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6 Gluten-Free Diet Dangers That You Didn’t Know: Easy Gluten-Free Recipes


There is a lot of buzz about going gluten-free these days. But unless you are sensitive to gluten or suffer from celiac disease, you may not need to switch to a gluten-free diet. Most people are going the gluten-free route, owing to the belief that gluten can have deleterious effects on health. Gluten in whole grains triggers inflammation in celiac disease patients and it might cause intestinal damage too.

Alternatively, it may raise the risk of coronary heart disease in gluten intolerant people. But it’s fast becoming a fashion to go gluten-free in order to boost energy, lose weight, reduce calorie intake, or feel healthier. The gluten-free diet dangers outnumber the benefits for many people. So the next time you decide to eliminate gluten from your diet without any specific reason, do not forget to consider the dangers of gluten-free diet.

gluten-free diet dangers

If you are not gluten intolerant, it might be a mistake to eliminate gluten foods from your diet. Here are a few gluten-free diet dangers that you should be aware of.

Gluten-Free Diet Dangers

gluten-free food dangers

1.       Nutritional deficiency
If you plan to go gluten free, you might want to know that it could pose a risk of nutritional deficiencies. For example, cereals and fortified breads are a key source of B vitamins. When you eliminate these products from your diet, it sets you up for nutrient deficiencies, because most gluten-free substitutes are not fortified with vitamins.

So when you replace wheat with gluten-free products, you may suddenly find yourself struggling with a nutrient-sparse diet.

2.       Lack of fiber

Most gluten-free foods lack fiber. When you choose to go gluten free and eliminate whole grain products from your meals, you raise the risk of consuming too little fiber.  However, getting enough fiber on a gluten-free diet still represents a bit of a challenge, and some people suffer from constipation because they aren't getting enough fiber in their diets.

So what can you do if you plan to go gluten free?

Well, you may want to add fiber to your diet. Consider including more beans and legumes in your meals. Look for gluten-free whole-grain options. Add more color in the form of fresh fruits and veggies to your plate. If you are not allergic to nuts, then adding nuts and seeds is a good idea to add more fiber to your diet.

3.       Good versus bad gut bacteria

One of the dangers of gluten-free diet is that it is hard on the gut due to the lack of fermentable substrate in the food that feed gut bacteria. Whole grains, such as whole wheat is rich in prebiotic fiber, which feeds the bacteria. But gluten-free sources, such as tapioca flour, potato flour, rice flour, and corn meal are poor sources of prebiotic fiber. As a result, the healthy gut bacteria are starved for food and the gut is crowded by pathogenic bacteria.

If you suffer from celiac disease and must go gluten-free, it is crucial to look for substitutes for the fermentable fiber in whole grains.

4.       Low calories for kids

Another risk of a gluten-free diet is that it may make for children calorie deficient. Growing children need healthy calories for growth. By cutting out foods made with whole grains, it can be harder for kids to get the needed calories.

5.       Arsenic toxicity

Since rice is the main grain for someone on a gluten-free diet, it may be high in arsenic. In large amounts, arsenic can be lethal. Even smaller amounts may cause a host of health problems over a period of time, especially in kids. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has been advising parents to limit rice in their kid’s diet.

6.       Weight issues

You might be under the impression that going gluten-free is the way to shed excess pounds. However, this may not hold true for some people, who might experience weight mismanagement issues. Reason? Well, whole grains are rich in fiber, germ, bran, and endosperm, which create a feeling of fullness in your stomach and take longer to digest. Contrarily, most gluten-free foods are carb-rich, they are quickly absorbed in the body, making you feel hungry again soon. Additionally, the more carbs you eat, the higher the fat stores, because excess carbs are deposited as fat.

All Is Not Bad About Gluten: Gluten-Free Diet Dangers

·         Compromised Immune Function: A Risk of Gluten-Free Diet
Gluten may boost the immune function. Research claims that subjects on a diet with added gluten protein experienced higher natural killer cell activity. This could help boost the body’s ability to fight viral infections. A strong immune function could also help someone fighting cancer. So withdrawing from a gluten-free diet may not be a good step for your immune function unless you are gluten sensitive.

·         Celiac disease may remain undiagnosed: A Risk of Gluten-Free Diet
Self-prescription of gluten withdrawal may not be the best decision of your life. One of the biggest gluten-free diet dangers is that it could undermine your ability to detect symptoms of celiac disease. You could have celiac disease and might not be aware of it, because you are already eating gluten-free foods. This makes the diagnosis of the celiac disease difficult.

Now that you are aware of the gluten-free diet dangers, it is better not to go gluten-free unless you are diagnosed with gluten sensitivity or celiac disease.  Consult with your doctor if you experience symptoms of gluten intolerance or celiac disease.

However, if you are gluten sensitive, you may want to avoid gluten at all costs and opt for gluten-free recipes. We have a list of gluten-free recipes here.

From gluten-free flour to gluten-free cookies, gluten-free cakes, gluten-free breads, gluten-free rotis, and what not, the list of gluten-free recipes for kids and adults alike is long.


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