Not to deter the train of thought or reason for this thread...
But I do have a question... so, Jeff, you're saying since wheat was, according to those numbers, much more prevalent on the American table in the late 1800s than now, that this should mean if wheat was causing us problems, we should be healthier now that the consumption is down fromthere?
Well... I would have some questions, though... I mean, it's an interesting observation, but I'm wondering IF people WERE in fact healthier in the late 1800s...can we know that? from correspondences I've transcribed from this time era, which is only a small amount, and again, casual observations, seems everybody had lots of arthritis and digestive problems, not to mention TB and stuff (celiacs more susceptible to TB too... I think I remember reading somehwere)... not to mention also that the wheat is difffernt now as to protein/gluten content, etc., as already discussed, plus, I'd say crude milling of the older varieties, if that's the only way it was eaten-- proably sourdoughed most of the time, could be a different story than now, with wheat something or other, along with dairy something or other, seem to be included in virtually all packaged or prepared foods and the commercial levening process entirely different. But maybe you do have a point though... I will think about that. But these are my thoughts right off the bat.
But also... here and now in our own time, wheat consumption is still up from 1976, when it was only 110 lbs., even if it is at 134 lbs. currently... interesting, because in Japan, apparently wheat consumption in 1955 was less than 50 lbs. per capita, has been rising since, as Japan westernizes and trades more and more with the U.S., and in 1990 was up to 70 lb.s, still way behind where we were even at our low 110 lbs. in 1976.
But in my original thought on this, I believe it is true and safe to say that in the 1900s, western countries were the main consumer of gluten grains, and that also, they were probably the main consumers of dairy products.
Global disease stats show certain things much more common among western countries than in other cultures... and two differences that I think I see in their diets are minimal or absent dairy and gluten. Now, this is probably like saying if Sam robs a bank and Joe happens to be in the car there with Sam at the time, and then if Sam robs a liquor store and Joe happens to be riding in his car then too... probably saying Joe is a person of interest, so to speak, because even though he may not have had anything to do with either robbery, it's weird he just always happens to be there and somebody might need to investigate if Joe does in fact have any role. And if I owned a bank or liquor store, I certainly woulnd't allow Sam, the known theif, anywhere near, and I also would feel the need to keep Joe away from my establishment too, given the suspicious nature of his presence with the other thefts...just to be on the cautious side until I could learn more about Joe.
I know analogy like that proves nothing, but I'm just trying to say gluten seems fishy to me because I think it seems to always happens to be around in big numbers where certiain diseases, illnesses and discomforts common to the western world are happening.
And back to the thread... I hope something helpful comes from all of this discussion. Again... I'm certainly no scientist or anything, but I just can't help but wonder about trends that SEEM to be found in the same place, at the same time. And I do wish all the best in empowerment and health for SuzeQuilter.