I guess I'll start out by apologizing because any way you slice it, someone will get offended nowadays. So if that is you, "I'm sorry." Now that we got that out of the way I just want to be real and shoot straight for a minute about the topics of food intolerances, fads, and propaganda in the marketplace. A friend of mine hit the nail on the head when I heard him say recently:
"There are far too many Ingredientologists with degrees from Google University in our world today."
I could not agree more! Everyone seems to think they are an expert on any topic, but for some reason people especially feel knowledgeable on the topics of nutrition and supplementation. Or at least they think they are knowledgeable because they read an opinionated blog OR they choose to believe the dogma being presented to them from a friend on facebook OR they watched a biased documentary on netflix. Then again, I guess it could have been because they read the abstract of a poorly performed study that was blasted all over the internet that claimed ingredient x, y, z to be harmful because the study was designed in a manner to unrealistically expose a rat to an unbelievable amount of a substance to the point it induced a negative response in the rat. All the while this poorly performed study and it's inaccurate conclusions circulate the media, the 200 well-performed studies proving the safety and efficacy of a particular substance sits published in a well-respected journal, yet never gets the PR despite its truth and accuracy. Controversy sells in our messed up world unfortunately, and truth oftentimes does not.
Here are the topics that seem to get the most inaccurate info circulating in the media and blog-culture, which has created ridiculously opinionated stances:
2) Artificial Sweeteners
First of all, let's just get it out there right now, the vast majority of research displays overwhelming evidence to the safety of gluten, artificial sweeteners, genetically modified foods, dairy, and soy. It's incredible how rare these topics came up in conversation just a few years ago. It was virtually non-existent, unless that rare 1 out of 100 person had Celiac's disease. Fast forward a couple years and it comes up daily, yet the truth in research remains the same on the safety of the above. Isn't that interesting? Could a fad have taken place and still be taking place? I think so. Look around how many new brands of nutrition products and supplements have stemmed from this fad uprising, sounds like big business doesn't it? Have you ever been to a CrossFit gym, where everything is Paleo friendly, Non GMO, Gluten Free, No Artificial Sweeteners? Therein lies one of the truths that most people overlook. There are industries battling for marketshare. The Nutritive sweetener industry, oftentimes referred to as "Natural" (a marketing term by the way) is battling against the Non-nutritive industry, oftentimes referred to as "artificial." Guess what marketing tactics the Nutritive companies use? You guessed it, propaganda about the adverse health effects of artificial sweeteners. This happens with gluten, GMO, Dairy, and Soy as well. Research says it safe, propaganda will say otherwise, confusing the public and creating nutrition camps in the marketplace that disagree (most often from behind their computer screens) to the point of hating one another. It's absolutely absurd!
Let's get real for a second, just because you had pizza and bread sticks delivered last night for the game and today you feel sluggish and tired does NOT mean you ate too much gluten and that you are gluten intolerant. Here's what it means. You ate TOO much! Guess what, nobody feels like a million bucks after crushing pizza and bread sticks. And, just because the next week you were out on a date night and you decided to stop by Dairy Queen for a fantastic Blizzard and you ended up farting all night long does NOT mean that you are dairy intolerant. Here's what it means. You ate TOO much! Guess what would happen if you ate 10 bananas, you know I don't really know, but I'm guessing you wouldn't feel fantastic and that would NOT mean that you are banana intolerant. And here's the real kicker in my opinion, oftentimes the same folks that will claim to be intolerant of this or that via their self-diagnosis or will drink too much alcohol on the weekends, feel like crap, and then never draw the conclusion that they are alcohol intolerant. Fascinating.
Here's the truth, it may not be sexy and it may not sell millions of copies in a book title called Moderation Belly or The Moderation Solution, but everything in moderation really is the closest thing to the truth.