Gluten is a storage protein found in many grains, including wheat, barley and rye. It’s commonly found in foods such as bread, pasta, pizza and most baked treats. A gluten-free diet eliminates gluten-containing grains.
No, gluten is only unsafe and causes discomfort for those with coeliac disease, gluten sensitivity or wheat allergy. In saying this, gluten-free diets are also popular among those who haven’t been diagnosed with a gluten-related medical condition.
Don’t worry – intolerance to gluten is fairly common, 1 in 10 people in the UK now avoid gluten! Coeliac disease is the most severe form of intolerance and affects around 1% of the population. There are many symptoms of gluten intolerance so if you’re not feeling quite right, speak to a doctor. Common symptoms include bloating, feeling tired, or experiencing stomach problems and abdominal pain.
Although a gluten-free diet may initially feel restrictive, there are many foods that can be enjoyed including most dairy products, fruits and vegetables, meat/fish, potatoes and rice. There are also many gluten-free alternative products widely available so you can still cook your favourite meals without suffering the consequences!
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