I feel kind of bad for gluten. It has been made a scapegoat for just about everything you can think of, from severe stomach issues to inability to think straight. In 0.56 seconds Google came up with 149,000,000 hits, yes that is 6 zeros. When I just asked if gluten is bad for me, the hits dropped to a mere 36,900,000. So what is the truth?
For years, we’ve seen entire sections of the grocery store dedicated to low-fat/no-fat. Now there are sections dedicated to gluten free. Should you be gluten-free? Will you end up missing out on important nutrients if you cut out gluten-containing grains? As with all things, you have to dig a bit to find out the real story and why so many folks seem to be “gluten sensitive”.
Wheat is the main source of gluten in our diet and has been since recorded times. While some “ancient” kin may have had trouble with grain, grain was not demonized. However, in the last few decades, farm practices have changed drastically. Pesticides, synthetic fertilizers and GMO seeds have become the norm to maximize yield. These new grains are also treated differently after being harvested. Today’s refining process provides flour that is great for making fluffy bread, donuts and cakes. Removed from the grain are the BRAN and the GERM. The bran is the fiber part of the grain. The germ is where the nutrients that grain provides are found. By taking the essential parts of the grain, what is left is a hollow shell of grain. When we eat “hollow foods”, our body will often “react” is undesired ways BECAUSE the body expects certain compounds to be present while digesting.
The Bottom Line
One of the general rules of consumption is, if God made it, it’s good for you. If man tried to improve upon it, it is not. This holds true with gluten containing foods. The more processed, the worse it is for your body. Avoid boxed foods, and you will do your body a world of good. If you think you need help healing your gut, set up an appointment with Dr. Julie.