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Not a trendy diet, but a health question: what is the real danger of gluten

Gluten is a plant protein found in popular cereals. The same element responsible for the elasticity and splendor of the dough. We are increasingly hearing about people who are intolerant of this protein. But often even doctors themselves (especially in the regions) consider talking about gluten free nothing more than a fad… I turned to an expert who knows by example what gluten intolerance is, and found out what to do for people who have faced such a problem.
Talking about gluten intolerance is not really accepted in our country yet. Many people consider a gluten-free diet a fashionable craze, saying that for centuries everyone ate cereals — and nothing, and suddenly their usefulness was questioned. In fact, many people for years can not be diagnosed with gluten intolerance, and someone has celiac disease (an autoimmune disease that affects the villi of the intestine and does not allow you to digest gluten completely. The exact cause is unknown). They go to a variety of doctors – from an endocrinologist to a dermatologist, heal the symptoms, but they do not know about the presence of allergies immediately. Our expert Valentina churayeva has been following gluten free for several years and knows how to live with this problem.
Valentina Churaeva
food blogger and journalist
Pass the correct tests
“I recently spoke with a friend who is 35 years old. Only now she was diagnosed with celiac disease, before that she was treated for pancreatitis, as there were problems with the pancreas. I myself did not know about gluten intolerance until recently, when after the birth of my daughter, serious skin problems began: it itched, flaked, then purulent rashes were added. Dermatologists, including those from the best private clinics, could not make a diagnosis, blaming everything on rosacea. They explained this by hormonal failure, stress, fatigue, taking antibiotics.

I have not associated my gastritis and skin problems for a very long time. And finally I met a doctor who insisted on a complete diagnosis of the body. I passed all the tests at the endocrinologist: the hormonal background corresponds to my age. We checked for parasites – everything is OK. for vitamins-the standard lack of vitamin D. and only the food panel test showed that the body reacts violently not only to gluten, egg white and yolk, dairy products (any animal milk), but also to tomatoes, garlic, bananas, pistachios, kiwi, chocolate and honey. A whole list! After eliminating these products, after three weeks, the skin finally became clean. But as soon as the body gets products with gluten (it is contained in many places in a hidden form!), immediately begins a reaction – itching, redness, discomfort in the stomach.”

Signs of gluten sensitivity
Gluten intolerance manifests itself in different ways for everyone. Some people have acute rhinitis and even migraines, others have endless problems with the gastrointestinal tract and skin rashes. In some cases, it is manifested in the form of joint pain and problems with teeth. You can’t do without full-fledged analyses. And here the main thing is to find a good doctor. You need to start with a gastroenterologist. Don’t trust fashionable nutritionists and food bloggers from social networks-look for a specialist for reviews and recommendations. Just passing a test for gluten sensitivity is not enough – now this service is privately provided by many laboratories, but such an analysis can also be false-negative, so it is so important to find a specialist who will analyze a whole set of indicators.

If it turns out that you are gluten intolerant, you will have to completely change your diet. It’s not about diet, it’s about lifestyle. And Yes, gluten-free products are on average 30% more expensive. This is due to a number of requirements for their production. Very few people get used to life without gluten at once, the force of habit is too great.

“It took me four years. Before that, there were many breakdowns when I waved my hand and bought forbidden products, because it is very difficult to find what to eat. You should always analyze the ingredients, read the information on the label, ask the waiters in the restaurant what is added to a particular sauce, and so on. Sometimes you need to rebuild the life of the whole family. If a child has celiac disease, then they need to explain why they can not eat this or that product. And, for example, gluten is not washed off the dishes completely, that is, it needs to be completely replaced. There are a number of nuances here, and in our country, people are trying to solve this problem on their own, finding information literally bit by bit. Because this is primarily a question of health, not a trendy diet.”
Photo: vostock-photo

List of products that contain gluten
It would seem that what could be simpler? Simply exclude products containing gluten from the menu. But no, gluten is added to the mass of products to reduce the cost of production.

Bakery products (everything is clear here);
macaroni; – semolina;
many sausage products;
frozen semi-finished products with dough;
confectionery: cakes, chocolate, sweets, waffles, halva, cookies.
beer (brewed with barley);
dairy products produced by industrial means.

Photo: vostock-photo

You can eat without fear:

vegetables, legumes, greens
potatoes cooked at home
eggs (if you do not have sensitivity to the white and yolk along the way)
buckwheat, corn, rice and flour derived from them
meat, poultry, fish
natural nuts (those that are processed industrially will contain gluten, although in a small dose)
homemade dairy products.

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