What is gluten
Let's start with the basics. Gluten (also called gluten) is an insoluble protein formed by two others, gliadin and glutenin. It is responsible for the elasticity and softness of the dough and is practically insoluble in water. The main and main source of gluten is cereals. However, due to the properties of gluten and the cheap technology of extraction from grain, it is often added to other seemingly gluten-free products.
It explains well what gluten is and what its effects can be in a short educational film prepared by the scientist and cartoonists for the TED-ed project.
Why is gluten harmful?
The fashion for a gluten-free diet is difficult to explain. It is more likely to be called unreasonable than based on any reasonable arguments. After all, originally such a nutrition program was developed for people suffering from gluten intolerance, and was one of the forms of treatment for the disease.
Some of us do have a gluten intolerance, which can be expressed through allergic reactions or a disease called celiac disease. According to the latest research, the percentage of those suffering from this disease in any country in the world does not exceed 1%. However, one or another reaction to gluten can be observed in almost every third person, but it still cannot be called hazardous to health.
The danger of gluten lies, firstly, in the inflammatory reaction that it excites in the body, namely in our intestines. Once inside, gluten begins to provoke the immune system, which, reacting to the protein as foreign, begins to fight it, exposing our body to attack. Second, people with gluten intolerance experience changes in their bowel function. He stops digesting food properly and misses nutrients, leaving us without many essential vitamins and minerals.
Both causes together lead to a sharp decrease in appetite, underweight and height, intestinal disorders, exhaustion, a decrease in general health, irritability, and in some children, even delayed puberty. Only a doctor can determine gluten intolerance by conducting an extensive examination of the gastrointestinal tract. It is impossible to identify and diagnose the disease on your own, since the totality of such signs is a reflection of quite a few diseases.
Is it possible to lose weight by giving up gluten
Losing weight on a gluten-free diet is not due to the lack of gluten in the diet, but rather to the rejection of starchy foods as its main source. So yes, by giving up baked goods and their varieties, you will indeed lose weight, but you should not hope to lose weight by simply switching to a gluten-free diet.
Where is gluten contained
As we said, the main source of gluten is cereals. Accordingly, all their derivatives, namely baked goods, pasta, some alcoholic beverages, including beer and whiskey, are rich in gluten. Also, keep in mind that gluten is also added to many other foods, which at first glance may seem harmless from this point of view. For example, today, for thickness and viscosity, gluten is added to yoghurts, ice cream, chocolate, syrups and sauces, including ketchup and mayonnaise, sometimes to milk powder, as well as to most products from industrially processed meat: sausages, sausages, cutlets, etc. etc.
Certainly gluten free
There are a lot of such products. First, they include all types of meat and fish, eggs, potatoes, rice, corn, various legumes, nuts, fruits and vegetables. Dairy products and cheese made from natural ingredients and without the use of milk powder are also allowed when following the diet.
By the way, today there are even gluten-free flour products. Typically this property is highlighted on the label. The main thing with gluten intolerance is to carefully read the composition of the products.
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