There are a lot of people who need to change their diet and go gluten free. Whilst approximately 1% of the population need to go gluten free as a consequence of coeliac disease another 6-8% of the population suffer from non-coeliac gluten sensitivity. Many people who suffer from other auto-immune conditions also find that removing gluten from the diet assists in managing their condition.
You realise that you need to make this change but you don’t really know where to start? This blog will help you get started with those changes. Lots of recipe ideas are contained in my page Gluten and Dairy Free Dinners and the recent blog Seven gluten and dairy free breakfasts.
The best way to start a gluten free diet is to do it after restocking your pantry and freezer. Look at what you usually eat and then prepare a shopping list to enable you to stock up on alternatives.
Ideal suggestions could include the following;
- Replace bread and crackers with suitable gluten free alternatives. Suitable alternatives for bread could include gluten free bread from Country Life, Dovedale, Healthybake, Schars or gluten free bakeries. Choices Bakery at Turramurra has a wide range and Deeks Bakery in Canberra provides online ordering across Australia. Gluten free bread is best served toasted and should be stored in the freezer so you can use it as needed.
- There is already a good range of gluten free crackers including rice crackers and corn cakes available in most supermarkets. Just read labels to make sure that there are no other ingredients that are problematic particularly if you have multiple food intolerances.
- Breakfast cereals often include gluten so its important to ensure that you have a suitable alternative. Commercial rice bubbles and cornflakes for example can contain gluten so its best to find alternatives such as puffed rice. Making your own muesli is an easy and cost effective option using a range of gluten free puffs and flakes as well as dried fruit, nuts and seeds.
- The porridge below is from Brookvale farms and is served with stewed plums and coconut yoghurt. Its tasty and only takes a few minutes to prepare.
- Pasta might be a good option for quick meals and there are several gluten free pastas to choose from including Orgran who have an excellent lasagne as well as San Remo. Ideally when cooking gluten free pasta keep stirring it whilst cooking to stop it sticking together. Also make sure that you rinse it well before serving.
- Baking is easier with gluten free options at hand such as gluten free plain and self raising flour plus gluten free cornflour. These can often be substituted in baking however generally if you don’t have gluten free flour you are better off using a mix of different gluten free flours to really improve results.
- Stock up on a range of rice including basmati and risotto rice so that you have a few different alternatives for meals.
- Check the Celiac organisation website for lists of foods which may have some gluten. Often it can be surprising with things such as soy sauce and BBQ sauce containing gluten which doesn’t seem quite unnecessary.
Do you have any other tips for going gluten free easily? Please post them in the comments section below.
Need help deciding if you need to change your diet? Christine Pope is practicing at Elemental Health St Ives and can be contacted for appointments on 8084 0081.