How to Start Eating Gluten-Free
A person on a gluten-free diet should avoid processed foods.
Hi, I’m Maria Saracen from ArtfullyNourished.com and in this video for About.com, I’m going to give you six tips about how to start eating a gluten-free diet.My first tip is to know which foods contains gluten. Gluten is a protein composite that’s found only in certain species of grains, namely wheat, barley and rye. So if you’re following a gluten-free diet, you need to avoid these grains, which include kamut, spelt, durum and all other types of wheat as well as triticale which is a hybrid of wheat and rye.Okay, so now that you know what grains you need to cut out of your diet, my second tip is to know what you can keep or add in. Most of us already eat rice and corn, but you may not be quite as familiar with other grains and pseudo-grains like millet, amaranth, teff, sorghum, quinoa and buckwheat. The good news is that these are all gluten-free, so experiment and see what you like, because chances are, the more options you have, the happier you’ll be.My third tip is about oats. As far as oats go, there is some debate as to whether they’re safe or not. The main issue is with cross-contamination, both in the fields where the oats are grown and when they’re processed. So to be safe, make sure that any oats you eat are labeled gluten-free, and if you have celiac disease, it’s recommended that you only eat oats under the supervision of your doctor.My fourth tip is to avoid processed food. This is because gluten is often used as a stabilizing and thickening agent, so many processed foods contain gluten, and it’s often not an obvious ingredient to detect, even if you diligently read food labels.Which brings me to my fifth tip...Whenever possible, stick to whole, unprocessed foods. Here’s the good news - on a gluten-free diet, you can still enjoy fruit, vegetables, nuts, dairy, meat, eggs - pretty much anything except those few gluten containing grains that I mentioned. By eating and cooking with whole, unprocessed foods, you can keep things simple, not to mention, more healthy, and have peace of mind, knowing that what you’re eating is safe.My last tip is to familiarize yourself with gluten-free products. There are many substitutes for all your favorite gluten-containing foods like bread, pizza and pasta, and there’s even gluten-free beer. But remember to enjoy these products sparingly, not only because they tend to be quite expensive, but also because you want your new gluten-free diet to be as healthy as possible so your body can heal.Thanks for watching and for more information about eating gluten-free, please visit About.com