What is gluten?
There are a number of reasons why you may want to try being gluten-free, but first, let's go over the fundamentals.
Gluten is a word used to describe a group of proteins present in grains including wheat, barley, and rye. Gluten is the "glue" that binds the grain together and keeps it from crumbling.
Gluten may be present in a variety of foods, including bread, pasta, doughs, baked goods, cereals, and less obvious sources such as cross-contaminated oats, soy sauce, salad dressings, condiments, deli meats, cheeses, fried foods, confectionery, alcohol, pharmaceuticals, supplements, cosmetics, and more.
A gluten-free diet removes meals which have the protein gluten, such as barley, rye, and wheat.
The majority of research on gluten-free diets has been done on celiac disease patients, however, gluten sensitivity is another illness that may create issues with gluten. If you have a gluten intolerance, you must avoid it totally.
Paying attention to food labels is essential if you're attempting to avoid gluten.
6 Reasons to Consider a Gluten-Free Lifestyle
1. Wheat is one of the most prevalent allergens
When you become gluten-free, you must eliminate wheat as well as other gluten-containing cereals. Because wheat is one of the most common allergies, becoming gluten-free eliminates a possible allergy from your system.
2. Gluten has the potential to cause inflammation
If you have a gluten intolerance, ingesting gluten might aggravate your symptoms, such as joint discomfort. Gluten, according to some accounts, might aggravate arthritis, particularly if you already have celiac disease. However, even with non-celiac gluten sensitivity, there may be a link between gluten consumption and swollen joints and overall inflammation. For joint support, one can use supplements for effective weight loss.
3. Gluten has been linked to thyroid issues
Gluten has been shown in studies to have a deleterious impact on thyroid illness, and a gluten-free diet may help lower the antibodies linked with autoimmune thyroid disease.
4. Gluten-free items aren't always nutrient-dense
Gluten-containing foods, such as wheat bread, are not considered nutrient-dense foods. In fact, in diets like the paleo diet, which focuses on just eating foods our ancestors ate for much of history, both gluten-free and gluten-containing grains are often avoided.
5. Gluten Sensitivities in Non-Celiacs
Gluten sensitivity is thought to affect up to a third of the world's population. Gluten sensitivities may produce a wide range of undesirable symptoms, but they aren't always detected by a celiac test. "Non-Celiac Gluten Sensitivity" is the name given to this disorder.
What are the symptoms of Non-Celiac Gluten Sensitivity?
The symptoms include:
- stomach ache
- Bowel motions that aren't regular
- Migraines and headaches
- Fog in the head
- Anxiety, depression, and other mood disorders
- Muscle spasms and joint pain
- Rheumatoid arthritis
- Acne, eczema, or an unexplained rash are examples of skin issues.
- Healthy weight gain
These signs and symptoms may develop shortly after consuming gluten or may take many days to manifest. The only way to know for sure whether gluten is causing your symptoms is to remove it from your diet and observe if they improve.
6. Gluten may interfere with nutrition absorption
It's likely that if you have gluten sensitivity or celiac disease but continue to eat gluten, your gut wall will get irritated. Leaky Gut Syndrome is a term used to describe a condition in which the body is unable to absorb nutrients from food.
Is it necessary for everyone to become gluten-free?
Gluten-free diets are required for persons with Celiac disease. Some detractors believe that being gluten-free is a fad diet that isn't required. It's something you should talk to your doctor about and decide for yourself.
What gluten-free flour options are the best?
The following flours may be used to substitute glutenous flours:
- flour made from coconut
- Oat flour that is gluten-free.
- flour made from tapioca
- flour made from cassava (grain-free)
- flour made from buckwheat
- flour made from chickpeas
- flour made from almondsFoods to Consume
- There are many gluten-free choices available that will enable you to eat nutritious and tasty meals.
The following foods are gluten-free by nature:
- Meats and seafood
- Dairy products. However, flavoured dairy products may include gluten-containing components, so check the labels carefully.
- Fruits and vegetables are healthy choices.
- Grains. Quinoa, rice, buckwheat, tapioca, sorghum, maize, millet, amaranth, arrowroot, teff, and oats are some of the most often used grains (if labelled gluten-free).
- Flours and starches Potatoes, potato flour, maize, corn flour, chickpea flour, soy flour, almond meal/flour, coconut flour, and tapioca flour are some of the ingredients used in this recipe.
- All nuts and seeds are allowed.
- Beverages. With the exception of beer, and most drinks (unless labelled as gluten-free).
- It's essential to check the food labels if you're ever unclear whether anything includes gluten.
A simple online search for "gluten-free recipes" can provide a plethora of dishes that use these gluten-free substitutes. And, thankfully, gluten-free choices are now readily available in many restaurants and grocery shops (see my round-up of the best gluten-free items at Walmart). In most major cities, there are even 100% gluten-free bakeries. In addition, all of the recipes on my site are gluten-free.
What's the difference between grain-free flour and gluten-free flour?
Grain-free flours are derived from non-grain sources like cassava or tapioca, whereas gluten-free flours are made from grains like rice or buckwheat.
Even if you don't have celiac disease, there are a variety of reasons why you may wish to become gluten-free. If you're thinking about making dietary adjustments, this may be one of the first things you want to try.