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Adopt a gluten-free diet? It depends.

Gluten? Say what? We’re talking about it all the time these days, but what is gluten? Why can some people eat it and other can’t? What’s the buzz about gluten-free diets? What’s the scoop about Celiac Disease? What are the pros and cons about going-gluten in their diet, or avoiding-gluten all-together? All great questions, right? Today’s blog is the fifth and final in a five-part series on all-things-gluten.

Some readers of this blog might be thinking, should I go gluten-free because I will feel better? It’s certainly trendy as gluten-free foods are available everywhere, even when eating out.

If you have been diagnosed with having a sensitivity or intolerance to gluten, formerly called non-celiac gluten sensitivity, OR if you suffer from Celiac Disease, the enormity of gluten-free foods available is welcomed. Going gluten-free is imperative; you don’t have a choice about it because the tiniest taste of gluten will trigger debilitating gastrointestinal discomfort. It’s time consuming, expensive, and a burdensome way to eat. But if you don’t suffer from these conditions, consider the following before removing gluten from your diet.

Based on little or no evidence, people have adopted a gluten-free diet to lose weight, boost energy, treat autism, or just feel healthier. According to health experts, the clear majority of those that switch to a gluten-free diet will receive no perceptible health benefits, spending lots of hard earned money on expensive gluten-free foods. Buyer beware.

Going gluten-free involves more than avoiding breads, cereals, pasta, pizza, and beer. Gluten is present in many other food stuffs like frozen vegetables in sauces, soy sauce, foods labelled as having natural flavorings, vitamin and mineral supplements, some medications, and even toothpaste. The bottom line is, is makes adopting a gluten-free diet complex. If you are determined to give up gluten, you need to know that you might develop some nutritional deficiencies, such as the range of vitamin B’s. Taking a gluten-free multivitamin & multimineral supplement is important for those wanting to avoid gluten. Be mindful that when you about wheat, you will need fiber to stay health, so consuming brown rice, quinoa, fibrous fruits, vegetables, and beans, will be important.

I acknowledge that this image is borrowed from BBC’s Good Food website, on September 4, 2017. Thank you!

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