Gluten is an original source of nature. But unlike most other natural foods and its sources, gluten offers no benefits to the human body upon consumption. Gluten is also a form of protein. It is made up of two proteins, in fact. Protein in general, and as is well known, is essential for the human body’s development and healthy maintenance, so just what is gluten then. Where does it come from and what does it do then?
Gluten’s two proteins are found in barley, rye and wheat. Its purpose is to nourish plant embryos during the processes of germination. When used in food, the purpose is to work like glue. Things tend to stick together. And it is the adhesive quality of gluten that gives dough its elasticity. This has allowed food manufacturers to create so-called perfect shapes and textures. You notice this in the shape of your bread loaves and biscuits and candy bars.
The toffee like texture of your favorite candy bars is as a result of gluten. Nothing to do with hard toffee at all. Gluten also traps air and this allows bread to rise during the baking process. Fortunately, not all grains contain gluten. These are your corn, amaranth, millet and sorghum, but not quinoa. That is because quinoa is not a grain at all. Rather, it is the seed from a plant that was originally indigenous to certain regions of the South American continent.
The fact that quinoa is a great source of protein has come like manna from heaven for many vegans and vegetarians. Even so, the debate continues to rage on over whether such natural alternatives are more than adequate as good replacements of meat based proteins. People who do show signs of gluten intolerance, however, may wish to at least modify their intake of meat.
And in case you did not know, your raw, organic oats remains gluten free. But processed oats should be avoided. This is because processing could also contaminate it. Rather sow your wild oats then. Reap what you so and continue sifting the wheat from the chaff. Pretty much all of your favorite fruits, vegetables and legumes. Numerous seafood species are also gluten free.