5 Common Mistakes When Going Gluten Free

Published on August 29, 2016 by
Wheat Belly Lifestyle program director and Registered Dietitian, Lisa Grudzielanek, MS, RD, helps you avoid pitfalls many make while going gluten free.

Lisa Grudzielanek, MS, RDN, CD, CDE, is a graduate of Mount Mary University, with a Bachelors of Science in Dietetics and University of Bridgeport with a Masters of Science in Human Nutrition. Lisa is registered by the Commission on Dietetic Registration to practice as a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist(RDN) and for more than 10 years, Lisa was a highly respected dietitian who worked for a large healthcare organization in Milwaukee where she counseled individuals and groups, conducted speaking engagements, and had regular media appearances on local TV.

Lisa is also the “go to” nutritionist for cardiologist and author of the New York Times best seller, Wheat Belly, Dr. William Davis.

Related Books
Wheat Belly: Lose the Wheat, Lose the Weight, and Find Your Path Back to Health

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The Hidden Proteins in “Modern” Wheat

  • Gluten is more than just the gluten proteins (gliadin and glutenin); there are many more problems with wheat besides these two compounds.
  • Most people substitute gluten with replacement products that are loaded with sugar and GMOs.
  • Modern wheat has proteins that break down our gut lining and allow sewage to get into our bloodstream.
  • Wheat germ agglutinin (a lectin) helps protect the grain from herbivory, but this breaks gut lining in humans.
  • The National Institutes of Health has found that gliadin protein can penetrate the blood-brain barrier and latch onto opiate receptors in the brain.
  • This causes us to eat more food (Lisa says it may cause us to eat 400 more calories per day).

Five Common Mistakes People Make When Trying to Get off Wheat

  • Many people use substitute wheat in the form of “gluten-free” products, which are loaded with carbohydrate-based components that raise blood sugar sometimes even higher than wheat products.
  • This causes blood-sugar surges, advanced glycation end-products, and glycation of proteins. Sugar is a “feel good chemical.” It fires up some of the various reward pathways in the brain that, for instance, cocaine might trigger.
  • Lisa says, “You can’t burn fat in the flames of insulin.” She reports that many of her clients that see her for weight-related issues actually gain weight when going gluten free.
  • That healthy bowl of oatmeal in the morning is something to be careful of. Many people think oatmeal is “heart healthy,” but in reality it spikes blood sugar.
  • Fruit smoothies and “raw juices” appear to be healthy, but they are rich in sugar. By replacing fruit with vegetables in smoothies, one can get all the health benefits without the sugar.
  • Relish in the fats. Fats help keep us feel satiated, and we can go longer between meals
  • People often give up because they sometimes feel worse before they feel better. Some people have wheat withdrawal; Lisa sees this in about 40% of her patients. This is normal
  • Many people want to try to go back on gluten-containing grains and then have “gluten re-exposure” symptoms (running to the bathroom, asthma, eczema, fatigue).
  • Lisa shares a case study of a client who had been on anti-depressant medications for over 20 years. After removing wheat and dairy from her diet, she was able to get off the medications.
  • Lisa G provides examples of healthy breakfast items.
  • What about snacks? Lisa thinks that if you’re hungry, you should eat. But folks should be able to go for 4-6 hours without food.
  • Eggs are no longer linked with heart disease. So long as someone is not egg sensitive.
  • For breakfast, Lisa suggests eating eggs, making smoothies with fruit/nuts/vegetables and protein powder.
  • Avoid sweetened nut milks; you can also make your own chocolate nut milk by adding cocoa powder (which is rich in magnesium).
  • Add a “green banana” prebiotic (Unripe bananas) is an excellent source of pre-biotic fibers. (minute 30) *you have to cut off the skin and you can freeze them and it mimics ice in smoothies as well.
  • For healthy lunch and dinner, Lisa suggests, “cooking once and eating twice.” Meaning cook extra and freeze food so you’re not having to spend a lot of time in the kitchen.

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