bread If you're planning on having friends and family over to celebrate the Fourth of July, you might want to consider having some gluten-free buns for those hamburgers and hot dogs. Maybe a gluten-free pie or cookies to boot. Because more now than ever before, people are experimenting with -- or committing to -- a gluten-free diet, whether or not they've been diagnosed with celiac disease. Going gluten-free may be the only thing that has helped them address certain G.I., autoimmune, or hormonal issues, but some experts are still hyper-critical, skeptical, and certain gluten sensitivity is rare and claiming you suffer from it is a fad.

Now, not only are they saying people aren't to be trusted to eat a well-rounded, nutritious, and gluten-free diet, but researchers say gluten sensitivity isn't triggered by gluten at all.

University of Guttenberg researchers think sensitivity's actually triggered by a specific protein called Adenosine Triphosphate Amylase that naturally repels insects and is found in greater amounts in "high-output" wheat. Industrial farms have increasingly been growing protein-rich crops to bump up their output, a trend that could explain the growth in gluten sensitivity. 

Oookay. Even if Adenosine Triphosphane Amylase is actually to blame, it's still in wheat products, and why shouldn't people suffering side effects from it cut those foods out?

Further, the argument that a gluten-free diet is nutrient-deficient -- low in fiber, iron, folate, niacin, thiamine, riboflavin, calcium, vitamin B12, phosphorus, and zinc -- doesn't hold up either. If you're eating real food that naturally happens to be gluten-free -- like sweet potatoes, quinoa, brown and wild rice, etc. -- and not relying on the kinds of GF foods that are just made to be substitutes for regular crap foods, you should be fiiiiiine!

Unfortunately, all docs can do right now is test for celiac disease. Confirming low-level sensitivity isn't possible, so people have no choice but to figure that out on their own with an elimination diet (preferably after you've had the test for celiac). And if they feel better eliminating the gluten or the ATA or wheat or whatever it is they've deduced is causing unpleasant side effects, more power to them.

Do you think going gluten-free -- due to sensitivity and not celiac -- is just a fad or there's merit to it?