When I first went cold turkey VLC in Aug 2010, I had a hard time finding what to eat. I was tracking my carbs daily and keeping it in the 30-50 range for several months.
I had never previously avoided bread, but most of it was certainly not whole grain bread.
But because I wanted to keep it "healthy" while on low carb, it was suddenly commonplace for me to use the Food For Life sprouted breads as vehicles for butter with my meals. One piece is 12g net carbs, so I'd easily eat 3 pieces most days. I wasn't eating tubers or rice, so most of my carbs were coming from these sprouted breads in those early days. We ate the "7 Sprouted Grains" and "Cinnamon Raisin" bread all the time.
Might a high intake of this have given me a leaky gut?
Yeah, it absolutely could. The villous atrophy, crypt elongation and intestinal permeability that so many people in the paleo community refer to as "leaky gut" is almost wholly the result of gluten exposure. Sprouting is more of a means by which phytate can be reduced. Even if it had an effect on gluten content, sprouted bread manufacturers have to add gluten back into the bread or it won't rise. If the loaf looks like standard bread, it really has to have gluten in it.
That all being said, unless you had full blown celiac's or crohn's or something, you would have repaired your gut fairly well by now, though I do seem to recall that you'll have pizza, beer etc. here and there. It may be worthwhile to completely cut gluten out for a while.
I always had more digestive issues and stomach aches after eating the ezekiel breads than after plain white bread. At the time I never understood that, like you said the sprouting and soaking and fermenting and baking should actually make it easier to digest. At the time I thought it probably was the multi-grain aspect in their breads, and that trying to digest several different grains plus legumes at once can cause problems.
Then I started sprouting grains myself and adding that to my salad and that nearly killed my intestines for good. That's how I found paleo.
I had eaten sprouted grains and whole grain when I was in my twenties and thirties and don't remember having such serious effects. But I am now in my fifties and my digestive tract finally went on strike. Since going paleo a few months ago and avoiding all grains and legumes I am slowly but surely recovering.
I know for myself, that if I ate a sprouted gluten grain at all, I would have a tidal wave of symptoms that would throw me off for weeks...development of leaky gut can be caused by eating foods frequently, as well as by not digesting properly due a myriad of reasons, including just plain not chewing your food well. There is a really easy way to figure this out for yourself...just don't eat any bread for a month and see what happens when you eat it again(heavily for a few days).
If you have leaky gut you probably need to follow a healing program like GAPS. I highly doubt that this bread would give you leaky guy. I know people with celiac disease who can eat this bread without any problems. You've probably had it for a long time from eating SAD and if you've ever take antibiotics they would contribute to a messed up gut.
I follow WAPF diet, but I try to avoid most grains and gluten for the most part. I buy this bread every once in a while when I'm craving toast or a grilled cheese sandwich. Supposedly, sprouted wheat digests like a vegetable, but I'm not sure how accurate that information is.
Wheat has gluten no matter the type. As Travis said, if you have problem, remove it.
The type of bread u use is probably the best wheat bread available. In Russia, similar type of bread is used as mandatory in nursery because of its very high mineral, amino acid and vitamin E content related to normal white bread, non existent fillers and E numbers and no industry procedure.
3 slices per day is not high intake if we compare that to regular bread eaters. In my country it is considered very low. I didn't have any problems with such bread to be honest, although I don't consume it any more as I fell for gluten free propaganda :)
When I do eat bread sometimes, its that one.