I’m seeing all kinds of posts on social media about gluten intolerance being a fad. I’m being told by all kinds of well-meaning people (see here for more thoughts on well-meaning people) that I should feel like some kind of dumbass for wanting gluten free products. I’m not a scientist, or medical professional. I can only go by how I feel. I have some very real pain from eating gluten. So, I don’t care about the scientific studies. Really, I don’t get why other people have decided it is their duty to be against those of us who are not eating gluten. Does a kitten die every time I eat a gluten-free cookie? Are you in my uterus, and are we sharing nutrients?
There are lots of lifestyle choices out there that are deemed to be fads. One of my Paleo loving friends recently posted this. The Paleo diet, and its father the Atkins Diet, is thought of as a fad, too. So, I find it amusing when pro Paleo people try to give me dietary direction. The Paleo IS a gluten free diet, by the way. I did some research on the diet before writing this. I even considered following it, but then I realized I couldn’t eat most of the things I like.
One of my Facebook friends sent me this via the messaging tool. There was no note or anything, just a link. It felt like some sort of “Stop being silly, and just eat like a normal ‘Murican” virtual intervention. As you can imagine, I took this very seriously and immediately rethought my eating habits. [Insert sarcasm font.]
Both of the anti-gluten free blogs above point out that the FODMAP diet actually works for IBS, but a gluten free diet does not. That actually makes no sense. I have had stomach issues since FIRST GRADE, and I have done some research. I was not merely waiting around for people to post links on Facebook. Shocking, I know. I have done a lot of reading about the low FODMAP diet. I have even followed the FODMAP diet, and it does help a lot.
The FODMAP diet is wheat free and MOSTLY gluten free. If you click the link you will also notice there are a host of other foods on the bad list. Could it be that someone who was eating gluten free was eating the other “bad” foods (like peppers and onions etc.) because they don’t contain gluten? In doing so, this could have skewed the results in the official “gluten free is a fad” scientific studies.
If you have any doubts about gluten causing me extreme stomach issues, please feel free to join me in the bathroom at 3:00 AM after I have eaten pasta, bread, or had gluten slipped to me in some sort of sauce. If I go to a restaurant and ask for a gluten-free menu, and they actually have one, don’t make me feel like an asshole for ordering from it. There is one person who can offer me dietary advice, my gastroenterologist. She knows me inside and out, literally, and she has a little thing called an M.D. after her name.