Non-Celiac Gluten Sensitivity May Be Mythical
Since the 2011 Gluten-Intolerance study at Monash University, unscrupulous opportunists have seized upon the findings and turned their gluten-free products into a 15 billion dollar a year industry. This promotion of gluten and wheat in general as unhealthful was aided and abetted by such books as Grain Brain and Wheat Belly, which made a number of scientifically dubious assertions.
Now, Peter Gibson, the same researcher who headed up the 2011 study, has released the results of his follow up study, in which 37 people, who self-identified as gluten-intolerant, participated. The results indicate that these 'gluten-intolerant' participants suffer the same amount of bloating, gas, and other intestinal discomfort on a non-gluten diet as they do on a diet that includes gluten.
A couple of excellent articles that give an in-depth insight into the fallacies of gluten intolerance are "Researchers Who Provided Key Evidence For Gluten Sensitivity Have Now Thoroughly Shown That It Doesn't Exist" by Jennifer Walsh of the Business Insider and The Smoke and Mirrors Behind Wheat Belly and Grain Brain by John McDougall, MD.
This is, of course, somewhat of a vindication for us, here at Country Living, who have maintained all along that wheat is indeed the staff of life and viewed the anti-gluten fad with a dubious eye.
All wheat is not created equal. I don’t read faddish health books, but I do read peer-reviewed research and 37 isn’t a large enough group to prove/disprove anything – something is making people sick and dismissing it as a fad doesn’t solve the problem.
Personally, I experienced a decrease in migraines, digestive symptoms, and skin issues when I stopped eating commercial bread. Since wheat has been the staff of life for centuries, this convinced me to look for what had changed since my great-grandparents farmed wheat in Kansas… gluten level, type of wheat, soil fertility, growing methods, milling, storage/shipping, yeast, additives, contaminants etc.
I discovered I could eat einkorn, then heritage wheat, then organic rye… now I’m baking with organic wheat, hand-ground fresh, using a starter for a cool rise. I feel great.
These days when a friend tells me they gave up gluten, I don’t assume they’re faddish, I talk about everything that’s different about commercial bread today and serve them my homemade einkorn pancakes.
The “bad” things in bread are Mono and Diglycerides, DATEM, various forms of glycol, and preservatives. If you havent been diagnosed with Celiac disease, you are not sensitive to gluten. I suggest you are sensitive to another ingredient – Soy. Corn, soy, coconut, palm are used in vegetable shortenings.Palm and coconut oils are extremely unhealthy, no matter what the internet or a magazine says. I am a Professional Chef, Certified in food safety. I have an MBA and also I am a Certified Dietitian. Many “gluten free” foods do in fact contain gluten, by the way. The FDA is not all that strict on many food claims. LOL the FDA says glycol is harmless in bread and ice cream, etc, yet Monsanto uses it in “Roundup” with a phosphate as a weed killer.
Dear Chef Glyphosate is not the same as glycerin. And the type of glycol is important; two carbon ethylene glycol is converted via the alcohol dehydrogenase pathway to oxalic acid, which with calcium forms sharp crystals which cut the kindeys in a fatal way. Propylene glycol is edible, but not what I would eat for dessert. I use coconut oil and olive oil, and they are both good oils for humans. Soy and canola, edible, but not preferable. Butter, yumm.