9 Dangers of Gluten-Free Products

The mainstream gluten-free diet can actually be making you fat and unhealthy! This is the conclusion I have found in my extensive research over the past two years.

Yes, if you are celiac or gluten intolerant (also known as having a gluten sensitivity), you do have to go gluten free.  Unfortunately, most of the recipes and products available, although they don’t have gluten in them, are NOT healthy for different factors, so you may end up with different problems.

Most people who go gluten-free feel much better right away.  I would like to suggest that these people choose to eat BOTH gluten-free AND healthy!

I, personally, was highly gluten sensitive, which I have overcome.  Some of my comments will be directed at this situation.

Gluten Intolerance is Growing:

  • One in every 133 people of the western population is suffering from celiac disease and the University of Chicago Celiac Disease Center estimates 97% of those with Celiac Disease remain undiagnosed. Wow! In our own testing we find that over 80% of the people we test are gluten sensitive.
  • Diagnosis of celiac disease is not easy.  It is expensive and you need to first have a positive antibody blood test then be confirmed by an intestinal biopsy by a Gastroenterologist in a hospital costing $2,000 – $5,000.
  • This disease can cause many problems in your body and research is even saying it may even predispose you to liver disease or cancer.
  • “Dr. Joseph Murray, a gastroenterologist at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., and his team looked at blood samples taken from Americans in the 1950s and compared them with samples taken from people today and determined it wasn’t just better diagnosis driving up the numbers. Celiac disease actually was increasing. Indeed, the research confirms estimates that about 1 percent of U.S. adults have it today, making it four times more common now than it was 50 years ago.”   CBS News
  • Wheat is not the way it used to be. Scientists began cross-breeding wheat to make hardier, shorter and better-growing plants in the 1950s. It seems that the gluten in wheat may have been altered contributing to ‘gluten sensitivity.’ There are now 25,000 types of wheat.

For more information on Celiac disease, visit the official website of the Celiac Disease Foundation. According to studies, gluten intolerance is four times more common today than it was in the 1950s.  Click here for a test if you are gluten intolerant.

Study Confirms that Mainstream Gluten-Free Diet is Fattening

Most of the people suffering from celiac disease (gluten intolerance) who follow a gluten-free diet gained weight according the University of Chicago Celiac Disease Center report in a study with 188 patients on gluten-free diets.  81% had gained weight and over 40% had a BMI (body mass index) in the “overweight” range of greater than 25 after two years on the diet.

Next page: the 9 Problems with Mainstream Gluten-Free Products and Recipes.

9 Dangers of Mainstream Gluten-Free Products and Recipes:

1.  Too little fiber:

Many highly processed gluten-free products and recipes are lower in fiber, and can leave you feeling hungry. Fiber is also essential for healthy bowel movements.

2.  Too many carbs:

GF products generally add starch to make up for the gluten in the wheat flour. A sensitive digestive system is unable to digest the large load of carbs thus creating a digestive problem.

3.  It is expensive:

I used to buy a very small loaf of bread for $8.50!  On average, gluten-free products are 242% more expensive than regular products.  US Nationa lLibrary of Medicine

4.  Many Bad carbs:

The gluten-free ‘flours’ like tapioca starch, corn starch, rice starch, potato starch etc. also cause health issues in the gut and with their high Glycemic index. Also, they are often devoid of nutrients! They are certainly not a ‘smart carb‘.

5.  Too many calories:

Processed gluten-free foods contain almost twice the calories as their counterparts and are more then double the price.

6.  Low in whole grains:

The benefits of good carbs like brown rice, fruits or beans are often sacrificed for other ‘bad’ carbs. You need good carbs to regulate blood sugar and bowel movements.

7.  Lacks important nutrients:

Avoiding grains means that you will be getting less iron, calcium, thiamine, riboflavin, niacin, and folate.

8.  Often contains Xanthan Gum:

Some of the side effects from consuming x-gum are similar to the negative effects of gluten-sensitivity. Flu-like symptoms can occur, and since it used for a laxative, sometimes even a small amount might aggravate your guts according to WebMD.

9.  Often full of unhealthy sugars:

Sugar is not an ingredient we want lots of if we have gut problems, as it is what will feed the unhealthy bacteria in our gut.


The Solution:

1.  First you need to eliminate all the gluten proteins. They are found in ALL forms of wheat (including durum, semolina, spelt, kamut, einkorn and faro) and related grains rye, barley and triticale.

2.  Substitute with whole real food; food that is rich in whole and unprocessed foods, vegetables and fruits and beans.

3.  Don’t believe that because a product label or recipe says it IS gluten free that it is healthy. Read the ingredient list to find out if it is truly healthy;  if there are unhealthy starches, sugars, and Xanthan Gum then it is not a healthy choice.

4. Include these 11 gluten-free whole grains in your diet: Millet, Quinoa, Brown Rice, Amaranth and Buckwheat, Cornmeal whole grain (not corn starch), Buckwheat, Oats (make sure they are pure and uncontaminated), Sorghum (whole grain), Teff, Amaranth,  popcorn, and Montina (Indian Rice Grass).  Read their benefits at 11 Gluten Free Whole Grains.

5.  I have been working on helping gluten intolerant people for years now. All my recipes at Real Food For Life are gluten-free and healthy. It is still a work in progress. I have taken out all the unhealthy starches, sugars, and Xanthan Gum.

6.  Try out my Healthy Baking Weekend Web BootCamp where I teach people to how to do baking for the holidays that is gluten-free,  sugar-free, and super healthy with whole foods!

If you want to be healthy,
If you want to grow stronger,
If you want to be slim not fat,
If you want to feel trim, not bloated,
…..Then you need to eat real, whole food ….no starch, no white sugar and no refined carbs.

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Christine V.
Christine V.7 months ago

thats why its best to read the label

Elena Poensgen
Elena Poensgen7 months ago

Thank you

Fred Hoekstra
Fred Hoekstra2 years ago

Thank you Diana, for Sharing this!

Peggy Ausmus
Peggy A.2 years ago

Thanks for sharing. Interesting information.

J. J.
J. J.2 years ago

I swear that my eyes must literally bulge out of my head when I see the price of these gluten free products in the supermarket. Utterly ridiculous! Thanks goodness I don't have a problem with gluten.

Mary ann S.
mary ann s.2 years ago

I have a friend with these issues will share info thanks

Boo Boo
Boo B.2 years ago

I keep cutting it back more and more. I'm not intolerant, I think I'm gluten sensitive.
I can eat a little and not feel like I'm gonna blow up but a whole 6" sub will make me bloat like a balloon

Janemarie C.
Janemarie C.2 years ago

I lost 20 lbs after giving it up, but I already eat vegan, no refined sugars/oils/additives (coloring, falvoring, etc)

Yulan Lawson
Yulan Lawson2 years ago

Thanks for sharing, thank goodness for nuts, fruit and vegies. Well some of them anyway.

katarzyna phillips

interesting. as always, it comes down to reading the packaging though. and about making the right lifestyle choices by doing research in the first place!