Living with a gluten intolerance or celiac disease can be challenging, especially when it comes to meal planning and grocery shopping. People who have been diagnosed with these conditions often find that they have to make drastic changes in their diets to stay healthy. For those facing this challenge, the good news is that there are plenty of delicious and nutritious options available for those following a gluten-free diet. We’ll look at some tips and advice on how to navigate the grocery store and create meals that will keep you feeling your best while still satisfying your cravings.
Go Completely Gluten-Free
It’s important to remember that even trace amounts of gluten can cause problems for those with celiac disease or gluten intolerance. As such, you should be sure to only buy products labeled “gluten-free.” This means avoiding products made from wheat, barley, rye, and oats (unless it is specifically labeled gluten-free) and being especially cautious when buying processed foods. This diet will also mean you'll have to make gluten free meals and as daunting as that might sound, it isn't difficult. Most grains and starches are naturally gluten-free, such as quinoa, rice, buckwheat, millet, amaranth, and sorghum. Look for pasta made from corn or rice flour instead of wheat.
Read Labels Carefully
Many processed foods contain hidden sources of gluten, which is why it’s important to be vigilant when shopping. Always read the label carefully before buying any food items - even if a product claims to be “gluten-free” on its front packaging - as some manufacturers sneak small amounts of gluten into their products or use shared equipment in production. If you are unsure if something contains gluten, it’s best to err on the side of caution and avoid it. Of course, there are also plenty of naturally gluten-free foods which don't require labels, such as fresh fruits, vegetables, and meats.
Know What Healthy Habits To Keep
To stay healthy while following a gluten-free diet, certain habits should be adopted. Eating a balanced diet is key - make sure you’re getting adequate amounts of fiber, protein, iron, calcium, and other vitamins and minerals from your food choices. Additionally, buy fresh foods when possible and limit processed options as much as possible. This will help ensure that you are consuming nutrient-dense meals.
Consult With A Nutritionist
If you’re having trouble transitioning to a gluten-free lifestyle, or are unsure of how to adjust your diet, it can be helpful to consult with a nutritionist. A registered dietitian can help you put together meal plans and provide guidance on navigating the grocery store. They will also be able to provide tips for maintaining a good nutritional balance while following a gluten-free lifestyle.
Overall, living with celiac disease or a gluten intolerance doesn't have to mean giving up delicious foods and snacks - there are plenty of options available! With mindful shopping and meal planning, people with these conditions can still enjoy tasty meals that don't skimp on nutrition. By taking the time to read labels carefully, consulting with a nutritionist if needed, and keeping healthy habits, you can stay gluten-free without sacrificing flavor or nutrition.