Wheat products include gluten, a protein that can be problematic for some people’s digestive systems. If a gluten-free diet is something you’ve been considering, it’s probably for health reasons. In this article we will see the benefits of gluten-free diet.
“gluten-free” refers to a dietary regimen in which cereal grains (such as wheat and rye) are excluded. Gluten-free diets are frequently recommended for those who have celiac disease, an inflammatory digestive disorder.
However, a gluten-free diet is becoming increasingly popular, and not just among those with celiac disease, because of the many health benefits of gluten-free diets.
Patients with celiac disease often follow gluten-free diets to reduce or eliminate symptoms like:
- Pain in the joints and muscles
- Abdominal discomfort
What is Gluten?
Gluten is a type of storage protein that is considered in wheat, barley, and rye. Some people are sensitive to the protein gluten, even though it can be tolerated as part of a nutritious diet.
After consuming gluten-containing foods, some people have unpleasant gastrointestinal symptoms. In addition, people with celiac disease are at risk of developing severe reactions to gluten.
Celiac disease is a devastating autoimmune condition in which the body erroneously targets itself after being exposed to gluten.
This can lead to serious health complications. Celiac disease affects 1% of the World’s population and damages the intestines.
Due to the rising occurrence of celiac disease and gluten intolerance, many food items are available for those who benefit from a gluten-free diet.
In addition, you can substitute other gluten-free grains, including corn, flax, millet, and rice, for grains that contain gluten.
Following a gluten-free diet may benefit your health, even though adhering to it can sometimes be difficult.
Why Should You Go Gluten Free?
The gluten-free diet is one in which gluten-containing ingredients are excluded. The growing importance of the gluten-free diet has led numerous individuals who have never had a health problem due to gluten.
In addition, the diet is said to have advantages such as better health, weight loss, and increased energy.
- An autoimmune condition is a celiac disease in which consuming gluten causes damage to the small intestine lining. Over time, this damage interrupts the body from getting the nutrients it needs from food.
- Non-celiac gluten intolerance causes signs and symptoms similar to celiac disease, like abdominal pain, bloating, diarrhoea, constipation, “foggy brain,” rash, and headache, despite the absence of small intestinal tissue injury. Studies indicate that the immune system has a role, although the underlying mechanism is not understood.
- Gluten ataxia, an autoimmune condition, damages various nerve tissues and disrupts muscle coordination and voluntary muscle activity.
- Wheat allergies develop whenever the immune response interprets gluten or another wheat protein as a disease, such as a virus or bacteria. The immune system makes an antibody against the protein. This causes the immune system to react, which can cause congestion, trouble breathing, and other symptoms.
Is Gluten-Free A Good Choice For Health?
As a Gluten-Free diet eliminates junk food and restricts the consumption of primary fruits, vegetables, and lean meats, it decreases unnecessary calories, leading to weight loss.
Additionally, the benefits of wheat gluten-free diets may alleviate digestive issues, increase energy, and minimize chronic inflammation. But, you should consult your doctor if you suddenly decide to follow a gluten-free diet.
Benefits of a Gluten-Free Diet for Health
People having celiac disease need to follow a diet that does not contain gluten since the disease causes damage to the small intestines if gluten is consumed.
Even though celiac disease only affects 1% of the population, it is four times more widespread than 60 years ago.
Who can get benefits from a gluten-free diet? A gluten-free diet is vital for people with autism, ADHD, or wheat allergies. This diet may also be beneficial for people having wheat allergies.
A person with celiac disease or other gluten-related disorders will benefit greatly from switching to a gluten-free diet.
1. Boosts Energy Levels
Gluten sensitivity is commonly associated with chronic fatigue in those who suffer from it.
This is because consuming gluten foods affects their intestines, which in turn limits the digestion of several nutrients, including iron.
This iron deficit develops in anaemia, which causes debilitating weariness and intolerance to exertion.
Going to a gluten-free diet can allow your intestines to heal, restoring nutrient absorption and boosting your energy levels.
2. Boosts Weight Gain in a Healthy Way
Diarrhoea, bloating, gas, and exhaustion are major signs of gluten intolerance and celiac disease. This causes dietary deficits and substantial weight loss.
By switching to a gluten-free diet, you may avoid these nutritional inadequacies and speed up your weight gain.
3. Get Lots of Vitamins and Antioxidants
Switching to fresher gluten-free food will significantly boost your intake of immune-boosting antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals.
4. Reduces Gas and Bloating
People with the celiac disorder or gluten sensitivity may feel bloated and gassy after consuming gluten-free foods.
However, after making the switch to a diet devoid of gluten, you will feel an immediate change in the absence of digestive irritation, along with a visible flatness of your stomach after meals.
5. Alleviates Discomfort in Muscles and Joints
Celiac disease & gluten sensitivity are typically associated with the digestive system. However, they can have far-reaching consequences.
Since celiac disease leads to an abnormal immune response, inflammation is more likely. Celiac disease is commonly characterized by joint pain, particularly in the knees, back, and wrists.
While adhering to a gluten-free diet can help reduce your risk of developing this kind of joint discomfort, it’s important to take extra precautions to avoid even unknowingly taking small traces of gluten.
6. Helps To Alleviate Headaches Frequently
Several researches are now conducted to assess the specific implications of the gut-brain connection, which has only been widely recognized in the last couple of decades.
For example, migraine headaches are significantly more common in patients with celiac disease and gluten sensitivity.
However, research indicates that gluten-free food can minimize the occurrence of these headaches.
7. Enhanced Blood Cholesterol
A gluten-free diet removes an enormous list of unhealthy items, including cookies, cake, and chips.
Partially hydrogenated fats, commonly known as trans fats, are harmful to your good cholesterol because they raise your unhealthy LDL cholesterol levels.
