Discovered: GMOs pack on fat Yale M.D. uncovers a shocking reason healthy diets fail—and the easy kitchen fix that will erase hunger, banish aches and melt flab fast
Call to mind a rose, so fragrant and lovely that it’s nearly impossible to resist the urge to pick it and take it home. But watch out for the thorns! Nature is full of such defense mechanisms designed to help plants survive and thrive so they can spread their seeds. And while we all know the tiny daggers on a rose’s stem can cause us pain, scientists have recently made a startling discovery: The plants we eat have invisible-to-the-eye protective measures that can cause havoc
inside the human body too. As Steven Gundry, M.D., the Yale-educated director of the Center for Restorative Medicine
in Palm Springs, California, explains, proteins called lectins are one of plants’ main defensive systems—akin to cellular thorns. Over thousands of years, humans have evolved to develop biological resistances to the lectins in most common foods that render them harmless, notes Dr. Gundry. This has allowed us to eat plants for centuries without worry…until recently, that is.
The problem: Genetically modified organisms (GMOs) harbor lectins that are new to the human diet. “GMOs are created by inserting foreign genes into plants to make the plant produce more of the lectins that enhance its ability to resist insects and other pests,” explains Dr. Gundry. As a result, insects don’t eat the GMO plants and farmers save money on pest-control products. “This sounds like a really good idea, but the problem is, this practice is introducing new lectins into our diet,
and the lectin load on humans is now higher than it’s ever been before.”
This influx of lectins sets up a cycle of creeping weight gain. “Harmful plant lectins hack into our cellular communication systems,” says Dr. Gundry. One key way lectins do this: “They mimic the blood sugar–regulating hormone insulin, so they’re able to dock to insulin receptors throughout the body and give cells wrong information.” When lectins bind to insulin receptors on fat cells, for example, they instruct the cells to store incoming blood sugar as fat. Lectins also prevent blood sugar from entering muscle cells—and without the necessary sugar to fuel their functions, muscles shrink. “The more harmful lectins we eat, the more muscle wastes away,” says Dr. Gundry. As a result, the body thinks it’s starving and turns up hunger hormone production. But if you give in to those cravings? Incoming calories are stored as fat. The cumulative result is less metabolism-revving lean muscle and ever-growing pockets of fat.
Complicating matters: Even women who avoid GMO fruit and vegetables are affected. According to the Center for Food Safety, a nonprofit consumer advocacy group, at least 75 percent of processed foods contain GMO ingredients. And science published in the International Food Research Journal reveals GMOs are in all processed foods that contain soybean oil, soy lecithin and cornstarch. Similarly, GMO corn and soy are fed to the poultry, cattle and even fish in our food supply. “Most of the corn fed to livestock in the United States is genetically modified,” Dr. Gundry asserts. “When you eat the meat from those animals, harmful lectins make their way into you.”
Fortunately, it’s possible—and even easy—to minimize lectin intake. Dr. Gundry says simple changes to how you shop for groceries and prep meals can eliminate the majority of harmful lectins in your diet. “You’re not going to eliminate all lectins from your diet but you are going to control which ones you consume and how much,” he adds. The reason: “Not all lectins are harmful—we actually use our own lectins in the human body to communicate information between cells.”
In just days, you’ll see the change, promises Dr. Gundry, who lost 70 pounds by avoiding lectins. Women who follow his food formula drop up to 4 pounds in 3 days. And the fat keeps falling off. In fact, an animal study in the journal Nutrition & Metabolism suggests that the diet improves the body’s ability to properly respond to insulin, which is a sign that the vicious cycle of creeping weight gain has halted. Indeed, animals in the study that were put on a lectin-free diet weighed 22 percent less and had 43 percent less jiggly subcutaneous fat than those on a standard diet.
As the fat melts away, the benefits multiply. “Your body has the ability to restore itself once you eliminate the foods that prevent it from healing,” Dr. Gundry says. “My autoimmune and arthritis patients revel in their newly pain-free and energized lives.” Science also shows that a low-lectin diet eases inflammation by 82 percent, and women FIRST spoke to report freedom from brain fog as well as glowing skin. Read on for the plan that can help you look and feel decades younger!
“Once women begin the program, weight loss is almost inevitable.” —Steven Gundry, M.D.
Steven Gundry, M.D.