Your One-stop Guide to a Gluten-free Diet!

by | Aug 20, 2014 | Diet and Fitness, Health, Mens Health, Women's Health | 0 comments

A gluten-free diet excludes the protein gluten. Gluten is found in wheat, barley, rye, and triticale (a cross between wheat and rye). No one can think of even compromising with the regular food they eat. We eat foods containing gluten, a protein composite mainly found in wheat and related grains, including rye and barley. Gluten gives elasticity to dough, which helps it rise and gives the bread a chewy texture. It is composed of two different proteins: gliadin protein and glutenin protein. Moreover, the related wheat grains like barley and rye contain protein composites such as prolamins and glutenin.

You may find gluten in many foods, and the list of foods containing gluten is a long one:

  1. Grains – Grains that contain gluten in their natural form include wheat, barley (including barley malt), kamut, orzo, bulgur, semolina, spelled, and flour.
  2. Pasta—There are different types of pasta, such as macaroni, spaghetti, and rigatoni. Pasta contains wheat, semolina, and flour, which contain gluten.
  3. Baked goods—Most processed baked goods are made from wheat containing gluten. These include cakes, breads, breadcrumbs, pastries, sandwich buns, hot-dog buns, cupcakes, tortillas, pizza crust, pie crust, and cereals from rye, wheat, bran, and barley.
  4. Meat and poultry – In their natural state, meat and poultry are gluten-free, but the processing and cooking of these products add gluten. Meat and poultry products containing gluten include breaded meat, chicken, and oven or deep-fried meats.
  5. Other products—The list of products containing gluten is too long, but some other products that contain gluten include beer, tabouli, gravies, sauces, candies, bouillon cubes, frozen or canned vegetables in sauce, potato and tortilla chips, canned soup and broth, restaurant, or fast-food french fries.

Is gluten bad for health?

Every study has its own opinion; some say that it isn’t necessarily bad, but some say that it is bad for people who have gluten intolerance. This means that their bodies produce an abnormal immune response during digestion. The most known form of gluten intolerance is celiac disease, which affects an estimated 1% of Americans. Celiac disease causes an abnormal response to gluten, thereby damaging the small intestine’s lining. This condition prevents the body from absorption of important nutrients.

Diarrhea, anemia, a severe skin rash called dermatitis herpetiformis, and bone pain are common symptoms of celiac disease. Doctors recommend patients go on a gluten-free diet in cases of gluten intolerance. Doctors prescribe the patients a list of gluten foods and ingredients, including bread, french fries, pasta, salad dressing, pizzas, soy sauce, beer, some soups, and others (unless otherwise marked as “gluten-free”).

What is a gluten-free diet?

A gluten-free diet excludes protein gluten; as we know, gluten is found in grains. The doctor recommends a gluten-free diet because it is used to treat celiac disease.

Variegated research and studies have stated that many people are considering switching to gluten-free diets in recent years. However, experts have already shown worry signs that going on or switching to gluten-free diets without explicitly could cause problems to a person’s health, as these are nutrient-deficient.

Generally, gluten-free diets help people who are sensitive to gluten. Several studies worldwide have stated that it is only a perception of people that a gluten-free diet helps in weight loss. People lose weight when they stop eating pizzas, pasta, and bread. However, gluten products are high glycemic-index foods, including cakes, cookies, and muffins. Many specialty grocery stores sell gluten-free foods and products. Moreover, if you’re considering starting a gluten-free diet or planning to lose weight, consult your doctor or nutritionist for the right diet.

What comprises a gluten-free diet?

Switching to a gluten-free diet may be difficult for people. Start eating the right variety of fruits, vegetables, low-fat dairy products (do not have gluten-containing additives), nuts, lean meat, beans, eggs, poultry, and fish to stay gluten-free. Some other gluten-free foods that may become part of your diet include:

  • Gluten-free flours (rice, soy, corn, potato, bean)
  • Hominy (corn)
  • Millet
  • Quinoa
  • Corn and cornmeal
  • Rice
  • Arrowroot
  • Flax
  • Buckwheat
  • Soy
  • Tapioca

Before jumping to these foods, it’s very important to ensure that the foods mentioned above are not processed or mixed with gluten-containing grains, additives, or preservatives.

Gluten-free recipes:

You can prepare healthy and delicious meals and snacks even on a gluten-free diet. Below are some examples of gluten-free meals that you can enjoy throughout the day:


  • You can have gluten-free bread with peanut butter for breakfast and a small bowl of fresh berries. As you have read above, wheat is the main ingredient in processing bread, contributing to the dough’s elasticity. But gluten-free bread is made with ground flour and a variety of healthy materials such as almonds, rice (rice bread), corn (cornbread), sorghum (sorghum bread), or legumes such as beans (bean bread). To maintain health, washing out the image of fluffiness and shape is important.
  • You can also have an omelet with 2 eggs, gluten-free bread, sautéed mushrooms, onions, peppers, and reduced-fat cheese.


  • You can have tuna salad with light mayo, chopped carrots, and chopped celery. To make it tastier and healthier, serve tuna salad on gluten-free crackers or wrapped in large lettuce leaves to make lettuce wraps.
  • Prepare chicken and cheese quesadilla fixed on a pure corn tortilla with pinto beans.


  • You can have rice noodles topped with sauteed vegetables and tofu.
  • Baked chicken breast with corn and cooked broccoli seasoned with lemon juice and freshly ground pepper.
  • Tacos are made with pure corn tortillas filled with lean ground beef, tomatoes, black beans, and reduced-fat cheese.
  • Grilled salmon fillet with wild rice and a side salad (with gluten-free dressing).

Gluten-free desserts:

To conclude your gluten-free day, it must be with gluten-free dessert. This seems like a mouth-watering option, and yes, it is. There are a variety of gluten-free desserts that you can eat after dinner. These include:

  • Apple cake with cranberries
  • Banana-blueberry muffin cake
  • Coffee biscuits with chocolate chips
  • Brownies

Going gluten-free means reducing bread and wheat preparations in your meals. Cakes, pies, alcoholic beverages, pasta, and oily food like french fries and burgers should also be eliminated. If you’re still unsure what foods fall into the gluten-free category, consult a dietitian or doctor for the best advice.

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Amelia Smith

Nutritionist, herbalist, health and medicine writer and yoga enthusiast, Amelia Smith, is a professional in the health, nutrition and diet industry.

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