Should you be gluten-free?

With all the fuss about gluten-free it can be quite overwhelming to understand right from wrong.  First, it is important to know what gluten actually is! Gluten is a yellowish-gray, powdery mixture of plant proteins occurring in cereal grains such as wheat, rye, and barley. It’s sticky-like texture acts as a glue, holding foods together.  It is used in flours as an adhesive to make baking or cooking easier. Barley and wheat gluten are also used as the base of beer to provide it with the flavor and depth. 

Although these grains, or gluten, have been around for years, people weren’t always “allergic” to them. It is important to understand that these crops used to be abundant and very healthy for us to consume. In fact, in some countries, it was there only source of food and provided many families with inexpensive nourishment. Over time as wheat began to be mass produced, as everything else has become in America, the farmers had to spray and inject crops with chemicals to keep up. Along with the crops being sprayed, changes to the way that bread and baked goods are made has changed. Water, flour, and salt were the only ingredients in bread back in the day. Investigate for yourself and turn over your bread at home and read the label. Chances are you won't even know what half of the ingredients are. Mixing all of these preservatives together with the wheat, whether it has been farmed properly or not, is almost impossible to digest. This would put it under the category of genetically modified foods, and even people without an actual gluten allergy, or Celiac, can have a reaction.  

Typically, becoming bloated or having a stomach ache is the most common symptom of a gluten allergy. However, sensitivities can show up many other ways. Below is a list of symptoms that have been tested as the highest forms that a gluten allergy comes through the body. If you are experiencing one or more of these issues, I would highly consider reading on to see how to proceed with elimination.

  • Anemia

  • Psoriasis, or eczema

  • Mouth sores

  • Dental disorders

  • Tingling or numbness in hands/feet

  • Mucus in stool

  • Diarrhea

  • Bloating

  • Constipation

  • Nauseous after eating

  • Muscle cramps

  • Arthritis

  • Brain fog

  • Always tired or hungover feeling

  • Joint pain

  • ADD or ADHD

  • Anxiety

  • Depression

  • Weight loss or gain

  • Acne (face or body)

  • Allergies

If you are reading on, then I'm guessing you had one or more of these symptoms. From here, there are a few steps you can take moving forward.

You can get a food sensitivity blood test.

I perform one for my clients through the company KBMO Diagnostics. It's a simple finger prick test and the results are back in 2 weeks. You can book your Initial Session plus FIT Test here. The KBMO test checks 22 foods for sensitivities. You do not need to be in the State of Michigan to be my client. I can drop ship the test and Skype for your appt.

You can also try an elimination diet.

There are a ton of different ways to try that, but I have a few simple steps listed below that you can follow to see how you feel. 

Step 1

Eliminate all wheat, flour, and gluten containing products for 4 weeks. This includes other items besides flour and cereals. Check the label or ask questions. 

Step 2

Journal how you feel on a daily basis. Note, you may start to feel a little worse for the first few days. This is just the wheat addiction leaving your body. It may be best to start over a weekend so you can get plenty of rest for your body to eliminate properly. 

Step 3

Stick with whole foods, fruits, and veggies. If you reach for the same old snacks but just gluten-free it is not helping the cause. Many of those products sneak in corn or potato starch which can wreak havoc the same way on the body, not to mention they have the same caloric value.

Step 4

On the last day of the 30 days, choose one meal to have some wheat. Don’t overindulge, but maybe have some whole grain pasta for dinner or bread on a sandwich for lunch.

Step 5

Continue to journal through throughout the day and the next couple days. How are you feeling? Did your symptoms come back? Did you feel fine? Did new symptoms come about?

It is also important to know what happens to your body when you eat gluten?

Upon consumption, those with a sensitivity experience a deterioration, or flattening, of the villi in your small intestine. Villi are hair-like projections that help to absorb vitamins and nutrients to nourish our bodies and sustain energy for our everyday activities. Malabsorption can occur when these villi start to flatten from the reoccurring consumption and as a result your body will experience one or more of the symptoms listed above. The more you experience these symptoms the more your body will start to attack itself, as it cannot keep up with the deterioration. This can lead to more serious issues like some of these auto-immune diseases and preventative diseases listed below.

  • Chrohns

  • Ulcerative Colitis

  • Sebo (small intestine bacterial overgrowth)

  • Candida (yeast overgrowth)

  • Infertility

  • Multiple Sclerosis

  • Chronic Fatigue

  • Irritable Bowel Syndrome

Listen to your body and what it is trying to tell you. If you do in fact have a sensitivity, not only does it make you feel bad in the moment, but overtime can really break down your body. Take care and nourish your body. Heal the damage that has resulted over the years.

It is also important that when embarking on a new lifestyle that you do have some professional help. You want to make sure that you are making the right choices and feeding your body enough vitamins and nutrients. 

When I went gluten-free it changed my life. It wasn't just the obvious breads and pastas that were causing the upset. Gluten sneaks its way into many common household foods and products. However, I also know how overwhelming it can be to embark on such a new lifestyle. 

That is why I created the STRESS-FREE GLUTEN-FREE GUIDE. 

A 74 page ebook that will help you master the art of gluten-free and feel good about it. 

This guide includes: 

  • my 5 best tips to success

  • the most important pillars of food quality

  • a guide to understanding cross-contamination

  • my favorite JRW-Approved GF products and brands

  • 30 days of meal plans, grocery lists, and recipes!!

