Just who is "Real Facts 2000"?

This is an example of what seems to be developing over at Amazon.com, posted as a "book review":

The author has no credentials, no credibility, just a small cult of terribly misinformed followers. Don't be fooled by the high volume screech against wheat and grains. Allegations of "secret ingredients in wheat" to make you eat more, or comparisons to cigerettes. Seriously?! For over 8000 years wheat has sustained and grown human kind, oh and it tastes good when mixed with a little water and yeast. Every nutritionist and serious medical professional will tell you that bread is the most economical and safe source of essential nutrients. In fact, bread is handed out in natural disasters because it sustains life without food safety issues or requiring refrigeration. And now, suddenly it will kill you. Comical! This book is such a bone headed, misinformed way to just scare people into not eating.

As for secret ingredients, humm, apparently the author is ignorant of the food laws that regulate everything that goes into food and on food labels. Unlike some enforcement agencies, the FDA has some serious teeth behind its enforcement. As for frankenwheat, again seriously?! Wheat, due to its ubiquitous presence in the world is treated as sacrosant from any GMO research or development.

If you need real, science based information on healthy eating, check out [...] and leave this book and its cult in the compound.

If you recognize the wording and tone, you will readily recognize the footprints of the Wheat Lobby here. "Terribly misinformed followers"? . . . Hmmm. "Food laws"? I didn't realize that eating more "healthy whole grains" was a . . . law?

Make no mistake: There are people and organizations who have a heavy stake in your continued consumption of the equivalent of 300 loaves of bread per year. There are people and organizations (read: pharmaceutical industry) who have a big stake on the "payoff" of your continued consumption of "healthy whole grains."

This is not a book review; this is part of a concerted, organized campaign to discredit a message that needs to be heard.

Anybody from the media listening?

Comments (38) -

  • Linda J

    9/29/2011 3:24:51 AM |

    Time to report that review - and click that it wasn't helpful.   There is a remedy and we need to get on it.

  • Donald Kjellberg

    9/29/2011 5:04:36 AM |

    On one of his/her other reviews, there is a reference that states, "For real information on healthy and balanced lifestyles including moderate physical activity go to www.mypyramid.gov."

    Moderate physical activity? Is that like moderate eating activity?

  • Sean

    9/29/2011 8:33:04 AM |

    Another person comparing a Paleo-style diet to a cult. You really just have to laugh at these idiots. Sure I like to shave my head and chant over a hunk of beef in the basement, whilst burning candles and wearing a robe, but that's not because of Dr Davis.

  • Howard Lee Harkness

    9/29/2011 10:57:00 AM |

    Hope this isn't a dupe; I tried posting and got an "internal server error," so I'm trying again.

    Dr. Davis: Have you heard of the "Streisand Effect?" This 'reviewer' is basically drowned in positive reviews, and is best ignored. The review that you mention is feeble enough that anyone capable of sentient though would dismiss it, and I think you would have been better off not calling anybody's attention to it.

  • Dr. William Davis

    9/29/2011 11:18:51 AM |

    Hi, Howard--

    Point taken.

    What I was intending to do was not so much pick on a negative review, which I can live with quite easily, but point out that this may be the start of a bigger effort, a larger campaign of disinformation. In other words, if this was just some guy who thought Wheat Belly sucked, that's okay. But I suspect this was not the work of a lone individual; I'll bet this was posted by an ad agency being paid by the wheat lobby.

  • Dr. William Davis

    9/29/2011 11:19:35 AM |

    If you step back for some perspective, Sean, you are absolutely right: This is, at many levels, pretty entertaining stuff!

  • Dr. William Davis

    9/29/2011 11:23:25 AM |

    Funny, Donald.

    I feel pretty "balanced" myself!

  • Dr. William Davis

    9/29/2011 11:25:27 AM |

    Raise awareness is my answer, Linda.

    Raise awareness that this is not likely the work of someone who disagrees with the premise of Wheat Belly. It is likely the work of someone in an advertising agency being paid for by the wheat lobby, the start of a broader disinformation campaign---just like they said they would in their press releases.

