There’s been a lot of buzz around the bread aisle lately, and we’re not talking about the age-old dilemma of white vs. wheat. Shoppers today are faced with yet another choice to ponder: do I need to give up gluten?

The choice isn’t limited to sandwich lovers. Gluten, the natural protein found in wheat and cereal grains seems to be in everything, from bread, pasta, and baked goods to lipstick, playdough and vitamins. But despite its heavy presence in products and foods, there’s just as much buzz about avoiding gluten. And like all hot health topics, the rumor mill is peppered with myths and misconceptions that just don’t match the science.

If you have celiac disease or a gluten intolerance, separating fact from fiction is extremely important. But even if you’ve never had a problem with the protein, knowing the facts about gluten can help you make more informed eating choices and support others who have to live gluten-free. Let’s separate the wheat from the chaff and get down to the truth about gluten.

Myth 1: Everyone should avoid gluten.

Truth: Not necessarily. Gluten is harmless to most people. Unless you have celiac disease, a wheat allergy, or non-celiac gluten sensitivity, there’s no scientific evidence to suggest you should shy away from it. In fact, gluten-rich foods often contain essential nutrients like fiber, iron, and B vitamins. If you can eat gluten without pain or problems, there’s no reason to stop doing so.

Myth 2: A gluten-free diet guarantees weight loss.

Truth: Gluten-free is not a magic weight loss ticket. Although some people might lose weight when they go gluten-free, it’s often because they start eating less processed food, not because gluten itself causes weight gain. On the flip side, many gluten-free alternatives are high in added sugar and fat, so they can actually lead to weight gain if you’re not careful.

Myth 3: Celiac Disease is a food allergy.

Truth: Celiac Disease is an autoimmune disorder where the body responds to gluten by producing antibodies that attack and damage the lining of the small intestines. It is a chronic and incurable disease. A wheat allergy is a true food allergy that can be treated with immunotherapy like our sublingual allergy drops.

Myth 4: Gluten-free equals healthy.

Truth: Not always. While it’s true that a gluten-free diet is necessary for those with specific health conditions, it doesn’t automatically mean it’s healthier for everyone else. In fact, many health experts caution against going gluten-free unless your condition requires it. Many gluten-free products are highly processed and lack key nutrients like fiber and iron, which can lead to constipation, malnutrition, and other health conditions.

Myth 5: If you feel better after going gluten-free, you must be gluten intolerant.

Truth: Not so fast. Self-diagnosing can be tricky. If you feel better after cutting gluten, it might be because you’re eating fewer processed foods or more fruits and veggies. If you suspect you’re gluten intolerant, the best course of action is to see a healthcare professional for an accurate diagnosis. And don’t stop eating gluten before you see your doctor, as this can interfere with your test results.

Myth 6: Gluten-free food is tasteless.

Truth: Absolutely not! With the rising awareness and dietary adaptations, there are so many delicious gluten-free options available. From brownies to bread to pasta, you can find a gluten-free version of nearly anything your heart (or stomach) desires. It’s all about experimenting and finding the flavors you love.

The facts are in and show that gluten gets the short end of the stalk. If you don’t have celiac disease or a diagnosed gluten sensitivity, cutting gluten out of your diet isn’t worth the challenge. If you have a wheat allergy, our sublingual allergy drops can provide lasting relief with proven results and a painless process. Contact us today to learn more.