Oh my goodness you guys, it has been a LONG time between blog posts! I apologise!
I have been hard at work creating my online program, The Healthy Hormone Method! While it has been fantastic, and the women going through the program currently are loving it and smashing their goals, it has also been time consuming.
Truth be told, I am not a writer. I never have been. Give me a book and I will dive into it, but ask me to write something and I will put it off.
All of my writing capacity has been dedicated to The Healthy Hormone Method -- but I have finished writing all 60 lessons and filming nearly 15 hours of content!! Which means I am back to writing blogs...whoo hoo!
I thought we would get reacquainted by talking about gluten.
If you have ever heard me speak or worked with me, you know that I bang on about ditching gluten. It is something that I am a big advocate of eliminating...and not just for me, but for you as well!
Ditching the gluten can help your bowel motions, your gut health, your energy, your mental clarity, your hormones, autoimmune conditions...and even your mood!! Say what?!
Gluten is a protein found in wheat, rye and barley.
It is a two-part sticky protein that contains gliadin and glutenin.
Now, I have heard so many people say that their parents and grandparents ate gluten and had no issue with it. That may be totally true because the gluten they were eating then is not the same gluten you are eating today!
Today’s gluten has been hybridized, which allows it to grow faster and become bug and drought resistant.
Not only that, there are proteins in today’s wheat that weren't in the wheat ÿour parents and grandparents ate. While they only make up about 5%, these proteins are thought to be the cause of the increase in inflammation associated with gluten and also gluten intolerance.
Another issue with today’s gluten is that is has been deaminated, which allows it to be water soluble. The problem with this is that deamination has been shown to trigger an immune response in many people. Not good if you have a hormone or autoimmune issue going on!
Something else to consider is that we are eating far more gluten than ever before. I highly doubt your parents and grandparents were having cereal for breakfast, a sandwich for lunch and pasta for dinner! Oh, and we can't forget the muffins and other baked goods for snacks...Just sayin'!
Alright, let’s talk about what gluten does to the body when you consume it.
Whenever the toast you had for breakfast hits your intestines, transglutaminase breaks the gluten down into gliadin and glutenin.
Now, as things pass through your digestive tract, the immune system in your gut, known as GALT - the gut associated lymphoid tissue - checks to see if anything is harmful.
If you have a gluten intolerance or Coeliac disease , then your GALT system will see gliadin as harmful and release antibodies to attack it.
In Coeliacs, the antibodies also attack the transglutaminase. This is not good because one of translutaminase’s jobs is to hold the micro villi in your gut together. You know, the finger-like projections in your small intestines that absorb your nutrients? Yeah, those things. If they are attacked by these antibodies, then they can break down and get destroyed! Not good, right?!
It decreases nutrient absorption and can lead to a leaky gut -- which is the root of every single autoimmune condition!
But guess what? It’s not just Coeliacs that can have this issue.
If you have a gluten intolerance, the gluten can cause the gut cells to release zonulin. This is a protein that breaks the tight junctions in your gut apart! Yikes! When this happens, leaky gut is a given.
Leaky gut is definitely not something you want as it allows toxins, microbes, undigested food and other things to pass into the bloodstream -- and they aren’t meant to be there!
On top of that, the gliadin attacking antibodies also pass into the bloodstream, giving them access to other body systems and organs that they can then attack! Sounds like a recipe for disaster to me!
It is why gluten intolerance is associated with autoimmune conditions. I have no doubt my many years of bread and pasta eating contributed to the development of my Hashimoto's thyroiditis.
Given what gluten does to the body, I sincerely believe everyone can do better without it.