What is a Gluten Free Diet?
A Gluten-Free Diet is a diet that is avoiding gliadin, the protein offender in gluten. Gluten is found in all forms of wheat, common cereal grains and also in rye, oats and barley. Wheat also includes semolina, durum, spelt, triticale, and kamut. Being on a gluten-free diet is not just the avoidance of bread and pasta.
Gluten is found hidden in items such as cold cuts, prepared broths and soups, most processed foods, and even in pharmaceuticals and body products. Some items on labels that are questionable include “natural flavorings, flavor extracts, or spice extracts”, and need to be avoided because gluten may be used in processing them.
Many people with digestive issues, allergies, fatigue, ADD, autism, neurological disorders, and more are turning toward a gluten-free diet with successful relief. Many times one may not even know they are reacting to gluten because there may be no discomfort, bloating, gas or constipation.
If you are suffering from health issues, eating Gluten-Free is not something you do for a couple of weeks and then go back to your old habits. Gluten can stay in the body for approximately 6-8 weeks and is cumulative. Even if you only have a bite or two here and there, it all adds up! It is very important for you to take ownership of your diet – phone calls, reading, attending events will all assist you in learning about a whole new lifestyle.
NOTE: I am not suggestion everyone has to go on a gluten-free diet forever: Some people without health issues avoid gluten for 6-8 weeks and then find they are able to tolerate it again in moderation. Some people do it as sort of a cleanse to give there body a break for awhile and get energized and notice their digestive complaints disappearing. Depending on your situation, you will need to decide what type of diet modifications are best for you. Most people I have worked with seem to feel better when avoiding wheat – and a lot of them lose weight!