Foods Containing Gluten Are Dangerous? This is the Fact

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The emergence of digestive disorders in some people after eating foods containing gluten makes this substance considered dangerous to health. However, is it true?

Gluten is a type of protein found in wheat and barley. Because it is found in wheat and barley, gluten is automatically found in foods made from these grains. Examples of foods that generally contain gluten are bread, pasta, cakes, and cereals.

Is Gluten Harmful to Everyone?

The dangers of eating foods that contain gluten actually only apply to people who have certain diseases or medical conditions, namely:

1. Celiac disease

In people who suffer from this disease, consumption of foods containing gluten will trigger inflammation and damage the surface of the small intestine, thereby interfering with the absorption of nutrients.

When consuming foods that contain gluten, people with celiac disease can experience diarrhea, constipation, and flatulence. In addition to disorders of the gastrointestinal tract, patients can experience anemia, osteoporosis, neurological, skin, and heart diseases. Therefore, people with celiac disease must avoid gluten.

2. Non-celiac gluten intolerance

Some people experience symptoms and complaints similar to those with celiac disease after consuming foods containing gluten, such as digestive tract disorders, headaches, weakness, and joint pain. However, after being examined by a doctor, no abnormalities were found in the intestines.

However, just like people with celiac disease, people with gluten intolerance should also avoid foods that contain gluten.

3. Certain autoimmune diseases

Numerous studies have shown that people with certain autoimmune diseases, such as Hashimoto's disease, Grave's disease, and rheumatoid arthritis, are at increased risk for developing celiac disease. If you suffer from one of these autoimmune diseases, it is recommended that you follow a gluten-free diet.

4. Other intestinal diseases

Gluten is also thought to cause complaints in patients with irritable bowel syndrome and intestinal inflammation. Therefore, sufferers of both conditions need to avoid foods that contain gluten.

Tips for Living a Gluten Free Diet

One study did show that a gluten-free diet could have a positive effect on heart health and weight control, but this had more to do with food consumption in general and not specifically.

You can choose to eat gluten-free foods even if you don't have any of the health problems listed above. However, keep an eye on the nutritional content in the food products to be consumed.

When on a gluten-free diet, of course, you will avoid all types of foods made from wheat and barley. The danger is that when you avoid these foods, you will be prone to lack of B vitamins, fiber, zinc, and iron. Therefore, try to meet these nutritional intakes by eating vegetables, fruits, rice or brown rice, and low-fat meats.

You also need to be more critical of processed food products that claim to be gluten-free, because these foods are not necessarily healthier. Research shows that processed foods that are gluten-free usually contain a lot of processed carbohydrates, sugar, salt, and fats which can be harmful when consumed in excess.

In addition, gluten-free processed foods usually do not contain much protein, folic acid (vitamin B9), niacin (vitamin B3), and other B vitamins that are needed by the body.

In conclusion, eating foods that contain gluten can indeed be harmful to people who have certain medical conditions. If you do have celiac disease, gluten intolerance, or an autoimmune disease, a gluten-free diet will have a positive impact on your health.

But if you don't have these conditions, you can just eat foods that contain gluten. If in doubt, consult a doctor so that they are given a diet option that suits your condition.