5 Reasons You Shouldn’t Go Gluten Free

I understand your desire to improve your health, but you may actually not need to go gluten free to stay healthy. In fact, cutting out gluten can do more harm than good, if you don’t have celiac disease or gluten intolerance.

As I explained in the article about gluten myths, celiac disease only affects one percent of the global population. People with this condition can benefit from avoiding foods that contain gluten such as wheat, rye, malt, barley, kamut, triticale, and spelt.

It’s hard to convince most people that a gluten free diet is not beneficial. After all, celebrities are crediting their high energy levels and weight loss success to gluten free diets.

Chances are these celebrities are being honest, but they don’t tell the whole story. A lot of junk foods and snacks contain gluten. Therefore, cutting back on them may help you lose weight. This means the weight loss is triggered by low calorie intake and not going gluten free.

5 Reasons You Shouldn't Go Gluten Free

There are some compelling reasons why you shouldn’t go gluten free unless your doctor has diagnosed you with celiac disease or gluten intolerance.

1. You may miss a serious health condition.

Most people decide to cut back on gluten because of fatigue or skin problems, ignoring that these could be signs of other conditions. You need to get a legitimate diagnosis of celiac disease or gluten intolerance from a doctor. Otherwise, you may miss serious conditions that share symptoms with celiac disease.

2. Going gluten free may lead to nutritional deficiencies.

Cutting out gluten eliminates some nutrients found in wheat, rye, and barley. For instance, fortified bread and cereal are a good source of B vitamins.

Unfortunately, most gluten free foods are not fortified with vitamins. If you have to go gluten free, make sure you take gluten free multivitamin supplements.

3. A gluten free diet may lead to low fiber intake.

Low fiber intake may not be a big concern for you, if you’re vegan. But if you don’t already eat lots of plant-based foods, you may suffer if you go gluten free. Whole wheat is a good source of dietary fiber, which means your fiber intake will reduce when you eliminate gluten from your diet.

4. A gluten free diet will hurt your wallet without improving your health.

This study compared the prices of gluten free products with those of regular products and found that gluten free products are 242 percent more expensive. Now, it would make sense to pay more for a product if it were healthier, but gluten free diets have not shown any positive effects in people who are not allergic to it.

Instead of buying gluten free, buy organic for foods with high pesticide residue such as strawberries.

5. Going gluten free is not a sustainable weight loss plan.

Some people lose weight after going gluten free. However, this is not a sustainable weight loss strategy. For one thing, a gluten free diet is not easy to stick to, since it’s expensive and highly restrictive.

Secondly, some gluten free foods are highly processed and high in calories. A better way to lose weight is to eat more plant-based foods and walk more steps every day. You can lose more weight using these two strategies than by following a gluten free diet.

Don’t listen to “gurus” and celebrities who praise the gluten free diet. It’s only beneficial to people with celiac disease and gluten intolerance. And the only way to know if you have these conditions is to get a proper diagnosis from your doctor.

Are you on a gluten free diet? If so, why?

Images via Thinkstock.

48 comments

Dennis Hall
Dennis H10 days ago

Thanks.

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Margie FOURIE
Margie FOURIE10 days ago

Moderation in anything.

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Tania N
Tania N12 days ago

Thank you for sharing

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Tania N
Tania N12 days ago

Thank you for sharing

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Danuta W
Danuta Watola12 days ago

Thank you for sharing

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Mark T
Mark T13 days ago

Ty.

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Winn A
Winn Adams13 days ago

Thanks

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Winn A
Winn Adams13 days ago

Noted

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Christine D
Christine D14 days ago

I have no problem with gluten but I eat a mostly grain free diet because grains are heavily sprayed with pesticides and some are GMO...they are no longer what Grandma used in her baking 70 years ago. Pesticide residues are even being found on organic grains thanks to the winds carrying the chemicals far and wide. As for grains and breads being sources of fibre and vitamin B, the term fortified means that the vitamins are added back in after processing and those are artificial so you aren't getting the nutrients the way nature intended. I get plenty of fibre and vitamin & mineral content from nuts and organic veggies & fruits.

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Angela K
Angela K14 days ago

noted

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