However, this process also assists you in getting rid of these fats. Therefore, a gluten-free diet will undoubtedly help improve your cholesterol levels.
8. Reduces Depression
More individuals with celiac disease suffer from depression. Researchers discovered, however, that adhering to a gluten-free diet positively impacted depressive symptoms and can assist enhance a patient’s quality of life.
9. Minimizes Lactose Tolerance
People who have the celiac disorder or are intolerant to gluten often also have symptoms of being intolerant to lactose.
This is because the intestinal lining generates lactase, an enzyme that degrades the lactose in dairy products.
Lactase synthesis is hindered in gluten-intolerant individuals due to the injury that gluten causes to the digestive tract.
On the other hand, this effect is only temporary, and adhering to a gluten-free diet can improve the gut’s health and minimize the indications of lactose intolerance.
10. Increases Bone Density
Patients with undiagnosed celiac disease frequently experience severe calcium shortages due to the loss of nutrients.
This calcium insufficiency is associated with a higher risk of bone diseases like osteoporosis and osteopenia.
However, researchers discovered that patients with celiac disease who followed a diet that excluded gluten significantly improved their bone mineral density.
11. Improves Skin Health
Untreated celiac disease or gluten sensitivity increases the likelihood of rashes, such as eczema and psoriasis.
A gluten-free diet can enhance your skin’s general health and potentially remove these problems.
12. Helps Control the Loss of Hair
Some studies have connected hair loss to nutritional inadequacies, which have been related to celiac illness and gluten intolerance.
Switching to a gluten-free diet can stop hair loss from occurring, boost hair density, and enhance hair texture.
What to Avoid?
It can be difficult to completely abstain from gluten as it is present in many daily food and beverages.
If you want to avoid it, your best bet is to stick to foods containing only one ingredient or to read food labels very carefully.
Listed below are products that may include gluten-containing ingredients:
- Baked foods
- Snack items
- Beer and several alcohol-flavoured beverages
- Pizza, couscous, and broth (unless otherwise labelled)
What to Consume For Food and Drink?
Gluten-free options are abundant, allowing you to enjoy nutritious and delicious meals.
The following foods are gluten-free by nature:
- All kinds of meat, fish, and chicken, except battered meats
- Eggs, across all various forms (including whites and yolks)
- Dairy: plain milk, yoghurt, and cheese, among other unflavored dairy items
- Fruits include berries, pineapples, bananas, melons, peaches, oranges, pears, and other fruits.
- Vegetables, including broccoli, onions, peppers, mushrooms, asparagus, carrots, tomatoes, and potatoes, among others.
- Cereals: rice, buckwheat, quinoa, tapioca, sorghum, corn, millet, arrowroot, and oats (if labelled gluten-free).
- Potato flour, corn flour, soy flour, chickpea flour, almond meal, coconut powder, and tapioca flour are examples of starches and flours.
- Nuts and seeds include almonds, cashews, chia seeds, hemp seeds, walnuts, pistachios, and flaxseeds, among others.
- Oils and spreads include sunflower, olive, coconut, butter, margarine, and other vegetable oils and fats.
- Herbs and spices, including turmeric, oregano, thyme, rosemary, black pepper, parsley, and cilantro, among others
- Beverages: the majority of beverages, excluding beer (unless labelled gluten-free)
How to Maintain a Healthy Gluten-Free Diet
As a result of so many dietary restrictions, gluten-free diets can make it more difficult for many individuals to get all the necessary nutrients.
It can be extremely difficult to find gluten-free, nutrient-rich foods that are also suitable for a balanced diet.
This could be the challenging and complex task of obtaining sufficient gluten-free nutrients.
Gluten-free Diet Plan
There are various gluten-free diet plans to meet various dietary needs. Some may prefer to practice this diet to treat their condition, while others may adopt it to lose weight.
However, in the largest context, this diet plan can enhance health, eliminate food cravings, tone the body, and assist in either maintaining or losing weight.
A Gluten-free diet has ideal levels of fats, carbohydrates, and sodium. As a result, the average daily calorie consumption is between 1200 and 1300.
Gluten-free diet programmes range in duration from 6 to 24 weeks.
Labelling Of Gluten-Free Food Products
Checking the labels is very important for buying processed foods to see if they have gluten.
In addition, foods containing wheat, barley, rye, triticale, or a substance derived from these grains, must include the grain’s name in the ingredient list.
Some foods that might have these labels are:
- Naturally gluten-free foods
- Gluten-free processed food does not include any ingredients that contain gluten.
- Food that hasn’t been contaminated with gluten-containing substances during the manufacturing process
- Foods containing gluten-containing ingredients that have undergone processing to remove gluten
Gluten-free foods cost more than their replacements. Costs associated with gluten-free food can be significant, particularly if the plan includes items that are not naturally gluten-free.
Gluten-Free Versus Whole Wheat
We must maintain healthy gut function, and getting enough fibre is vital to ensure everything remains in good condition.
Eliminating whole wheat could result in a decrease in fibre, but this is not necessary because there is a multitude of high-fibre foods that will provide you with all you need.
Priority has been taken on ensuring that our products are both rich in dietary fibre and gluten-free.
With or without gluten, you can eat a nutritious and balanced diet. However, it is crucial that you eat a diet that is specific to your needs and ensures that you obtain all your body requires.
For example, your diet can substitute gluten-free grains like millet, brown rice, corn, quinoa, buckwheat, and oats for wheat, barley, and rye. Eating gluten-free diet has long-term favourable effects on health and has several benefits.
But, gluten-free food can be nutritious depending on the gluten-free items chosen, the frequency with which they are eaten, and the other food choices.