“I love wheat”

Annette DraperBy: Annette Draper

I remember the thrasher coming to our farm. All the farmers in the area came to help in hauling the wheat bundles to the farm. The job of the children was pushing the wheat to the back of the bin so everything fit. Every year we made wheat gum by chewing the wheat to the point of being able to blow bubbles. It was tradition. Later as flour was needed, a couple gunny sacks would be filled and taken to the mill to be ground.

I had been taught by example to store food and helped do it. One day I was looking at my children and had a very vivid realization of how I would feel if they were crying because they were hungry. It made me cry. I was not doing the things I’d grown up with to provide for my family. I began to renew my knowledge of canning and baking bread. We obtained our one-year food supply, which included a great deal of wheat.

Using whole wheat flour in bread, cookies and other baked goods and eating wheat cereals had become our regular routine. Still, I received a prompting to learn to use wheat. I thought I already knew. I was very involved in church and family life was very busy. I had all the usual excuses for not doing as I had been instructed. Because of procrastination, we experienced what I call, “The tithing in reverse principle.” Our income had not changed nor had our expenses; but we were very broke. It didn’t take me long to realize that what I had been instructed to do needed to be done now.

I started by making gluten, separating the bran and starch from the wheat to use later. I made gluten steaks, meatballs and meatloaf. I made everything I could from wheat. It took practice. I made diastatic malt powder (sugar) which was sickeningly sweet. We ate cream of wheat cereal, whole wheat cereal and cracked wheat cereal. We ate wheat nuts. We had cooked wheat berries in our spaghetti sauce, soups and casseroles. Ironically, as soon as I learned these things, our finances returned to normal.

I then taught others. Preparedness seemed to become my calling in life. I continue to learn, and almost all I cook and eat is based on the underlying principle of preparedness.

I have studied the Word of Wisdom many times and these words have been impressed and continue to be impressed upon my mind.

D&C 89:14: “All grain is ordained for the use of man and of beasts, to be the staff of life,”

D&C 89:16: “All grain is good for the food of man;”


I know wheat is for man. Just as He instructed us to not use tobacco, and the “why” was proven many years later, I feel it shall yet be so with the good of wheat and the benefits to man. I also know that the Lord (through the LDS Food Storage program) has continued to instruct us to store wheat. Why? He knows the evils and designs of men and the world has adopted their philosophies of gluten intolerance for everyone. If wheat is so bad for us now, why has the Lord not changed the storing of wheat and instructed us accordingly? His words are still valid, and I feel they are more needed today than ever before because we are truly “in the last days.”

As I’ve continued to be taught by the Lord, I’ve come to understand the “whole” of the plant and the synergy of it working as a whole. When again asked to teach a class on making gluten, I explained the power of the whole of all God created for man and that to break anything down into components was not beneficial for our bodies. I learned that each of God’s creations for feeding man has a powerhouse inside. In the “whole” of wheat, the germ, bran, starch, binder, and all other things are there in correct proportions. Even if the berry is ground or cracked, when used together it is still the whole. I’ve added sprouting and now use either cooked wheat berries or sprouted wheat in meals. Both are wonderful on salads.

I have been on and off for several years trying different things and seeing how my body reacts. It has been fun. Through this “testing and trying,” I feel I’ve come to experience and understand some of the benefits of wheat.

Strength is one of those benefits. When I eat wheat almost every day, I am stronger than when I do not. I cannot explain why but when I lift something heavy or try to run, there is a noticeable difference. The inside of my body is cleaner. I maintain weight. I was extremely surprised when I ran one mile while on my walk and hadn’t tried to run in months prior. This may not seem like any big deal, but for me it is unheard of because running has not been an easy thing.

I cannot prove any of these things by scientific means, but I have proven them as I eat it for a period of time and then do not. We all know that drill. I have done it too many times to deny there is something very ideal for my body when I eat wheat.

I know there are people who react to wheat. I also know that gluten intolerance can be cured. I know that other grains are also good for man. But because of the world’s teachings, I feel we are not partaking of the greatest of what was created for man. I also feel when it’s time to eat from our food storage, we will be eating wheat, and we will experience a great increase in strength, endurance and health.

