Potential Health Benefits Of The Gluten
In addition to celiac, NCGS, gluten ataxia, and wheat allergy, according to the aforementioned Gastroenterology & Hepatology study, a gluten-free diet may play a role in treating:
Eliminating gluten may improve athletic performance in some individuals, too, per the aforementioned study. Yet the diet isnt recommended for every athlete, so dont follow it before getting your doctors approval.
Precautions Of A Gluten Free Diet
- You may find yourself with low energy carbs are a necessary fuel for the body.
- Weight gain is a possibility as a result of the starches in replacement foods, namely potato, tapioca, and corn starch. Packaged gluten free foods may be loaded with sugars and not supplemented with vitamins and minerals as well.
- Malnutrition can happen as a result of food substitutions that have fewer nutrients and minerals than the foods that were removed.
Financial Cost Of A Gluten
Studies have shown that gluten-free alternatives are more expensive than their gluten-containing counterparts.- Stevens and Rashid performed a cost-comparison analysis of gluten-free and gluten-containing foods in 2 large-chain grocery stores. All 56 gluten-free products were more expensive, with a mean unit price of $1.71 compared with $0.61 for gluten-containing products . On average, gluten-free products were 242% more expensive than regular products. In the Austrian study mentioned previously, gluten-free foods were also substantially higher in cost compared to their gluten-containing counterparts cereals as well as bread and bakery products were upwards of 205% and 267% more expensive, respectively, compared to similar gluten-containing products.
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Going Gluten Free Can Improve Bone Health
We’ve talked about how gluten intolerance can impact your ability to receive specific vitamins and nutrients. Like iron, calcium is one of the nutrients that gluten sensitive individuals are often low in. Calcium plays a crucial role in bone health, and making sure that you get enough of it is essential for maintaining health. Luckily there are many gluten free foods loaded with calcium. Make it a goal to begin incorporating dishes like this Four Layer Millet Salad into your daily diet.
Boost your calcium intake safely with this gluten free Black Bean Quinoa Salad recipe.
Adapts To Dietary Restrictions
Just as a gluten-free diet is flexible enough to allow you to honor food preferences simultaneously, it also can be adapted if you have additional health-related dietary restrictions .
One common dietary restriction is dairy. That’s because many people who are diagnosed with celiac disease also are lactose intolerant since the damage to their small intestine causes them to be unable to digest lactose, the type of sugar found in milk products. Therefore, they need to follow a gluten-free diet that’s also free of milk-based dairy products.
Symptoms of lactose intolerance are similar to those of celiac disease and non-celiac gluten sensitivity: they include diarrhea, gas, and bloating. So to determine if you’re truly lactose-intolerant, you’ll need to monitor your body’s reactions to foods closely. You may be reacting to accidental gluten exposure, as opposed to milk products.
To eat gluten-free and dairy-free, you’ll first need to replace milk with a gluten-free, dairy-free alternative. You have many choicesmanufacturers make gluten-free soy milk and almond milks , as well as dairy-free cheeses and yogurts. Read ingredient lists on processed foods and avoid milk-based ingredients.
If you’re not eating dairy products, make sure you’re getting enough calcium in another way, such as using fortified dairy-free alternatives and/or taking a gluten-free vitamin supplement.
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Gluten Can Cause Digestive Issues
Gluten is broken down into specific peptides that can be difficult to digest. Many individuals are sensitive to gluten and experience mild to severe digestive upset when they consume this protein. This is because of the way gluten impacts our gut microbiome, and the gut inflammation that is caused post consumption. Many notice symptoms such as bloating, flatulence, diarrhea, and constipation. If you are sensitive to gluten, removing it may be the answer to avoiding some of this digestive discomfort . Many also notice an improvement in symptoms if gluten is reduced, but not necessarily eliminated.
The Real Q: Why Does Gluten Affect Some People
Even though theres lots of debate over whether removing gluten is healthy for everyone, theres one thing we all know.
If you have gluten problems, a GF diet is non-negotiable.
