Published at: 08/08/2018

In this article we are going to talk about the role of gluten-free foods and do we have to exclude gluten from our diet.

Gluten is a protein

The name "gluten" derives from Latin and means "glue". Gluten is the reason why we are left with a sticky texture when mixing flour with water.

Gluten consists of two proteins - gliadin and glutenin, which are the main reason for the development of gluten intolerance.


Here are some foods that are containing gluten

Gluten is contained in cereals such as wheat, barley, rye, triticale. Nowadays, it can be often found in many foods as a supplement. That’s why you should carefully read the labels on the products.


Is the consumption of gluten foods harmful?

This is a question asked by many people interested in healthy eating. In fact, gluten foods are more difficult to be digested from the body. The duration of gluten food digestion is the main thing that can cause indigestion.


Yes, this is gluten intolerance.

Yes, gluten intolerance is an allergy.


Allergy and intolerance are characterized by the body's inability to partially or completely break down a particular food. As with all other allergies, gluten intolerance can occur at an early age as well as during the adulthood. In adults, the disease is called gluten-sensitive enteropathy (most likely known as celiac disease).


In an attempt of the body to protect itself, the immune system produces antibodies that cause inflammatory processes in the body. Symptoms may occur within hours or even days after the consumption of gluten food.

Gluten intolerance disturbs digestion and decomposition of nutrients as well as the absorption of carbohydrates, proteins and vitamins in food.

Less than 1% of the world's population is intolerant to gluten. With other words, about 70 million people around the globe have a problem with the absorption of gluten products.


These are some of the most common symptoms of gluten intolerance:

(1) diarrhea that is not affected by medication

(2) swollen abdomen

(3) swelling of the body

(4) irritability

(5) difficulty in gaining weight


Кeep in mind that these symptoms may be due to other illnesses or conditions.


You can check for gluten intolerance in two ways:

(1) by a special blood test (f79-gluten) - it will show the presence of specific antibodies that incorrectly interact with gluten protein

(2) small intestine biopsy - a tissue which is taken undergoes a histological examination to reveal if there is atrophy of the intestines.


It is believed that the use of white flour leads to oversaturation of the body with gluten and this causes gluten intolerance.


Gluten intolerance cannot be healed

Diet that excludes gluten-containing foods is a sufficient step to reduce or eliminate the negative symptoms. All cereals and wheat must be excluded.


Exclusion of gluten foods is risky.

Gluten foods contain fibre, vitamins and minerals that the body needs. So in case you decide to exclude them from your menu, you should consume their substitutes.


Food isn’t the only thing that contains gluten

Gluten can be found in fitness supplements, most often in the form of wheat gluten.


Here are foods that are allowed on a gluten-free diet:

(1) fresh foods - fruits and vegetables, raw seeds and nuts such as chia seeds, pumpkin seeds, linseed, sunflower seeds, almonds, hazelnuts, coconuts, cashew, pistachios, walnuts; meat, eggs and fish

(2) cereals, starch and flour - amaranth, arrowroot, buckwheat, potatoes, flax, sorghum, soybean, quinoa, tofu, millet, peas, lentils, beans, chickpeas, rice, chestnuts, tapioca, all kinds of herbs and spices

(3) gluten-free beer and any other type of beverage


All foods listed above don’t have natural gluten content, but there can be gluten-containing residues during their production.


Take, for example, the production of tofu. Tofu has three ingredients - soy, water and flavour enhancer. All of these are gluten-free. But we can find gluten in some types of flavored tofu because aromas are used.

The labels of all products in the market indicate whether a food contains gluten or gluten residues.


Here's a list of gluten foods:

This is not entire article. It continues ...