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You Shouldn’t Go Gluten-Free Unless You Have Celiac Disease

  1. May 3, 2017 #1


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    The links to the studies are in the article.

    Those with celiac disease often follow strict gluten-free diets, because consuming the protein found in wheat, rye, and barley can cause them to develop health problems and gastrointestinal issues. And yet, certain people seeking to lose weight have hopped on the gluten-free train as well, assuming that it will help them consume fewer calories and lead healthier lives. But now, a new study cautions that cutting out gluten unless you have to may actually be a bad idea for your health.

    Published in the BMJ on Tuesday, a new study found that restricting gluten can have harmful health effects on people who don’t suffer from celiac disease. That’s because, according to researchers from Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, going gluten-free means a person reduces their intake of whole grains, which are known to have cardiovascular-health benefits. So, cutting out gluten unless medically necessary can potentially increase a person’s risk of heart problems.

    “As such, the researchers say the promotion of gluten-free diets among people without celiac disease should not be encouraged,” the study authors wrote.


    Despite the fact that the findings merely add fuel to the mounting evidence that cutting out gluten unless you have to is a bad idea, going gluten-free as a weight-loss solution is still quite popular, the scientists note. As such, a September paper in JAMA Internal Medicine found that more people have been going gluten-free despite a lack of medical need to do so. As of 2014, the number of people in the U.S. following a gluten-free diet tripled, while celiac-disease rates remained relatively stable.[/quote]


    I might change this to the actual studies later, I'm busy now.
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  3. May 3, 2017 #2


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    Interesting article - thanks! My elder daughter has celiac disease and we found it difficult to keep her healthy (and growing!) unless we made our house essentially gluten free. So the rest of us consume almost no gluten day to day - perhaps we should 'suplement' more! We do eat a lot of whole grains, though. The certified gluten free oats are not cheap but they make wonderful granola. We can also now buy very tasty whole-grain bread (made with sorgham, teff, rice, etc.) in the frozen section of the local grocery store.

    The gluten free fads have made the diet a kind of joke, with the result that some restaurants don't take the request seriously so aren't as careful as they ought to be about cross-contamination. The eye-roll from the waiter at the request is usually a sign to walk out the door or gamble on my daughter being sick for a week. On the plus side, there are more products available as food companies try to capitalize on the fads.

    Last edited: May 3, 2017
  4. May 3, 2017 #3


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  5. May 4, 2017 #4


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    I am so sorry to hear about your daughter. Yes, it's hard for everyone to eat normally if she can't. My older daughter has Crohn's and it has been a nightmare for her. There have been many times when she said just remove her colon, she'd rather live with a colostomy bag. She's in that much pain.

    My older brother was mistakenly diagnosed with Celiac and lactose intolerance when he was young, and my mother had a recipe for the most incredible rice bread, dense and moist. She lost the recipe when she found out that the doctor was a quack and my brother was neither lactose or glucose intolerant. I would love a recipe like that again, but can't find one, seems everyone seems to think all breads have to resemble Wonder Bread. :eek: The recipes are terrible.
  6. May 4, 2017 #5

    jim mcnamara

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    @jasonRF Teff. Thanks. I knew about Eragrostis tef but not the fact that it was used as a gluten free grain in the US. I had thought it was just a really good introduced hay/forage crop from Ethiopia that was used extensively over there for an unusual spongy flatbread. With a little googling I found the name of the bread: injera. I had it in a local restaurant a few times. Never made the connection. Duh.

    https://www.exploratorium.edu/cooking/bread/recipe-injera.html @Evo will this work?

    Like some recipes for lentils from India, it requires fermentation. You might want to consider it if you were unaware of it - the bread is good, BTW.
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