‘‘As bizarre as it might sound, what you eat or smoke today could affect the health and behaviour of your great grand children.” – Ethan Walters, Discover magazine
Changing the way you eat, including the exclusion of gluten, is a stride in the right direction. Directing you to a link that houses over 200 reasons to avoid wheat can be a motivator. Know this, there has been a sharp increase in interest and research on the topic of “gluten intolerance.” In 1971, there were 71 studies listed on MEDLINE which referenced gluten. Last year in 2011, there were 514. Gluten is linked to everything from infertility, to diabetes, to schizophrenia and more. According to Dr. David Clark DC, a functional neurologist and endocrinologist, “There’s not a disease or health condition you can think of that does not have an association – in the research literature – with gluten sensitivity.”
Gluten is in wheat, barely, rye and oats (unless marked gluten free oats), yet, it is in so many foods from the obvious breads, cakes, pastas to soy sauce, marinades, mustard, vinegar, preservatives (maltodextrin), BBQ sauce, dressings, spices, instant rice and more. Clearly the transition is not easy, but they steps can be a start.
Steps in Removing Gluten Successfully:
Focus on REAL foods – swap your morning toast for fruit, or mushrooms, spinach, cauli mash to name a few. The best way to know something is gluten free is when you choose a food in it’s natural, fresh, whole form. No label necessary.
Read Labels – Even when you would assume something would not have wheat, barely or rye in it, read the labels. Some words that are gluten containing but not obvious include: maltodextrin (yet this can come from corn too), malt, soy sauce, modified food starch, to name a few.
Know your Grains – Gluten containing grains can include: Farina, Graham flour, Semolina, Durham, Bulgur, Kamut, Kasha, Matzo meal, Couscous, Spelt (form of wheat), Triticale and sneaky gluten containing foods include: orso, crackers, pretzels, ice cream, yogurt, dip, blue cheese, Gorgonzola, veggie burgers, imitation seafood and more.
Make the Decision – when making the transition to be and eat gluten free, don’t go halfway. It will makes this much harder, and social pressure (when eating out or hanging out with friends) may not be supportive when they see you do a variety of things. Make the decision today, and tomorrow and the following.
Make Over Your Kitchen – clean our your kitchen of gluten containing foods.
Social Media – follow a gluten free website or blog that you enjoy, and can serve as inspiration for meal ideas.
Find a Friend – with the same gluten free goal. Any journey is better with support.