Are you brand new to living a gluten-free life? You might have been diagnosed with Celiac disease recently, or have signs of a gluten sensitivity. Whatever the reason for going gluten-free, it is important that you transition in the simplest way possible.
Benefits of Switching to a Gluten-Free Diet
The first thing you should do is understand the additional benefits of going gluten-free. When you have a craving for foods with gluten, remind yourself of these additional benefits.
You Eat Healthy Whole Foods
Just to start off, one of the main reasons why eating gluten-free can help you, is because your tendency to eat fruits and vegetables will become a lot more common, because they are foods that don’t contain gluten, and are widely available. This promotes eating these foods in their natural, and whole forms.
Most manufacturing processes can rob you of their nutritional content. Eating foods in their natural state can be a lot more satisfying and filling, and when you eat this way your body will destroy thank you. Most people tend to see result of this in just a few days because of a remarkable change in their vitality.
Another great thing about eating gluten free, is that even if you aren’t someone who has been diagnosed with celiac disease, you are likely to experience better digestive efficiency. This can affect a lot of areas in life because who you absorb your food is very important to your health.
Better digestion means that your bowels are less likely to become irritated or inflamed, which could be a large help to people who suffer from IBS or other inflammation issues. Many whole foods that you eat will help keep your intestines clean and free of the plaque that many processed bread products contain, which will improve nutrient absorption, as well as proper elimination.
Prevent Heart Disease
Heart disease is a serious issue around the world today. Many foods lack the nutrient content to help your body to carry out all of its cleansing and repairing procedures.
The addition of healthy whole foods and the avoidance of inflammation causing foods can shield you against developing heart disease because you will improve your cholesterol levels over time, preventing arterial blockages that lead to strokes and heart issues. This can also lead to a noticeable reduction in weight, leaving you feeling better all around.
First Steps to Starting a Gluten-Free Diet
When you’re beginning a gluten-free diet, it’s important to set yourself up for success, in that you don’t want to allow yourself to get trapped in a corner with unrealistic expectations for yourself.
Officials who have changed laws to make it difficult to separate the foods that contain gluten from the ones that don’t have only created more confusion, but you can still put yourself in a position to be protected from these silent assailants. The only question that you might be asking yourself might be, “What do you I need to do if I think I have any issues with gluten?”
Get a Real Diagnosis
Having a real, actual diagnosis is a good place to start. The worst thing that you can do for yourself is create a reality where you are suffering from some kind of imaginary illness.
This will make it a lot harder to know what is actually causing the problem, and send your doctor on chases that don’t have any bearing on your health because they are from the incorrect perspective. Always be as honest and forthcoming with a healthcare professional as you can.
Know What Items Contain Invisible Gluten
Today a lot of companies post the legally acceptable versions of ingredients rather than the actual list of ingredients. That is because companies have the right to lie about or omit important information given to consumers who might not be so excited about purchasing their chemical-laden products.
While not totally illegal, these kinds of practices can harm consumer trust, and along with it, ruin the reputation of companies who are willing to engage in such practices.
If you become familiar with the multitude of ways that companies hide the less desirable elements in their food, you’ll be more well equipped to avoid the hidden gluten that might cause you to have any of the issues mentioned here.
Some of these secret names appear as hydrolyzed wheat protein, durum, and modified wheat starch.
Be Open to People Who Are Curious
No one likes getting the 3rd degree when they walk into a room, but when you have a slighlty different lifestyle than most people, there are likely to be a few of people who come in contact with you who are going to end up asking about how it all works. If you’re doing a dietary program, it can be really life affirming to get to share some of your best and most important tips with curious people.
This small amount of personal investment can move people to make major changes that benefit them for years to come.
Gluten-Free Is More Common Than Before
One of the best things about the spread of information, is that a lot of people begin to pick up on important social cues that show them the rules and what kind of interactions are appropriate.
Groups and individuals alike have the ability to influence many aspects of the world around them, and this can be seen in the way that many gluten-free people have influenced restaurants to include gluten-free options for their meals at a reasonable price.