WARNING: Following this guide will lead to the following positive changes:

  • more energy

  • less bloat and digestive distress

  • reduced chronic inflammation

  • clear skin and clarity

  • no more brain fog

Who is this guide for?

Anyone experiencing the following: 

  • digestive issues

  • constant bloating

  • joint pain and inflammation

  • chronic fatigue and low energy

  • acne, psoriasis, or ezcema

  • mood swings and depression

  • anxiety or feeling overwhelmed

Get your copy of the STRESS-FREE GLUTEN-FREE GUIDE today for only $35.

Get the stress-free gluten-free guide here. $35

Get the stress-free gluten-free guide here. $35

 

If you need support or have questions, you can email me at jaclyn@jaclynreneewellness.com. For additional support on what to eat and how to cook gluten-free you can visit my favorite recipe blogs:

Gluten Free Goddess

Elana's Pantry

XO Jaclyn Renee

** A core principle of the Jaclyn Renee Wellness program is to choose organic whenever possible. This includes all fruits, vegetables, meats, dairy, flours, nuts, and even spices. Reducing your exposure to pesticides and chemicals is a major part in healing your body and preventing disease.


5-DAY FIX: Beat the Bloat

A 5-day guide to reducing bloat and healing gut inflammation significantly.

Almost all of my dry ingredients come from Thrive Market and I get them at a fraction of the cost of what I'd pay at other stores. If you want to save money and score some of the great things you see on this blog, check them out! 

Want to save 20% off your first 3 orders? Use the link below! 

 

 

Gut Health 101

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Everything begins and ends in the gut.  In fact, our second brain is the center of our gut and is home to the central nervous system and is actually larger and more powerful than the one in our skull. It holds the power to 3/4 of our immune system. The gut is also the first place we should look when we are experiencing chronic disease and inflammation.  When our digestive tract has been compromised our whole immune system can be compromised.

The foundation of gut health is understanding digestion. Digestion starts in the mouth when food is mixed with saliva. If we rush or hurry through a meal, we have not properly started the digestive process. Slowing down and chewing food is the core principle of digestive health.

Once the food leaves our mouth, it travels through your esophagus into our stomach. Your stomach is the mixing bowl where your liver, gallbladder, and pancreas secrete enzymes to break down your food into bile. If any of these organs are inflamed or compromised, they also cannot break down your food properly and will lead to constipation, gas, diarrhea, or chronic bloating.

Beyond the organs are your intestines. The large and small intestines. Let's take a quick look into the gut and it's four major parts.

  • The intestinal wall is the lining of the digestive tube. 
  • Intestinal flora is the good bacteria that live in the intestinal wall AKA microbiome. 
  • The Gut's lymphatic system or Gut associated lymphatic tissue; GALT
  • Nervous system or small nerve fragments that are spread throughout the gut

If any of the four parts of the gut have been compromised, your immune system will be notified and your body will start to become inflamed. You may start to experience light digestive discomfort or bloat to begin however, if not addressed properly if can morph into many other symptoms.

  • food allergies
  • indigestion
  • bloating
  • Inflammation of the joints
  • depression and anxiety
  • auto immune disorders - Celiac, Chrohn's, MS
  • skin conditions like psoriasis, eczema, and acne

These signs and symptoms of gut inflammation should not be taken lightly. Predominantly referred to as "Leaky Gut" this type of inflammation will definitely effect the long-term health of your body and your brain.

What is Leaky gut really? Leaky gut is simply a penetration of the intestinal wall, or the most important wall in our body. A colon contains these hair-like tight junctions that help ward off toxins from poor nutrition and uncontrolled environment. When they have become inflamed it starts to pry the junctions open and can create tiny cracks in between the junction. Instead of digesting and dumping the toxins through the body, they can slip through the cracks and into the bloodstream.  This is ultimately where disease begins. 

Things that can disrupt the gut lining:

  • exposure to BPA and other toxic chemicals
  • pesticide exposure (non-organic food)
  • antibiotic overuse
  • stress
  • chronic infections
  • alcohol
  • caffeine
  • sugar
  • gluten (for some)
  • dairy (for some)

Indefinitely, avoiding these things will help the healing process, however it's important to understand that healing takes time. The gut heals in stages. We have to reduce the inflammation first and the allow the lining the opportunity to heal properly.

The best place to start is from the beginning.

My foundation of gut health can be found in my free 5-day fix to beat the bloat. This will give you my core principles of gut health before you get too deep. Follow these for a few weeks to notice significant changes in digestive health. 

Beyond that if you still are experiencing symptoms, I recommend purchasing my 7-day Flat Tummy Food Guide. This is an incredible jump start to healing.

The guide includes:

  • A clean out list
  • Daily protocols to detox
  • A healing foods grocery list
  • 7-day meal plan; breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks
  • Over 20 of the best gut healing recipes that I have tested over time

This guide is normally $75 but for a limited time, I am offering this guide at $35. Get your copy today and let's get healing!

Following my JRW lifestyle guidelines, along with your personalized program will remove all of your struggles and symptoms and help you thrive. I know what it feels like to live every day in a constant struggle. Let me guide you towards better health and wellness so you can enjoy life again. XO Jaclyn Renee 


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5-DAY FIX: Beat the Bloat

A 5-day guide to reducing bloat and healing gut inflammation significantly.

Almost all of my dry ingredients come from Thrive Market and I get them at a fraction of the cost of what I'd pay at other stores. If you want to save money and score some of the great things you see on this blog, check them out! 

Want to save 20% off your first 3 orders? Use the link below!