If you have no medical reason to avoid gluten and you still choose to, then there’s a good chance you are a masochist. While else would you choose to pass up on pizza, bagels, croissants, baguettes, cookies, pasta…? Ugh just thinking about all that yummy food breaks my heart.
Seriously though, a 30 day fitness or diet challenge can be a fun way to either build strength, stay active or jump start a fitness/health regimen. I’ve even completed a few 30 day fitness challenges myself. However, a 30 day gluten free challenge is a huge undertaking and the benefits for a non-glutard are not what you may think. Here are seven things you should consider before starting a 30 day gluten free challenge.
- It fosters the belief that all gluten free foods are “good” for you. Let’s be real, a cookie is a cookie, gluten free or not.
- 30 days is really not enough time to fully understand where gluten can be found in order to make informed and healthy dietary decisions.
- It encourages the belief that gluten free is just another diet fad. Celiac is an autoimmune disorder triggered by the consumption of gluten. Gluten free eating is actually a permanent way of life for approximate 3 million Americans! For someone living with Celiac, I can say first hand how frustrating it is to see so much misinformation floating around. If you want to learn more facts about it check out www.beyondceliac.org.
- If you’re taking a 30 day challenge, chances are you are trying to jump-start weight lose. I’m all for people finding their healthiest self, however cutting out gluten may actual cause weight gain, especially if you are relaying on pre-packaged gluten free foods as opposed to foods that are naturally gluten free.
- On the flip side, you may lose weight on a 30 day gluten free challenge only to find that once the 30 day period is over the weight slowly creeps back on as you return to your normal diet.
- Generally speaking, 30 day diet challenges seem to be little more that quick fixes. They don’t necessarily foster a healthy way of looking at food but rather promote the deprivation of specific foods for a specific period of time.
- If you don’t have Celiac or some level of gluten intolerance there is no significant benefit to avoiding gluten.
As a huge proponent of health, fitness and overall wellness, I would never bash someone for wanting to push their limits or try to introduce new healthy habits. However, there are always things to consider before you take on any sort of challenge from dietary considerations to your current health conditions. If you think you may have Celiac or a gluten allergy you should definitely consult a physician.