Now you can dine at your favorite places without being stuck with the baked potato.
Watch Out for Hidden Gluten
While it is easy to choose whole, fresh foods that are gluten-free, when you start getting into pantry staples and packaged foods, it is an entirely new experience. You will need to learn how to look for hidden gluten.
Ingredients to Avoid When You Are Cutting Out Gluten
When you’re first learning about the intricacies of the gluten-free diet and lifestyle, it’s probably seems like you’re going to have to get rid of and avoid an unbelievable amount of foods that you might enjoy.
When you’re getting ready to make a major dietary change, the best thing you can do for yourself is to empower yourself with knowledge so that you can find success by fully experiencing the variety and nuances of food.
The good news is that there are a lot of great ways to confront these issues, so this article will be primarily focusing on prepackaged ingredients to avoid when you are cutting out gluten.
One of the main things that people neglect when looking at a gluten free diet, is that condiments they love can be loaded with gluten. In recent years, the spread of gluten-free has become enough of a fad that it’s become relatively common as a marketing point.
Ketchup, mayonnaise, salad dressings, gravy, malt vinegar, marinades, and even soy sauces may contain gluten. You will need to get used to reading labels to look for any ingredients that might have gluten. Just be sure to buy the gluten-free certified versions of your favorite condiments, and you won’t have to worry about it.
If you’re on the go or in a hurry in the morning, it can be pretty tempting to grab a flavored coffee for yourself at the gas station on your way to work, but the hidden gluten in those drinks can derail a strict program. Instant drinks, root beer, wine coolers and other convenience drinks of similar type tend to include gluten in their list of ingredients.
While having these drinks is a fast way to satisfy some urges, they aren’t usually very healthy, and many of these types of drinks also tend to have a high level of acidity, or cause acidity in the gut. It’s always better to have fresh versions when you can. Here is a list of other names for gluten as it appears on some ingredient labels.
Gluten in Disguise:
- Hydrolyzed malt extract
- Hydrolyzed vegetable protein
- Phytosphingosine extract
- Amino peptide complex
- Secale cereale
- Fermented grain extract
- Hordeum distichon
- Hordeum vulgare
- Brown rice syrup
- Modified food starch
- Hydrolyzed vegetable protein
- Hydrolyzed soy protein
- Caramel color
These types of ingredients usually find their way into many lists. Health professionals have been warning consumers about the dangers of processed foods for years, particularly with a close eye on the effects of processed meats. These kinds of foods are well known for their acidic nature, and tend to be behind a lot of the heartburn around the world.
These conditions are ripe for swelling and inflammation, which can make itself worse over time, so it should be no surprise that many of these packaged, coagulated meat products also contain a plant protein that a portion of the population has a difficulty digesting.
Manufactured food today is as much of a mystery, as it is a source of high sodium. As people become more familiar with the names for the proteins that are called gluten, somewhat unethical practices have arisen due to the lack of public outcry. Lawmakers spend tremendous amounts of money so they can trick people and continue selling nutritionally deficient food to the masses.
If you’ve been feeling a bit concerned about gluten finding its way back into your life, then you might be interested in the following article that will show you foods with hidden gluten.
Benign Sounding Names
So now you’ve turned to look at your items from the last store visit. As you read through the ingredients, you see a few familiar names, but now is the time to focus.
Some of the names that are generally included in this somewhat hidden group are: Kamut, hydrolyzed wheat protein, durum, farro, rye bread, atta, and farina.
If you have serious gluten sensitivity, then it would be important that you be sure to not only stay away from these foods and their processed versions, but also be very careful about eating ingredients that can become tainted by the presence of gluten sometime on the way to you, the consumer.
Ask the Manufacturer
Sometimes it’s impossible to know what’s going with the chemical makeup of certain foods. If they’ve been changed, then you will need to get in touch with a sales rep or another informative authorization unless you have some kind of food testing kit in your car.
