Is a gluten-free diet really necessary for your child or adolescent? We hear many parents tell us that they think their child or adolescent should be on a gluten-free diet because they think its healthier way of eating? In reality this way of thinking is very puzzling because in the vast majority of medical nutrition therapy cases it isn’t necessary. A gluten- free diet can be diet can be very unhealthy for children. It can be unhealthy in the sense that it is missing important b-vitamins, antioxidants, nutrients, fiber and is too low in calories for growing children. Further, it may cause constipation due to the fact that rice is a large staple of a gluten-free diet. some children, tweens and teens may “feel better” on a gluten-free diet, even though their medical tests are normal. However, this is unclear and controversial. Lots of children and adolescents would feel better if they suddenly started eating more fruits and veggies and less cake, cookies, and other junk food. While some kids without celiac disease or wheat allergy may indeed react to gluten in a way that isn’t healthy, those kids are relatively few. Because gluten is in so many foods, being on a gluten-free diet can also make school lunches, play dates, and other aspects of a child’s daily life significantly more complicated — and it can be more expensive, too. So before you cut gluten out of your child’s diet, talk to your doctor. Talk together about why you want to do it; find out if there are any tests that should be done, or if there are other ways to achieve what you are hoping to achieve by cutting out gluten. A child’s diet can have a big effect on not only his or her current health, but future health; be sure you are making the very best choices. If your child or adolescent's pediatrician has medically prescribed a gluten for diet to treat a nutrition related disease you can complete our Nutritionomics form and order our "gluten-free me" meal plan menu today. If not, you can book an appointment with our pedi-dietitian to help guide you and further determine if a gluten-free diet is the most appropriate choice for your child or adolescent.