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Things to Know Before Going Gluten-Free

| Blog | August 16 2019

Are you contemplating a gluten-free lifestyle? Before, you think that gluten has some superpowers and will make all your health worries disappear; here is some reality check, a piece of advice if I may before you commit yourself to a gluten-free diet.

Get Tested for Celiac Disease

Please get yourself tested for celiac disease before you jump on a gluten-free diet. There’s no need for you to avoid gluten if you do not have a gluten sensitivity or celiac disease. What you think of gluten sensitivity could be digestive issues or IBS. Therefore, get a blood test it will tell you accurately if you have celiac disease or not.

It isn’t Necessarily Healthy

Go to the grocery store and you will find numerous gluten-free waffles, cookies or bread. Gluten has become synonymous with healthy, and it is a misconception. Getting on a gluten-free diet does have its health benefits however, it is not particularly healthy. Keep in your mind that gluten-free products are more processed than non-gluten products.

No Stomach Issues Doesn’t Mean You Don’t Have Gluten Sensitivity

Just because you do not have diarrhea or gas does not mean you don’t have gluten sensitivity. Gluten sensitivity is more than just digestive issues. It is said to affect your brain and manifest in a lot of ways by affecting your thyroid, mouth, brain, and skin. The best way is to consult a doctor to find out if you have gluten sensitivity or not.

You May Put On Weight

Going on a gluten-free diet does not mean losing weight; you might even gain a few pounds. Being on a diet that restricts your favorite foods might result in binge eating. Moreover, as you increase your fat and protein intake and exclude fiber and gains, it can lead to weight gain. You need to be mindful of portions, as with any other diet if you are trying to lose weight.

Miss Out on Health Benefits

Whole grains, particularly the fiber in it, facilitates digestion and promote your gut health. Therefore, include pro-biotic rich foods like kimchi, yogurt and gluten-free whole grains in your diet. These whole grains reduce the risk of heart disease and help control blood pressure. As long as you can tolerate gluten, there are more pros than cons of eating whole grains.

Could Make You Feel Worse

Giving up gluten instead of eliminating the brain fog, may make you feel more tired since whole grains are a source of energy. Therefore, before you embark on a gluten-free diet keep in mind that this lifestyle can also lead to nutrient deficiencies. It is because whole grains contain important nutrients including selenium, iron, zinc, magnesium, and fiber, to name a few.

Gluten Is Everywhere

Ensure that everything you use is gluten-free; apart from food, this includes all your body care products, toothpaste, medications, etc. Start by asking questions from friends and family, the wait staff at the restaurant to make sure that your food is gluten-free. Moreover, start by cleaning your kitchen and removing everything that contains gluten. If you are going gluten-free, might as well do it right.

Websites and Books Lie

Books and online content isn’t always accurate. Paleo diet, for example, is highly recommended for people wanting to avoid gluten; however, its focus is not on avoiding gluten. Therefore, be wary of what you read online or in a paleo book, it might do you harm if you have gluten sensitivity. The best way is to consult a dietitian and get your diet plan made.

Gluten Does Not Mean Grain-Free

If you decide to go gluten-free, there are plenty of grains that you can eat. These grains include rice, quinoa, millet, oats, corn, sorghum, buckwheat, and amaranth. These grains should be heavily incorporated in your diet since they are great sources of fibers. However, oats are often contaminated with wheat during processing so be careful of that. 

Labels Lie

Picking up a product, reading its ingredients and assuming its gluten-free because they are no wheat glutens listed is a rookie mistake. A product is not safe until it has gluten-free written over it. There are players in the market who are falsely claiming (by omission) their products to be gluten-free while they are far from it.

A gluten-free diet is for people who are diagnosed with gluten intolerance or celiac disease. And for people without a diagnosis, it is not recommended. Try whole grains instead of processed grains, instead of cutting gluten together.

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