When it comes to healthy eating, there are a lot of mixed messages out there about what to eat and when. It’s astounding how frequently diet myths get in the way of people achieving their health goals!
We recently sat down with a nutritionist from Pack Health to bust a few of these myths, and are excited to share what we learned. Jennifer Dunn RDN had so much great advice, we decided to make it a series! Last week we busted the myth that fat-free foods are always the healthiest choice. This week, let’s talk about gluten!
Myth: A gluten free diet will help me lose weight.
Fact: Without a medical reason, such as Celiac disease or gluten intolerance, a gluten-free diet isn’t necessarily beneficial.
That being said, there are a few reasons that the myth has momentum.
- Cutting out whole categories of foods may help you lose weight simply because it takes so many choices off the table.
- New research does estimate that up to 25% of people who have psoriasis are also sensitive to gluten, so that may be a reason to try a gluten-free diet.
- A lot of your go-to processed foods also contain gluten, so if you’re swapping these out for fresh and homemade options, there may be benefits to this as well.
If you’re considering going gluten-free for health reasons, Jennifer Dunn RDN has a few tips:
- If you suspect you have trouble with gluten, don’t self-diagnose. Talk to your doctor. It is much more difficult to get a definitive medical diagnosis of celiac disease if one stops eating gluten.
- If you’re goal is to lose weight, you’ll need to reduce the number of calories you take in and increase the amount of physical activity you do each day. When you’re looking at the food you consume, make sure you also consider the nutrients and satiety (how much the food satisfies your hunger). 100 calories of almonds, for example, is more nutritious and filling than a 100 calories of cookies or bread.
- The first step is to create a healthy eating plan that replaces less healthy options with a mix of fruits, veggies, whole grains, protein foods, and low-fat dairy, but you also have to stick to it! Make sure you’ve got a system in place to hold yourself accountable to your goals.
Stay tuned for more mythbusters and pro tips to eat healthier and feel better.
If you’ve got specific concerns related to RA, psoriasis, IBD (Crohns and Colitis), MS, COPD, IPF, Type 2 Diabetes, or Cancer, and want someone who understands what you’re going through to hold you accountable through a combination of encouraging text messages and calls, check out Pack Health – a free resource for health coaching on your schedule.
Pack Health’s programs are fully funded by grants, so don’t bother taking out your credit card, just claim your spot before they run out!