14.6.2016 | 00:11
Many people don’t realize this, but there actually can be problems with a gluten-free diet.
It doesn’t mean that “going gluten-free” is dangerous, or a bad idea; it just means that we have to be aware of what pitfalls might exist.
This is why it’s so important that people don’t just stop eating gluten and replace processed gluten-containing products with processed gluten-free products.
Sometimes folks wonder why they go on a gluten-free diet and gain weight.
Many times, that’s due to the fact that they go to the grocery store and buy the same sort of packaged products – only now they’re gluten-free – that they bought before.
A lot of those mainstream gluten-free foods replace the wheat flour with highly-refined ingredients like potato starch, rice flour, tapioca starch – which basically turn to sugar in the body almost immediately.
They are not going to help you lose any weight!
They are simply not healthy foods.
As a matter of fact, if someone isn’t suffering from any degree of gluten sensitivity, I’d rather see them eating whole grains if they must have bread, pasta, etc. than eating stuff like that because they think a mainstream gluten-free diet is “healthy” for them.
Not everyone needs to be gluten-free.
Yes, there is evidence that the components in wheat cause some small degree of intestinal permeability in everyone who ingests it, but that doesn’t always manifest in any sort of permanent health issue.
There are those who say that no human can digest the proteins found in wheat.
And yet there are many, many people who eat it throughout their lives without seeming to suffer any ill effects.
For me personally, I feel much better without it – my chronic alternating diarrhea and constipation vanished when I eliminated gluten.
Since I have no desire to return to those days, I have no interest in testing myself.
Another thing that can trip people up is the fact that whole grains do contain certain healthful components, the most important of which is fiber.
And guess what?
All those starches and sugars in the gluten-free cookies, cakes, and bagels?
That fiber helps feed the beneficial bacteria in our guts, and replacing it with junk calories can lead to an imbalance, allowing the pathogenic strains to take over.
And we’ve all heard enough on that topic lately to know that’s not a good thing….
The problem is that wheat in particular contains some nutrients – but it also contains a multitude of anti-nutrients, not just gluten.
So what are we supposed to do?
We need to be mindful of these sorts of potential pitfalls when we make any sort of radical change to our diet. We also need to be sensible: If you’ve been eating whole grain cereals, breads, etc. you should really consider whether you want to replace those foods with ones made up of refined sugars and starches.
We have to take responsibility for our own health. If you can’t do the research yourself – either due to time restraints, or because you can’t sort through all of the contradictory information – find a nutritionist or dietitian who specializes in Celiac Disease and/or Non-Celiac Gluten Sensitivity.
Dr. Tom O’Bryan maintains a registry of all of his Certified Gluten Practitioners at his website www.theDr.com
Reach out to Debra and I – we’ve been doing this for a long time, and as I’ve said before, we’ve made many mistakes and learned many lessons along our journey.
We can help you avoid these potential pitfalls.
We’re even putting together a program to help people transition to a healthy gluten-free lifestyle. We’ll keep you posted on the upcoming launch this fall, and we hope you’ll join us.
Please feel free to contact either Debra (firstname.lastname@example.org) or myself (email@example.com) if you’d be interested in scheduling a complimentary 30-minute Q&A phone discussion around issues you may have with gluten.
We want others to be able to do this right, straight out of the gate.
Let us know how we can support you if and when you make the choice to get rid of the gluten!!