- Gluten-free diets require an individual to eliminate all products that contain the protein, gluten.
- Just because an individual is eating gluten-free, he or she does not have to eliminate all foods that aren't vegetables, fruits, or lean meats.
Gluten is a protein found in many food items, and intolerance towards this protein may lead to intestinal damage. A typical gluten-free diet avoids all possible sources of this protein in meals. Gluten may cause inflammation in the body's of people who are suffering from celiac disease. Having gluten-free diet is the best way to control the symptoms of the disease. Those who are new to the diet may find it difficult to be consistent with the diet. But it is easy to find substitutes for most of the gluten-containing foods so that it is not very hard to follow the diet.
To start with the diet, one may feel quite restricted in his or her choice of foods. But as there are several types of gluten-free products, it may become much easier as time passes. One will have to avoid normal bread, including white, marble, wheat, and rye varieties. Several alternatives are available for these products. Look for products labelled as 100% gluten-free. These products are made of rice or potato flour, which makes them free of gluten.
One will have to do away with many of the popular breakfast cereals, like cheerios and frosted flakes. Instead, opt for cereals made of rice and corn. But in any case, one needs to make sure that there are no gluten components in the product.
Different types of pasta, including spaghetti, macaroni, shells, and spirals are made of wheat. Choose rice noodles instead, whenever you crave pasta. And if you like crackers with cheese as a snack, you will have to move on to corn chips and rice cakes to avoid gluten. Popcorn is also a good option in gluten-free diets.
Some other foods to be aware of are chicken nuggets and fish sticks, both of which may contain a coating of gluten containing wheat. Lean meat is the ideal choice for a gluten-free diet. Check the ingredients to make sure they do not contain any gluten products in the food.
Although a gluten-free individual will have to avoid cakes, pies, and cookies, her or she can choose gumdrops, marshmallows, and hard candies. There are many bakeries where gluten-free cakes and pies are custom-made.
Beer is made from barley malt, and is not good for those with a gluten intolerance. However, other wine and liquors are generally gluten-free.
There are many more options than restrictions in a gluten-free meal. Some of the healthiest choices are still available, like eggs, fish, meat, fruits, vegetables, and milk products.