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The gluten free food industry is growing rapidly as more and
more consumers are choosing to purchase gluten free options. The global retail
market has grown from $1.7 billion in 2011 to $3.5 billion in 2016 and is
forecast to grow to $4.7 billion by 2020. This is according to Euromonitor, a
consumer data group. The data from South Africa is not as available but from
observation there appear to be a growing number of gluten free options
available to South African shoppers.
Many people feel confused and unsure of whether to completely exclude
gluten from their diets. It is important to note that a feeling of bloating,
indigestion and tiredness may not be indicative of gluten sensitivity but may
be due to the consumption of a poor diet that is too high in protein, refined
flours (breads) and consequently lacks adequate fibre. These reported symptoms
often disappear when wholegrains, fresh fruit and vegetables are included into
the diet. The best advice would be to visit a registered Dietitian who can
assess your diet and assist you in removing gluten containing foods from your
diet, if it is specifically indicated based on your medical and diet history.
Gluten free alternatives are often very expensive because they use less
mainstream ingredients that are often expensive and shoppers who are choosing
these products without sufficient reason might find their pockets hurting due
to the price! These gluten free products can also be processed, very refined
and a poor source of fibre and other essential nutrients such as vitamins and
minerals. They may also contain a large amount of sugar and are not necessarily
a healthier option just because they don’t contain gluten.
The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal
advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.