When we crave foods or overeat, we are quick to blame a lack of self control or will power. It appears that we may be overly critical of ourselves, when you discover what is hidden in our foods. Ji Sayer, Founder of 'Green Med Info', wrote an article 'Do hidden opiates in our food explain food addictions?' and what he found was indeed eye opening!

Many of us health conscious people have somewhat naturally come across the fact that we feel better when we avoid wheat. The gluten free movement which has exploded in our society, has triggered many people who are experiencing less than perfect health, to give it a try. Many people as a result have found that their level of health and wellbeing has improved and many health problems, actually disappear.

If like me you read articles about the latest health discoveries, you may have read that milk and other diary products may be as equally damaging to our health. We are the only mammal that continues to drink milk after weaning from our mother's milk and the most common milk we consume is cows milk, which is designed to nourish baby cows, many times larger than ourselves. How could this possibly be harmful when we have consumed it all our lives and have been taught in school that milk is one of only 2 'whole' foods (the other being eggs) which is necessary for good health and is very good for us?

Well what Ji discovered, through the analysis of copious amounts of research and studies, was that in fact both wheat and milk contain heavy concentrations of 'food opiates', being especially high in cows milk!

In fact:

"many of the most commonly consumed foods in Western Culture, actually contain narcotic properties associated with the presence of psychoactive chemicals that bind opiod receptors in the nervous system"

Coffee is another drink which we may actively seek out, for the caffeine's ability to keep us alert; but there is also an opposite and yet desirable effect that we receive when we drink coffee. This comes from its opiate-like properties, which may relax or reduce stress and elevate our threshold for reaching high states of anxiety and aggressive levels. These results may be maintained, if coffee is consumed continuously. However the presence of the opiate-like properties of coffee, also explains why when we suddenly stop drinking it, that we experience similar symptoms to someone withdrawing from opiate drugs!

Other foods which contain food opiates include spinach, rice protein, meat and fish protein, chocolate and sugar, including fructose (fruit sugar) ,sucrose (table sugar) and glucose. So when we look at the average person's high sugar, wheat, diary, meat/fish/rice protein, chocolate and caffeine riddled diets, we will certainly be shocked to see the accumulative effect that these opiate containing foods will be having on our addictive food cravings! Maybe the self criticism we aim at ourselves for a lack of will power when trying to maintain a healthy diet, needs to be placed where it belongs, on our food choices and the manufacturers decision to put these addictive products in so many of our processed foods.

The best way to see if 'food opiates' are effecting your health, is to eliminate them from your diet. Once out of your system for a few months, you can reintroduce them, one at a time and experience the bodies full reaction to them. It may be surprising how many chronic physiological effects you may have lost. You will probably experience a renewed level of health and vitality and finally be in actual control over what you put in your mouth, through logical choice, not through some form of addiction.

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