To Be Or Not To Be Gluten-Free, That Is The Question

Fri, Aug 28th 2015

Vanessa Luis

3 mins read

Up until a few years ago, gluten was a real concern only for people suffering from celiac disease or gluten allergy. However, over the years it moved from being simply a life-sustaining diet to being a fad that was looked upon for several reasons, including weight loss.

When celebrities like Victoria Beckham and Gwyneth Paltrow took the gluten-free route, its popularity grew extensively, and everyone was experimenting with it even though they were not sensitive to gluten.

It wasn’t long before a whole market of gluten-free products hit the shelves and people were buying into the trend. While several fitness buffs continue to omit wheat, rye and barley from their diets in hope of weight loss, it’s important to note that these grains—packed with vitamins and fiber—are actually good for you.

So you need to ask yourself this: is a gluten-free lifestyle of any use to you? If you don’t suffer from CD or gluten sensitivity, consider these points before you decide to go gluten-free.

1. You’re Missing Out On Vital Nutrients
Apart from gluten, whole wheat products also contain several nutrients like B vitamins, iron, folate, and fiber that are essential for good health. Skip wheat, and you’ll be missing out on these.

2. Unnecessarily Cutting Down On Healthy Foods
In going gluten-free, you are cutting down on your healthy food options such as barley, bulgur, rye, spelt and couscous. You might unnecessarily start looking for alternatives that might not match up to the nutrient quotient of these grains.

3. A GF Diet Can Be Complicated
If you thought being gluten-free means skipping all the bread on the menu, then you’ve only discovered the tip of the iceberg. Gluten comes in many forms and could be hidden in everyday dishes such as sauces, processed meats, potato chips and more. Following this diet would mean you will have to scan every ingredient of every product before you buy it. Here are 6 other disclaimers for people leading a gluten-free life.

4. It’s Expensive Being Gluten-Free
Even though the popularity of such products is picking up, they usually cost a lot more than their regular counterparts. So be ready to shell out a few extra bucks for everything you buy gluten-free.

5. Gluten-Free Food Can Be Unhealthy Too
Just because they used gluten-free flour to make your donut or bread, doesn’t mean that these products are healthy. Very often, people on a GF diet ignore the label for other ingredients such as sugar and fat, thus buying stuff that’s free of gluten but still high on fat and calories. Gluten-free pasta, pastry and bread can sometimes be high in starch and calories, and low in nutrition. So read the labels carefully. Better still, make your own gluten-free food with our healthy recipes.

Image Courtesy: Shutterstock

PS: Head to our Food section for healthy recipes and the latest food trends.
Also, here are some more recipes and tips for a Gluten-Free Diet.

Read More:
Exploding Common Gluten-Free Myths: Part 1
Cooking With Julieanna Hever: How To Go Gluten-Free
Can A Gluten-Free Lifestyle Help You Save Taxes?

About the Author
Vanessa Luis

After pursuing her Masters in Journalism, Vanessa got her first big job as a health writer and since then, she has never switched paths. She has always been intrigued by the wonders of a holistic lifestyle, and believes it was destiny that led her to writing for the wellness industry. In her natural state, you can find her tucked under a blanket watching an Indie film, or reading obsessively. At Z Living, she writes about food trends and other daily life expeditions.

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