But once you cut gluten out of your system, the results can be pretty incredible.
However, theres also growing research that people with other autoimmune disorders can benefit from a GF diet.
Now, if youre curious as to whether or not gluten is affecting you, there are a couple of routes to take.
Talk to your doctor about gluten-sensitivity testing, or you can try cutting it out all-together then seeing how you feel.
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If You Make A Mistake
Following a gluten free diet is a learning process, not only for you but also for your family and friends. Mistakes can happen, especially if you have only recently been diagnosed.
If you have coeliac disease and eat gluten by mistake, you would usually start to have symptoms a few hours after eating it and the symptoms can last from a few hours to several days. The effects vary from person to person and depend on how much gluten youve eaten, how sensitive you are and how long you have been on a gluten free diet.
If you make the occasional mistake and eat gluten by accident, its unlikely to cause lasting gut damage. It’s a learning process and we can support you and help you because we understand what you are going through. Our helpline is staffed with dietitians and food experts who are here to help you with advice and support. Call us on 0333 332 2033.
It’s Not Just For People With Celiac Disease But Is It For You
In the world of trendy diets, gluten-free continues to be one of the most popular. This eating style is absolutely essential to people with celiac disease, who can’t tolerate even small amounts of the protein gluten, which is found in grains such as wheat, rye, and barley. However, many people who dont have celiac disease follow a gluten-free diet.
Immune system response to gluten
Illustration: Scott Leighton
In people with celiac disease, gluten triggersan immune system response that damages thelining of the small intestine, resulting in diarrheaand problems related to malnutrition.
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Helps Maintain A Healthy Weight
With celiac disease comes many symptoms that can negatively impact your digestive system. Bloating, gas and fatigue are just a few of the many symptoms individuals sensitive to gluten may experience daily. This lack of nutrition, energy and impaired digestion can directly impact the overall function of your metabolism. By eating healthy, gluten free foods, you eliminate these stressors, helping your body to run how it should. As a result, your body can achieve a healthy metabolism and receive the nutrients it needs to function correctly.
For a metabolism-boosting gluten free dish, make these Spinach and Quinoa Bites.
What Is A Gluten
This is why gluten-free diets are growing in popularity. A gluten-free diet is eliminating foods that contain the protein gluten, including all types of wheat, rye and barley. This requires avoiding most breads, pastas, cereals, baked goods and other packaged foods.
Even if you dont have a gluten intolerance, going gluten-free provides numerous health benefits. Thinking about trying it? Here are the top benefits of a gluten-free diet.
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People Who Avoid Gluten
Some athletes have advocated for a GFD to enhance performance and stamina. In a 2015 questionnaire-based study of 910 athletes without celiac disease, 41% reported following a GFD more than 50% of the time . Of that group, only 13% did so for the treatment of reported medical conditions, and 57% reported self-diagnosed gluten sensitivity. This group was made up of predominantly endurance sport athletes who reported gastrointestinal symptoms and fatigue that they believed were associated with gluten ingestion. Eighty-four percent of the patients following a GFD more than 50% of the time reported symptomatic improvement on the diet. Respondents indicated that their leading sources of information and guidance for a GFD were online , their trainer or coach , and other athletes . A follow-up study of 13 cyclists without celiac disease was performed by the same investigators and consisted of a randomized, double-blind, crossover trial in which participants received either a GFD or GCD for 1 week, then crossed over after a 10-day washout period. No significant differences were found between the diets when both gastrointestinal symptoms and athletic performance on timed trials were analyzed, suggesting that a nocebo effect played at least some role in results observed in the initial, larger trial.
What Does Gluten Do To Our Bodies
Before you decide to make any major changes to your diet, it is important to know why you are making these changes. This is because a change wont likely work if you dont have a reason behind it.
You may not realize it, but eating gluten, even if you dont have a disease like celiac, can be damaging to your body. It can cause conditions like leaky gut, as well as inflammation. And if you suffer from inflammation already, gluten in your diet is likely making it worse.
