Is lectin the new gluten?

Now that there’s doubts as to whether gluten intolerance is really so widespread, a new villain is about to take its place: lectins.

Blamed by respectable US cardiovascular surgeon, Dr Steven Gundry, as the hidden reason behind inflammation, autoimmune diseases and obesity, lectins are proteins made by plants to protect themselves from attackers.

When ingested they force carbohydrates (sugars, starches, and fibres) to clump together and cause inflammation.

The main lectin-containing culprits are tomatoes, beans, whole grain breads and cashews.