JUST BECAUSE IT’S GLUTEN FREE DOESN’T MEAN IT’S HEALTHY
TEAM JDP explore the current trend of Gluten Free food and if it really is as healthy as is made out.
IT SEEMS going gluten free has become as trendy and socially acceptable as swigging a green juice and traipsing around town in active wear.
But while many people can attest to the genuine health benefits of going gluten free, not all gluten free products on the market are necessarily healthy.
Food manufacturers and cafes have swooped upon the gluten free trend with a vengeance, in the hope of snagging a piece of the highly profitable (gluten free) pie. Everything from gluten free muffins, cereals, waffles, biscuits, cakes and all things deliciously sweet.
So could ‘gluten free’, actually spell something more sinister, such as high sugar; artificial additives and processed vegetable oils?
One of the biggest mistakes I see consumers make when it comes to their weekly grocery shop, is they base their food choices largely on face value — in other words — based on what’s written on the front of a package, vs what’s listed in the actual ingredients and nutritional table on the back.
So if you’ve decided to try going gluten free, then here a few tips to ensure you’re getting the full effect, and not simply swapping it out for a whole lot of sugar and artificial ingredients.
GLUTEN FREE DOESN’T MEAN SUGAR FREE
Be sure to always read the ingredients list and assess a product’s sugar content in the nutrition table. If you want to experience the full benefits of a gluten free diet, then you need to avoid sugar or you’ll defeat the purpose.
There’s little point in grabbing a gluten free muffin thinking you’re doing your health a favour, because products like this are typically loaded with sugar.
LOOK OUT FOR ANYTHING ARTIFICIAL
This includes artificial colours, flavours, preservatives and sweeteners.
ENSURE YOU’RE GETTING THE ‘GOOD’ OIL
Avoid any gluten free products made with processed vegetables oils, including canola, corn, soy or margarine.
BYPASS THE CORN
Many people who experience gut problems related to gluten, turn to corn based products as a gluten free option. But people with a sensitivity to gluten are often just as sensitive to corn, especially if it’s processed.
SWAP PACKAGED GLUTEN FREE FOODS FOR WHOLE FOODS
This way you’re guaranteed to avoid the other nasties in your food.
In my view, the best way to go gluten free is to stick to eating as many fresh, nutrient dense foods as possible, preferably homemade, so you know exactly what’s going into your food and can ensure you’re getting plenty of nutrition.
And while many people choose to go gluten free because of genuine issues with their digestion and immune system, simply abstaining from eating gluten, without repairing your gut, is generally not enough to resolve the full effects of a gluten sensitivity.
By combining a gluten free diet with replenishing your gut flora and healing your intestinal or gut wall, you’re also more likely to reduce your sensitivity to gluten, and any other foods — should you be exposed to them every now and then.
Just because it’s gluten free does not mean it’s healthy! Don’t buy the lie!