    It reminds me of the magazine ads from years ago paid for by Big Tobacco countering the arguments that smoking was bad. Did anybody take them seriously?

  • nina

    9/29/2011 11:51:48 AM |

    Well of course they are right.  Just look at some of the people online who have wrecked their health by eliminating healthy wheat:



    Yep brothers and sisters, keep the faith, eat the wheat (and drink the Kool Aid) NOT.


  • nina

    9/29/2011 11:57:11 AM |

    Oh..... I forgot the other zombie cripple who is a victim of an unhealthy wheat free diet.

    Yep Dr Richard Bernstein.  He was just an engineer, but trained as a doctor so he could spread the world.

    Very very dangerous man.


    Keep the faith and eat a muffin (NOT).


  • chuck

    9/29/2011 12:05:39 PM |

    To many people, there are many NEW revelations in the book Wheat Belly.  I have seen so much criticism of this book in various forums and it is by people who have never even held the book in their hand let alone read it.  Over time, this book will have a pretty big impact as more people actually do read it.

  • marilynb

    9/29/2011 12:25:08 PM |

    With just the first 5 words of that review, "The author has no credentials", I knew the reviewer was just blowing smoke out his butt.  Hello, a cardiologist is not credentialed???  The whole thing is unprofessionally written.  If the wheat lobby wants to discredit your book. they'll need better people than this joker.

  • Soul

    9/29/2011 1:33:53 PM |

    You know it is kind of funny, I'm often asking the opposite question of where isn't media!

  • James Buch PhD

    9/29/2011 2:23:42 PM |

    "Rsyinh Greens Alters Your Genes"

    A new Chinese study showing that genes from plants survive the digestive tract and can be expressed in animal tissues. There is some limited discussion near the end of other studies regarding GMO genes and the claim that in at least one study, the GM O genes were found in animal tissues.

    So, the dangers of drastic gene modification and cross-breeding of plants (such as our friend wheat) may be getting a more scientific basis.... but this is only one animal study. So, time will tell, hopefully.


  • Jana Miller

    9/29/2011 3:02:45 PM |

    So creepy....I guess with all the opposition, you must be on the right track. Thanks for all your research. I appreciate you.

  • Tyler

    9/29/2011 3:40:34 PM |

    You are absolutely right. The cultish comparisons are very laughable, but I think there are some similarities when someone discovers such a drastic improvement in the quality of their life in such a small change... sure, eliminating wheat and eating more bacon are a science backed and delicious notion, but I, for one, am willing to admit that I have happily proselytized a handful of curious friends.

    Now they eat a more paleo/primal diet and no longer suffer from the fatigue, lethargy, and autoimmune issues they weren't even aware of. So I guess I have converted them (like a cult aims to do?), but it wasn't malicious or ill-founded. It's changed their lives in tangible ways and none of them have looked back on the glorious life of cupcakes and doughnuts as a safe harbor before their new increased energy levels, more comfortable and fit body, and depression and mood swing-less days.

    So maybe we should be weary of sharing "the good news" of paleo lifestyle/wheat elimination... or maybe we shouldn't feel bad about sharing this information with people who want what we've uncovered.

    Either way, Sean, are we still on for bleeding out that lamb in my garage tonight? I'd like to boil the bones, too.

  • Fat Guy Weight Loss

    9/29/2011 4:13:46 PM |

    You could be optimistic this is just a classic troll, but I agree given the tone and wording that this is obviously written by someone paid by someone from the wheat lobby.  Heading over to hit the button that that review is not helpful.

  • Dr Ostric

    9/29/2011 4:45:20 PM |

    I left an e-mail with John Stossel, who has written about toxic partnerships involving government and ADM in his books. I like his work, and I like his ideas. I don't know if it will help, but I am on your side Dr. Davis. I am committed to ideas and not ideology, and dialogue and not dogmatism. Keep up the excellent work. I am recommending Wheat Belly for all of my obese patients who have wound problems, diabetes, and even for my carpal tunnel patients who have type II and are obese. With 47 trillion dollars expected to be spent for care of chronic illness in 2030, we need to do something. What I was so surprised about this book is how my wife took to it, and now is spreading the word to. By the way, your recipes ROCK!

