Gluten free meals may not be the best thing for you

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(March 5, 2015)-  Gluten free has become a trend in dieting, and some feel it’s a healthier way of eating overall. But unless you know you truly have a gluten intolerance (a blood test can tell you) or you have celiac disease, going gluten free may not be the best way to lose weight.

“There have been a lot of studies that say people who go gluten free sometimes gain weight because a lot of these products are processed, they have more sugar, more sodium and more calories than products that do contain gluten,” says registered dietician, Vicki Shanta.

“Half of a gluten free muffin is 200 calories, so you’re getting 400 calories in this muffin, plus a lot of sugar and quite possibly a lot of salt.”

And a gluten free muffin can come with a hefty price: $5.99, in this case.

“You may think it’s healthier, but the calories add up, the sugars add up and quite possibly the sodium.  If you are taking gluten out and customers put other things in to make it taste as good, to give it the consistency and make it appealing, it defeats the purpose,” says Shanta.

Gluten free pasta is another product, customers should consider.

“Both regular and gluten free pasta contain the same amount of calories, but if you really inspect the labels, you’ll have more dietary fiber in the whole grain.  There are six grams of dietary fiber in this product per serving and there’s only one gram in the gluten free pasta.”

Gluten free products are not fortified with iron or folic acid or other nutrients that people need, so they may be missing out on the nutritional value that wheat products do contain.

Presented by American Senior Communities.

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