There’s been a lot of chatter over the last few years about whether or not a gluten free diet is really good for you if you don’t have celiac disease. Experts disagree on the topic just as much as the public. Let’s take a closer look at the potential benefits of a gluten free diet whether you have celiac disease or not.
You’re forced to learn more about what you’re eating
Gluten isn’t usually a single-word ingredient listed on something. You can’t just turn over a package and say, “Oh, the word gluten isn’t in the ingredient list so I can eat this.” You have to learn more about where gluten can actually be hiding, and that requires you to learn more about your food and where it comes from.
Fruits and vegetables are always gluten free
Let me clarify- plain fruits and vegetables are always gluten free. If you order them from a restaurant covered in a sauce or seasoning, they may not be. The takeaway is that you can replace your gluten-filled foods with more fruits and vegetables, and that means more beneficial antioxidants and nutrients, often for less calories.
You may find gluten was wreaking havoc on your health
Many people don’t realize that everyday annoyances or problems such as heartburn and reflux, depression and anxiety, headaches and fatigue, can actually be caused by gluten. They may think it’s something else, but a 1-month trial completely free of gluten may help them pin down the problem.
You learn to cook
If you make the decision to avoid most gluten-free packaged products such as cereals, crackers and breads (that have very little protein or fiber but are bursting at the seams with carbohydrates), you will find yourself getting a little more creative in the kitchen. You can of course find a few healthy packaged choices as the selection grows, but you can rely on other sources of carbohydrates like sweet potatoes and winter squash for your carb intake. Enjoy a veggie omelet or turkey sausage with veggie hash for breakfast instead of gluten free bagels and cereal.
Your tastebuds change
Eating gluten-filled treats can often make you continue to crave them. While it isn’t easy to say goodbye to a slice of cake, a cupcake or a donut every time someone brings one into the office, most people find that they don’t crave these things as much as they used to once they’ve been gluten free for a while. You don’t have to avoid these items forever unless your gluten free diet is medically necessary, but cutting back may help you develop a healthier relationship with food.
Do you follow a gluten free diet? Have you noticed any positive changes?