It’d be hard for anyone to miss the recent “gluten free” trend sweeping the globe. Gluten intolerance is a real thing, and there are good reasons for some people to stay away from it, but should you cut gluten out of your life?
Answer these questions to find out:
Question one: have you been tested by a doctor?
Celiac disease is a condition where the small intestine is hypersensitive to gluten. This results in problems digesting food and can cause other health issues, ranging from muscle cramps to rashes and even seizures.
Many people self-diagnose as being gluten intolerant and give up eating it without being tested for celiac disease first. That’s actually the wrong way to go about things as it’s hard for doctors to determine whether gluten actually was affecting you negatively once you’ve already given it up.
Question two: have you tested negative for celiac disease but still feel bad after eating gluten?
Having celiac disease isn’t the only way that gluten could be harming you. There’s actually a condition known as Non-Celiac Wheat Sensitivity (NCGS) which causes many of the same symptoms as celiac disease. These include things like abdominal pain, bloating, diarrhoea and headaches.
A 2016 study found that NCGS not only makes you feel bad but also causes measurable damage to your intestines. Listen to your body. If you feel bad after eating gluten products, stop eating them.
Question three: are you deficient in iron, folate or vitamin B12?
Celiac disease damages the parts of the intestine where these vitamins are absorbed. If you’re aware that you’re deficient in any of these, it might be a clear warning sign that you have undiagnosed celiac disease. Get tested and consider cutting out gluten on a trial basis to see if the deficiency clears up.
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