  • STG

    9/29/2011 6:01:00 PM |

    I am going to amazon right now to make so waves with this ignorant post by the wheat trade organization rep.--what bogus propaganda!

  • Lindas

    9/29/2011 10:51:38 PM |

    Dear Doctor Davis and fellow anti- wheat bellies:::::I'll be posting this on Amazon

    Attention real facts 2000 and other uninformed critics who fear the truth, that can save your own life
    .....Walk down the street and see the flagrant, extreme, mutli-generational obesity. Go into a doctors waiting room and see the huge numbers of diabetic, metabolically ill patients.
    Look at some old photos taken in America in the 1900's- 1970's such as those of crowds on Jones' Beach, or crowds in the streets after World War II AND OBSERVE ONE VERY SIGNIFICANT thing...there is no  OBESITY !   WHAT'S WRONG...WHAT HAPPENED???? APPARENTLY THE "SO-CALLED-RECOMMENDED FDA DIETARY EATING PROTOCAL "   HAS FAILED....IT'S NOT WORKING !!!!!!     America 's got a lot of weight to loose.....At least try getting the wheat out.    TTthere is too much MSG (wheat based) a known neurotoxin hanging around in our food sources also.
    Be sure your fighting for your health....not against it !

  • John Lorscheider

    9/30/2011 12:04:28 AM |

    If Washington, along with the various special interst groups, would have real interest in promoting health and economic reform they would get rid of corporate welfare like wheat, corn, soybeans, rice, and cotton subsidies instead of lining their pockets with taxpayer dollars.  The following excerpt is from http://www.downsizinggovernment.org/agriculture/subsidies

    Six Reasons to Repeal Farm Subsidies

    1. Farm Subsidies Redistribute Wealth. Farm subsidies transfer the earnings of taxpayers to a small group of fairly well-off farm businesses and landowners. USDA figures show that the average income of farm households has been consistently higher than the average of all U.S. households. In 2007, the average income of farm households was $86,223, or 28 percent higher than the $67,609 average of all U.S. households.19 When large-scale federal farm subsidies began in the 1930s, farm incomes were only half the national average.

    Although policymakers love to discuss the plight of the small farmer, the bulk of federal farm subsidies goes to the largest farms.20  For example, the largest 10 percent of recipients have received 72 percent of all subsidy payments in recent years.21 Numerous large corporations and even some wealthy celebrities receive farm subsidies because they are the owners of farmland. It is landowners, not tenant farmers or farm workers, who benefit from subsidies. And one does not even have to be the owner of farmland to receive subsidies: Since 2000 the USDA has paid $1.3 billion in farm subsidies to people who own land that is no longer used for farming.22  

    2. Farm Subsidies Damage the Economy. The extent of federal micromanagement of the agriculture sector is probably unique in American industry. In most industries, market prices balance supply and demand, profit levels signal investment opportunities, market downturns lead to cost cutting, and entrepreneurs innovate to provide better products at lower prices. All of those market mechanisms are blunted or nonexistent in government-controlled agriculture markets. As a result, federal agricultural policies produce substantial “deadweight losses” and reduced U.S. incomes.

    Farm programs result in overproduction, overuse of marginal farmland, and land price inflation, which results from subsidies being capitalized into land values. Subsidy programs create less efficient planting, induce excess borrowing by farmers, cause insufficient attention to cost control, and result in less market innovation. And policies often work against the claimed goals of Congress. As an example, while members of Congress say that they support small farms, owners of large farms receive the largest subsidies, which has given them the financing they need to purchase smaller farms.23

    In 2006 the Congressional Budget Office reviewed major studies that examined the repeal of U.S. and foreign agricultural subsidies and trade barriers.24 The CBO found that all the studies they reviewed showed that both the U.S. and global economies would gain from the repeal of subsidies and trade barriers.  

