Strawberry Basil Salsa
- 45 mL (3 tbsp) Fontaine Santé Basil Pesto
- 250 mL (1 cup) diced fresh strawberries
- 250 mL (1 cup) diced mango
- 2 kiwis, diced
- 2 green onions, thinly sliced
- 30 mL (2 tbsp) minced jalapeño pepper...
With or without gluten?2012-05-01
In recent years, many gluten-free products have appeared on supermarket shelves. Celiac disease, a desire to lose weight, a belief that these products are healthier: what is the real interest in adopting a gluten-free diet? What are the benefits and the drawbacks?
First of all, what is gluten?
Gluten is a protein that occurs in most grains. All foods derived from wheat, rye, barley, spelt, kamut and triticale, or made with these grains, contain gluten. As well, gluten is found in flour, bread, pastries, cakes, pasta, bulgur, semolina, pizza crust, breakfast cereals, breadcrumbs and cookies, etc. It is also used in many processed foods and products and prepared dishes as a thickener or binder.
For people suffering from celiac disease, even small traces of this protein can be harmful. The immune system reacts by attacking the lining of the small intestine, resulting in poor absorption of iron, calcium, vitamins, protein, fats, folic acid and other dietary elements. Currently, the only treatment for celiac disease is strict adherence to a gluten-free diet. According to Health Canada, the disease affects nearly 1% of the population.
Unless you have a condition that has been diagnosed by a medical specialist, there is no real benefit to going gluten-free. It’s a complicated regimen that is hard to follow and calls for vigilance to prevent nutritional deficiencies. “Gluten-free products aren’t necessary for people who don’t have celiac disease,” explains nutritionist Julie Aubé. Many of them have little nutritional value and are low in fibre, vitamins and minerals.
Weight loss on a gluten-free diet is due mostly to reduced consumption of pastries, cookies and many processed products, which often contain high amounts of fat and sugar. Unless you have celiac disease, simply changing your eating behaviours will enable you to reach a healthy weight without restricting products that contain gluten.
People with gluten intolerance have no problem eating legumes: lentils, chickpeas, split peas, red and white kidney beans, soybeans, etc. Since many Fontaine Santé products, such as hummus, are naturally gluten-free, they’re a healthy option for people with celiac disease or for anyone who wants to eat delicious, nutritious foods.
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