From traditional breads to modern-day pizza, wheat and grain-based foods have been all around us. Wheat, in particular, has been one of the basic staple foods in highly populous countries like India. Consequently, eliminating wheat from the routine diet seems wholly unreasonable.
Over the years, wheat has made significant inroads into the fast-food industry on the back of ease-of-use and convenient factors. Wheat-containing foods are also prevalent throughout the convenience food market.
However, an increasing number of people around the world are switching to wheat-free diets and for good reason. In recent times, high popularity of wheat-free diets worked in tandem with improvements in diagnosis of celiac disease which is characterized by gluten intolerance.
Why You Should Stop Including Wheat in Your Diet
Despite the ‘national staple food’ quotient, the elimination of wheat from regular diet is primarily due to medical necessity. Because of its high-gluten content, those who are suffering from celiac disease need to stay away from it and become life-long dependent on a gluten-free diet. It causes destruction of small intestine mucosa accompanied by a wide spectrum of clinical symptoms.
A growing number of dietary-conscious consumers becoming more aware of healthy-eating habits and disadvantages of wheat are blaming the grain for the onset of several health issues. In addition to the dramatic rise of celiac-rise disease, wheat is considered to be associated with obesity, cardiovascular diseases, and a host of digestive problems.
Processed wheat is not recommended for those who are on a strict weight loss diet, due to the abundance of sugar and carbohydrates. These components have a negative effect on the body, raising blood sugar levels and leading to weight gain. Furthermore, wheat is blamed for diabetes, low absorption of important minerals, and destruction of intestines.
High Glycemic Index of Wheat to Influence Dietary Change
Wheat along with gluten is a growing concern and it’s starting to have a significant impact on human health. A main disadvantage of wheat and its products swirling around a health-conscious population is the high glycemic index which releases glucose rapidly and leads to spikes in blood sugar level.
Overdoing wheat can also trigger other effects such as high visceral fat and atherosclerotic plaque that aren’t immediately noticeable. Moreover, the expediency of fast-food options that contain wheat has resulted in several generations of increased obesity, heart disease, diabetes, and even cancer.
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Another disadvantage of wheat products, particularly bread, is their calorie count. Compared to other grains and seeds, wheat-based bread is high in calories and carbs and relatively low in protein and other essential nutrients.
Additionally, these products may also be higher in added sugar which can facilitate diseases such as diabetes. Other substances such as lectins and phytic acid in wheat can also be harmful when consumed in excess.
Apart from obesity, lectins may facilitate the symptoms of metabolic syndrome and contribute to insulin resistance and autoimmune diseases. On the other hand, phytates, when combined with gluten, can make it difficult for the body to absorb nutrients.
Zero-Wheat Flour is Here to Stay
Whether it’s for a medical condition or health reasons, more people are going gluten-free. As a result, natural food companies are focusing on capitalizing on the trend. Today, the production of wheat-free flour represents a vast part of the food industry. Growing consumer inclination towards healthy baked foods is further expected to have a positive impact on the sales of wheat-free flour.