Gluten What?

Gluten What?

Coming from where I have, I've never heard of Gluten. If you come from where I come from, you too have been missing out on this information.

As I grow into the habit of elevating my lifestyle, I come across many products that I have come accustomed to that have an alternative from the original labeled "Gluten Free." And this label can be seen on just about everything; pancake mix, cereal, coffee, and the list goes on. Before I started paying attention to those alternatives. I'd just go to my local grocery store, buy what I need and make my way back to my kitchen, just like a lot of others. Due to me not knowing what Gluten was, reading "Gluten Free" just felt as if it did not matter to me. It never dawned on me to look further into what Gluten Free meant, until one blog post from Kourtney Kardashian.

I follow Kourtney because her and I have similar taste, interest, and personalities. Like we are both into Interior Design and both live a chills mellow kind of life, and she's a family oriented individual with a nice size family which I dream of having one day. But more importantly, she is a somewhat natural individual that enjoys the simple things in life, just like me! Being a fan of Kourt, I downloaded her App to Keep Up (wink wink) with some of the things she gets in to. I enjoy reading up on the skin care products she uses and I like to see what she has changed/updated in her home. One day on Kourts App, she discussed why she made her house Gluten Free and Dairy Free. I was pretty intrigued as to why she made this decision and after reading why. I've became very interested in knowing more and how Gluten played a part in my everyday life. 


Gluten is a family of proteins found in grains like wheat, rye, spelt and barley. Of the gluten-containing grains, wheat is by far the most commonly consumed. The two main proteins in gluten are glutenin and gliadin. Gliadin is responsible for most of the negative health effects. When flour is mixed with water, the gluten proteins form a sticky network that has a glue-like consistency.

This glue-like property makes the dough elastic and gives bread the ability to rise when baked. It also provides a chewy, satisfying texture. Interestingly, the name glu-ten is derived from this glue-like property of wet dough. Most people tolerate gluten just fine. However, it can cause problems for people with certain health conditions. This includes celiac disease, gluten sensitivity, wheat allergy and some other diseases.

After reading this definition, I then had to find out what Celiac Disease was?

According to

Celiac disease (gluten-sensitive enteropathy), sometimes called sprue or coeliac, is an immune reaction to eating gluten, a protein found in wheat, barley, and rye.

If you have celiac disease, eating gluten triggers an immune response in your small intestine. Over time, this reaction damages your small intestine’s lining and prevents absorption of some nutrients (malabsorption). The intestinal damage often causes diarrhea, fatigue, weight loss, bloating and anemia, and can lead to severe complications.

In children, malabsorption can affect growth and development, in addition to the symptoms seen in adults.

There’s no cure for celiac disease — but for most people, following a strict gluten-free diet can help manage symptoms and promote intestinal healing.

From research, I've learned many people react negatively to Gluten but do not have Celiac disease. This condition, known as non-celiac gluten sensitivity, is controversial. Gluten may be problematic for people with irritable bowel syndrome and wheat allergy, and people with schizophrenia, autism and gluten ataxia may benefit from a gluten-free diet.

Which foods are high in gluten?

The most common sources of gluten in the diet are:

  • Wheat

  • Spelt
  • Rye
  • Barley
  • Bread
  • Pasta
  • Cereals
  • Beer
  • Cakes, cookies and pastries

Wheat is also added to all sorts of processed foods. If you want to avoid gluten, start reading food labels.

Gluten-free grains

There are a few grains and seeds that are naturally gluten-free. These include:

  • Corn

  • Rice
  • Quinoa
  • Flax
  • Millet
  • Sorghum
  • Tapioca
  • Buckwheat
  • Arrowroot
  • Amaranth
  • Oats

However, while oats are naturally gluten free, they may be contaminated by it. Therefore, it is safest to only consume oats with a gluten-free label.

As of now, I've been investing in Gluten Free products for almost five months and I've been Dairy Free for over a year. I will still have eggs maybe once or twice a month, with provolone cheese (my favorite). But when I do eat eggs, milk, or cheese I can smell and feel the difference in my body. Also with rice and other grains, after eating gluten-free grains I don't feel the discomfort I once felt when eating nongluten-free grains. 

Furthermore, we all have one life to live and while I am not saying try every health trend out here known to man. It is best that you have information regarding what could be possibly taken place in your body. Live it up, but know what you are doing to your body and what could possibly be going on in it.

If you are up for, try going Gluten Free for a week and share your experience with me.

— Ward

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