The Gluten-Intolerance Confusion.

What is gluten-intolerance? First know what is gluten – a protein natural to wheat, rye and barley. When leavening agents produce bubbles in dough or batter air is trapped in its gluten network. This is why baked goods rise up light and fluffy.

Something to chew over:

Gliadins and Glutenins are the two main component of wheat – gliadins give rise to dough – glutenins give stretch and shape.

There are three serious reasons to avoid gluten:

Celiac disease, if you have been diagnosed with this autoimmune disorder then even the smallest amounts of gluten can cause intestinal damage.

Here’s what happens, the villi – tiny hair-like projections or linings of the small intestines – will become atrophied. Literally waste away if you catch my drift. The villi and spaces between them are there to absorb nutrients and keep away toxins from attacking the system. The body sees bits of gluten and will attack everything in its path to get it out. Villi get washed away like dirty-laundry water along with what the body considers “begone-trash”.

What happens now?

Less villi retained results in less nutrients absorbed and more toxins hanging about.

Gluten Intolerance, here it gets complicated mainly because there is no actual diagnosis from your doctor.

Nobody knows your own body like you do so if you feel sick, bloated, difficulty breathing, itchiness, and a mass of other strangeness happening:

Go see your doctor for a medical check-up, and start recording your food intake.

Eat like you normally do and note everything down over a couple of weeks.

Just like a “complicated” relationship I suggest you dump the stuff that makes you feel bad and aim for the good stuff that brings your body solace.

Wheat Allergy is an actual allergy to…yes, wheat. This, like shellfish and other allergies, can cause mild to serious issues so be aware, be careful, and always carry your prescription adrenaline auto-injector.

Separate your well being from the chaff.

Never apologize for feeling healthy, whatever you choose to do. If your doctor is ok with it and you feel good about yourself, then do it.

 Note: When it comes to children – because they cannot make their own decisions yet – always work in conjunction with their paediatrician.

Be informed. Keep reading my blog posts if it’s helpful to you.

Lets cut through the gluten together and learn to be in control of our own health once again.

Gluten out,



Samantha McLeod

Vancouver based food and travel writer.

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