You have to keep in mind that the USDA and other agencies associated with diet and nutrition have agriculture and commerce as their primary focus. It's not about our health at all. That's a common misconception. If they keep extolling the virtues of certain foods, you can bet it supports some aspect of the food industry in some way. Of course they're going to promote those products to us!
Another post here asked a similar question about whole grain vs wheat, and mentioned the book "Wheat Belly" as a possible reference. I encourage you to read it. It may answer your question in great detail. A good read, if a bit unsettling.
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current weight: 249.0
Fitness Minutes: (3,530)
1/29/14 12:29 P
I avoid gluten almost of the time even though I have never been tested. I chose not to get tested because IMO the tests are invasive, expensive and not perfect. Testing for celiac will not tell you if you have an allergy, intolerance or sensitivity with 100% accuracy. I have been gluten free for two years now and the idea of eating gluten to purposely make myself sick (diarrhea/constipation/stomach pain), sounds like a really, really bad idea.
Another reason I chose not to get tested is because insurance comanies charge higher rates to people with known diseases, celiac being one. So a formal diagnosis could put your health insurance rates up.
The best way for a person to know if they have any kind of allergy, intolerance or sensitivity to a food is to do exactly what the OP is doing remove it from the diet and then reintroduce it slowly. Listen to your body, it will tell you if you have a problem with that food or not. It's really not any more complicated than that.
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181 Maintenance Weeks
Fitness Minutes: (15,747)
1/29/14 5:10 A
I'm with Anarie on this one. If you suspect intolerance/allergies then it's important that you get tested before you change your diet. A positive test result will likely be proof you do have reactions. My allergist told me the tests are very useful for confirming (but not excluding) intolerance/allergies.
Good luck. Generally many will have healthier diets after they exclude wheat (and dairy), but I suspect this is often because many junky foods will be off limits.
The thing is, if you stop eating wheat, then you can't be tested for gluten intolerance. The way they know whether you have celiac or gluten intolerance is by testing for antibodies. If you haven't been eating gluten, you won't have the antibodies and your test will come out negative even if you do have celiac disease. If you think you're sensitive to gluten, get tested by a medical doctor first. If you have a serious gluten sensitivity, it will probably show in the test. If it doesn't but you're still not convinced, you can still cut out gluten *after* the test.
You also need to decide whether you think you're sensitive to wheat or to gluten. It's not the same thing. There are many other foods besides wheat that have gluten in them, so just giving up wheat won't help if you're gluten sensitive.
A better plan than giving up wheat might be giving up unhealthy processed foods. Many people who say they feel better because they gave up wheat (or corn, or red dye number 238, or whatever the latest trend of giving up foods is) actually feel better because they gave up cupcakes, vending-machine sandwiches, and Kool-aid. It's much easier to say, "I can't eat that because it might have red dye number 461 in it" than it is to say, "I am choosing not to eat that because my body doesn't need it." Giving up any common food ingredient will generally make a person feel better at least for a while, because it means eating less, cooking at home, and cutting out dubious junk food. For your detox, consider just cutting out foods you know aren't healthy and eating only what you cook yourself for a month or so. Chances are very, very good that you'll feel much better even if what you cook for yourself is chock-full of wheat.
current weight: 132.0
Fitness Minutes: (32,816)
21,634 1/29/14 1:24 A
It sounds to me like you may be a wee bit confused about wheat and sensitivities. What leads you to think you and your husband MAY be sensitive to it?
Often people will unnecessarily cut out a whole food group based on "I think I am insensitive/allergic etc.", when in fact it isn't justified. Of course, it doesn't hurt to cut out white processed flour, but the wholegrain itself doesn't cause as many problems as a lot of people think, and in fact, has a lot of very healthy nutrients. If you think that there is a problem, then perhaps you would be advised for both you and your husband to talk with your Dr and if need be, ask for a referral to a Registered Dietitian.
It depends on the individual. Some of us eat things with wheat in them, like bread, and it causes cravings. Others have allergies. The rest can choose to eat wheat if they want to.
What you are hearing is many people who find out that they have issues with wheat, sugar, and other foods, and they are talking about how it is bad for THEM. Don't assume if they say it is bad, that it applies to YOU. It may, but then again, it may not. If you aren't sure, go ahead and cut out the grains, or wheat, or sugar etc., and see how you feel. Do cravings go away? Do you have more energy? Basically, do you feel better?
Cutting these foods out for a short time, isn't going to destroy your body, or kill you, so try it, and either find out that it IS a problem, or cross it off your worry list, and move on, enjoying the foods that do not bother you.
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current weight: 179.6
Fitness Minutes: (19,838)
1,288 1/29/14 12:53 A
In my opinion...and I am NOT a Dietician (!)...I believe true "gluten" sensitivities are far rarer than many folks have been led to believe. The folks mostly claiming it seem to be selling books...hmmmm.....??!!
I think all WHOLE grains are acceptable and healthy. A whole grain has protein, carb and fat and that is what our diets are comprised of. So as part of a healthy diet, I definitely include wheat. (I love whole wheat hot cereal, and whole wheat English muffins!!)
Do many of us eat too much of the carb part of it....the white flour...yes....and I think that when folks cut down suddenly the changes they see (which some attribute to gluten sensitivity) are actually because their carbs and calories have been drastically changed and their metabolism and digestive tract has to adjust.
It will be great to see what some of the Spark Folks can add to this discussion. All the Best, patti
"The only thing we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us." Gandalf: Lord of the Rings
My husband and I are doing a ten day detox in part to learn if we are sensitive to gluten. I am hearing more and more talk about getting rid of all wheat not just the process white stuff for better health yet some still rave about its health benefits, Please clarify.
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