Gluten-free diets started to become very popular, but people are not aware of the fact that they may contain toxic metals like arsenic and mercury. Even if we tend to think that gluten-free foods are healthier, a new study will reveal outrageous results. These foods may present higher levels of toxic metals which may jeopardize people’s state of health.
A new study analyzing gluten-free foods was published in the Epidemiology magazine, indicating that individuals who consumed such products may have exposed themselves to high levels of mercury and arsenic. These are metals known to contribute to the development of neurological conditions, cardiovascular disease, and cancer.
Those who suffer from celiac disease need to be very careful when choosing their diet, avoiding the use of gluten. These proteins which are present in rye, grain, barley, and wheat can damage their small intestine’s lining, preventing the body from absorbing the necessary nutrients. Approximately 1% of the US population lives with celiac disease.
Nevertheless, in recent years, many other individuals who do not suffer from this type of autoimmune illness decided to switch to gluten-free foods, believing that this could constitute a healthier option. Back in 2015, about a quarter of all American citizens argued that they have consumed gluten-free foods, increasing the number of consumers to about 67% compared to the records from 2013.
These gluten-free diets started becoming extremely popular. Thus, many food chains decided to implement gluten-free products to attract more consumers. Some individuals claimed that they switched to a gluten-free diet to reduce inflammation. However, they do not know that there is no scientific study which proved that gluten-free food consumption reduces inflammation.
Other stated that they use this type of diet because they want to lose weight faster. Usually, gluten-free products use rice flour, substituting wheat. Rice tends to accumulate several toxic metals from soil, water, and fertilizers. Maria Argos, a researcher at the University of Illinois at Chicago, has used information provided by the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey to determine a link between gluten-free foods and biomarkers of toxic metals traced in blood and urine after testing.
The results proved that scientists spotted about 73 people who were following gluten-free diets out of 7,500 participants. These 73 participants were more likely to present higher arsenic concentration in their urine as well as high mercury levels in their blood compared to those who did not consume gluten-free products.
Image source: wikipedia