What do Salmonella, E coli, and bread have in common? 28. January 2011 William Davis (22) Say you happen to eat some chicken fingers contaminated with bacteria because the 19-year old kid behind the counter failed to wash his hands after using the toilet, or because the kitchen is poorly managed with unwashed counters and cutting boards, or because the food is undercooked. You get a bout of diarrhea and cramps, along with a desire to banish chicken from your life. Here's yet another odd wheat phenomenon: About 30% of people who eliminate wheat from their lives experience an acute food poisoning-like effect on re-exposure. You've been wheat-free for, say, 6 months. You've lost 25 lbs from your wheat belly, you've regained energy, joints feel better. You go to an office party where they're serving some really yummy looking bruschetta. Surely a couple won't hurt! Within a hour, you're getting that awful rumbling and unease that precede the explosion. The majority of people who experience a wheat re-exposure syndrome will have diarrhea and cramps that can last from hours to days, similar to food poisoning. (Why? Why would a common food trigger a food poisoning-like effect? It happens too fast to attribute to inflammation.) Others experience asthma attacks, joint pains that last 48 hours to a week, mental fogginess, emotional distress, even rage (in males). Wheat re-exposure in the susceptible provides a tidy demonstration of the effects of this peculiar product of genetic research. So if you are wheat-free but entertain an occasional indulgence, don't be surprised if you have to make a beeline to the toilet.