After going gluten and dairy free after my baby was born in 2016 to try and figure out what was causing so much discomfort for him, I discovered numerous benefits of going gluten and dairy free for myself too! Please note that when I say dairy free, I DO NOT MEAN LACTOSE FREE. These are two very different things and more often than not, going lactose free often doesn’t benefit the person as well as what eliminating dairy/ or cows milk protein does. This is because it is more often the protein that is doing the damage and not the sugar molecule (lactose). I really wanted to clarify that once again as I see many patients who tell me going dairy free didn’t do anything for them, but what I actually discover is that they trialled going lactose free.
Getting to the benefits, they are but not limited to:
- Improved gut health and digestive function. Removing these inflammatory foods causes and contributes to leaky gut. (See my earlier blog post on leaky gut).
2. Clearer skin– Most people will see their skin conditions significantly improve whether that be; acne, psoriasis or eczema as examples. For me my acne significantly improved.
3. Less bloat and abdominal discomfort- you will most definitely see some improvement and perhaps even no more food related bloat!
4. No more brain fog. A lot of people out there have claimed they begin to think more clear than ever before and feel as though the “fog has lifted”.
5. Improved energy– with the gluten and dairy food proteins causing inflammation and many other symptoms, it is more than likely, your energy levels will improve, once those inflammatory trigger foods have been removed. I know mine did!
6. Consistent, regular bowel movements. So many people believe it is totally normal for them to have loose bowel motions each day or to only have a bowel movement every few days- This is not normal and once those foods are removed, you will most likely see improvement in consistency, form and regularity. Unless of course there are other foods you may be intolerant too (e.g. FODMAPS or soy).
7. Less body aches and pain– We know that these foods contribute to inflammation and inflammation is what causes pain, therefore a significant improvement in your pain levels should also be seen and that can include menstrual (period) pain too.
8. Studies have shown much improvement in endometriosis symptom scores once dairy and gluten have been removed. (See Endometriosis blog).
9. Better absorption of all nutrients. Once these foods are removed, the gut can begin to heal and better absorb, assimilate and digest food nutrients that are essential to your health.
10. Weight loss may be a side benefit!
Keep an eye out for my next blog post on gluten and dairy free food swaps you can make, if you decide to give this gluten and dairy free thing a go.
I’ve often heard that, these “diets” are just a phase and the next best thing will come soon, but I think if done correctly with appropriate food swaps gluten and dairy free can be a life long dietary habit that you know makes you feel better!