Currently, millions of American is avoiding gluten-containing meal. They prefer eat something that labelled as gluten-free, as if the gluten the main cause of all maladies. People assume that consumption of gluten-free food able to maintain their health and they will not suffer from modern lifestyle-related diseases such as diabetes or obesity. Is this notion true, and scientifically has been proved, or just another hype created for commercial purpose? I try to dig deep into this problem through this article.
The answer for aforementioned questions is partly true for 1% of world’s population. These people have a particular genetic mutation which affect their ability to digest gluten, namely as celiac disease. Gluten, actually is a part of component seed’s storage. Flour that is processed from cerelia plants such as wheat, barley and rye contains this molecule. Gluten is a large complex and comprises of two main protein, gliadin and glutenin. The molecules are elastic in nature which responsible for the flexibility of the dough or practically it makes the bread rise and gives the shape.
One should be notice that we are evolutionary are not adapted to consume cerealia such as wheat as our main staple food since we are firstly destined as omnivore by hunting. Human begin utilize plant as main sources of meals after the advent of agriculture several hundred thousand years ago. Thus, our digestive system is not fully adapted to consume it, several people with certain genetic profile even couldn’t processed it at all indeed. They are that modern people called as person with celiac diseases. The gluten only passes through the digestive system, but the system doesn’t process it. The molecules pile up in the system and further, it causes wreak havoc by sticking into the space between intestine which impede with the ability for nutrient absorption. In other way, gluten clogging also resulted in intestine’s microbiome in balance, this effect is observed by overproduction of stomach gasses and inconvenient feeling of the stomach. Person with celiac diseases simply being able to recover from all clinical signs above by avoiding meals containing the gluten such as by stop taking the bread and choose other instead such as rice, potato etc.
However, recent books (such as the Wheat Belly or ) hinted that the overconsumption of gluten has big contribution towards the high incidence of modern lifestyle related disease, for instance diabetes, obesity even the Alzhaimer. This notion is misinterpreted by great number of people, then it is used as marketing target, suggesting that consumption of gluten free food will hinder us from chronic diseases. People take this suggestion easily and they wants sacrifice a lot of money to upgrade their meals into the food that has gluten-free label. This food actually substituted the gluten with other component which also have negative outcomes after overconsumption such as glucose or fat. Hence, in my opinion there’s no direct benefit of changing our diet into something that gluten free unless we have genetic diseases called as celiac disease. We shouldn’t easily attracted into some advices which can improve our health in instant. Be remember that having enough sport, sleep and maintaining our diet in balance is still the key for healthy living.