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Yes! A Gluten-Free Diet Can Help You Feel Better

Apr 29, 2024 | Blog, Nutrition

Gluten is a hot topic these days. I generally think gluten isn’t great for anyone, but certain people benefit more from avoiding it than others. At Best Life Functional Medicine we recommend strictly avoiding gluten in 3 instances:

Those with Celiac Disease (an autoimmune disease where an immune response to gluten attacks the small intestine.

People with other autoimmune diseases. Research shows that gluten may worsen autoimmune conditions such as Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, type 1 diabetes, Grave’s disease, and rheumatoid arthritis.

People who have NCGS (Non-Celiac Gluten Sensitivity). These patients test negative for Celiac disease but still experience symptoms after eating gluten. It is estimated that this affects 1-13% of the population.

The best way to know if you fall into any of these categories is to be tested. However, you can also avoid gluten for a month and see how you feel! It’s worth a try!

Many people lose weight when they begin eating a gluten-free diet. If you have glucose intolerance, you may lose weight because your body can process the food better, but you may also lose weight even without the intolerance.

But along with weight loss, a gluten-free diet can also help to reduce inflammation in the body and ease stress on muscles and joints that may be in pain. Gluten is a protein. It’s found in wheat, barley, and rye grains. It’s also found in bread, cereals, and most bakery products. Incidentally, these are often the products that tend to have a lot of calories, sugars, and fat.

If you have a gluten intolerance, you’ll find that removing gluten from your diet may help you to lose weight, as well as get rid of digestive problems such as gas, abdominal bloating, and diarrhea or constipation. Additionally, muscle and joint pain will be reduced.

Reversing your abdominal irritation and chronic pain can do wonders for how much energy you have, which will lead to increased activity which can further facilitate your weight loss. And when you remove products that contain gluten from your diet you’re left with really healthful options.

Removing gluten from your diet leaves you with fruits, vegetables, proteins, and some grains that are a healthier alternative such as quinoa and oats. Oats don’t contain gluten unless they’ve been contaminated during processing.

If you’re allergic to gluten, make sure you get oats that are labeled as gluten-free. If you’re not allergic, it probably is such a negligible amount that it won’t harm your attempts to lose weight and feel better.

When you’re removing gluten from your diet to lose weight, you need to still be mindful of what you’re eating. For example, make sure that you don’t replace products containing gluten with other highly processed foods. There are even gluten-free Oreos now! It’s ok to treat yourself occasionally but you won’t see great weight loss benefits if you just swap out the gluten-containing junk food for the gluten-free junk food.

You’ll want to steer clear of gluten-free products that contain a lot of saturated fat, cholesterol, sugar, and artificial colors and flavors. These foods will impede your weight loss progress and keep you from attaining your goals.

If you’re dealing with Celiac Disease, chances are you’ve lost a lot of weight unintentionally. You may be worried that a gluten-free diet will cause you to lose even more weight. But in this case, it’s just the opposite. When you get rid of gluten, your body can absorb nutrients again. This will help you to regain the unintentional weight you lost.

A gluten-free diet is a healthy way to lose weight and reduce your risk of developing some diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, and some cancers. If you’ve wondered if a gluten-free diet is good for weight loss, the answer is YES!, it can be a very effective part of a healthy weight loss program.

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