The Gluten Free Myth

Gluten Free is all the rage. Many people have adopted a gluten free diet, because they’ve heard it’s healthier, or they will lose weight. But not everyone needs to be gluten-free.

I’m Wendy Corr, with your daily Wellness tip!

If you haven’t already gone gluten-free, I bet you’ve at least thought about it. About one-third of Americans say they want to cut down on gluten or eliminate it from their diet.

So, what is Gluten?

Gluten is a type of protein naturally found in wheat, barley and rye. Our bodies don’t have the proper enzymes to break down these complex proteins, so the immune system has to clean them up and get them out of our system. For 99% of us, that isn’t a problem.

But in about 1% of the population, the immune system can’t handle the cleanup, and produces antibodies that attack the body’s digestive system, which leads to inflammation and other negative reactions. This is called celiac disease, which is an autoimmune disorder with potentially serious consequences.

There are many more people who have what’s called gluten sensitivity, which can cause rashes, bloating, mental fogginess, and fatigue. Both these groups should really adopt a gluten free diet.

What does that involve? Well, that means avoiding the obvious breads, pastas and baked goods made with gluten-containing flours, but may also be in foods you wouldn’t suspect, added to processed foods such as sauces, salad dressings, soups, energy bars, and soy sauce.

Many people think they can lose weight if you adopt a gluten free diet – but that’s not necessarily true. It’s all too easy to load up on gluten-free junk foods, like cookies and chips, and think you’re doing your body a favor. But these products often spike your blood sugar higher than wheat products, because they are higher in starchy carbs and contain higher amounts of sugar.

On the other hand, if you take bread out of your diet and put in more fruits, vegetables and lean proteins, you’ll absolutely see the benefits when you step on your scale!

Thanks for tuning in to Wellness with Wendy! For more health and wellness news and advice, follow my blog on mybighornbasin.com. See you again next time!