natural processes that would make whole wheat products easier to digest. It has made me want to learn m ...more
Ganesh Vijayakumar
Nov 12, 2015 Ganesh Vijayakumar rated it really liked it
Pretty informative. By that I specifically mean, I got to know something about wheat I didn't know before. And other info that makes me angry like "Whole wheat flour only needs to contain 50% or more of whole wheat!" However, a lot of it is fairly flowery language. Agreed, if it were written as a scientific article, I probably wouldn't read it. But definitely got me curious about sourdough bread!
Jun 17, 2016 Nikki rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Finally...someone sticking up for wheat!

Speaking of the anti-wheat crowd: "They approach wheat with a blanket indictment, with no interest in or patience for different processing and cultivation methods that make all the difference. It follows that they entirely ignore any research or techniques that might weaken their arguments."

Thanks Yafa! (I'm committed now to learning how to make sour dough bread.)
Oct 16, 2015 Paula rated it liked it
Shelves: 2015
Very interesting and important topic, and I appreciate the author's efforts at proving his case, but by the end of the book his writing style was all over the place. It reminded me very much of a high school student trying to add a lot of fancy adjectives and long descriptions to fulfill the teacher's minimum page-length requirement.
Apr 10, 2015 Alice rated it it was amazing
Thank you GoodReads.
Thank you Stephen for the research you have put in to this book. I have many friends that live by the gluten free diets and will gladly share your research with them. You gave info on both sides of the issue. I now understand about gluten and grains. I know I will read this book again as there is so much to learn.
Kelly L.
Aug 02, 2015 Kelly L. rated it liked it
So far I really like this author's writing style and it is nice to get a counter balance to the "wheat is poison" message that we are hearing out there. Could it be that it is the way we process the stuff here in the US rather than the plant itself? I'll let you know!
Feb 17, 2016 Kay rated it really liked it
It dispelled many food "facts" coming from books such as "Wheat Belly" and "Grain Brain". I can relax and eat bread without worrying about it's effect on my body. What a relief!! The Word of Wisdom is correct again.
Apr 17, 2015 Connie rated it liked it
Shelves: first-reads
FTC Disclosure: I received this book free from Goodreads hoping I would review it.
Louise Kuhlman
Aug 11, 2016 Louise Kuhlman rated it really liked it
An interesting read about wheat and why we should still eat it, particularly in whole grain form. Also includes a highly detailed recipe for sourdough whole wheat bread which is delicious!
Brenda Schneider
Apr 16, 2015 Brenda Schneider rated it really liked it
An interesting book. Not what I expected but that is ok. I won this book in a goodreads giveaway
Jul 23, 2015 Janet rated it did not like it
I gave up on this book and ate half a box of crackers ... Gluten is bad for yo? It is good for you?
I wish authors would just stop writing books to sell them...make then truthful and readable.
Rose M
Rose M rated it liked it
Mar 26, 2016
Wendy rated it really liked it
Sep 19, 2015
Minh Tu Pham
Minh Tu Pham rated it it was ok
Sep 02, 2015
Harriet rated it really liked it
Feb 01, 2016
Shannon 8footsix
Shannon 8footsix rated it really liked it
Sep 25, 2015
Jay Wysocki
Jay Wysocki rated it really liked it
Nov 14, 2015
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