Month: May 2014

Is Gluten-Free a Scam?

I heard Dr Oz on the radio last week claim that “gluten-free is a scam”.  I think what he meant to say was that marketing gluten free products as healthy is a scam.  A position with which I would heartily agree.  However, it came across more like the only true problem with gluten is celiac disease and as long as you don’t have celiac disease then you are fine with gluten.  Now if this is what Dr Oz meant, then shame on him (I haven’t had a chance to call him up and clarify). I am someone who has been scoped and biopsied for celiac disease and have tested negative for it.  I produce IgG antibodies to gluten (celiac disease involves production of IgA antibodies to gluten). What that means is that I will be doubled over in pain, constipated and exhausted if I eat gluten.  I will even have some emotional responses to gluten that include being more irritable or sad.  I have gluten intolerance.   These antibodies create inflammation in my body which makes me feel extremely unwell.  That is not how I choose to live.  Do I fill myself up on gluten free bread, pasta, cookies and cake? No way, those things aren’t a regular part of a healthy diet whether they are gluten free or not.  In fact, I am for the most part grain-free as I feel better that way.  But once a month or so if I have the urge for a piece of toast, or it’s someone’s birthday and I’m making the cake, I’m grateful that there are many gluten free options available to me now that weren’t so easy to obtain 16 years ago when I first went off gluten.  Gluten free is not a scam occasionally.

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