Eating Gluten Free...

27 Sep 2011 5:31 PM - Keeping it simple is the easiest option...

I attended the Gluten Free Show in Melbourne on the weekend.  It was fascinating to get an update on the variety of foods now available without gluten. 

If you have been diagnosed with coeliac disease or suffer from gluten intolerance you will be pleased to know there are literally hundreds of options for you now.  These include a choice of breads, baked goods, pizza bases, pasta, flour, sausages, stir fry sauces, beer and more. 

Many of the products I sampled were very sweet so you need to be careful that you are avoiding gluten but not overdoing other ingredients like sugar.  I did try the beer (made with millet instead of barley) and, for those who would love an occasional beer I thought it was good (but I'm not a connosseur!). 

Gluten is found in wheat, barley, rye and oats.  If you have coeliac disease you need to avoid gluten entirely and if you are intolerant to gluten (but don't have coeliac disease) you might be able to digest small amounts (you need to find your "threshold") especially if you work with a naturopath to heal your intestinal lining and improve your digestion. 

Of course, if your diet consists of fruit and vegetables, lean meat, fish, nuts and seeds, legumes and dairy (which is the basis of a healthy diet anyway) you will be gluten-free anyway.  It's really when it comes to packaged foods or eating out that you have to be cautious. 

And if you are looking to incorporate grains into your diet there are an increasing number of options available to us now.   These include quinoa (technically not a grain but used like one), millet, amaranth, rice, corn and buckwheat.  You'll find plenty of recipes on the web for everything from bread to porridge, cakes and biscuits.

 In good health,

 

Kaye Wright
Naturopath