Is Gluten that bad for your health? | The Science

Interestingly enough, there are all kinds of stories about people who have healed some ailment or another by eliminating all wheat and gluten containing products from their diet.

The book Toxic Staple by Anne Sarkisian is packed full of personal stories of people who, on a gluten free diet, healed various ailments like Irritable Bowel Syndrome, Acid Reflux, Skin Rashes, Allergies, and even neurological issues like depression, migraines, ADHD and brain fog.

One reason people clear up so many issues by cutting out gluten, is that over 95% of people with celiac disease remain undiagnosed. As Medical Doctor Alessio Fasano puts it in his book Gluten Freedom, celiac disease is a “clinical chameleon” that «can range from chronic diarrhea, weight loss, and abdominal distention to symptoms and
conditions that can affect any organ system.» But celiac disease is not the only gluten related disorder. While the global incidence of celiac disease ranges from .5% to 1% , it’s estimated that 18 million Americans, about 6% of the population, have a condition called gluten sensitivity according to Dr. Fasano. Dr. Kenneth Fine of EnteroLab, a testing laboratory for non-celiac gluten sensitivity, asserts that the number of people with this disorder could be as high as 30 to 40 percent.

You might be thinking “OK, so what if I’m not gluten sensitive or celiac? ​is there any point to specifically removing wheat and gluten from my diet?” Well, high carbohydrate foods like grains in general spike your blood sugar, leading to various problems with weight and insulin resistance. So a grain free diet in general has various benefits, but what is unique about wheat and gluten?

First off, even people ​without​ a proven sensitivity to gluten ​claim to have easily lost plenty of weight by cutting out wheat specifically. And, a 2012 study from Brazil found that a gluten free diet reduces body fat, inflammation and insulin resistance. In the study, they gave two different groups of mice free access to food and water. The diets are exactly the same except one group’s diet contained 4.5% wheat gluten. The mice with the gluten gained more body weight and much more fat. Specifically, the mice eating the gluten had higher fasting insulin and glucose, and had much more fat in the muscle and liver. This points the finger at gluten as an exacerbator of insulin resistance, diabetes and fatty liver.

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Why giving up or reducing Wheat and gluten can improve your health
Aside from the fact that a grain free diet is a low carb diet that should help you lose weight, what specific benefits are there from cutting wheat out of the diet? This is the question that the video covers. Books like wheat belly have enhanced the popularity of gluten free diets, but due to their very rapid increasing popularity, such diets have redeemed the status of «fad.» Nutrition is always complicated, as the human body is – this topic is no different. I covered some of the reasons why cutting out gluten should evoke weight loss and improve health, especially gut health and conditions like irritable bowel syndrome, but there are actually a couple more reasons to avoid gluten not mentioned here.

A PDF with the transcript and sources can be found here:
★Correction: Please disregard the table shown at 4:09 as it doesn’t actually present a significant difference in muscle & liver lipids in the control and gluten free mice. Based on the other findings in the study, the point that gluten could exacerbate insulin resistance, diabetes and fatty liver still stands.

(The study suggests that gluten results in metabolic alterations in lipid and glucose metabolism in GF group instead reduction of lipid absorption.) You can read the full study here: [… ]
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Books: «Gluten Freedom» by Alessio Fasano, «Toxic Staple» by Anne Sarkisian,»Grain Brain» by David Perlmutter
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