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Gluten-free

Take care with gluten-free foods

More and more people are struggling with celiac disease in recent years. This is a hypersensitivity to gluten, popularly known as gluten intolerance. These days, gluten-free food is so popular that you’ll find more and more gluten-free products on store shelvest. But how healthy is this gluten-free food really? We looked into it for you.

Gluten intolerance and celiac disease

  • Gluten is protein found in cereals such as wheat, couscous, barley, spelt and kamut. This protein is responsible for the elasticity and lightness of dough, which is why it is often incorporated into bread, pasta and other wheat products.

  • For most people, gluten is safe for consumption, but in others it still causes problems. People with celiac disease, an autoimmune disorder, do not tolerate this protein, leading to an inflammatory reaction in the intestines. Its symptoms include abdominal pain, diarrhea, fatigue and weight loss.

  • Other people, in turn, may experience gluten intolerance sensitivity, meaning they tolerate the protein poorly. The result is fatigue or stomach pain after consuming foods containing gluten.
  • So a gluten intolerance is not the same as celiac disease. Still, in either case, you can experience unpleasant symptoms after eating gluten. If you suspect that you do not tolerate gluten well, temporarily eliminate gluten from your diet. If the symptoms disappear after a few weeks, this may indicate a gluten intolerance, allergy or even celiac disease. Always discuss complaints and symptoms with your doctor.

Gluten: the aggressive protein

Gliadin is the culprit in the gluten story. This is a component of the protein that makes the substance “zonulin. This substance affects the permeability of your intestinal mucosa, causing small holes can form in your intestinal lining, which in turn leads to a leaky gut. The latter can cause a lot of problems and is dangerous to your health. In fact, a leaky gut causes waste products to pass through the intestinal waind into the blood. This leads to a variety of symptoms, ranging from skin problems and allergies, to autoimmune diseases such as celiac disease, inflammation and long-term fatigue. In addition, nutrients are not absorbed properly in your gut.

Is gluten-free food healthy for you?

  • People with celiac disease or gluten intolerance often choose gluten-free foods. These are often alternatives to bread, pasta, cookies and other baked goods. However, it is important to note that already many foods are naturally gluten-free. Think of all the foods that do not contain wheat or grains, such as fruits and vegetables, dairy products, meat and fish, rice or quinoa.

  • To still enjoy a delicious pasta or a slice of bread, there are gluten-free alternatives for those with celiac disease, gluten allergy or intolerance. However, we recommend choosing these alternatives only when you really suffer after eating foods containing gluten. In fact, these gluten-free products contain a lot of starch and
    sugars
    , which causes these products to contribute to a few extra pounds on the scale.

  • This is because the combination of sugars and starches raises your blood sugar levels considerably. The pancreas then makes insulin to carry the energy you’ve received to your cells, thereby lowering your blood sugar again. If your blood sugar spikes regularly, a lot of insulin is circulating in your blood, making it impossible to lose weight. In addition, people with celiac disease also often gain weight because, thanks to gluten-free alternatives, they can now absorb adequate nutrients from food.

Healthy alternatives

If you do not suffer from celiac disease or a gluten allergy, it is better to leave gluten-free food products out. It will save you several pounds and it is better for your wallet, as these products are very pricey. Moreover, sometimes there is some scarcity on the gluten-free shelf, so then it is better to leave the products for those who really need it. 

Are you really unable to tolerate gluten? Then it is interesting to look at healthy alternatives. First, you can choose foods that do not naturally contain gluten. These are all products without any wheat or grains, and believe us, there are many. Think of all fruits and vegetables, yogurt, eggs, cheese and other animal products.  

Want to eat gluten-free in a healthy way? So then it’s best to omit cereal products and everything on the gluten-free shelf. There are plenty of natural alternatives to replace the absence of grain and wheat products in your diet. 

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