Although it is the current trend in healthy eating, you shouldn’t go gluten-free. Experts say that no real advantage can be gained for healthy people who choose to scratch off gluten from their diet. So why the sudden interest in wheat-free products?
With such a massive publicity behind them, many people consume gluten-free products because they are introduced as healthier than the “normal” alternative. The markets are filled with such products, and people are quick to pay more for something that is not necessary for the vast majority of adults and children.
What not many people know is that gluten-free foods were primary meant to be consumed by individuals with celiac disease. Individuals with this autoimmune disorder are hypersensitive to gluten, its ingestion causing difficulties in digesting food. Technically, only 1 percent of Americans have been diagnosed with this disease. However, 25 percent of Americans admitted to consuming gluten-free products. The market for such food has doubled between the years 2013 and 2015.
Consumers believe that cutting back gluten means a healthier lifestyle. Doctors, however, say that there are many misconceptions about it. There have been no proven benefits for people without celiac disease or a wheat allergy. On the contrary, gluten-free products can contain more sugar, fat or sodium. This means that the chances of gaining weight increase. This type of food is also more likely to be lower in vitamins and minerals. Rice also contains inorganic arsenic at higher levels, and inorganic arsenic has been associated with cancer for a long time now.
Because of this, you shouldn’t go gluten-free unless you have a condition that could explain this change in diet. And healthy children are in no way allowed to follow this trend. When you eliminate a food group from a child’s diet, nutritional issues may arise. This means lost vitamins and minerals that may lead to malnutrition and poor growth. Of course, some might say that there are substitutes for the lost benefits, but replacement foods are not as nutritious.
Parents are also discouraged to put their children on a gluten-free just because celiac disease runs in the family. In the case of such disease, the wheat-free diet can obscure signs of the disease in an undiagnosed child.
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