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Designing a Healthy Gluten-Free Diet

Designing a Healthy Gluten-Free Diet

Amazon.com lists more than 15,000 entries for books on going gluten-free (GF). Clearly GF is a major dietary trend. But before you switch to a GF diet, ask yourself…is gluten-free a smart move if you’re one of the 93-98.5% of folks who can process gluten without problems? And if you do need to go gluten-free (around 1.5% to 7% of North Americans are gluten-sensitive or have Celiac disease) are you short-changing yourself on essential nutrients?

As Dr. Mike explains in his new book This is YOUR Do-Over, an abundance of whole grain options, such as quinoa (not really a grain but it’s lumped into the category nonetheless), amaranth, rice, buckwheat and millet, don’t contain gluten. We encourage everyone to try them because they deliver loads of fiber and heart-lovin’ nutrients! And remember fruits, veggies and lean proteins, like salmon and skinless poultry, are GF -- and packed with the nutrients you need for a happy belly and a younger RealAge.

But if you skip those gluten-free 100% whole grains, fall for highly-processed GF foods (there are lots of them!) and don’t have 7-9 servings of fresh produce daily, going GF can shortchange you on vitamin B12, calcium, iron, zinc and magnesium. And you’re wasting your money! A study found gluten-free products cost 240% more than comparable gluten-containing items. So look online for good deals on gluten-free products that are also free of added sugars, syrups and saturated fat. You’ll improve your digestion and overall health one tasty, healthful bite at a time.

Medically reviewed in January 2019.

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