    3. Farm Programs Are Prone to Scandal. Like most federal subsidy programs, farm programs are subject to bureaucratic inefficiencies, recipient fraud, and congressional pork-barrel politics. The Government Accountability Office found that as much as half a billion dollars in farm subsidies are paid improperly or fraudulently each year.25 Farmers create complex legal structures to get around legal subsidy limits.26 And many farmers decide not to pay back their USDA loans: in 2001 the GAO found that more than $2 billion in farm loans were delinquent.27

    Congress and the USDA distribute payments for farm emergencies carelessly. Disaster payments often go to farmers who have no need for them, and in many cases have not even asked for them.28 To receive benefits, some farmers claim to have experienced damage even when they haven’t.

    A powdered milk scandal in 2003 illustrates the USDA’s bureaucratic ineptitude. That year, the government decided to give some of its massive stockpile of powdered milk to cattle ranchers for feed after a drought. But much of the milk ended up being illegally diverted to other uses, which allowed speculators to earn large profits at taxpayers’ expense.29

    Perhaps the biggest scandal with regard to farm subsidies is that congressional agriculture committees are loaded with members who are active farmers and farmland owners. Those members have a direct financial stake whenever Congress votes to increase subsidies, which is an obvious conflict of interest.

    4. Farm Subsidies Damage U.S. Trade Relations. Global stability and U.S. security are enhanced when less developed countries achieve stronger economic growth. America can further that end by encouraging the reduction of trade barriers. However, U.S. and European farm subsidies and agricultural import barriers are a serious hurdle to making progress in global trade agreements. U.S. sugar protections, for example, benefit only a very small group of U.S. growers but are blocking broader free trade within the Americas.

    The World Trade Organization estimates that even a one-third drop in all tariffs around the world would boost global output by $686 billion, including $164 billion for the United States.30  Trade liberalization would boost the exports of U.S. goods that are competitive on world markets, including many agricultural products, but U.S. farm subsidies and protections stand in the way of that goal.

    5. Farm Programs Damage the Environment. Federal farm policies are thought to damage the natural environmental in numerous ways. Subsidy programs can cause overproduction, which draws marginal farmland into active production. Similarly, trade barriers induce agriculture production on land that is less naturally productive. As a result, marginal lands that might otherwise be used for parks or forests are locked into farm use because farm subsidy payments get capitalized into higher prices for land.

    Subsidies are also thought to induce excessive use of fertilizers and pesticides. Producers in regions that have better soils and climates tend to use less fertilizers and pesticides than do producers in less favorable climates, who can only afford to farm in the poor locations because of subsidies. An excessive use of chemicals can contaminate lakes, rivers, and other water systems.

    Florida sugar provides a good example. Large areas of wetlands have been converted to cane sugar production because of artificially high domestic sugar prices. Unfortunately, the phosphorous in fertilizers used by sugar farmers has caused substantial damage to the Everglades. Farming, like any industry, can cause negative environmental effects, but it is misguided for federal policies to exacerbate those problems.

    Federal subsidies for irrigation have also been a cause of environmental concerns. The Bureau of Reclamation runs a vast water empire in the western United States, which sells water to farmers at a fraction of the market cost. The resulting overuse could lead to a water crisis as the West’s population continues to rise.31 The solution is to move water into the free market and allow prices to rise to efficient and environmentally sound levels.

    6. Agriculture Would Thrive without Subsidies. It is normal for people to fear economic change, but many industries have been radically reformed in recent decades with positive results, including the airline, trucking, telecommunications, and energy industries. If farm subsidies were ended, and agriculture markets deregulated and open to entrepreneurs, farming would change—different crops would be planted, land usage would change, and some farms would go bankrupt. But a stronger and more innovative industry would likely emerge having greater resilience to shocks and downturns.

    Interestingly, producers of most U.S. agricultural commodities do not receive regular subsidies from the federal government. In fact, commodities that are eligible for federal subsidies account for 36 percent of U.S. farm production, while commodities that generally survive without subsidies, including meats, poultry, fruits, and vegetables, account for 64 percent of production.32 And, of course, most other U.S. industries prosper without the sort of government coddling that farmers receive.

