Gluten

Being on a gluten-free diet has become extremely popular in recent years. For some people, complete elimination of gluten from the diet is necessary from the health point of view. Many people avoid gluten because it’s now fashionable and they think that thanks to this they lose weight or simply identify a gluten-free diet as healthier even if they have no idea what gluten really is.

Gluten – meaning what?

At the beginning, let’s unravel the false beliefs about what gluten is. Gluten, contrary to popular opinion, is not a component of food, which makes us gain adipose tissue. In itself, the exclusion of gluten from the diet does not translate into fat burning and weight reduction.

Gluten is simply a vegetable protein found in wheat, barley, life and their derivatives. Gluten can also appear in oats by contaminating them with other grains. Gluten is made up of two types of proteins: gliadin and glutenin. In combination with water, gluten gives the cake flexibility.

This means that gluten is found in most types of bread, grains, pastas, pizzas, beer, baked goods, and many sweets. Gluten is also lurking in many soups, sauces, dips, and even sausages and cold meats.

No wonder that the withdrawal of gluten has been identified by many with weight reduction. Considering how many products this plant protein contains, its discontinuation can translate into weight loss. Why? If someone who has been eating sandwiches, pizza, beer and noodles with sauces so far, decided to give up gluten and put down all the above-mentioned products, and they picked up vegetables, eggs, meat, fruit and rice, it probably reduced body mass and improved their well-being.

Who should avoid gluten?

In fact, some people should avoid gluten. About 1% of the population suffers from celiac disease, which means that gluten triggers an autoimmune response throughout the body. This extensive inflammation particularly damages the small intestines, preventing them from absorbing essential nutrients from food. People with celiac disease must use a completely gluten-free diet.

Another 6% of the population has some degree of hypersensitivity to gluten despite the fact that they do not suffer from celiac disease. In the case of these people, consumption of gluten does not cause intestinal damage, but may cause bloating, gas, joint pain and “brain fog”. Avoiding gluten can make people feel much better.

In order to confirm or rule out any of the above-mentioned diseases, please go to the gastroenterologist and do the necessary tests. In the case of autoimmune diseases other than celiac disease, it’s also recommended to exclude gluten from the diet. Everything, however, indicates that for the vast majority of us gluten is not harmful.

If you do not suffer from celiac disease, hypersensitivity to gluten or autoimmune disease, you will not feel any benefit from discontinuing gluten.

When can the elimination of gluten be harmful?

Gluten itself is not a valuable protein and essential in our diet. A diet deprived of gluten is not a shortage diet.

There are many products naturally lacking gluten, which we can successfully replace bread, pasta and wheat flour with. For gluten-free products, which should be included in the diet, in this situation should include: rice, millet, buckwheat, and rice quinoa. If we properly replace products containing gluten with those that do not have it, it turns out that our diet is not only not deficient, but it’s even more nutritious.

However, if we decide to give up eating gluten and instead of using ordinary bread, go for ready-made gluten-free pastries, instead of pasta, we choose ready gluten-free pasta, instead of cakes on wheat flour we will reach gluten-free cookies, not only we will not lose weight, but also may lead to nutritional deficiencies. What’s more, usually when gluten is removed from the food (especially from bakery products) instead, it adds more fat and sugar to it, so that it’s tasty. This way, we can harm ourselves.

Diagnosis of celiac disease – So how do we know that celiac disease can affect us?

The full-symptom form of celiac disease is characterized primarily by the presence of intestinal complaints. However, oligosymptomatic celiac disease is more often observed, the symptoms of which are uncharacteristic. These include, for example, sleep problems, fatigue, anemia, headaches, decreased libido, miscarriage, infertility, skin problems, weight fluctuations, and depression. Sometimes celiac disease takes on a hidden form. Then, the symptoms do not occur.

There is not just one study to diagnose this disease. Genetic tests, blood tests for antibodies and intestinal biopsy are used to make a diagnosis to assess the damage to the intestinal villi.

Serological tests from blood:

  • total level of IgA
  • tTG in the IgA class
  • EmA in the IgA class
  • DGP in the IgA class

Genetic test:

  • HLA DQ2 and DQ8 in the alpha and beta subunits
  • DR4 gene

Being on a gluten-free diet has become extremely popular in recent years. For some people, complete elimination of gluten from the diet is necessary from the health point of view. Many people avoid gluten because it’s now fashionable and they think that thanks to this they lose weight or simply identify a gluten-free diet as healthier even if they have no idea what gluten really is.

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