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Non Celiac Going Gluten-free
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I do not have Celias Disease however I have a few friends that have gone on a wheat/gluten free diet for many reasons. I have been trying it for a few weeks and have noticed I am less tired, have lost several pounds, and am able to concentrate much better. Are there any negative/positive reasons I should or should not cut out wheat free foods like paste, bread, beer, etc (other than reducing carbs and empty calories)? Is there any health benefit at all?

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When non-Celiac people go on a glutenfree diet I look at it the same way as people who do not eat meat. It's a lifestyle change and if you want to do that then go right ahead! As long as you eat good foods and make sure you're gertting all you need then it is fine to make the choice to be gluten-free.

The only thing you will have to watch out for is that when you re-introduce gluten into yourself after awile off it you will get sick or feel discomfort. That is the same as if you cut out all acid or all vegetables and then re-introduced them.

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Going gluten-free doesn't mean - in theory - that you're eliminating a major food group and depriving yourself of nutrients, so no, there's no particular health concern there. In practice, if you rely on packaged gluten-free products to replace a lot of wheat based items in your diet, you might actually find a problem with some nutrients. A lot of wheat based items that are common in our diet are fortified - particularly with folic acid. The gluten-free counterparts do NOT have this fortification, most of the time. A couple of studies (you can find them on pubmed) have shown the potential for deficiencies in unbalanced gluten-free diets, in part, due to this lack of fortification. Of course, that's not an argument against the gluten-free diet - it's an argument against unbalanced diets, and I'd imagine that if you're going gluten-free voluntarily, you're aware enough of your diet to avoid it being unbalanced! :)

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do not have Celias Disease however I have a few friends that have gone on a wheat/gluten free diet for many reasons. I have been trying it for a few weeks and have noticed I am less tired, have lost several pounds, and am able to concentrate much better. Are there any negative/positive reasons I should or should not cut out wheat free foods like paste, bread, beer, etc (other than reducing carbs and empty calories)? Is there any health benefit at all?

Tremendous health benefits in my opinion-- wheat is not very good for people in general--it's hard to digest, even for people without celiac disease. Additionally, giving up wheat means giving up many processed foods with all those chemicals and artificial ingredients that also aren't good for anyone's body. It will not hurt you to cut gluten out of your diet and the health benefits are great. The only negative is dietary restriction, but if you're not celiac, then you can definitely go off the diet if you're on vacation or something--so it's fine.

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As celiac3270 said, wheat is hard to digest even for people who do not have celiac. It would probably make you feel better in general by getting off of the gluten. The only thing would be if you are off of it and then go on a vacation or something and decide to get on it again it may not settle well. Your body would be so used to not having that then you might start not feeling well.

There are so many unhealthy foods and wheat is over used. It's pretty sad that certain countries won't accept our food because they say it is too unhealthy.

And if you have noticed a difference maybe in fact you did possibly have an allergy to wheat but not a noticable one to make you feel terrible. I think more people are allergic to some of these foods and don't even know it.

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Thanks for all the feedback. Other than Folic Acid are their other vitamins or alternative ways to get those nutrients with out Wheat and Gluten?

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The gluten-free diet isn't the reason for us not getting enough nutrients. The main problem is that since gluten wreaked havoc on our intestines, our bodies were not absorbing the vitamins and in some cases, still don't (this applying to celiacs who are still healing). You should be able to get the same vitamins on the gluten-free diet, possibly more since gluten-free food is typically more healthy than the processed foods I, and many here, might have eaten in the past, which contains little or no nutritional value beyond calories and fats. All the same, it is good to take a multi vitamin--really, everyone should. Centrum, I have heard is gluten-free, and you could probably find more gluten-free vitamins...found it:

Glutenfreedrugs.com might have something on vitamins, but I'm not sure...

Here's the celiac.com gluten-free medicines list...centrum is on here--call the company, of course, just to be sure.

