Gluten-free options for gluten sensitivity and gluten intolerance have become increasingly available within the past few years. This increase in gluten-free options has also created the notion that, ideally, we’re all better off avoiding gluten. The reality isn’t so simple though.
Most of the gluten-free products on the market are processed. Breads, wraps, chips, crackers, and many kinds of junk food are available in a gluten-free option. If we avoid processed foods, the gluten that we do consume will be in a whole form, in healthier foods like kamut and barley.
So before you self-diagnose as having a gluten sensitivity or gluten intolerance, try cutting out processed foods first, opting for foods like wheat berries rather than whole-wheat bread. In addition to eating gluten as part of a whole food, you also may want to try focusing on the ancient wheat varieties like spelt and kamut. For those that are questioning gluten sensitivity, this may be a sensitivity to modern strains of wheat. Switching to whole, unprocessed forms of ancient wheat may be a good first step in figuring out where the sensitivity lies.
Watch the first of a three-part video series on gluten by Dr. Michael Greger:
- Part II of Dr. Greger’s videos on gluten
- Part III of Dr. Greger’s videos on gluten
- The Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine’s response to “Should I be on a gluten-free diet?”