Chances are, you’ve heard a lot of talk about gluten and whether or not it has any adverse health benefits. Over the past few years, there’s been a spike in gluten-free products and diets, but why are so many people against it, and is it really as bad as they say? Let’s take a look and find out!
What Is Gluten?
First, we need to understand what gluten is and where it’s found. Gluten is a protein that acts as a glue and helps food keep its shape. It’s most commonly found in wheat, barley, and rye but can appear in some unexpected foods. It’s not uncommon for gluten to hide in sauces, salad dressings, wine, and soup, making it challenging to avoid.
Why Are Gluten-Free Diets So Popular?
Gluten-free diets are all the rage, thanks to studies claiming they assist in weight loss and may reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease. Originally developed for people with Celiac Disease, the gluten-free diet was never meant for the general public. For those who suffer from gluten sensitivity, eliminating gluten is incredibly beneficial, but it can actually do more harm than good for those without any sensitivity issues.
Those eating a gluten-free diet without Celiac Disease may not get the recommended amount of grains, leading to nutritional deficiencies. It may also cause weight gain and is significantly more expensive than a diet containing gluten. There is currently no connection to any proven benefits of eating a gluten-free diet without having a gluten sensitivity.
Are That Many People Really Sensitive To Wheat?
Although it may seem like everyone you know has developed a gluten sensitivity all of a sudden, only about 0.5% of the global adult population is truly sensitive to gluten proteins. That means that 99.5% of people adhering to a gluten-free diet don’t need it!
Those numbers are pretty astounding when you consider how susceptible the vast majority of people are to believing mistruths on how gluten affects their bodies. As it turns out, unless you’re one of the 0.5% of adults worldwide with a genuine gluten sensitivity, it isn’t the villain of the story, after all. So, if you suspect your gluten-sensitive, get checked out by a doctor; otherwise, enjoy your wheat, rye, and barley since there’s no need to ditch the gluten. Giving it up could do you more harm than good in the long run!
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