There’s a lot of hype right now about eating gluten-free and the term “fad” has been associated with it more often than not! Ditching gluten might cause weight loss in some people because a lot of processed food is cut out, but most times gluten is removed for health issues that you might not be aware of. Check out the list below to see if you may benefit from ditching it.
1. Celiac Disease: Those with Celiac cannot eat gluten without severe reactions such as diarrhea, vomiting, skin issues, stomach pain, bloating, etc. Not everyone has severe reactions though so it is important to get tested and perform elimination trials.
2. Autoimmune Disease: Rheumatoid Arthritis, Multiple Sclerosis, Diabetes, Fibromyalgia, Interstitial Cystitis, Hashimotos Thyroiditis, etc. are all caused by inflammation which can come from anti-nutrients in certain foods like those with gluten.
3. Digestive Issues: Constipation, diarrhea, gas, bloat, IBS, Crohn’s disease, Colitis, etc. can all be aggravated and caused by gluten since it is a gut irritant causing inflammation and permeability of the gut lining. (photo credit here)
4. Skin Issues: Acne, eczema, psoriasis, keratosis pilaris, etc. are all signs of digestive dysfunction. Constipation in particular is a sign of sluggish digestion and stored toxins. Chronic constipation can cause congested skin leading to breakouts, and the improper absorption of nutrients can cause deficiencies leading to other skin conditions.
5. Cavities and Gum Disease: Grains/gluten are simple carbohydrates that convert to sugar in the mouth. These sugars are sticky and love to cling to teeth.
6. Infertility: Grains can destroy the gut lining causing malabsorption of nutrients over time. This may lead to improper levels of hormones to conceive. (photo credit here)
7. PMS and Hormonal Imbalance: Eating gluten-free can aide in hormonal imbalance and reduce PMS symptoms.
8. Belly Fat: Wheat is a simple carbohydrate that affects insulin. Insulin is a hormone that very effectively allows the body to store fat from converted carbohydrates… especially around the mid-section.
9. Addiction: “Gluten breaks down into polypeptides that cross the blood brain barrier and bind to opiate receptors in the brain – this causes a reaction similar to an endorphin rush that happens during a “runner’s high.” After the high comes the crash, and then, the cravings for more.” (MyYogaOnline) (photo credit here)
10. Mental/Emotional Illness: “Eating gluten causes inflammation which shuts down blood flow to the frontal cortex. This is part of the brain that helps us focus, plan, organize, manage emotions, and use our short term memory. The decreased blood supply to the brain is powerfully linked with depression, anxiety, and ADHD.” (GrassFedGirl)
11. Vitamin deficiencies: Wheat has anti-nutrients that inhibit some vitamin and mineral absorption, especially vitamin D. (TheRawFoodFamily)