I have to admit that through all these years, I have studied, fasted, prayed, pleaded, questioned, reasoned and pondered because of the fears and doubts that came to me with the trends, especially as I’ve seen the gluten intolerance scene become so pervasive. Every time I’ve struggled with what I knew I knew, the Lord has always brought me back with a greater knowing that: “All grain is ordained for the use of man….” “All grain is good for the food of man….” “Nevertheless, wheat for man….”

I love wheat.

Annette Draper is 71 years old and lives in Billings, Montana. She was married 47 years before her husband recently passed away. They have 4 children and 19 grandchildren. She has been a homemaker most of her life. She loves work for Heavenly Father, and He has always kept her very busy. She loves to learn and especially to be taught of the Lord. 

For more on whole food, plant-based diet food storage and good recipe for whole wheat bread, see: WFPB Food Storage.


  1. I learned about Annette when I found a blog she used to have on wheat. As I’ve gotten to know her, I’ve been so impressed by the number and intensity of the spiritual impressions she has received about wheat. I too have a testimony that the Lord ordained grains to be the “staff of life” (D&C 89:14) and that wheat is specifically ordained of God for our use. That doesn’t mean we all need to eat wheat regularly, but we should appreciate the fact that the Lord ordained grains and wheat and be a bit more hesitant about jumping on a bandwagon to condemn these foods for general use, especially when the science strongly supports the fact that people who eat more whole grains are healthier than those who do not. I’m going to guess that the Lord knows a lot more about our bodies than even the best nutritionist. Let’s have faith in His words.

    I have written quite a bit about grains, wheat, and gluten, for those who are interested: http://discoveringthewordofwisdom.com/qas/food-sensitivities/

  2. I have had celiac disease for years. So I have been gluten intolerant. And LDS friend, whom I met on a private group on FB, makes sourdough ww bread, that takes about 12 hours to rise. For the first time in my 74 years, I can now eat wheat. It is a lengthy process, and there are some explanations as to why people are developing gluten intolerance, but I eat a slice every morning and am loving it!

    • Please, post the recipe and process. I loved making bread, muffins, pasta, and tortillas with my own wheat. Now, I can’t eat wheat at all. Even wheat grass makes me quite ill. Like Annette, my naturopath told me my wheat problems could be healed given enough time. Maybe your sour dough recipe could start the process.

  3. I, too, have noticed that wheat is under attack, like so many other aspects of the gospel. Great article! Do you have a website?

  4. Thanks for this beautiful ode to wheat. I sure do miss eating wheat bread and pizza and tortillas and so many other things. I never did get into making gluten though.

  5. I talked to you a while back about my problem with cereal without milk as the Silk milk is so thick it made me want to hurl. I found out from my doctor that I have a 69 percent blockage of a aortic vein that branches to the right shoulder and the other to my brain and the one to my brain is the one that has the blockage.. He gave me a prescription for Atorvastatin Calcium Tablets 10mg to be taken once a day. I was give a full years supply. My doctor has since moved and I am going to another doctor’s care. I want to get another opinion from my new doc. Maybe he’ll decide that I shouldn’t take it. I hope that’s true. I value your opinion and would like to know what you think.

    Respectfully, Shelley

  6. Thank you for sharing this beautiful testimony of wheat! I grew up eating lots of wheat, and it wasn’t until I was an adult at age 35 that I was diagnosed with celiac. My father passed away a few years ago, and in one of my last conversations with him, out of the blue, he said “Deb, I would not be suprised at all if in the near future, you will be able to eat wheat again. After all, it has been ordained for our use”. His comment blew me away. Both of my parents have eaten a slice of homemade wheat bread every day of their lives, without fail. I look forward to the day when I can, again, as well. I appreciate you sharing your experiences and what you have learned – it was so uplifting!

  7. Annette, I usually check much earlier each day for submissions my daughter Jane has published, but today was the day my dear wife, Melva’s “Sweat” (I forget her maternal grandfather’s first name), family was scheduled to have their annual get together way up in Wasatch County (a round trip of 200 miles from Murray, Utah here in the heart of the Salt Lake Valley where we live.

