Bad Bread

I am asked very often why people nowadays seem to have an issue with wheat, and especially bread, when years ago, we seemed to be OK. There are loads of factors involved, but did anyone see the article in the Mail on Sunday by Alex Renton about how our bread is made? You can read the full story here: IS YOUR BREAD MAKING YOU ILL?, but here is a summary for you:

“There is growing belief among medical researchers that modern industrial baking methods may be behind today’s extraordinary rise in digestive illness, such as gluten intolerance and coeliac disease.  

Bread historians bemoan the day in 1961 when the Chorleywood Baking Process (CBP) was introduced.    By juggling chemicals and adding three times as much yeast, then mixing at high speed, scientists at Chorleywood Food Research Institute brought out a bread that was softer and lasted twice as long.    This was the start of modern bread.  80% of all bread is made the Chorleywood way.

The most significant charge against CBP is that by increasing the yeast, it may have caused modern bread-related digestive illness.   More worrying are the enzymes that are used to aid the process which don’t have to be declared on ingredients lists because they are ‘processing aids’.      One of the most common, amylase, causes asthma, a common disease among bakers.  Others have been linked to gut illnesses such as coeliac disease.  As author Joanna Blythman, a critic of the food industry, says in her book “Shopped: ‘Enzymes are our supermarkets’ way of giving us “fresh” bread that lasts a week .”

Bread contains hydrogenated and fractionised fats – supposed to have been outlawed by most companies now-,  flour treatment agents (oxidant chemicals to make bread fluffier), reducing agents to make dough stretchier,  emulsifiers to make bread softer and give an illusion of freshness,  mould killer calcium propionate, which can cause eczema & allergies, enzymes from fungus or bacteria, which do NOT have to be declared on the label and are widely suspected of being linked to allergies, asthma and gut diseases. ”  

Give us our daily bread? I think not.

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