Is a gluten-free diet helpful for athletes?

Only if the athlete has celiac disease, a genetic condition in which the body is unable to digest gluten, a protein found primarily in wheat, barley and rye. For all other athletes (and regular people), a gluten-free diet can mean a diet higher in calories yet lower in important nutrients like carbohydrates, fiber, folate, iron, and B-vitamins that are vital to athletic performance and recovery from training. Research with athletes who switched to a gluten-free diet found no health or performance benefits.

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