We constantly hear about the evils of gluten and the benefits of a gluten free diet. This begs the question…given all this, should we all be on a gluten-free diet? The short answer is NO.
That said, before embarking on a gluten free diet there are a few things to consider:
Those who have been diagnosed with Celiac disease must eliminate 100% of the gluten from their diets…if not 110%. No wiggle room here…it’s everything. If you or your doctor or nutritionist suspects Celiac disease or gluten sensitivity, get tested for Celiac prior to starting a gluten elimination.
Gluten sensitivity is much different than Celiac but the diet is essentially much the same. Unfortunately the major pitfall we see when individuals transition to a gluten free diet is just going to the store and buying, and subsequently eating, everything that says “Gluten Free” on the label. Not the greatest path to take. Work with a nutritionist who has experience with food sensitivities to find the best dietary plan and food choices.
Even if you do not have gluten sensitivity or Celiac there are those that can benefit from eliminating or reducing gluten intake, especially those with inflammatory conditions.
For everyone else that doesn’t fall into these categories, there is really not indication or benefit in eliminating gluten. I do recommend, however, not putting all your eggs in the wheat basket. Diversify your grains. Include some gluten free grains like – brown rice, quinoa, millet – not because they’re gluten free but because they are wonderful grains with lots of great nutrients.
Whatever diet you follow the single most important rule is to make all your grains WHOLE GRAINS!
Before making on any major dietary change, consult with a nutritionist to be sure your embarking on the right journey.