If you walked into a trendy cafe today, it’s likely you’d see a few letters beside items on the menu; the first being ‘v’ for vegan, and the other ‘gf’ for gluten free.
Gluten-free eating has been in fashion for a while now, with particular thanks to Gwyneth Paltrow.
The protein component found in rye, wheat and barley, it’s found in our favourite carbs such as pasta, bread, breakfast cereals and cake and is something many believe to be the cause of their digestive issues such as pain, bloating and stomach cramps.
For those with coeliac disease – a disgestive condition where the small intestine becomes inflamed and unable to absorb nutrients – this is true, as eating gluten will trigger abdominal pain, indigestion and diarrhoea.
But for those without the condition, just because gluten-free eating is popular, doesn’t mean it’s right for us.
And thanks to new research, scientists are now suggesting that avoiding our favourite pizzas and breakfasts might not be doing us any good.
According to a study in the BMJ, not only is consuming gluten not significantly linked with the risk of coronary heart disease but, by avoiding eaten gluten, we aren’t eating important whole grains which are actually good for our hearts – “which may affect cardiovascular risk”, the study’s authors noted.
“The promotion of gluten-free diets for the purpose of coronary heart disease prevention among asymptomatic people without coeliac disease should not be recommended,” they concluded.
So if you want to look after your heart, pick that delicious, delicious bread back up off your plate – stat.
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