Demystifying Gluten

In the recent years, the war against gluten has gone viral and we have seen an incremental number of people modifying their diets to avoid gluten at any cost. While we know that gluten is a complex protein very hard to digest and non-essential to our health, the drastic response of removing gluten from our diet is possibly treating a symptom and not addressing the root cause of the real problem.

Not that long ago, wheat, the main source of gluten, was harvested only once a year during the fall. In our modern era, wheat has been hybridized and it is harvested 3 times a year. Wheat has become so popular that we have ended up consuming it in every meal, every day throughout our life. Could it be that we have abused its consumption?

An Ayurvedic lifestyle promotes balance in everything we do and eat. Too much of a good thing can be harmful to our body. Overeating wheat will result in fat accumulation, higher glucose levels, and toxicity. Our ancestors used to ferment their vegetables to preserve them through the winter. Little they knew that these fermented veggies release lactobacillus bacteria that break down the hard-to-digest portions of the gluten protein molecule. Recent studies indicate that probiotic supplements not only help us digest complex proteins like gluten but also protect the intestinal wall by disallowing the undigested gluten molecule to penetrate the gut wall.

So, before we blame gluten for all that ails us, we might want to begin by assessing our ability to digest and focus on strengthening our digestion. A good start is avoiding processed foods and sugars from our diet. A wholesome diet based on organic fruits and vegetables, grains, lean proteins, nuts, herbs and spices is the foundation of a good digestion.

If you experience gluten intolerance or any digestive ailment, I recommend scheduling a consultation for a personalized assessment to improve your health through the gentle Ayurvedic wisdom.