Surprisingly, every second people seem to have gluten free diet on the internet. This encouraged me to do some research and find the science behind gluten free diet. Why we should eat gluten free diet?
Gluten is very controversial these days. Most sources claim that it is safe for everyone except those who have celiac disease. On the other hand, some health experts believe that gluten is harmful to most people. Now the question comes:
What is Gluten?
Gluten is a general name for the proteins primarily found in wheat, rye and barley. Gluten acts as a “glue” in foods such as cereal, bread, and pasta, helping them hold their shape.
Why Gluten is harmful to health?
In some individuals, consuming gluten can cause illness. It is estimated that around 1 out 100 people in the world have some form of gluten intolerance – referred to medically as non-celiac gluten sensitivity (NCGS) – causing symptoms such as bloating or gas, diarrhoea, fatigue, headache, “brain fog,” and itchy skin rash.
What is Celiac Disease?
Celiac disease is an autoimmune condition characterized by an intolerance to gluten – a protein naturally present in wheat, rye, and barley, and which acts as a “glue” in foods such as bread, cereal, and pasta.
When an individual with celiac disease consumes foods containing gluten, the body’s immune system attacks the small intestine, damaging finger-like projections called villi, which are important for absorption of nutrients from food.
Symptoms of celiac disease include bloating, chronic diarrhoea, constipation, stomach pain, and nausea and vomiting.
The only way for people with celiac disease to avoid these symptoms is to adopt a gluten-free diet, but – as the new study affirms – it seems that even people without the condition are moving toward a preference for gluten-free foods.
Why you should eat gluten rich diet?
There is no research to support gluten-free diets for anyone other than those affected by celiac disease. So if you are not suffering from the celiac disease you can eat wheat, barley, etc.
Some experts claim that following a gluten-free diet in the absence of celiac disease may actually be detrimental to health, as it can lack the nutrients needed to maintain a healthy, balanced diet. A gluten-free diet may lead to lower levels of iron, calcium and fibre.
Are we being ‘tricked’ into believing gluten-free is healthy?
Any gastrointestinal symptoms, such as chronic or severe abdominal pain, bloating, or diarrhoea should be discussed with a doctor. Your doctor will need to assess for many other conditions that may be causing symptoms. Self-treating may delay proper treatment.
A simple stool test will be able to determine if you are gluten tolerant or not.
In addition, it is important to continue consuming gluten prior to being tested for celiac disease – following a gluten-free diet prior to being tested may result in a false negative. If you still want to follow a gluten-free diet after celiac disease or any other health problems have been ruled out, talk to a dietitian to make sure your diet contains all the essential nutrients.
Hope this article resolves all myth about gluten and its symptoms. Don’t forget to let us in comments below if you want a detailed gluten free diet list or not?
Keep yourself healthy.