Gluten. Why the fuss? – Part 1

Sunday, July 17, 2016

Gluten is a distinct, hard-to-digest protein found in wheat, rye and barley. Sounds harmless, right? These grains have been a staple in mankind’s diet for thousands of years, but unfortunately, it is not the same as it was.

This shift began in 1870, when the modern steam roller revolutionized grain milling. Then, in 1950s and 60s, the “Green Revolution” began. A man named Norman Borlaug was the Father of the movement and was even awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. During this time, Borlaug found a way to alter wheat, which increased its yield in an amazing way. Genetically modifying the wheat caused it to grow faster and store better once made into flour. This advancement credited him with bringing an end to hunger. I wish the story ended there, but this dramatic change just shifted the problems to a different area—health.

Remember...gluten was already a hard-to-digest protein. When wheat’s make-up was altered (genetically modified) the amount of gluten increased substantially. Guess what area of our bodies was/is affected the most? Our digestive system. Scientists are starting to connect modern wheat with all manner of chronic digestive and inflammatory illnesses...hence the gluten-free craze. Gluten-free is not a trend, it is a way to escape major health problems.

There was a point in my life many years ago where my hair was falling out in patches; my energy level was so low (especially around 2 o’clock in the afternoon); my weight was increasing even though I had not changed my diet and was eating relatively healthy. I honestly thought that having kids was the reason for these occurrences. I deemed it as normal but did not want it to be.

It wasn’t until my doctor noticed I had a goiter (enlarged thyroid gland) that I realized something was wrong. It was quite a shock! Living a healthy life (exercising and eating “right”) had been a part of my routine since I was in high school. My confusion and desire to know the underlying cause led me to an amazing doctor in TX, who was able to find the reasoning behind the madness. He did a series of blood tests, which included a complex thyroid panel (including the testing of antibodies). The results showed that I had Hashimoto’s, an auto immune disorder where your own body attacks your thyroid thinking its foreign. Crazy, isn’t it?! I quickly did research on Hashimoto’s and auto immune disorders and found that gluten can have a harmful effect on people’s bodies that deal with any auto-immune disease.

And so, the experiment began...I immediately took gluten out of my diet. What happened in five to seven days was wild. I felt miserable—totally sick like I had the flu (with no fever). My body was so achy and weak. It was experiencing detox symptoms according to my doctor and the research I’d done. By the eighth to ninth day, my energy began to return. That second week I began to experience energy like I hadn’t had in a long time! It was amazing! From that point on, I became gluten-free and have had no regret!

Thankfully, I was able to discover this vital piece of information regarding my health and well-being. I know so many people struggle with symptoms and are maybe even taking medication. Diet plays such an important role in how our bodies function. We need to feed our body what it needs and rid it of what hurts it.

Follow this link below to see if you have 4 or more of any of these symptoms. A gluten-free diet might be able to relieve you and help you to live a healthier life! You’ll never know unless you give it a try!

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