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I regularly take Centrum as a general supplement multivitamin, and make sure I keep to a balanced diet. Other than that, as others have said, a gluten-free diet is actually very healthy, as you tend to cut out a lot of unhealthy processed foods at the same time, and substitute lots of fresh fruits and vegetables and whole grains. If you have a Trader Joe's nearby, it's heaven! My wife does not have celiac disease, but she shares my diet, and has said she feels much healthier and energetic as a result.

An aside, something that my wife and I have both discovered recently, is that we were both B12 deficient. (Grooves on the fingernails, missing half-moons on one or more fingers, starting from the pinky, confirmed by bloodwork.) Of course, this could be unrelated. In my case, it might be linked to celiac disease, in her case, could be another malabsorption condition. Apparently it strikes about 40% of the population. We both take sublingual B12 supplements, and it's reversed the process.

Cheers,

-Patrick

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So it's true that nobody here has a problem with the idea of a non-celiac going gluten free?!

I don't have celiac disease, that I know of, (never been tested, but don't particularly suspect it) and have very seriously wanted to be on a gluten free diet since about 1998. But I feared that it would be morally wrong to undertake such an unusual diet, without medical cause. I thought that if people with celiac disease ran into me and knew of it, that I could expect venom (and that I would fully deserve it). ;)

One of my friends has celiac and watching somebody else on a gluten free diet that I wanted, but thought I had no moral right to was extremely hard. So I ended up going gluten free in September of 2004. I was certain that I was doing something horribly immoral, that my friend would want nothing more to do with me if he knew of it, and that I was a horrible person. :D

I couldn't imagine that there were any other gluten free nonceliacs in the world, save Dana Korn a few other relatives like her. Now it turns out, that half the people on this web believe the "wheat isn't good for anyone" school of thought.

Of course the diet does make me feel HUGELY better, which seems as good a reason as any to stop feeling guilty about the whole thing. ;)

I could have been rational sooner and noticed that the boom in gluten free products probably isn't being driven by the few celiacs who actually are diagnosed alone, and that vegetarians were considered just as odd, not too long ago.

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So it's true that nobody here has a problem with the idea of a non-celiac going gluten free?!

Of course the diet does make me feel HUGELY better, which seems as good a reason as any to stop feeling guilty about the whole thing. ;)

To me it doesn't matter about medical tests...your body can tell you more then that.

Definitely don't feel bad going gluten free...you feel better which is great and it probably has been extremely good for you. There are people on here that are self diagnosed and know they have problems with gluten.

Welcome to the board :D

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So it's true that nobody here has a problem with the idea of a non-celiac going gluten free?!

I don't have celiac disease, that I know of, (never been tested, but don't particularly suspect it) and have very seriously wanted to be on a gluten free diet since about 1998. But I feared that it would be morally wrong to undertake such an unusual diet, without medical cause. I thought that if people with celiac disease ran into me and knew of it, that I could expect venom (and that I would fully deserve it). ;)

Morally, I'm a utiliarian egoist, so I would think it would be immoral for you to NOT go gluten-free if you really felt that you should - regardless of have celiac disease or not - and that it wouldn't hurt anyone around you. :-)

We all have to make the best decision for ourselves in our lives - for our bodies, our minds. And only you know yourself best!

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I suppose feeling guilty or that I was doing something immoral was probably not terribly rational. But it's amazing how some things can just reinforce themselves.

One thing I do run into is the difficulty in explaining this, when I don't have a medical cause to rely on. I don't feel comfortable with lying and telling people that I have "gluten intolerance" when I can't document any such condition.

Yes. I do feel tremendously healthier this way. But if I felt better on a diet that ruthlessly cut out all refined sugars, would that automatically prove I was "sugar intolerant"? Not necessarily. If that school of thought that claims wheat and/or gluten are innately unhealthy is true, then that could be the explanation right there.

