Unless you've been living under a rock, you've noticed the gluten free craze taking hold of America by storm. And there's a reason for this. So many people, myself included, have sensitivities or an allergic reaction to gluten, the protein found in many grains including wheat, rye, barley and kamut.
Going gluten free the proper way can cause someone to lose weight, regain their energy and start to heal their gut. However, some people don't feel much of a difference going gluten free because there are some really common and easy mistakes to make when transitioning from gluten to bar none.
Gluten free = healthy.
Overall, going gluten free is a great choice for so many simply because our bodies were never meant to consume that amount of gluten in the first place (3 meals a day, 365 days a year). Also, since the 1940's wheat plants have been altered to contain 3x as much gluten than its ancestors to help with crop production and larger yields. Eating this modified wheat has contributed to a host of chronic issues and illnesses so just by removing it would make someone healthier. The problem is that the gluten free aisles now in grocery stores are riddled with products void of gluten, but full of sugar. So my point is...not all gluten free products are healthy and you must read the label to determine if there is added sugar. Personally, I would not buy any product that has more than 4grams of sugar per serving listed on the nutritional label or else you're just swapping out one inflammatory food with another.
Gluten free = magical cure for whatever ails you.
Removing gluten from your diet is absolutely a smart move. However, if you've removed gluten from your diet and seem to plateau with your results, chances are a few things are happening. These are the most common things I've noticed with my clients: 1) You allow yourself some "cheat" meals that contain gluten. Now, there is a time and place for a gluten "cheat meal" if you desire, but not during the initial phase of removing gluten. Your body might take 3-6 months or longer to heal from decades of abuse. 2) You haven't removed all your trigger foods. Everyone is different, so if you've hit a plateau with your progress, you may have other inflammatory foods in your system outside of gluten. 3) There are other underlying conditions going on that need an integrative approach. Eating gluten free can be a good start, but an individual process must continue for progress to take place.
Gluten free = deprivation.
Many people assume that going gluten free will deprive them of amazing foods and yes, options will need to shift, but I can assure you that you won't feel deprived for long. Honestly, the number one complain I get from people going gluten free is that they won't be able to have pizza anymore. However, so many pizzarias and grocery stores are now carrying gluten free crusts that taste amazing! I personally love the cauliflower crust in the freezer section from Trader Joe's. Did you see my meal plan post last week where I linked to a mouth watering homemade cauliflower crust? As long as you are consuming a nutrient-dense diet full of anti-inflammatory food choices, your body will shift to crave the foods it needs to heal and to feel vibrant.
Have you gone gluten free for any amount of time? What was your experience like? Please share with me! At the same time, if you have plateaued and you would like to discuss your options moving forward, set up a time to chat with me!