How to Eat Gluten-Free

The Beginning

For individuals wondering how to eat gluten free, it is expected such a diet will require some drastic lifestyle changes. However, a gluten-free diet can actually be a healthier diet; one that opens you up to a world of new and unique foods.

How to Eat Gluten-Free

Gluten is a protein found in certain grains such as:

  • Wheat
  • Barley
  • Rye
  • Spelt
  • Kamut
  • Semolina

Spelt, kamut and semolina are really just varieties of wheat. However, the average consumer may mistake these titles for non-wheat grains, so it should be remembered all three of these contain gluten as do wheat, barley, and rye. Your first step in how to eat gluten-free should be to eliminate these grains entirely from your diet.

Gluten Derivatives

You will also need to eliminate any food products or additives derived from gluten-containing grains. This means ingredients such as malted barley syrup and hydrolyzed wheat protein are completely out. Soy sauce is notorious for harboring derivative gluten.

Vigilance

Read nutrition labels carefully. If you see an ingredient that is unknown or looks suspicious, call the product manufacturer or investigate the product line. Products not labeled "gluten free" should always be items of suspicion.

The Oat Controversy

Though oats are inherently gluten-free, they may endure cross contamination from other gluten-containing grains harvested nearby and/or processed using the same equipment. Only buy oats if they are certified gluten-free.

The Alternatives

Many grains do not contain gluten. You can try:

  • Quinoa
  • Amaranth
  • Rice
  • Millet
  • Buckwheat

There are also flour products available from vegetable, seed, and nut origins such as potato flour, corn flour, teff flour, coconut flour, and almond flour.

Living in Balance

Grains don't need to be a pivotal part of your meals, period. Make the focus of your plate a hearty dose of fresh fruits and vegetables. Don't forget to include protein sources. Protein is essential for your body's metabolic health and healing abilities.

A New Lifestyle

As you learn to bake all your favorite treats using rice or almond flours, and your life becomes easily wheat-free, you may forget all about your prior dietary habits. Eating at restaurants may continuously present a challenge, but many people with celiac disease have adjusted to this act as well. In the end, you will probably be eating healthier than ever before and doing so with much more awareness.

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How to Eat Gluten-Free