I made an estimate that over 95% of the calories I consumed during my college years came from wheat, and for virtually all my life it has been well over 50%. If wheat is really unhealthy as some say, then that could be like the change of any horribly unhealthy diet!!

But what to tell people? "I don't eat wheat.", "I feel healthier without it." I've tried "I don't eat wheat." a few times in contexts where people don't know me.

Since I have a sulfite allergy and A LOT of problems where food additives, it is often easy enough for me to look at what goes into a dish and then say no without question. And I do have to look pretty carefully anyway, so most friends have just accepted that I know my own problem better than they do and don't push it.

If I ever get a boyfriend again or get married, I probably will have to do some explaining.

Another thing, is that I tend to stay away from gluten free books that deal heavily with emotional issues. Particularly Jax Peters Lowell. I can understand why some people would really like her writing-inaccuracies about specific food items aside-but for me her advice on the emotional issues, is about as irrelevant as it gets. Advice by Carol Fenster or Danna Korn is a bit more palatable.

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I think that if anyone has any issues with anything *you* are eating, or any way of eating, as long as it isn't people or your cat or something like that, they have no business saying anything. Period.

It may not be in the Constitution but I tend to take the part about "the pursuit of happiness" (yeah, that's the Declaration of Independance, not the Constitution) very seriously and you can't be completely happy if you feel crummy. Even if you don't have a documented medical condition requiring a special diet, so what? So far I have several things I can't eat, but only the gluten part is somewhat documented at this point. I admit sometimes I feel sheepish asserting myself (which I know I shouldn't) but there is nothing "morally" wrong with *not* eating something. :D

It seems the only "moral" issues are with eating something, not with not eating something. :)

Anyway, welcome (I know, I'm a couple of months late) and enjoy (if you're still here).

Stephanie

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I'm of the opinion that wheat/gluten isn't good for anybody. I believe it is one of the primary reasons that our "advanced society" is over run with health problems like obesity, cancer, depression, and the like, and also why SO MANY people appear to have Irritable Bowels and Upset tummies, why products like Pepto Bismol have silly commercials that play all over the airways and people can't get through a meal without a TUMS or Zantac... Of course another part of the problem is "fast food" and fat and grease and all of the processed crap that is out there, but the most prevalent additive in the majority of foods is wheat. Why is that? It's CHEAP.The wheat farmers and some "experts" somewhere got together and tried to say that wheat is healthy, particular whole wheat. It's NOT. I'm sick of the lies and the misinformation being handed to the consumers of the world, it's literally making us all ill.

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You know, those ads make me crazy! Esp. the pepto bismol one where there's a person who has heartburn, a person who has diahrrea, a person who has gas, etc etc etc. Like it's cool to have these problems, which one are *you*, while they all do some kind of dance.

And the pepcid and zantac bits, the RV driving around the country so they can distribute their drugs...

Is there any wonder everyone is sick? I mean, you almost feel you should take this stuff just to see if you'll feel better. And it's just another drug, chemical, etc, that actually, in the end (no pun) makes your digestion even worse!

OK... rant over... hit a nerve there.

Stephanie

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I find it intresting that you think its a moral issue weather or not to go gluten-free. I am not at all clear how it is? The only time I hear of diets having morality are typicaly from Vegitiairins who preach in your face that eating meat is moraly wrong. Any other time, diet is just a choice, some times forced by an allergy/etc, some times just a choice. Tieing up morality into it just seems very odd to me. I guess I am just niave about these things, but if some one said to me "Hear eat this" and I did not want to, I would just say "No thanks" and move on. :)

If your looking for a convient excuse to use, tell the truth, Wheat makes you feel sick (which you basicly said in your post, unless I read it wrong) so you aviod it.

My wife has a deadly nut allergy, so I am very used to telling ppl that we wont eat thier food if they can not garrentee the nut contents. No one has ever questioned me on it, or given me a hard time about it. Now because of my son, I just add gluten to the list to tell ppl to keep in thier own dang bodies. :)

As ofr you orginal question, if you want to go gluten-free, the reason does not matter, just do it. Its your body and health, your call. No one elses (uless your male and get married, then its your wife's call LOL!!!)

