Gluten is a protein found in cereals such as wheat, rye and barley that helps foods maintain their shape, acting as a kind of glue that gives greater elasticity and a particular texture.
The ingestion of food with these cereals can cause abdominal discomfort in those people who have gluten intolerance as is the case of celiac disease or people who have sensitivity to gluten or allergy to gluten, because they cannot digest this protein well, so when they consume foods with gluten, symptoms such as diarrhea, abdominal cramps and abdominal swelling arise.
Foods that contain gluten
The foods that contain gluten are all those that are made with wheat, barley or rye as cookies, cakes, biscuits, breads, toasts, beers and any type of dough that has wheat flour in its composition as the pizza dough and pasta, for example.
The daily diet usually contains many foods with wheat, which means that gluten is consumed in large quantities, so some individuals refer improvements in the intestine when they reduce the consumption of this nutrient. In addition to this, beverages such as beer and whiskey also contain gluten, as they are made from barley malt.
The gluten-free foods are mainly:
- Fruits and vegetables;
- Rice and its derivatives;
- Corn and its derivatives;
- Potato starch;
- Meat and fish;
- Sugar, chocolate, cocoa, gelatin and ice cream;
- Oils, olive oil and margarine.
These foods and other products with only these ingredients such as potato starch cake, for example, can be consumed on a gluten-free diet. The industrialized foods that present on the label the designation of “gluten free”, means that they do not contain gluten and that they can be consumed by people with intolerance to this protein.
Benefits of a gluten-free diet
Beginning a gluten-free diet can be a big challenge, so whenever it is going to start you should read the nutritional labeling of the products before consuming them, which should indicate that they are “gluten free”, in addition of this, it is a diet that is not cheap because the products that do not contain gluten tend to be more expensive.
The main benefit of eliminating gluten from food is the exclusion of industrialized and caloric foods from the diet such as stuffed cookies, pizzas, pasta and cakes. Although the gluten-free diet is made by people who do not have gluten intolerance, there is usually an improvement in their body because they begin to eat healthier, making both the intestine and the body work better.
In addition to this, removing gluten from the diet can help to reduce gas and bloating in those who are more sensitive to this protein. The presence of symptoms such as constipation and excess gas may indicate problems with gluten.
Does gluten get fat?
The foods with gluten that fatten are mainly those that contain fat inside their ingredients as it is the case of the cakes, the biscuits and cookies, for example. However, foods such as bread or toast, although they contain gluten, only get fat if consumed in large quantities.
Removing gluten from food is common in some diets to lose weight because gluten is present in many caloric and unhealthy foods, and eliminating it contributes to improving the quality of daily food.
When must interfere the food that contain gluten in the babies?
Gluten should be introduced into the baby’s diet between 4 and 6 months of age, as children who have contact with gluten before or after this period are more likely to develop celiac disease, type 1 diabetes and wheat allergy.
Products with gluten should be offered to the baby gradually while still in the period of lactation, and should be aware of the symptoms of intolerance such as abdominal bloating, diarrhea and weight loss. If these symptoms appear, the baby should be taken to the pediatrician for tests of gluten intolerance.