Could Going Gluten-Free Make You a Better Athlete?

by Sarah Jio, Glamour
We've talked about the millions of people who suffer from gluten-intolerance issues, of course, and also the growing number of people who are going gluten-free because it's sort of en vogue right now. In that vein, a new book suggests that going gluten-free may make you a better athlete. Let's discuss...

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Blisstree's Hanna Brooks Olsen interviewed the authors of the new book The Gluten-Free Edge: A Nutrition and Training Guide for Peak Athletic Performance and an Active Gluten-Free Life. Peter Bronski and Melissa McLean Jory, assert that going gluten-free can benefit almost everyone in an athletic way, whether it's helping you run faster and longer, or getting you closer to finishing the triathlon you have your eye on.

"Their new book, isn't heavy-handed or preachy, and it doesn't claim that gluten-free works for everyone," notes Brooks Olsen. "Instead, it puts the trendy (and, for some, life-saving) dietary choice in a new light, highlighting the way that the human body reacts to gluten, and the changes that commercial wheat have undergone since the early days of cultivation."

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Bronski adds: "There's definitely the potential for anyone to benefit [from going gluten-free]. In the book, I interview Dr. Allen Lim, who's an exercise physiologist and who's worked with a number of the Tour de France pro cycling teams. And he refers to the gluten-free diet as a kind of Pascal's Wager, where you have something to gain and nothing to lose by trying it. ...[I]s there a lot of evidence that suggests that they will [benefit]? Absolutely. And that evidence becomes more convincing when you start looking specifically at athletes, because athletes are prone to certain factors like immune suppression, heightened sensitivity to foods, gut problems-that can benefit from a gluten-free diet."

So interesting. Would you consider giving up gluten for fitness reasons?

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