So... lately it seems that "Gluten-Free" is the current buzzword or "fad" from a food industry perspective. For those of us looking to remove or restrict gluten from "modern" wheat products, this seems great, however it's not all silver-lining. Oh, and before I rant, please note that I am not a dietitian (I don't even play one on TV).. I'm just a guy struggling to navigate the mine field of healthy eating and a healthy lifestyle.
Anyway, my wife came across this great article from SCD Lifestyle which you can read here.
I'm afraid that what is happening with the idea of identifying modern gluten as a dietary hazard is that the industry is quick to jump on it as the "culprit" behind the fact that the "Standard American Diet" is wreaking havoc on our health. Michael Pollan does a great job of describing how the industry is so focused on figuring out what the key ingredient is in our diet that is making everyone sick, so that they can eliminate it through more over-processing.
The point that they are missing is that the entire highly-processed, over refined, and unnatural foods that comprise much of American's diets is what is contributing to declining health and obesity. It's not any one single component.
Unfortunately, as the SCD article notes, there are a ton of products being marketed out there now as "gluten-free", and while its great to provide alternatives that eliminate gluten, these products are no better than any other highly processed foods being marketed.
The bottom line continues to be (in my opinion), is that to eat well, the focus needs to continue to be on whole, organic foods (local if possible). The more you know about your food, and the more you recognize it as food, and not a list of 15 ingredients that you can't pronounce, the better off you will be. There are a lot of "diets" out there, such as paleo, SCD, vegan, frugan etc etc... but I think you'll find that regardless, they will point back to this same premise.
It seems to me that with most of the people I know, they are all somewhat dialed into what is wrong with the "food" that is most often found in grocery stores, and many are striving to move away from processed foods and GMO's. However, I often worry that we are in the vast minority... perhaps, but I can't help but feel we are on the brink of a wave of change for the better. But seeing the food industry continue to miss the point is frustrating. I certainly hope I am right, especially after seeing this report that shows that over 50% of us in the U.S. will be obese by 2030.. not cool. And, just for the record, I've been in the obese category most of my life, until taking steps to make permanent lifestyle changes more than a year ago...
Until then, we can continue to cast our votes daily by buying local, organic, whole foods.. staying educated, teaching our children what food is, and what cooking is, and putting our health first.
Ok.. I guess that's my Monday rant... feel free to leave comments whether you agree or disagree :-)
Have a great week!