Sunday, February 26, 2012

My thoughts on Gluten Free diets


Another thing I find incomprehensible is why would somebody chooses a gluten free diet if you do not have to? Most peopel do it so they can lose weight or they think they are eating healthier.

Those individuals who suffer from Celiac disease have to be on a gluten free diet because their body's immune system overreacts to the protein gluten which is found in most breads.  If they consume any gluten foods they can have symptoms of abdominal pain and diarrhea. They have to avoid gluten for their own health because eventually their intestines will be so disrupted that they will not be able to absorb nutrients form the food they eat.
Please anyone who is doing this gluten-free diet without having any medical issues should seriously reconsider.
This diet can put an individual at risk of several vitamin deficiencies:

  • iron
  • folic acid
  • b vitamins
  • calcium 
  • fiber
On a gluten free diet you have to avoid: 
    Barley (malt, malt flavoring and malt vinegar are usually made from barley)
    Rye
    Triticale (a cross between wheat and rye)
    Wheat
These following items contain wheat and they should be avoided as well:
Bulgur
Durum flour
Farina
Graham flour
Kamut
Semolina
Spelt
Now it is hard to find all products that do not have wheat. SO why do it if you do not have to.  It is true there are plenty of gluten free products out there, but they are expensive. Why waste your money on something when you do not need to go through this diet??? Most people who follow this diet will eventually not eat bread just to avoid the wheat. This is not healthy either. Your body needs complex carbohydrates for energy so please do not avoid them completely. 

We need to follow a healthy diet of:
  • fresh fruits and vegetables (buy organic if you can afford it and only those that have high pesticide risk)
  • lean meats
  • healthy fats: olive oil, nuts, non-fat dairy, avocados
  • avoid saturated and transaturated fats (butter, cakes, brownies, donuts...all things unhealthy)
  • eat every 2 hours
It is ideal to follow a healthy diet and not go on a gluten free diet unless absolutely necessary. 

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