Breaking down the gluten-free trend with Allie Henrie

Apr 2, 2019, 1:08 PM

SALT LAKE CITY — In a few short years, gluten-free food has moved from the back of specialty health food stores to the front of popular consciousness. The gluten-free diet is no longer reserved for those suffering from celiac or autoimmune diseases like Hashimoto’s, but prescribed to treat everything from obesity to depression. It’s among the trendiest of diets right now, and gluten-free meals are readily available in most restaurants and grocery stores.

But the answer to the critical question — does it work, and for whom? — remains murky.

Allie Henrie, a registered dietitian at Total Health and Fitness, says most people adopt a gluten-free diet in a misguided attempt to target simpler problems.

“[Gluten] is not inherently bad for you in any way,” Henrie told Maria Shilaos on Let’s Get Moving with Maria last week. “But with there being an increase in the awareness and the diagnosis of people with celiac disease, it’s at the forefront of people’s minds.”

The gluten protein is found in wheat, oats, barley and rye, making it most present in carbohydrate-heavy foods. Coincidentally, carbohydrates are also the main component of most dieters’ so-called “problem foods.”

“Carbs are a pretty common enemy when it comes to weight loss,” Henrie said. “I think that’s where the trend stems from — we try to target one particular thing that’s causing our problems regarding health or weight, and if we get rid of it, then naturally we think that that was the ultimate culprit.”

“Maybe it wasn’t necessarily gluten,” she continued. “Maybe it was the fact that we were eating excessive amounts of these carb-heavy foods that happen to contain gluten.”

Henrie isn’t advocating for listeners to cut out carbs altogether; rather, she encouraged them to consume mindfully.

“Carbohydrates aren’t bad for you, we all need them to survive. But too much of anything is not going to be a good thing,” she said. “It’s all about balance.”

Ultimately, though, gluten-free eating is an unnecessarily complicated way to pursue that balance.

“Unless you have something like celiac disease or hashimoto’s, it really isn’t harmful to you,” Henrie said.

You can listen to the full episode here, or subscribe to Let’s Get Moving With Maria here.


We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Send it to the KSL NewsRadio team here.

Today’s Top Stories


The Utah House has advanced the bill that bans transgender-related surgeries on minors and pauses t...
Aimee Cobabe

Equality Utah supports bill clarifying rules for therapists when it comes to conversion therapy for minors

Equality Utah is supporting a bill adjusting rules for therapists when it comes to conversion therapy for minors.
2 days ago
When inversions bring pollution to the ground, we breathe it in. That makes it easier to get sick a...
Dale Spaulding

Is illness or poor air quality causing that cough?

Inversion can impact a person's health. Is that why people are coughing, or is it just the regular cold and flu season?
2 days ago
A woman wearing white sitting in front of a light box...
Michelle Lee

Winter blues: light therapy and lifestyle changes can help

SALT LAKE CITY – With the chilly weather and the shorter days, many people are prone to experience the winter blues. In the latest Let’s Get Moving with Maria podcast episode, host Maria Shilaos spoke with Dr. Jason Hunziker from the Huntsman Mental Health Institute about ways people can overcome the winter blues. Seasonal depression […]
3 days ago
A new study finds that reports of bad weather and air actually decrease ridership on the UTA....
Devin Oldroyd

Relief from inversion and poor air quality may be in Utah’s near future

The Beehive State is in the middle of some thick inversion and poor air quality, but relief may be on the way according to the National Weather Service.
5 days ago
A study by Intermountain Health that spanned 40 years and sought answers about the health of people...
Simone Seikaly

Intermountain’s 40-year study provides insight into weight-loss surgery

In some cases the results from the weight-loss surgery study were expected. But at least one result could be a cause for alarm and caution.
5 days ago
The U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service has issued a recall for mil...
Simone Seikaly

Check your pantry, a Conagra canned meat recall may affect you

Millions of pounds of canned meat and poultry products (mainly Vienna sausages) are involved in the Conagra recall.
5 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Skier being towed by a rider on a horse. Skijoring....
Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

Looking for a New Winter Activity? Try Skijoring in Bear Lake

This article about skijoring is sponsored by the Bear Lake Convention & Visitors Bureau. Participate in Skijoring the Bear on February 20th, 2023.  What is skijoring? Skijoring is when someone on skis is pulled by a horse, dog, animal, or motor vehicle. The driver leads the skiers through an obstacle course over jumps, hoops, and […]
Banner with Cervical Cancer Awareness Realistic Ribbon...
Intermountain Health

Five Common Causes of Cervical Cancer – and What You Can Do to Lower Your Risk

January is National Cervical Cancer Awareness month and cancer experts at Intermountain Health are working to educate women about cervical cancer, the tests that can warn women about potential cancer, and the importance of vaccination.
Kid holding a cisco fish at winterfest...
Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

Get Ready for Fun at the 2023 Bear Lake Monster Winterfest

The Bear Lake Monster Winterfest is an annual weekend event jam-packed full of fun activities the whole family can enjoy. This year the event will be held from January 27-29 at the Utah Bear Lake State Park Marina and Sunrise Resort and Event Center in Garden City, Utah. 
happy friends with sparklers at christmas dinner...

15 Easy Christmas Dinner Ideas

We’ve scoured the web for you and narrowed down a few of our favorite Christmas dinner ideas to make your planning easy. Choose from the dishes we’ve highlighted to plan your meal or start brainstorming your own meal plan a couple of weeks before to make sure you have time to shop and prepare.
Spicy Homemade Loaded Taters Tots...

5 Game Day Snacks for the Whole Family (with recipes!)

Try these game day snacks to make watching football at home with your family feel like a special occasion. 
Happy joyful smiling casual satisfied woman learning and communicates in sign language online using...

The Best Tools for Deaf and Hard-of-Hearing Workplace Success

Here are some of the best resources to make your workplace work better for Deaf and hard-of-hearing employees.
Breaking down the gluten-free trend with Allie Henrie