Gluten can cause leaky gut. Leaky gut sounds like a scary condition, and when you break it down, it most definitely is. Leaky gut is where the walls of the intestines no longer function as intended and let anything and everything through their walls. Your gut is supposed to block the toxins, only allowing the healthy nutrients into your blood, but with a leaky gut, this doesnt happen.
Unfortunately, when anything can get into your bloodstream, this means that illness and disease are more common than they ever were before, and doctors have begun to look for reasons this may be occurring.
They have found that eating gluten, especially in a person sensitive to gluten, causes your body to produce a protein called Zonulin. And this protein leads to further breakdown in the walls of your gut, thus increasing permeability and leading to the leaky gut condition.
One way to stop eating gluten is going on a keto diet. Since gluten is something you cant eat on a keto diet, it will help you cut this harmful substance.
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Increases Your Nutrition Knowledge
Whats the first thing you look at when you read the nutrition facts? According to research, sugar and calories are the top two items U.S. consumers look at. And while both are important, theres much more to take into consideration.
Going gluten-free forces you to read nutrition labels and get educated on food ingredients, saysAmy Davis, RD, LDN. A lot of the time, simply being more aware of your food choices causes you to make better ones.
Where Is Gluten Hiding
Pastries, cakes, biscuits and breads are all widely known to contain gluten, but it hides in many everyday food items.
- Breakfast most breakfast cereals will contain some wheat and gluten. Try porridge oats, corn flakes and granola, but always check the label.
- Sauces gluten can be found in chicken, beef or vegetable stocks plus soy sauces, other sauces including gravies, marinades, ketchup, mayonnaise and salad dressings. Always check the label. Also be careful to avoid cross-contamination in the kitchen.
- Numerous snacks contain gluten, including many crisps. Look for popcorn, plain nuts and seeds and gluten-free crisps, but always check the label.
- Certain alcoholic drinks such as beer, ale, light beer and hard liquors can be made using grains that contain gluten. Sherry, Port and liqueurs are suitable for people with coeliac disease and there are gluten-free beers, lagers and stouts, but always check the label.
- Grains such as couscous, bulgur wheat and semolina are not gluten-free. Try quinoa in place of couscous or bulgur wheat and polenta or ground rice instead of semolina.
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Remember Healthy Looks Different For Everyone
Its easy to assume whats healthy for one person is healthy for you. But unfortunately, thats not how it works.
Everyone has a varied set of genes, gut bacteria, and environmental factors that make up who you are. This means we all react differently to diets, including gluten-free!
The only way to see if it works for you is to try it!
If you reap the benefits, great! If not, its time to try something else.
Either way, going gluten-free is a great place to start your health journey, especially if you suspect gluten foul play!
Benefits Of Eating Gluten Free
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In this day and age, it seems like you cant go anywhere without seeing gluten free options listed on a restaurant menu. Maybe you even have friends who eat gluten free, so you look for these restaurants in particular. But what is all this about? And why are so many people suddenly eating gluten free?
Surprisingly, even if you dont have a disease where you cant digest gluten, there are many benefits to eating a gluten free diet. This is because gluten does several things to your body and mind, and removing it from your diet can help you lead a happier and healthier life.
Whether you already eat gluten free, or it is just something you are considering, keep reading to find out all about gluten, what it does to your body, and how you can be better off without it.
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Benefits Of A Gluten Free Diet For Autism
Most naturopathic doctors will as a first step put children with autism on a gluten free diet because some research has been done saying it can improve symptoms and reduce outbursts. Anecdotal evidence indicates that this is true as well. Many children with autism suffer from gastrointestinal complaints, so this diet might help reduce the symptoms and their frequency, but there is no definitive proof or science to back the assertion that doing it will be beneficial.
That said, there may be no harm in trying a 30-day elimination diet to see if there is a change in the childs behavior, though its possible that that timeframe may be too short to observe changes , so its best to talk to your doctor first.