Gluten-Free Or Not?


Is gluten-free a passing fad diet? Many people who are not gluten-free believe as such. This week I want to spend some time talking about a gluten-free diet.  The looming question is why all the sudden is there this surge of jumping on the gluten-free bandwagon?

I won’t bog you down with a long drawn out history lesson, but it is important to understand what gluten means.  Gluten is a naturally occurring protein found in Wheat (all types), rye, and barley (including contaminated oats from processing & volunteer gluten crops that may have been planted in fields prior).  Gluten gives foods their elasticity, acting like a glue that holds foods together.

The problem with gluten some say began with the start of the agricultural revolution whereby humans transitioned from a hunter/gathering society to include farming.  As farming began to gain popularity, new ideas were created to help increase crop yields, which in time depleted the soil of important nutrients, as well as the heavy use of chemical fertilizers and pesticides. Hybridization of faster growing seeds were also invented to keep up with the increased demand.

Along the way, gluten containing grains were becoming overly processed and refined, removing much of the nutritive value when turned into flours for baking and as the demand for better tasting and convenient prepackaged foods gained popularity.

Over the years, we’ve become a society of fast-paced lifestyles, coupled with high stress, a toxic environment and bad eating habits.  This combination takes a toll on the immune system, causing inflammation to run amuck throughout the body. Consuming gluten containing foods only aggravates the situation even more, leading to a multitude of autoimmune disorders, causing the body to attack itself, manifesting through celiac disease, gluten sensitivities, food allergies, and neurological disorders to name a few.

Could going gluten-free help to eliminate some of your health issues?

Visit My Website to download a free PDF of the gluten-free chapter from my book.

Susan Hardesty-Ritenour is a certified health and wellness coach as well as the author of Love Your Food Again: Ingredient Substitutions for Allergy-Free Living and the founder of Gaining a Healthy Lifestyle, Health and wellness Coaching.  She also conducts cooking workshops on healthy cooking utilizing allergy-friendly ingredients.

Visit Susan on her facebook page, Gaining a Healthy Lifestyle and her website,