Gluten Free Meal Plan FAQs
- What exactly is gluten?
Gluten is a mix of two proteins found in wheat, barley, rye, and triticale (a wheat-rye mix). These gluten-containing grains are commonly used as thickeners and stabilizers in processed, convenience items. In baked goods like breads and pizza, gluten provides their dough with an elastic and stretchy texture that allows them to properly rise before baking.
- Who should eat a gluten free diet?
People with celiac disease, an auto-immune disease that damages the lining of the intestine when gluten is eaten, and those who are gluten sensitive or have wheat allergies should eat a gluten-free diet.
- What foods can I/can't I eat on a gluten free diet?
Foods to eat:
Most grains such as corn, oats, rice, quinoa, and wild rice are gluten free so you can still get the healthy benefits of whole grains in your diet. Be adventurous and try other gluten-free grains like amaranth, buckwheat, millet, sorghum, and teff.
Foods to avoid:
When following a gluten-free diet, it’s critical to avoid wheat, barley, rye and triticale (wheat-rye mix). Many packaged foods contain wheat, barley or one of their derivatives as an ingredient. Because they can show up in unexpected foods, be sure to read the ingredient list on your food labels. Here’s a quick rundown of wheat and barley containing foods and ingredients to help you decode labels:
- Wheat: bulgur, couscous, durum, farina, graham flour, hydrolyzed vegetable protein, kamut, seitan, semolina, spelt, maltodextrin, matzho, modified food starch, wheat berries, wheat germ, and wheat starch
- Barley: brown rice syrup, malt, malt barely syrup, malt extract, and malt flavoring
- Can a gluten free diet help me lose weight?
Going on a gluten-free diet alone won’t help you lose weight, but it may if you keep your calorie intake in check. Beware of packaged gluten-free foods like snacks and baked goods. They are often higher in fat and calories than wheat-based products they replace and, if consumed regularly, can sabotage your weight loss efforts.
- What is the difference between eating paleo and gluten free?
There are many similarities because paleo diets restrict grains, but a gluten-free diet offers more food options such as dairy products, legumes, potatoes, vegetable and canola oils, alcohol, and select processed foods.
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