by Melissa Diane Smith
The gluten-free diet is one of the most talked-about and followed diets these days for good reason: It’s the nutritional answer for the growing number of people who learn they are gluten intolerant. However, few people realize it, but eating gluten free can harm health in other ways when we focus only on “gluten-free” and end up eating a gluten-free version of the Standard American Diet that leads to ill health. Many people are doing that, unknowingly making mistakes with their diet that lead to weight gain, elevated blood sugar, heart disease risk factors, new allergies, immune system problems, and more.
I will address these issues and the little-covered topic, “It’s Gluten Free but Is It Healthy?” at the Southern Arizona Celiac Support (SACS) general meeting on Saturday, January 14, 2012, at 10:00 a.m. In my presentation, I’ll explain the most common mistakes people make with the gluten-free diet that lead to health problems and cover key food concepts that promote better health. My presentation will take place at Pima Community College, 4905 E. Broadway Blvd., and will be immediately followed by book signings of Going Against the Grain and my follow-up book Gluten Free Throughout the Year.
As a long-time SACS member, I am really pleased to be addressing the Tucson celiac support group again – and on such an important topic. From my experience counseling clients, I have found that most people who eat gluten free haven’t learned certain important aspects of nutrition and end up unknowingly making nutritional mistakes that set them up for new health problems. In my presentation, I will synthesize information I have written about in my books Going Against the Grain, Gluten Free Throughout the Year, Syndrome X, and User’s Guide to Preventing & Reversing Diabetes Naturally and also in my articles and Go Gluten Free column in Better Nutrition magazine, and put the information in the simplest possible terms to help gluten-free eaters improve their health.
If you’re one of many who have gone gluten free and felt better at first, but over time have gained weight or developed new health problems – or if you simply want to do everything you can to prevent new chronic illnesses from developing – I hope to see you in the audience at my presentation at the January 14th SACS general meeting. I think it’s a perfect way to get 2012 off to a healthy start.