Most lifestyle diseases that people are suffering from today like high blood pressure, diabetes, Celiac disease among others, are related to their lifestyle, and most of these are attributed mainly to their diet. As such, patients with these diseases have been severally recommended to make certain lifestyle and dietary changes to set themselves on a different path and see if their conditions improve.
Well, in the case of gluten, there has been numerous reports, debates, and news indicating that gluten is associated with celiac disease, and type two diabetes. This protein is also associated with rapid weight gain. In fact, there has been a lot of fuss over gluten in the recent times and how severely it affects human health. It has even gotten to the extent where doctors and nutrition experts’ recommend a gluten-free diet to patients to help ease their symptoms.
And so, while the diet in question has been proven to be beneficial to our general health as humans, it is not an easy one to follow and adapt to. Why? Well, for starters, a diet that is gluten-free is one that excludes all products that are known to contain even the slightest amount of gluten. Wheat products, rye, and barley are some of the items that include a high amount of gluten. And even though these make almost 80% of our daily diet, it is imperative to eliminate them entirely from your menu when on the no-gluten diet.
So, it is evident that expelling gluten from your diet isn’t going to be as easy as you thought. Luckily, the transition can be made easy and more tolerable if you keep to the ground rules. Here are some tips to help you:
Always ensure that your ingredients are gluten-free
Most people tend to think that only wheat flour, cookies, pasta, tortillas, and related products, should be excluded from the non-gluten diet. Surprisingly no, it is not just wheat products that you should wary about; gluten is present in a lot more other foods. You will be surprised to know how many because honestly, the list is endless and we can’t mention all of them here.
In a nutshell, though, it is essential that you read your labels carefully when shopping in supermarkets, grocery stores or wherever. Just ensure that whatever food item you pick is entirely free of gluten or is safe for a gluten-free diet.
Know where to get gluten-free products
Can’t find gluten free bread, cakes, or pasta? Don’t worry, as there are some places where you can get what you need to help you stick to the rules of your diet. Many health stores, pharmacies, supermarkets and even grocery stores today stock gluten-free items. All you have to do is find one of these stores and head over to purchase your item of interest. You should also know that you can quickly get gluten-free baking flour today. So don’t stress over why you can’t have your favorite cake because your diet restricts.
Invest more in natural, gluten-free foods
Truth be told, that while most stores today stock gluten-free food items, finding everything you need when you need it can be a challenge. This is why we recommend that you try to incorporate gluten-free natural foods into your diet like fresh vegetables, fruits, meat, and certain grains. You will love it trust me, mainly because these are readily available, are inexpensive, and of course, you would know how to prepare them. What’s is more is that you are guaranteed they are healthy.
Be wary of cross-contamination
When on a strict diet that is gluten-free, you need to ensure that you don’t consume the unwanted through cross-contamination. This is particularly important for those that are gluten intolerant and celiac disease patients.
To avoid gluten contaminations, ensure that you don’t use the same colander that you use to drain regular pasta for your gluten-free pasta. Also, use a different toaster for your gluten-free bread. You might even want to avoid using the same spread, i.e., mayonnaise or ketchup for both gluten-free and regular food items especially bread as this can also lead to gluten contamination.
Look out for gluten-free recipes for more versatility
You don’t have to eat the same foods every day just because you are on a diet. You can break the monotony by preparing your foods differently and by using various ingredients and spices. To be able to do this, you will want to use the internet to find gluten-free recipes or buy a related cookbook to help you gain ideas on how you can develop your style of gluten-free cooking.
These resources will help you learn various cooking tricks like for example that you can substitute wheat flour with mashed potatoes, rice flour, polenta, or even ground almonds.
Do not obsess over what you are missing out on
To be able to follow this diet successfully and enjoy its benefits, you need to embrace what is before you and not what used to. This means that you should focus more on what opportunities the diet brings forth. Focus on all the new food and exciting flavors that you can explore and add to your diet. Stop obsessing over what you are missing out on as this will only drag you behind.
Drink lots of water
When on this diet, constipation is quite common. Therefore, you will need to increase your water intake to prevent cases of constipating.
Well, those that are just getting to learn about what involves the gluten-free diet might think that all this is unrealistic but what they don’t know is that for people with gluten allergies, intolerance or those suffering from celiac, continued consumption of gluten can cause serious harm to their health. As such, it is imperative that they follow the rules of this diet strictly as well as try to learn more about it to avoid making costly mistakes.
Nonetheless, a diet that is gluten-free is healthy. Is also known to be beneficial to people struggling with weight loss. However, you should know that eliminating gluten from your diet entirely can lead to specific deficiencies. So make sure that consult with a doctor or dietitian first before you commit to this diet and its demands.