Gluten sensitivity can manifest itself in several ways. Here are some of the most common. First, a quick refresher on what gluten is exactly. Gluten is a storage type protein that is commonly found on a cellular level in many of the different food stuffs in the grain family. Gluten gives cereals and grains and especially bread certain specific qualities among them a doughy texture, stickiness and elasticity.
However, in some individuals gluten poses a problem. For individuals with a gluten sensitivity there is a difficulty in digesting the gluten found in bread or grain containing products. For these individuals it becomes important, in order to avoid intestinal problems, that they maintain a gluten free diet. In this type of enteropathy gluten can not be properly digested, sometimes due to Celiac disease which affects no less than 0.5 percent of the population. Such persons either have a gluten sensitivity (which is like an allergy) or Celiac disease. Estimates suggest that nearly fifteen percent of all persons in the United States have either the gluten sensitivity or Celiac disease. However, be advised that many of such people are able to live healthy and happy lives providing that they remove the gluten from their diet and see their doctor regularly. If you believe you may be afflicted with a gluten sensitivity or Celiac disease please see your doctor as soon as possible.
Another important factor to remember when considering gluten sensitivity is the history of the disease. To be frank about it, gluten allergies are well understood even today. For many years, before advanced medical screening made the detection of gluten intolerance easier for doctors, people were uncertain why some individuals had trouble with their intestines as well as certain skin disorders. Some time ago, there were more questions regarding what is gluten. However, by world war II many in the medical profession were slowly sensing the connection between a gluten sensitivity and the claims of distress that were being presented by many patients. Through a process of elimination (a gluten free diet really) the gluten intolerance was ascertained and treated.
Because gluten is present in many of the grains in the grain family as well as cereals, many individuals with a gluten sensitivity feel that they must miss out on their favorite foods of yesteryear due to this complication. While it is true that in order to comply with a gluten free diet certain grain staples such as wheat and cereal must be eliminated from your diet, there are many gluten-free alternatives for each and everyone of these products. Since the detection of a gluten sensitivity has become so much easier for doctors, we have discovered that a much larger percentage of individuals struggle with some form of a gluten allergy or even Celiac disease. These changes in detection really only came to light in the last several years and as a result of them we have learned that there are many individuals, much more than previously thought, who struggle with gluten issues.
New websites have sprung forth to address the gluten issue and more people than ever have come to discover that they have a gluten sensitivity. For many, the news that have a gluten sensitivity is actually welcome news. For a long time they had been struggling with certain symptoms such as intestinal difficulties and fatigue and simply had no clue what was wrong with them. For these individuals there is now light at the end of the tunnel. They see that having a gluten allergy isn’t a death sentence, it is, in fact, far from it. With some changes in diet and a commitment to live gluten free these individuals are finding themselves healthier than ever.
The other question that comes up is whether people with a gluten sensitivity will have to give up some of their favorite foods that contained grains or cereals or were heavy in carbs. In some cases the answer to this question is yes. Certain foods, those with gluten will have to be eliminated in order to be healthy and at peak performance. However, as I alluded to earlier recent advances in medical detection have yielded interesting results. We have learned that many more people have some form of gluten sensitivity than was previously thought. As a result of this new, healthier food choices have become available for individuals who are gluten intolerant.
For instance, if you were to go to your favorite search engine and type in “gluten free beer” or “gluten free pizza” you would discover that many alternative options have sprung up in recent years to try to cater to the gluten free crowd. That’s how many people suffer with some form of gluten sensitivity. So many in fact that a cottage industry has sprung forth in order to allow people who have chosen to live gluten free to do so without giving up some of their favorite things. You can even find gluten free bread these days. Who would have thought that that was possible.
Also, a lot of these products without gluten taste fantastic. Sure your gluten free bread won’t be exactly like how you remember fresh baked bread but it will have it’s own qualities that you may grow to enjoy. It won’t have the elasticity of glutenous bread and therefore will be easier to digest as well. The point is that these gluten free products have really improved in the last few years to the point that, in many cases, there is no difference in quality between a product with gluten and one without it.
I know that for a few individuals out there it seems like a lot to sacrifice to lose gluten. I can assure you that not only will you feel healthier, but you won’t have all those negative side effects that are caused by a diet full of gluten. As a result you will be more effective and efficient. Now who wouldn’t want that. Plus as I said the new products really aren’t all that bad. There are now some great gluten-free possibilities.
I hope you realize that having a gluten sensitivity doesn’t have to be a bad thing. For many a gluten sensitivity is the motivation for them to start living a healthier lifestyle.