Medicine: Too-White Bread

For 25 years U.S. millers have been using in their flour a compound called nitrogen trichloride. It bleaches wheat flour and saves months in the aging process (hence the trade name: Agene). It is now used in 80% of U.S. white flour. Sir Edward Mellanby of Britain's Medical Research Council fed a concentrated diet of highly Agenized bread to dogs he was using in an experiment on nutrition, published the frightening results in the British Medical Journal two years ago. The flour had caused "running fits"; most of the dogs that did not recover in 30 minutes died.

The University of Wisconsin's...

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