I don’t know enough about the gluten free debate which is the food trend de jour but I have experienced my fair share of fads. Not to say that Coeliac disease is a fad. Quite the opposite. That is a clear definable disease. I’m talking about people diagnosing themselves without due care. Making extreme and sudden changes to their diet without any real consideration for the wider implications on a previously stable and healthy ecosystem inside their gut.
It will sound crazy at first but I think these sudden changes we do all too often could actually cause our bodies injury and thus more problems than those we are initially trying to solve.
Injury….. yep injury. How can you injury your stomach? you ask. Good question.
Just like you can injure yourself by taking up exercise and increasing your activity too quickly. Before your bones, muscles and connective tissue can adapt to the increasing demands. Eventually they develop weaknesses and something breaks and you get injured. The same can happen with your stomach. Your stomach is like any other part of your body. It is built for the recent demands of your lifestyle, your diet and its contents being those demands. It will have developed the required bacteria and disposal methods and know how to handle correctly the food and drink you eat.
Change your diet drastically and suddenly the stomach won’t be fit for purpose. The bacteria won’t break everything down correctly, there will be waste it can’t deal with. If it doesn’t get broken down properly then it won’t pass through your gut in a normal way. This can mean pain and things getting stuck and the stomach itself being hurt because it isn’t ready for what’s happening.
If you had changed your diet slowly the stomach could have managed the process better. Adapting it’s content of bacteria to handle the new foods and learning how to deal with their waste. Making sure nothing gets stuck and excess, gas, liquid or whatever is dealt with properly. The same goes for your stomach lining. It is built for purpose. Change what you ask of it and it needs time to adapt. If you don’t give it enough time it may simply not be able to adjust fast enough and get hurt in the process. An injury.
Most injuries need time to heal. A drastic change in diet is very likely to prevent healing, at least for a while until the stomach learns to deal with the new diet. If it doesn’t heal properly or at all you will eventually notice new problems. Though you are very unlikely to realise that changing your diet so drastically was the cause. Your stomach doesn’t have any pain receptors so it can’t tell you if it’s injured. That’s why you have to learn to understand the signs of it working well and it being injured.
You are free to agree or disagree with this concept. It is just my opinion which reflects my experience and knowledge. It works well for me and helps me take care of my stomach and ensures I get what I need from my diet.
I came across a very balanced review of the gluten free debate and I wanted to get you thinking critically about how you treat your stomach before reading it. The point is that the gluten debate is just the current food debate. These are ongoing and will never stop. So it’s worth stepping back and thinking more about how your body actually works and how you work with it instead of just making a huge decision without really understanding how your stomach gets the job done.
Have a read through The great gluten-free scam and let me know what you think. I found it a balanced article. You can easily switch the topic of gluten in its words to any of the other ideas we’ve been told about over the last few decades and the article would still read the same and have the same message. The reality is that life isn’t really changing and neither is the food industry.