The answer? It is a bit complicated. Gluten is a mixture of two proteins found in bread and all food products that contain wheat, eg. As cereals, pasta and packaged food. It can be difficult to digest these proteins, and they are thought to cause or even aggravate health problems.
Some people need to avoid gluten to save their lives, while others just feel better and believe that they are healthier without gluten. Whether you should eat gluten or not is definitely not black or white, which is why I dive into the most common reasons why people avoid it below. If you are considering avoiding gluten, you should know why people avoid it and how it can affect your health, according to nutritionists and health professionals.
Keto, paleo and low-carbohydrate diets are growing in popularity
If you have not lived under a rock for the past five years, you've probably noticed that the trend towards low-carbohydrate diets is booming. And while science and health professionals are still arguing whether it's really healthy for you to avoid carbohydrates, people turn to a low-carbohydrate diet to lose weight, feel energized, or treat certain diseases or conditions ( among other reasons).
Some of the most popular diets, including the keto diet and the paleo diet, require you to cut out bread and gluten. For the keto diet, you cut bread and wheat products, especially because they are high in carbohydrates; The goal of the keto diet is to cut down on enough carbohydrates and consume more fat so that your body goes into a ketogenic state (in which your body needs fat for energy). The Paleo diet restricts bread and all cereals (including gluten-containing cereals) because the goal of the diet is to reduce the consumption of processed foods and to keep food in its entire form (ie mainly vegetables, fruits, meat, eggs , Nuts) ).
Gluten Health Concerns
There is much confusion as to whether everyone should refrain from gluten, or whether only people with diagnosed complaints should be concerned (more on that later). The main argument for problems with gluten is that it contains proteins that are resistant to human digestion. And although you might think that this is not such a big deal (aside from bloating or discomfort), many experts disagree.
When this happens, there may be some information about "leaky guts" or intestinal permeability, where molecules from your small intestine can enter your body (which should not happen when you're digesting food). Triggering an autoimmune response. Science shows that this is the case in people with celiac disease, although the evidence that this may be the case in people without celiac disease, is confirmed only in test tube studies.
And the proteins in gluten are not the only problem – gluten in wheat also contains amylase trypsin inhibitors, which are proven to cause inflammation in the digestive system. Wheat germ agglutinin is a type of lectin found in wheat that is also associated with autoimmune problems and inflammation.
Celiac Disease and Gluten Sensitivity
Celiac disease is an autoimmune disease in which the consumption of gluten damages the small intestine and causes painful and unpleasant digestive problems. The small intestine is responsible for the body absorbing nutrients. If it's damaged, it means that you do not get what you need from the food you eat, which can cause a lot of health problems. If celiac disease is undiagnosed or left untreated, it can lead to serious health problems such as diabetes, multiple sclerosis or GI cancer.
Even if you do not have severe wheat or gluten allergy or celiac disease, sensitivity to gluten may develop, causing symptoms such as headache, fatigue, "brain fog", flatulence or gas. This is widely reported and it is estimated that 18 million people in the US have gluten sensitivity.
If you suspect gluten sensitivity, one way to identify them is to remove them from your diet for a period of time. If you then reintroduce it and notice symptoms, you may be able to tell if it's the culprit for a headache or abdominal pain that you feel.
It is a personal preference whether you avoid gluten or not. Some people just avoid it because they follow health experts who recommend cutting it out (which is fine). If you think you have no problem with it and are not worried, you do not have to follow a trend just because others are doing it. And if the above evidence pertains to you, taking gluten out is an easy way to avoid the health risks associated with some claims.
The information contained in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended to be considered as health or medical advice. Always consult a doctor or other qualified healthcare provider if you have questions about a disease or health goals.