    Therefore here I am at about 10:00 p.m. this Saturday, instead of responding much earlier in the day to your very interesting and very inspiring account of your experience with eating wheat, which is something I do every day, but I mix in the wheat grains I personally have cooked with actually five other of other grains which constitute the main course of each of my three daily meals which adds up to each of my three daily meals containing six different grains, which, always includes wheat!

    By the way, the only thing we were offered in the food today that various extended family members provided, that contained wheat were rolls that family members had just bought at the store. As I ate those I was grateful that they were made from wheat, but I realized much of the nutritional value of the wheat in those rolls was not actually in them!

    I really appreciated all that you submitted, but I particularly appreciated the following paragraph:

    “I have to admit that through all these years, I have studied, fasted, prayed, pleaded, questioned, reasoned and pondered because of the fears and doubts that came to me with the trends, especially as I’ve seen the gluten intolerance scene become so pervasive. Every time I’ve struggled with what I knew I knew, the Lord has always brought me back with a greater knowing that: “All grain is ordained for the use of man….” “All grain is good for the food of man….” “Nevertheless, wheat for man….”

    By the way here is a personal note I thought I should add:, Years ago while employed by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints American Indian Seminary Program my growing family and I lived in for just one year in Hardin, Montana so as to be close to the LDS families of the Crow Indian Tribe who lived there and also members of another tribe whose children I taught in my Indian Seminary classes who lived within easy driving distance from where we lived.

    We did most of our shopping for things such as appliances we needed over in Billings which was about fifty miles away. By the way, years later On a trip to the Northwest, we were able to view the Billings, Montana Temple soon after it was dedicated. I really learned to love the people we served up there. I’m glad to know you lived up there.

    Now I wish I could go back up there in Montana and introduce the people I knew up there to the Lord’s way of eating! Most likely many of them were just like me, thinking that I thought I really understood the Word of Wisdom when in fact I just knew and understood just a part of it!

    With much appreciation for all that you submitted above. May the Lord continue blessing you the way He already has regarding your understanding of the value of eating wheat! Best Wishes! J. Neil Birch

  8. So, as others have asked in the above comments. Where can I find the recipes to Annette’s items she talked about and also jane’s dad with his mixing wheat and other grains? Details would be great. Thank you

  9. Because of Brent’s asking for details on items Annette and I mentioned above I guess I finally ought share with each of you who might be interested, my most likely very unique meal menus. As I do so I don’t think that many of you, including Brent, will possibly be very anxious to fully emulate my example:

    For almost the entire time I’ve been eating in accordance with the Word of Wisdom which began when I had just turned eighty and has continued to now when I’m in my eighty fourth year of life, I haven’t significantly altered my daily breakfast and supper menus. along with regular work outs at the local Recreation Center. During those about four years of my life I’ve never experienced any illness! That even includes, colds and headaches!

    Before I provide each of you with the details, you may want to know that I actually prepare three identical Breakfasts at the same time, eating one soon after cooking and then storing two of them in our refrigerator until needed. I do the same thing with my suppers. That cuts down the time needed for meal preparation right before meal time when I’m often in a hurry to eat because of being hungry or ready to do something I need to do or to allow Melva to use the kitchen.

    You also need to know that I’m fully retired and have a dear wife who is willing to go without preparing my meals even though she is an expert cook! My wife, Melva hasn’t begun to eat in accordance with the Word of Wisdom as fully as I believe I am doing.

    In our kitchen refrigerator I have containers for each of the following fully cooked grains which I personally cook at home in our modest kitchen:

    1. Buckwheat and Quaker Old Fashioned Oats which I combine each time I cook them;

    2. Wheat (you might be interested to know that the wheat I now use was actually bought and placed in sturdy metal cans by my father, (LDS convert and then later, he became: Bishop Philip John Birch) when my I and my two younger brothers were frequently present. I was about twelve years of age then. I’m now in my 84th year.)

    3. Rice which I buy in packages from the local Wal Mart Store and cook at home.

    4.Barley in whole grain form I buy at a local at a local “Good Earth Store” (along with the Buckwheat mentioned above) which I also cook personally at home.)

    5.Lentil whole grains bought in packages from Wal Mart,which I then also cook at home in bulk form as I do each of the grains I use)

    6. Quinoa which I buy in whole grain form at the Good Earth Store mentioned above. I also cook that at home in bulk form.

