By Health Couture
Read and make an informed decision.
Most of us have heard of the term “gluten” in the past decade, yet many have a pretty poor understanding of how it fits into a healthy lifestyle. Before we rush into vilifying this poor protein, let’s start with some basic information.
Gluten (from Latin gluten, “glue”) is an ancient and complex combination of proteins found in wheat, barley and rye. In principal, gluten acts like glue, holding the ingredients together and giving texture, elasticity and shape to dough.
Gluten in its purest form is clean, but why do many people avoid eating it regardless? Wheat and other grains have been stripped of their nutritional value through vigorous processing methods to increase production. Hence, the conventional grains we get are not whole and the gluten has been processed from its natural form. Also, gluten is used as a thickening agent in a large number of highly processed and unhealthy food items such as sauces, condiments, packaged soups and high-sugar pastries. Naturally, by avoiding highly processed food you will end up with a clean and healthy lifestyle, but does that mean gluten is the villain?
The Gluten-Free Diet: Fads vs. Facts
With the exception of celiac and gluten sensitivity, there is a misconception that following a gluten-free diet will revolutionize a person’s health and help them shed a lot of weight. Surprisingly, a gluten-free diet, if not done properly, can have adverse reactions on your health, weight and lifestyle.
For people choosing a gluten-free diet as a lifestyle choice, there are several hidden ingredients they should be aware of. If a product is gluten-free or low-carb, it does not automatically mean it’s healthy. Many gluten-free products contain highly processed ingredients, preservatives and a lot of sugar to make the end product edible and in an acceptable form. Following a clean lifestyle involves choosing natural over processed whether it contains gluten or not.
Making the Choice
Whether a lifestyle choice or a health requirement, gluten is a critical topic that requires constant research, professional help, cautious label reading and making natural choices. Most importantly is aiming for balance by listening to your own body requirements rather than fashionable diet hypes.
Where to Buy Gluten Free Products
Organic and Nutrition Corner, Al Oruba St.
Special Loaf (specialized gluten-free bakery), Exit 5
- You can also get it from the Health Couture branches
Maha Al Jawini is a certified Clinical Dietitian and the Founder of Health CoutureTM, a local Saudi brand that has two branches under its umbrella: a line of local organic pre-packaged goods in Saudi Arabia, including artisanal granola and natural nut butters with local flavors. The other is an educational branch that promotes clean eating and recipe formulation through HC’s social media platforms and health and fitness events in the region. Maha works constantly to change the invalid perceptions about healthy eating and continuously promotes the creation of creative options from local and natural ingredients, elevating health to a delicious level.
Health Couture (HC) is a brand founded by a Clinical Dietitian from Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. The founder has partnered with 3 sisters, a certified fitness trainer with a business administration background, a manpower and organization planning expert in a health setting and a creative Graphic Designer and events planning expert. This partnership was inspired by a mother who taught them what organic, healthy and natural is before it all became a trend. The brand has two branches under its umbrella: a line of local organic pre-packaged goods in Saudi Arabia, including artisan granola and natural nut butters with local flavors, prepared and supervised by a Clinical Dietitian. The other is an educational branch that promotes healthy eating and recipe formulation through HC’s social media platforms and health and fitness events in the region.