There are so many diets out there that it can get really tough for us humans pursing a simple wish of weight loss: “Just tell me how!!! I’ll do it all!” This is where self-assigned-dietitians and creators of loads of unhealthy and absolutely unrealistic diets come in – proposing us ‘a quick fix’ to our problems. But that quick fix never tends to be the answer to our dieting prayers.
This made me want to examine a current rave over a Gluten diet.
So let’s look at what Gluten diet is, why people spend extra money on it and whether or not it’s worth the price and effort.
The main reason why people follow the gluten diet as it helps prevent the Celiac disease. Celiac disease is a digestive disorder that occurs as a reaction to gluten (a protein found in rye, barley, wheat, and consequently in loads of other products that contain these grains). People with a wheat allergy or with a non-celiac gluten sensitivity could also be advised to undertake the gluten-free diet.
But recently many people without those conditions started to follow the diet religiously. So gluten diet has slowly become extremely popular. It is true that if you cut out over-processed products like white bread, cereal and white pasta, you’d loose weight. But that’s not because of gluten: they contain very high levels of sugar. This is why cutting out these products, would help you with a weight loss.
Glenn Gaesser, PhD and the director of the Healthy Lifestyle Research Center at Arizona State University, told Prevention that simply swapping your food for gluten-free versions wouldn’t do any particular good: normal products contain the same amount of calories and sugar as the gluten-free ones. “There is a desire…to search for some sort of magic bullet that’s going to solve a lot of their [people’s] health problems. But we couldn’t find a single study published that supports a weight loss claim for a gluten-free diet”.
Keri Glassman, Registered Dietitian Nutritionists, wrote in Women’s Health: “The bottom line: If you’re looking to lose weight, there’s not enough compelling evidence right now to suggest that you’ll benefit from going gluten-free. Take a look at the rest of your eating habits first. Your weight gain could have more to do with your addiction to sugar-packed coffee drinks, for example, than with your gluten intake.
“If you do decide to eliminate gluten from your diet, keep in mind that gluten-free foods are often low in B vitamins, calcium, vitamin D, iron, zinc, magnesium, and fiber- and they can also be expensive.
“Rely on fresh fruits and vegetables, legumes, nuts, seeds, dairy, and lean meats to get the nutrients you need- and keep your grocery bill in check”.