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I have chosen not to eat soy. I don't care if anyone else has a problem with that. That would be their problem, not mine.

Make sure you are getting a balanced diet, whatever you decide.

Laura

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I have chosen not to eat soy. I don't care if anyone else has a problem with that. That would be their problem, not mine.

Make sure you are getting a balanced diet, whatever you decide.

Laura

Exactly :D

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I think just for fun, I'm going to throw a spanner into the discussion.

Why, when we are so passionate about someone telling us that we should eat gluten containing foods, that we insist on telling someone who feels perfectly healthy and fit, that whole grains, including wheat is "not good" for them? :rolleyes:

I'm finding that a bit odd.

Yes .. gluten is terrible for us and makes us very ill.

But ... who are we to say that it doesn't work for some people? After all ... we are not the same in personality, or digestive systems. My husband, who eats gluten containing foods each and every day of his life, has never been ill, except for the odd cold and injury. Should I be telling him that gluten isn't good for him? After all, he is certainly healthier than I have ever been?

Just my thoughts on the subject ;)

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Because our digestive systems were not made to digest wheat and we cannot fully digest it as we do with rice, corn, etc. And that's not just celiacs--everyone. We went something like 10,000 years without wheat and then it was introduced to our diet. It's not good for anyone, celiac or not, though it obviously causes more problems in us than in non-celiacs.

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I find it intresting that you think its a moral issue weather or not to go gluten-free. I am not at all clear how it is? The only time I hear of diets having morality are typicaly from Vegitiairins who preach in your face that eating meat is moraly wrong.>

I suppose it was more the "How dare you turn down good food when children are starving in Sudan?!" angle more so than anything else. I also felt guilty since rice requires more water to grow than wheat. (Even if millet and potatoes need less, while corn, sorghum, and tapioca are about the same.) I was afraid that eating more rice would mean using up more water.

I was also afraid that it would end up needlessly burdening friends and family, and/or that it would be seen as pretending to have a disease that I don't really have. Or that it would just come across as obnoxious and high maintainence and such.

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[think just for fun, I'm going to throw a spanner into the discussion.

Why, when we are so passionate about someone telling us that we should eat gluten containing foods, that we insist on telling someone who feels perfectly healthy and fit, that whole grains, including wheat is "not good" for them?

I'm finding that a bit odd.]

I don't!

I wish somebody had told me that wheat is just plain unhealthy YEARS AGO. And preferably presented it in a way that didn't mean one had to take up an "Atkins" style diet or something!

I can't see why anybody in their right mind, would every want to eat wheat, once they had actually tried the gluten-free diet. My feeling is that if you try it, you'll neve want to go back. And I can't understand how anyone could see it any other way!

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[quotethink just for fun, I'm going to throw a spanner into the discussion.

Why, when we are so passionate about someone telling us that we should eat gluten containing foods, that we insist on telling someone who feels perfectly healthy and fit, that whole grains, including wheat is "not good" for them?

I'm finding that a bit odd]

I don't!

I wish somebody had told me that wheat is just plain unhealthy YEARS AGO. And preferably presented it in a way that didn't mean one had to take up an "Atkins" style diet or something!

I can't see why anybody in their right mind, would every want to eat wheat, once they had actually tried the gluten-free diet. My feeling is that if you try it, you'll neve want to go back. And I can't understand how anyone could see it any other way!

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Hello. I am reading this forum and planning to go gluten free. I do not have celiac disease. In this discussion, the question of why eating that way.... A woman I met said, "and if people don't have celiac disease, I think it's a healthier way to eat anyway." her comment and several like it have spurred me to study and try to do this. I want to be healthier and less tired, etc. To enjoy my grandkids more, etc. Thanks, all, for this great support.

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