We have seen celebrity after celebrity going gluten free for the purposes of losing weight recently and it’s driving a lot of us who need to keep to a strict gluten free diet for serious medical reasons pretty nuts!

For this reason it’s nice to get back up from researchers that there really is no evidence that a gluten free diet would benefit the general population who don’t suffer from health issues related to eating gluten or wheat.

Arizona State University professor Dr. Glenn Gaesser is an exercise physiologist and advisory board chairman of Grain Foods Foundation. He says that there is no evidence at all that a gluten free diet is effective for weight loss and it may even lead to weight gain as a result of eating gluten free equivalents to gluten containing foods as many of these contain more sugar and saturated fat.

“While the gluten free diet is an important medical treatment for people with celiac disease and gluten sensitivity, far too many Americans are following the diet for reasons that simply do not make sense.” 

A packaged Facts survey which was carried out in 2010 found that only 8-12% of consumers buying gluten free products were buying them because they had to as a result of themselves or someone in their household being unable to eat gluten or wheat. Worryingly 46% of consumers questioned in this survey were buying these products are they perceived them are healthier whilst another 30% were buying them for weight management reasons.

Despite these figures, there is not evidence that a gluten free diet is healthier than a ‘normal’ diet or that it will help with weight loss.

“Even though it has been endorsed by celebrities for weight loss, let’s face it – they are not experts on nutrition and health. It’s time to listen to the science.” says Gaesser.



Post authored by The Gluten Free Traveller.