Should you really be avoiding gluten?
Gluten-free diet plans are gaining a lot of attention in recent years. As a result, you would wonder what gluten is and whether you should avoid all foods that contain gluten. Continue to read and we will share more details with you on whether you should really be avoiding gluten.
What is gluten?
Wheat, barley, and rye all contain the protein known as gluten. It makes bread rise and gives it flexibility and chewiness. Additionally, gluten binds cookies together when baking and contributes to the chewy texture of the pizza crust. Many meals, including breads, spaghetti, pizza dough, cookies (including gluten-free ones) and cakes made of wheat, as well as the brewing of beer, include gluten.
Is gluten really harmful to you?
Wheat, barley, and rye all contain the protein known as gluten. It causes cakes to rise and gives bread its chewy texture. Yes, avoiding gluten is crucial if you have a gluten allergy or coeliac disease, an autoimmune condition that damages the lining of your small intestine when you consume foods containing gluten.
But what about the majority of people? Not really. There is no evidence to support the idea that eliminating all sources of this protein would enhance a person’s health in any manner, even though some individuals may feel stomach discomfort or bloating after consuming breads with high amounts of gluten (which indicates they may have a gluten intolerance and not a gluten allergy).
Why do some individuals stay away from gluten?
There are a few factors that may cause you to avoid gluten. The first is that you have celiac disease, an autoimmune condition that damages your small intestine when you consume gluten-containing foods. Americans with celiac disease make up around 1% of the population, although many more are susceptible to it.
The fact that they feel better without it is another reason why some individuals opt to avoid gluten, and there is some evidence to suggest that this is especially true for those with non-celiac gluten sensitivity. (NCGS). The exact cause of NCGS and its prevalence are unknown; some studies have found rates as high as 6%, while others have found extremely low rates of 0% among healthy adults who do not report experiencing any symptoms or intestinal problems after consuming wheat products in clinical trials where other factors were controlled.
Some people avoid wheat because they are allergic to or intolerant to certain varieties, brands, or flavors of bread made from wheat flour; these allergies and intolerances aren’t specifically related to gluten but rather more generally with other ingredients present in breads made from wheat flour, such as fructans, which explains why someone might react negatively to bread even if he hadn’t previously been diagnosed with Celiac Disease (CD).
How to stay away from gluten?
Eating healthy and cooking at home is the greatest method to stay away from gluten. This is due to the fact that the majority of those who are sensitive to it develop digestive issues including bloating, gas, and diarrhea after consuming processed meals that contain the protein.
If you do go out to eat, inquire about the ingredients in your food, particularly if there’s a possibility that it was prepared or cooked using wheat or barley. Additionally, ask your waiter whether beer or other alcoholic drinks (which may include malted grains) were produced on equipment that was also used to produce drinks with gluten-containing components like barley malt syrup or wheat flour pasteurization agent.
Look for “gluten free” items at grocery shops; they will be prominently labelled as safe alternatives when shopping to assist guarantee that you’re avoiding hidden sources of gluten in foods like soy sauce (which often includes wheat).
Stay away from foods with gluten only if your doctor advice to do so
Follow a doctor’s advice to avoid gluten. Otherwise, you shouldn’t be concerned. Ask your doctor about being tested for celiac disease or non-celiac gluten sensitivity if you’re unclear if your body is sensitive to gluten and want to know your alternatives.
Around 1% of individuals worldwide suffer from celiac disease, an autoimmune condition that is brought on by eating foods containing the protein gluten, which is present in wheat, barley, and rye. However, despite experiencing symptoms similar to those brought on by celiac disease, people with NCGS do not actually develop damage to their intestines as a result of eating these foods; doctors speculate that this may be because they undergo an innate immune response as opposed to an autoimmune one.
How can you tell whether you are gluten sensitive?
There are no particular tests available to diagnose gluten sensitivity, which is not a recognized medical condition. Instead, medical professionals check for additional symptoms like weariness or bloating as well as indicators of inflammation in the body (such swollen joints or redness on your cheeks).
They also take into account if there is a family history of celiac disease, a severe type of gluten intolerance that, if ignored, may result in major long-term health issues. If these conditions are satisfied, they could advise eliminating gluten from your diet totally while keeping an eye on how well your symptoms change over time.
The great majority of us can consume gluten, while some individuals with celiac disease cannot. Food allergies and gluten sensitivity are two very distinct things. Due to a hereditary tendency to gluten sensitivity, people with celiac disease have severe immunological reactions after consuming gluten. True allergies are caused by your immune system creating antibodies against and inflaming your body. These symptoms often include hives or swelling of the tongue or throat.
The bottom line
It’s important to remember that the subject of gluten is complex. Most people out there can consume gluten food. By all means, go ahead and take out gluten if you find that it helps your stomach feel better or if you believe it may assist with other medical conditions like irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). But don’t listen to advice from someone who is unsure of whether they have gluten sensitivity since they can be joining a trend without any supporting data.