Grains such as wheat, triticale, barley, rye, and oats contain a protein called gluten. It is found in a person’s typical diet, most particularly in bread, as it keeps the elasticity intact in foods, making it chewy and in shape. However, several studies have shown that many people cannot tolerate high levels of gluten in their body without them knowing it.
Over the years, the global market has seen a vast growth in the number of gluten-free food products due to public demand. A Gallup Survey has shown that one in five Americans actively try to eradicate gluten from their diet. This just proves that the advantages of a gluten-free diet have already been recognized by many. In the Philippines, the market is still on its infant stage as people are still unfamiliar with the benefits that gluten-free foods provide.
Dr. Daniel Leffler, director of clinical research at the Celiac Center at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston, said that gluten-free diet provides improvement in gastrointestinal problems. Since gluten is associated with obesity, a form of malnutrition, it also helps the body maintain proper weight if you consume the right products.
A study published in the Journal of Nutritional Biochemistry found that the major factor of obesity associated with wheat consumption is gluten and not calories. However, eradicating foods with gluten and high-calorie contents like bread completely from your diet may lead to extreme weight loss because the nutrients needed are not being absorbed by the body. That’s why it is recommended to find the right products for your diet such as gluten-free bread in order to maintain balance.
Gluten-free diets are also becoming popular among sports-oriented people. Since athletes need to maintain their health in order to obtain the strength their body needs, being gluten-free allows them to adopt a healthier lifestyle and helps them in many cases they often encounter that hinder their performance, such as gastrointestinal reflux, bloating, abdominal pain and diarrhea.
Another study by Aberdeen University’s Rowett Institute of Nutrition and Health suggested that adopting the diet significantly reduces fatigue, increases energ y levels, and leads to healthier nutritional intake.
It is also found to be beneficial to children with autism, helping reduce symptoms and behavioral disorders when used alone or in conjunction with conventional treatment methods.Diabetics are also advised to consume less gluten, as it has been linked with the disruption of the body’s endocrine and exocrine processes.
Many gluten-free products do not contain animal proteins and by-products, making it suitable for vegans.