Just Because It's Gluten-Free Doesn't Mean It's Good for You


By Nell Stephenson
Author of Paleoista

Seeing gluten-free options has become as commonplace as seeing vegetarian, low-sodium, and low-fat fare. At any given grocery store or restaurant, you'll find your choice of gluten-free breads, pastas, and cookies. Does that mean we should partake? Not so fast. While choosing gluten-free versions of foods such as those listed above may be slightly healthier than consuming their gluten-laden original counterparts, we must keep in mind that all grains, even those that do not contain gluten, like rice, and those that mimic seeds, such as quinoa, are still not Paleo.

All grains contain anti-nutrient properties, which serve to protect them from being invaded by organisms in the soil as well as being eaten by animals. Unfortunately, these very same anti-nutrients have negative consequences on our bodies. The anti-nutrients bind to vitamins and minerals in the healthy, Paleo foods we eat and prevent us from properly absorbing them. They also create microscopic tearing in the intestinal walls, which leads to a condition called leaky gut. This compromises the functionality of our GI tract and allows inflammation to begin.

The inflammation does not end there; while it begins in the GI tract, it becomes a systemic problem, which then leads to systemic inflammation throughout the whole body and goes on to cause or worsen: -Acne and other skin conditions
-Allergies
-Auto immune symptoms
-Chronic fatigue
-Joint pain
-Migraine headaches

This is not just the case for anyone who has been medically diagnosed with Celiac disease, gluten allergies or intolerance, and not only for those who have figured out a sensitivity on their own, without medical intervention. This happens to all of us every single time we eat any grain. Even if we don't feel we're having symptoms, it's happening, and there is scientific research to back this up.

Thanks to leading researchers on the subject like Dr. Loren Cordain, the father of Paleo, we can learn why it happens from his books on the Paleo Diet.

Thinking it would be too hard, too time-consuming, or simply too much trouble to try the Paleo Diet? You'll never know until you give it a shot. You have nothing to lose, except maybe some excess pounds and a feeling of lethargy.

Paleoista recipe: Grilled Summer Fruits


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