    Another point to consider is that farm households are much more diversified today and better able to deal with market fluctuations. Many farm households these days earn the bulk of their income from nonfarm sources, which creates financial stability. USDA figures show that only 38 percent of farm households consider farming their primary occupation.33

    Some USDA programs provide useful commercial services such as insurance. The USDA says that its insurance services are “market-based,” but if that were true, there would be no need for subsidies and the services ought to be privatized. After all, most U.S. industries pay for their own commercial services. Also, financial markets offer a wide range of tools, such as hedging and forward contracting, which can help farmers survive cycles in markets without government subsidies.

    An interesting example of farmers prospering without subsidies is in New Zealand.34 That nation ended its farm subsidies in 1984, which was a bold stroke because the country is four times more dependent on farming than is the United States. The changes were initially met with fierce resistance, but New Zealand farm productivity, profitability, and output have soared since the reforms.35  New Zealand’s farmers have cut costs, diversified their land use, sought nonfarm income, and developed niche markets such as kiwifruit.

    Today, data from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development show that farm subsidies in New Zealand represent just 1 percent of the value of farm production, which compares to 11 percent in the United States.36 New Zealand’s main farm organization argues that the nation’s experience “thoroughly debunked the myth that the farming sector cannot prosper without government subsidies.”37 That myth needs to be debunked in the United States as well.

  • John Lorscheider

    9/30/2011 1:47:10 PM |

    Realfacts2000 is no doubt a special interest and/or the mouth piece of the wheat lobby.  I you follow the money trail it will always lead one to the truth and what is behind the scenes.  This taken from North American Millers Association website http://www.namamillers.org/NewsArchives10/Mar10News.html .  Billions of your tax dollars go to subsidize wheat growers every year.

    NAMA urges government funding of cereal crops research
    NAMA and the National Oat Improvement Committee submitted a joint letter to Representative Tammy Baldwin expressing support for the National Barley Improvement Committee's appropriations request for the USDA-ARS Cereal Crops Research Unit (CCRU) at Madison, WI. CCRU was established in April 2007 with the goal of studying and identifying antioxidant chemicals in oats and barley that may play a role in protecting humans from degenerative diseases such as cancers and heart disease. "However, current funding is insufficient to meet a substantial increase in operating costs for the new building and maintain programs for seven CCRU scientists (currently only five positions are filled and two are vacant due to inadequate funding.)" Government funding is essential as oat research receives no private investment.

    Industry supports Obama's pledge to double U.S. exports
    A coalition of food/feed and agricultural industry organizations are in support of President Obama's pledge to double U.S. exports within five years as a way to create millions of new export-related jobs in this country. The coalition, of which NAMA is a member, sent a letter to Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, Republican Leader John Boehner, Majority Leader Harry Reid, and Republican Leader Mitch McConnell urging them to take the necessary actions to support this goal—including passing the pending free trade agreements with Colombia, Panama, and South Korea. These agreements would allow U.S. exports to be on par with other countries and compete effectively in the export market.

    The letter also noted concern over recent legislation (H.R. 3012 and S. 2821) that would "require the Administration to demand the re-negotiation of all current pending trade agreements to modify provisions to permit inclusion of certain requirements." This legislation has the potential to drastically damage export relations and U.S. agriculture. To view the letter, please visit NAMA’s web site at http://www.namamillers.org/NewsArchives10/Ltr_FTA_Mar2010.html.

  • dmg

    9/30/2011 3:10:27 PM |

    All pioneers wear Arrow shirts.

  • Dave90291

    9/30/2011 9:10:13 PM |

    I just finished the book and posted a review on my blog for anyone who is interested in a more in depth analysis than IT ROCKED! The strong sales and largely positive reviews are a good sign, which is probably why the wheat industry hacks are posting negative reviews.


  • Debbie B in MD

    10/1/2011 1:31:27 PM |

    Yep, I must admit I am working to bring people to this "cult." I am probably a bit annoying or I like to call it persisitent in my FB posts. Oh well, the proof is in the pudding. The change in my body and outlook has been so dramatic, it is hard not to share. I'll take my chances.