If you can impress on them that you have special medical circumstances to keep yourself from becoming ill from gluten exposure, then your server can be an extra pair of eyes that bridges the gap between the server and the chef, who will also help to keep you safe from cross contamination.
Sauces, Soups, Seasoning and Sausage
Among the foods mentioned here, these end up being some of the biggest surprises. The gluten found in liquid foods like spaghetti sauce, several varieties of creamy soups, and popular seasoning packets has usually been added as a thickening agent, but it’s inclusion in sausage is entirely filler.
With a small amount of research, it should be a piece of cake (but don’t eat gluten-filled cake!) to find processed meats without gluten that can be enjoyed in very small doses. Many of these meats are clearly marked so that people who are interested in gluten free items can easily identify them.
Stocking Your Kitchen While on a Gluten-Free Diet
If you’re new to the idea of going gluten free, then you’ve probably gotten to the point where you realize that success with restrictive dieting can be difficult when you aren’t prepared.
The best way to be prepared is always to set up elements in your life to create the easiest and most efficient ways for you to stay on track. Keeping your kitchen organized and free of foods is just the first step to being successful. The next step would be to make sure that you are stocking your kitchen while on a gluten-free diet.
With the ever-growing popularity of gluten-free products, the availability of these products has become relatively common. The majority of stores now have a staggering array of crackers, pastas, and bread products.
These products have been created with the singular goal of making sure that a person who is converting to a gluten free lifestyle isn’t going to have a hard time making the switch because of carb cravings because of the sudden changes to their diet that have now become apparent.
Whether you have celiac disease, or simply want to cut back on gluten for other reasons, keeping these foods on hand will help ensure your success.
One easy way to get your day started would be to get some oats going, but it’s important to know that many companies that produce oats use the same types of equipment to cut wheat, which is one of the primary sources of gluten in foods.
This means that these types of ingredients will have to be gluten-free certified so that you don’t damage your diet through cross contaminated foods. Another option that you could utilize might be a food like buckwheat. Think of the combination that you can create with your favorite proteins!
Sandwiches are a favorite among busy people because they can easily be carried, stored and eaten on the go. It might take a small amount of research, but most people don’t find it very hard to find their favorite gluten free breads that they can use to make awesome sandwich creations that keep them satisfied and ready to face another day.
One easy way to get your dinners gluten-free would be to incorporate Asian foods into your diet. The majority of these foods tend to be gluten-free because of the vegetable and meat content, but you have to be sure that soy sauce and other soy products are also certified as gluten-free.
Popular Alternatives for Gluten-Rich Foods
Whether you are a person who suffers from celiac disease or you simply want to avoid gluten, new advancements individuals have been able to create4 some very enjoyable ways to eat their favorite foods without having to worry about their tastes challenging their resolve to remain on a gluten free diet.
Within just a few minutes, you could be on your way to creating gluten free versions of meals. You might be curious as to how you can get rid of the bready part of meals, but this information is here to help you learn about popular alternatives for gluten-rich foods.
Food like potato, cassava corn, quinoa, millet, soy, tapioca, beans, and buckwheat are all gluten free. With a small amount of planning, you can find brilliant ways to turn these veggies and legumes into amazing meals. Some have taken to using nut flours to bake different types of bread that they can enjoy.
As long as it doesn’t contain wheat, then the likelihood of gluten being in your food will be much lower. It’s always a good idea to stick to fruits, meats, and veggies to be absolutely sure that you’re not getting anything gluten. There are a number of brands that will include this information on the packaging, but beware some of the sneaky names that companies use to guide gluten in plain sight.
In the last few years, some great ideas have come about such as the cauliflower pizza crust. This pizza crust uses eggs to hold itself together after the cauliflower has been cooked, drained and pressed to remove a large portion of the moisture.
Veggie wraps are a great way to have your favorite lunch meat on the go, and be sure that you juice is freshly squeezed. This will prevent you from accidentally getting some gluten from any of the ingredients found in store-bought juices.
Avoid Contaminated Sources
One thing a lot of people forget about, is that the types of equipment that cut oats is often the very same equipment that is used to cut wheat.
