You want to live a happier, healthier life. We want to help. If you’re experiencing headaches, bloating, gastrointestinal distress or other ailments, you’ve probably arrived at the conclusion that those issues have something to do with your diet. More specifically, they have something to do with your consumption of gluten. We gathered a few Celiac sufferers and other folks who have removed gluten from their diets to supply you with some advice on implementing – and maintaining – a gluten free diet for 2016, and for years to come!
Produce is Your Best Friend
What you see is what you get with produce. No added ingredients. They’re not processed to the hilt, either. That’s why produce is nothing short of gold for folks looking to avoid gluten. Fruits and vegetables are inexpensive, accessible and can be used to make a wide assortment of dishes. Be sure to vary your intake to keep it fun and exciting, and you’ll find that you could easily live on fruits and vegetables alone! But you certainly don’t have to!
Get Your Protein
Protein is crucial for muscle and for metabolic reasons, but all of our experts agreed that protein is crucial to a gluten free diet for another reason – it’s incredibly filling. Eliminating gluten from your diet means eliminating breads, pastas, cereals and other foods that usually make up the larger portions of our meals. Eating just fruits and vegetables can leave you feeling hungry, especially during the initial stages of adopting the gluten free lifestyle. Make sure you eat meats, fish, dairy products and nuts to get your protein and ensure that you’re leaving the table feeling happy and satisfied.
Get in the habit of reading the nutrition labels on everything. Look for ingredients in the product that are likely to contain gluten – wheat, barely, and rye are going to be the most common ingredients to look out for. But the list of other ingredients that contain gluten is expansive , so don’t just skim the nutrition label. After reading the list of ingredients where gluten is found, you can imagine why sticking to produce is so much easier than reading labels on packaged foods!
Be Mindful of Your New Lifestyle
The most essential tip our experts came up with is to be very conscious of how you replace your old diet with gluten free foods. Don’t equate gluten free with calorie free, and certainly don’t assume everything you eat is inherently more healthy just because it’s gluten free. For example, you’d be amazed at how delicious a gluten free cake is – better than cake with gluten, if you ask me! But in order to make the cake bake properly, and taste as delicious as it does, more sugar and butter is added to make up for ingredients removed because they had gluten. So just because it’s gluten free, it doesn’t mean you can eat three slices!
Learn more about American Gluten-Free for more!