Study Links GMOs and Gluten Sensitivity
According to Celiac Central, an estimated 1 percent of the U.S. population has celiac disease. This autoimmune digestive disease affects the small intestine’s ability to absorb nutrients from food. There is no cure for the disease, and the only known treatment is to avoid gluten. Awareness of celiac disease has increased in recent years, leading manufacturers to create gluten-free products and restaurants to add more menu options for diners with the sensitivity. Your online cooking school should give you the skills you need to develop gluten-free dishes that are just as delectable as other foods.
GMOs and gluten sensitivity
Though preparing gluten-free food for diners with celiac disease is important, it’s not getting to the cause of the issue. Researchers with the Institute for Responsible Technology have released a study that connects gluten sensitivity with genetically modified organisms (GMOs). While not all gluten-free diners suffer from celiac, a growing number are sensitive to the product. The researchers believed there had to be a reason more people were becoming susceptible for gluten other than genetics. One possible environmental trigger is the prevalence of GMOs in the modern American diet.
The American food supply began adding GMOs en mass in the mid-1990s. These modified foods’ seeds are created in labs where scientists transfer genetic material into the DNA of food organisms. There are currently nine foods on the market that contain GMOs. They include soy, corn, cotton (oil), canola (oil), beet sugar, zucchini, yellow squash, Hawaiian papaya and alfalfa. Wheat is not a GMO product.
Many GMO crops are created to withstand a weed killer called Roundup. The active ingredient in this product is glyphosate, which may be linked to conditions that initiate and/or irritate gluten-related disorders. These conditions include:
- Intestinal permeability
- Imbalanced gut bacteria
- Immune activation and allergies
- Impaired digestion
- Damage to the intestinal wall
Symptoms of gluten sensitivity usually don’t appear until later in life. Researchers believe that this supports the idea that environmental factors may cause or irritate the condition.
How You Can Help
As a person who cooks and serves food for a living, you have some power to help the situation. Take a few precautions that will please your gluten-free patrons.
Buy organic: Source your dishes with local, organic ingredients. Though the study could not confirm that GMO causes gluten sensitivity, the two may be linked.
Cook gluten-free: Learn the basics of gluten-free cooking and baking. When you serve someone with celiac disease, they will have a delicious meal that won’t harm them.