The ‘Disease Du Jour’

So, what exactly is ‘a celiac’? Well, for starters, they aren’t a tribe. She/He isn’t ‘a celiac’. Celiac disease is a genetic disorder that is linked to gluten intolerance. It’s surprising to think that gluten intolerance has been around forever but everyone has just recently been wrapped up in the gluten-free craze. So what exactly is gluten and how does it affect us?

Gluten is a protein found in flour (types wheat, rye, and bulgar), that traps air during baking and gives foods their crumbly texture. People with celiac disease have an autoimmune response to this protein and are not able to digest it. This is the reason behind stomach pains that occur when gluten is ingested. For those who do not have celiac and want to maintain a gluten-free diet, it is good to know that it is not necessarily healthier. Unless you have celiac disease, there is not really any reason that you would need to ‘go gluten-free’.

People who do have celiac disease can control it by limiting the amount of gluten in their diet. To do this, stay away from products containing wheat, rye, and bulgar flour. This includes bread products, crackers, pasta, and beer (womp). There is a chance of ‘contamination’ in oats and certain soy products. It is also good to note that gluten is added as a stabilizing agent to some products you wouldn’t expect, such as ice cream and ketchup. Even though it is at much smaller quantity than in other products, gluten is also present in pastries.

Amy’s brand products  are gluten free and they aren’t half bad! I would recommend trying some of these if you are gluten intolerant.

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