That means that the potential for gluten contamination in your food will be very high. Knowing about how your food is prepared, and how it is handled from start to finish can go a long way to keeping you from accidentally ingesting a bit of the stuff you’re trying to avoid.
Tips for Eating Out While Gluten-Free
The age old question of where to eat has plagued men and women alike for centuries. Food can be a very personal thing, so spending time finding a place to eat, only to be completely devastated by the awkward discovery of a poor food choice is probably something that basically everyone seeks to avoid.
This is even more apparent when you have particular dietary restrictions because you’re attempting to make major changes in your health and appearance.
Pick A Restaurant That Can Provide the Experience
There are very few things in life more frustrating than trying something new that you are excited about, eating the food and then suddenly realizing that the food is terrible. It might take a moment, but it’s worth it to be sure that you’ll get what you’re looking to try. This could mean calling the restaurant a few days in advance to ask them questions about their menu items.
Be sure that you budget in time to have discussions with the chef. Once you know what you options will be, it’ll be easier to make a selection.
Eat During Low Volume Hours
If you’re not planning to meet up with friends or groups that adhere to a strict dining schedule, then eating at such arbitrary dinner times serves little to no purpose at all. This means that you can eat earlier than when most people crowd into the restaurant, or wait until the dinner rush has passed.
This way, any dietary restrictions that you have can be addressed without making the night more difficult for the staff, and they will be less likely to contaminate your specially prepared meal with gluten or make mistakes on your order. During that time, you can sit and enjoy your meal in peace.
Be Concise About Your Needs
There’s nothing more grating than someone who can’t get to the point. In a high-pressure environment of a restaurant, time is money, and keeping things efficient saves everyone from having issues. Be direct and concise about what you need from the restaurant staff.
It’s important to note that you are on a medically restricted meal plan for your health benefit. If you have a serious allergy, then it would be a great idea to wear a medical bracelet to signify the gravity of your need to have any items that touch gluten to be substituted by the server’s suggestion. This way, your server will have a more vested interest in keeping you safe.
Mistakes to Avoid When Going Gluten-Free
At this stage, it’s possible that you’ve taken all of the bready, sweet, salty bread products and tossed them into the trash as you take one last look before you start your new life as a gluten free person, but as you walk back towards the kitchen, you may find that you really don’t know much about what kinds of foods can have gluten in them before buy them.
If you continue reading the next few paragraphs, you’ll find some pointers on which mistakes to avoid when going gluten-free.
The Gluten-Free Learning Curve
If you don’t know anything about how to actually avoid gluten in the multitudes of foods that are mass produced on a daily basis, you might discover that despite all of your changes, you’ve just ended up eating less palatable versions of all of the foods you like, while still eating gluten.
The best thing to do is arm yourself with a true knowledge of exactly what foods and brands can contain or become contaminated with gluten at some point. A large portion of people who live with celiac disease are unaware that sauces from the store are often packed full of gluten, which can completely cancel out the work you did to find a gluten-free light beer.
Replacing Your Diet with Gluten-Free Junk
It’s one thing to limit yourself to healthy foods that you can eat fresh, but it’s another to sit and get stuffed on gluten-free junk foods that are intended as treats. These items might not contain much of the gluten that you’re trying to avoid, but still contain a measure of fat, salt, sugar and other additives that are used as preservatives.
Food manufacturers are well known for creating products that they can market to people will poor impulse control. If you have a health condition like celiac disease, then it’s more important than even to find fresh foods to eat. This is one way to be absolutely sure of what you’re eating.
Relying on Processed Foods for Gluten-Free Options
In today’s modern world, a large cross-section of young adults have become accustomed to eating high amounts of processed foods. Unfortunately, these habits can often continue right into a new gluten free diet routine because gluten free items exist in nature, but the added value of the words “gluten-free” draw in the curious buyer.
The best way to get the nutrients that you need would be to cook your own food, and squeeze your own juices. That way you can prevent yourself from allowing any gluten slip past your watchful eyes.