  • Debbie B in MD

    10/1/2011 1:38:23 PM |

    I have watched a friend lose 94 pounds on medifast. She works out like a crazy woman. Now, she is getting burned out and starting to gain weight. She has seen me lose 37 pounds over the last year or so. Admittedly I still have about 37 to go. I got into the gf replacements for a while. Now that I am off of them the weight is going away again. At any rate, I wish she would listen to what has helped me. She claims it is only because I have celiac. It doesn't apply to those who don't. I can't get her to read the book, but maybe, just maybe she will read the blog. I hope she doesn't listen to the critics.

  • Dr. William Davis

    10/1/2011 1:44:18 PM |

    Don't fret, Debbie. Your friend will come around when she witnesses your profound and effortless weight loss--no extreme exercise, no colon cleanse . . . just no wheat.

  • Dr. William Davis

    10/1/2011 1:55:30 PM |

    Yup, you got it, Dave.

    Very nicely written review, by the way. "A giant among dwarves"? That's great!

  • Dr. William Davis

    10/1/2011 2:01:39 PM |

    Hi, John--

    No doubt. Note that, at the left on the Millers Association website and listed as a "partner," is the USDA Food Plate. How revealing! Imagine a chemical manufacturer calling the EPA a "partner."

    This wheat-free message is, indeed, potentially economically disruptive. None of us, of course, are demanding legislative reform to ban wheat; we are simply trying to raise awareness to allow better-informed individual choice. This issue has come up repeatedly in my interviews on Canadian media, since they are such large wheat exporters.

  • Dr. William Davis

    10/1/2011 2:08:42 PM |

    Thanks, John. Fascinating reading!

    We are confronting head-on with vertically-integrated agribusiness and Big Food, all of whom stand to lose big-time by elimination of government subsidies. I, too, find it incredible that this still goes on.

  • Dr. William Davis

    10/1/2011 2:10:13 PM |

    Thank you, Lindas!

    Your clear-minded wheat-free logic shines through!

    The USDA and HHS need to get off their high horse, blaming our sloth and gluttony. They are to blame.

  • Dr. William Davis

    10/1/2011 2:11:37 PM |

    Thanks, STG!

    I'm shocked that there are PR people out there who do this just for a paycheck.

  • Dr. William Davis

    10/1/2011 2:13:36 PM |

    Wow, thanks, Dr. Ostric!

    The John Stossel idea is terrific. He is a champion among whistleblowers; adding his voice would be priceless!

    And thanks for the feedback on the recipes.

  • Dr. William Davis

    10/1/2011 2:16:07 PM |

    I noticed that, too, Chuck: The criticisms seem to be coming from 1) wheat trade group PR stooges, and 2) people who think they know what the book says but haven't read it.

    It actually makes me laugh! Real criticisms would be one thing. But this stuff is just fluff.

  • Jackie G

    10/13/2011 3:14:03 PM |

    Yeah, I have to treat this information like religion... People are THAT fanatical about their food. But, I have managed to get a few people to go lc. And thanks to the good DR. here, I got my mom started. I just said, "fine, but do me a favor. Go wheat free for a month. While you're doing that, buy full fat dairy. Then tell me what you think." I'd never thought to put it so simply.

    You would think the fact that my husband has lost 80+ lbs and I've lost 45lbs in under 5 months would sound some bells. Our cholesterol has dropped 30+ points each (while raising HDL a bit.) and my Trigs are down more than 150 points. Yeah - you read that right. So of course people ask us... then get ANGRY about the answer. We stay the heck away from frankenfood. We eat full fat cheese, and leave the fat and skin on our chicken.

    Put that on your "government regulated food plate" and eat it!

    *Sorry for post hijacking, got carried away.

  • Dr. William Davis

    10/14/2011 1:00:23 AM |

    Yes, but it was a good hijacking, Jackie!

    Very excellent results for you and your husband.

  • [...] are acting like it with some dubious claims and flat out attempts at character assassination with comments like this on the Amazon page for Dr. William Davis’ book Wheat Belly:  The author has no credentials, no credibility, just a small cult of terribly misinformed [...]