Do you have a Gluten Sensitivity?
I’m thrilled to co-author a book with my dear friend Rita Romano, Italian Gluten Free Gastronomy – The Art of Selecting, Preparing and Savoring Gluten-Free Meals.
In 2015, Rita and I were discussing how I Love Love Love Italian food. And why wouldn’t I, after living in Italy for 35 years. But I also discovered I have a Gluten Sensitivity. That conversation led to the idea of a Gluten Free cookbook. We were both excited at the idea of wonderful Italian dishes that are gluten free. Yum!
Years earlier, I was sick and no doctor could tell me what was wrong. The attacks of illness were frequent and swift. I had no idea what prompted them nor how to avoid them. In a matter of minutes I would go from feeling perfectly normal to having my body completely covered in welt-sized hives that itched so badly I thought I’d go crazy! I called it the “Incredible Hulk” effect because my eyes, lips, hands, feet and whole body would swell to epic proportions. Most of these attacks lasted anywhere from half an hour to an hour, leaving me feeling weak and debilitated.
Apart from the fact that this problem went undiagnosed for years, it was very, very scary. I had no clue why my body was reacting that way. When I paid closer attention to everything I ingested, I noticed a pattern. Most of the incidents took place after eating, followed shortly thereafter by some form of physical movement such as walking, running, dancing, etc. Sometimes, just a slow, short walk after lunch or dinner would be enough to trigger yet another bout of “whatever it was”.
Yes – It was gluten! Up until then, gluten was something I had little knowledge of, only to find it was basically running and/or ruining my life! The culprit was the cookies, cakes, crackers, pasta, pizza, etc, that I love so much.
Gluten and the idea of a gluten free diet may be new to you too. In simple terms, a gluten-free diet is one that excludes gluten, a family of proteins which is found in wheat, rye, spelt and even barley. Gluten gives the elastic texture of dough. There has been controversy regarding the inclusion of oats in a gluten-free diet. When it comes to a gluten free diet, it provides a lot of health benefits. Although many people move to be gluten-free due to medical conditions like celiac diseases, non-celiac gluten sensitivity, gluten ataxia, etc. Following a gluten-free diet entails paying attention to the ingredients of foods and their contents. If you’re still new to a gluten-free diet, you’re bound to make some mistakes during your learning process.
Gluten Sensitivity And Allergies
If you notice rashes or develop hives or perhaps get a stomachache after eating cereal, pasta, or bread, you might have a gluten allergy, which is a medical condition affecting millions of Americans. If both of your parents have allergies, the chances of you battling the same is pretty high. With a gluten allergy, you will have to be placed on a free gluten-free diet for life. Any lapses or mistakes can be very uncomfortable, depending on your sensitivity. If you have this allergy, an allergist might help review the symptoms and help you manage your allergy.
What Foods Are The Highest In Gluten?
Gluten is very controversial these days. Many health experts say gluten is safe for everyone except those with celiac disease. Others believe that gluten is unsafe for everyone. If you’re wanting and ready to live a gluten-free life, here are the most common sources of gluten you should avoid:
• Cakes, cookies, and pastries.
In other words, to help make sure you can stick to a gluten-free diet, you need to start reading the food labels. Most of these foods contain wheat and can be disastrous if you have a wheat allergy. By paying more attention to food contents or ingredients, you will have nothing to worry about.
3 Well Known Chefs That Prefer A Gluten-Free Diet
1. Chef Frederique Jules, Noglu
Jules established Noglu, an entirely gluten-free establishment for those in New York and Paris who love the savory side of gluten-free cuisine. He has been ranked as one of the top chefs in the world of a gluten-free diet.
2. Executive Chef Mark Ladner, Del Posto
Unlike at Noglu, Chef Mark offers menu items containing gluten; he also has menus with gluten-free delicacies. With that, he can satisfy all kinds of customers. Numerous websites have ranked him as one of the renowned gluten-free chefs in the world.
3. Chef Brian Fernando, 1601 Bar & Kitchen
Last on this list is Chef Brian Fernando. This San Francisco restaurant is known to many as a refreshing spot and an adventurous site for foodies. Despite his passion for traditional dishes of Sri Lanka, he also finds time to create an impressive slate of gluten-free options for his guests.
What do Personal Trainers Think Of Gluten-Free Diets?
Most people who are about to delve into the gluten-free world worry about what personal trainers think. You may have heard that tennis legend, Novak Djokovic attributed most of his success to giving up gluten. Many athletes and active people often wonder if they should kiss bagels goodbye. If you are not suffering from a gluten allergy, being on gluten or gluten-free diet is your choice. There are no substantial studies to know if it impacts on workouts or not.
Types Of Medical Conditions Aggravated By Gluten?
There are several medical conditions that are aggravated by gluten. They include;
• Coeliac diseases,
• Dermatitis herpetiformis
• Gluten ataxia.
There is also non-celiac gluten sensitivity, like a wheat allergy. Since these conditions are triggered by gluten, patients are often advised to stay off foods that contain gluten. Sometimes it calls for a total lifestyle change. In the learning process, patients often make mistakes. It usually happens when they failed to read the label of most processed foods.
How Do You Know If Gluten-Free Is Right For You?
Gluten intolerance is more common than you might have imagined. Millions of Americans are battling it, making them stick to an only gluten-free diet. How then do you know if it is right for you or not? Here is a list of common symptoms or reactions you will experience if you are gluten intolerant.
• Abdominal pain
• Feeling tired
• Skin problems
• Unexpected weight loss
• Iron-deficiency anemia
• Joint and muscle pain
• Leg or arm numbness
• Brain fog
The best way to know if gluten is right for you or not is to visit an allergist. An allergist is a physician trained to diagnose, treat, and manage allergies. By going to an allergist, you will know for sure if gluten is right or wrong for you.
Do You Love Italian Food Too?
Check out my book with Rita Romano. You too can make some delicious, gluten free Italian dishes with these recipes.
“Because Gluten Free Should Be Delicious”