    I was using Rye but relatively recently I dropped that grain because I think it is pretty similar to wheat and I didn’t want to do unnecessary work!

    Because most grains have a tendency to sprout after they have been stored even in a refrigerator after a while like I do mine, I began also using large containers filled with each of the above named grains so that after cooking them I can store them in the freezer we have near our back door. I just thaw out individual grains as those same grain containers in the refrigerator are close to needing additional amounts added which I had been keeping in the freezer to prevent sprouting, but then when they began showing signs of beginning to sprout I begin adding small amounts into the containers I have in the refrigerator. My eldest child, Jane Birch was the one who was concerned about keeping them too long in the fridge.

    Oh there is one other grain which is a very important part of my daily diet which I handle differently because I discovered that it more easily than most other grains tends to sprout: Corn!

    7. Corn (Maize in Spanish) which I actually cook one cob at a time in our microwave oven just before I eat a meal. At some meals I actually eat two cobs depending how hungry I am. Actually corn on the cob cooked for three minutes in the microwave is my favorite snack food.

    I feature corn cobs as my main food at each lunch time along with greenery and chopped up green peas and a tomato, along with what fruit is available.

    In preparing my breakfasts I mix in about three or four different kinds of fruit. I also eat about five or six different kinds of fruit and at each supper along with some fruit such as chopped up watermelon or red seedless grapes that I make easily available.

    I used to use more wheat than I do now. I made that change because wheat is one of those grains that seems to more easily begin sprouting! I try to use as much wheat as possible because I know the Lord stressed its use in Section 89 of the Doctrine and Covenants!

    I mix in a number of different kinds of fruits in the breakfasts I prepare. At supper I make fruit such as bananas and table grapes etc., more easily available. I also have a relatively small amount of walnut pieces easily available because the medical experts have found that they are very vitamin rich!

    By the way I never eat candy, ice cream, and other easily available treats! I believe that there was actually a time in my life when I was addicted to eating meat and other foods so commonly eaten by most Americans. I thank the Lord for His Word of Wisdom and my daughter, Jane, for helping me overcome those addictions, through personally instructing me and also through her amazing book, “Discovering the Word of Wisdom”!

    I hope what I have written may help each of you! Neil Birch

  10. I am writing this as an addition to what I told above about grain eating in my meals. I realized after I submitted what I did above that I neglected to tell how important it is to me to eat many legumes and vegetables including potatoes, both regular and sweet. Those are all mixed in by me in each of my suppers. They are all very important parts of my suppers!

    Neil Birch

  11. Thank you for this useful information. Am I to assume you freeze corn on the cob? We grow quite a bit of it, and I freeze it, but the only time I froze it on the cob, it turned out soggy. And if you do freeze your corn that way, any tips or secrets? 🙂

  12. Deb, I’m replying to your very welcome Thank You Note just above. During most of the year when fresh corn isn’t available I buy frozen corn cobs which are usually cut in half length-wise and I then cook those in our micro wave. During this time of the year when the stores have fresh corn I just keep buying and then cooking those fresh corn cobs which I usually prefer buying at Wal Mart. Also the Wal Mart we shop at is well supplied with frozen corn cobs so those cobs we buy there or from other stores don’t cause problems like you reported having while freezing your garden corn.

    When I buy corn this time of the year I husk off their leaves, etc. right there in the store using waste containers our Wal Mart provides for that. That keeps me from making a mess in our kitchen sink after coming home from the store.

    I think you must be like me in preferring to eat fresh corn, but I feel pretty good about using the frozen half cobs I usually buy at Wal Mart during most of the year. I actually eat at least four or five full size cobs each day when I’m eating fresh corn. I eat a little less corn during the greater portion of the year when I’m using frozen corn cobs. Its good to learn that you grow your own corn. I’ve done that with mixed results when Jane and my other eight children were growing up as we usually had a fair sized garden.

    I know that the Lord emphasizes wheat not corn, but I really do value eating wheat. I read just this morning in Alma somewhere in the Book of Mormon where corn and barley are mentioned by Mormon in his writing. I sure love the Book of Mormon (and all of the rest of the marvelous scriptures we are blessed with including all of Section 89 of the D. & C.)

    Best wishes to you and everyone else who may be reading this! Neil Birch

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