What Is Driving Us Ever More Gluten-Free?

If you thought that gluten-free everything would be a fast fading memory, think again. Ever more gluten-free products are screaming for your attention. Looking for lipstick without gluten? You got it. Or better yet, you can join the Arbonne multi-level marketing network and help to fill the world with it. Gluten-free marketing is going strong.

Setting aside the marketing fluff, perhaps the need is greater than anyone ever imagined.

More Celiac Disease Than We Thought?

A new cohort study from Denver suggests that the prevalence of celiac disease might be far higher than we previously thought. Edwin Liu and colleagues closely studied 31,766 infants for up to 20 years. They found that by the time they were 15 years old, 3.1% of them had celiac disease. This number is sharply higher than previous estimates of a prevalence well below one percent.

So in addition to the bandwagon effect, gluten-free marketing might be getting a boost from more people who really need that gluten-free life. And so it is that getting rid of gluten is growing into a giant trend that’s fueling two parallel trends: ancient grains and grain-free foods.

Ancient grains — like millet, quinoa, amaranth, sorghum and teff — offer good nutrition without gluten. And most important, they give food marketers something new to sell. Grain-free bakery products take a starkly different track. But they are prospering all the same. Mintel says that launches of such products are growing in triple digits.

So get used to it. Gluten-free foodstuffs appear to be taking root in the maketplace for the long term.

Click here for the study by Liu et al and here for more from Food Navigator USA. Here you can find more from the New York Times.

Gluten-Free Cow, photograph © Ted Kyle/ flickr

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June 26, 2017