Gluten-Free Diet Guide: Recipes & Health Benefits

Gluten-Free Diet Guide

 
Suffering from chronic illness? Joint pain?  Bone problem?  Hair loss? Obesity? Dull skin? Mood swings? And bad eating habits? 

What if I tell you that it’s possible to reduce these discomforts and have a healthier life with a Gluten-free diet?  

Remember, you are what you eat! Let’s talk about what a Gluten-free diet is and its health benefits on this blog. I also have a bonus for you – GLUTEN-FREE RECIPES! 

What Is Gluten and a Gluten-Free Diet?  

Let’s start with gluten; gluten is a plant protein that can be found in wheat, rye, and barley – which is available everywhere. We all know that whole grains are an essential part of a balanced diet, and contrary to popular belief, gluten isn’t actually bad for most people. However, gluten might be harmful to a few people because there’s difficulty digesting it and that may result in a digestive system problem. So far, the only known treatment option is to eliminate gluten completely. 

Now, let’s talk about a gluten-free diet; A gluten-free diet is basically a diet that does not include gluten. Simple, right?! Most people are actually doing this diet just for starting a healthy habit, weight loss, etc.  but for some, it’s literally a lifesaver, a hope for a new life. 

How to Start a Gluten-Free Diet? 

  • You should learn what foods to enjoy and what foods to avoid. 
  • Try to explore gluten-free goods available in your area. 
  • You should carefully read food labels. 
  • You should watch out for cross-contamination with gluten. 
  • Join a Gluten-free support group both online and offline. 

Food to Avoid 

Food to Avoid

These are the food you need to avoid, when you’re starting a gluten-free diet, you may not directly expose to them, but there might be cross-contamination. 

  •  Grains- gravies, croutons, bread crumbs, biscuits, rolls, pita, batter-fried foods, noodles, tortillas, ice cream cones, bran, wheat germ, dumplings, pancake mixes, pies, pumpernickel and rye breads, cornbread, vermicelli, doughnuts, buns, pretzels, spaghetti, waffles, and pastries.   
  • Sweets and Treats- products made with malt, all chocolate and chocolate candy containing malt, ice cream, candies containing cereal extract, sherbets, commercial cake frosting, and root beer.   
  • Condiments and Seasonings- Worcestershire sauce, MSG, modified food starch, malt products, bouillon, barley malt, and soy sauce.   
  • Alcoholic Beverages- whiskey, certain vodkas, and gin 
  • Processed Meats- cold cuts, liverwurst, hot dogs, sausages, bologna, pepperoni, salami, and pate 
  • Miscellaneous- Many items that people get gluten exposure from are less obvious. Pet food, make-up, shampoos, and skin lotions are some common examples.   

Food to Enjoy 

Food to Enjoy

The following grains, legumes, seeds, and other starchy foods are naturally gluten-free: 

  • Amaranth 
  • Arrowroot 
  • Beans 
  • Buckwheat groats (also known as kasha) 
  • Cassava 
  • Chia 
  • Corn 
  • Flax 
  • Gluten-free oats 
  • Millet 
  • Nut flours 
  • Potato 
  • Quinoa 
  • Rice 
  • Sorghum 
  • Soy 
  • Tapioca 
  • Teff 
  • Yucca 

Gluten-Free Substitutes 

Gluten Free Substitutes

These are the following substitutes to jumpstart your gluten-free diet: 

  • Cereal 
  • Oats 
  • Soups and Sauces 
  • Produce 
  • Beverages 

10 Health Benefits of a Gluten-Free Diet 

Remember the saying “Think out of sight, out of mind”? Well, this is basically the kind of thinking you need if you want this gluten-free diet to be successful. It doesn’t work overnight, you have to put in an effort, be committed, and just don’t eat gluten. Getting into a gluten-free diet means you are on the path to making your gut healthier than ever. Learn about the 10 surprising health benefits of a Gluten-Free Diet. 

1.  A gluten-free diet reduces splitting headaches.  

Are you suffering from frequent headaches?   

Your gut and brain are strongly intertwined and this is why some people with gluten intolerance suffer from frequent headaches or migraines and we all know it’s the worst feeling and may disrupt your day. Migraine headaches are clearly more common in those who have gluten sensitivity or celiac disease. Switching to a gluten-free diet, on the other hand, has been shown to help lessen the frequency of these headaches. 

2. A gluten-free diet improves your bone health 

Do you feel like you have weak bones? 

If you’re suffering from osteoporosis or weak bones, then, a gluten-free diet is good for you because it improves your bone health. Malnutrition is one of the risks of having an undetected condition like celiac. Unfortunately, your small intestine is severely injured, and nutrients are unable to enter your circulation. After a while, this leads to vitamin deficiencies such as calcium and iron, which can lead to other issues such as poor bone health and anemia. Calcium malabsorption has been related to a higher risk of bone diseases such as osteoporosis. However, studies show that if you have a gluten sensitivity and eliminate gluten from your diet, your bone health would certainly improve.  

3. A gluten-free diet clears up your stressed skin.    

Do you want clearer and healthier skin? 

Rashes, such as eczema and psoriasis, are more common in those with undiagnosed celiac disease or gluten sensitivity. A gluten-free diet can help you improve your overall skin health and potentially get rid of some skin issues. Gluten sensitivity can cause skin rashes such as eczema and plaque psoriasis, as well as acne. Your gut and skin are also intertwined! Furthermore, there is some evidence that eating a gluten-free diet can enhance your skin. So, if you’re fighting a skin battle and suspect you’re suffering from gluten sensitivity, try cutting it out and seeing if your skin improves! 

4. A gluten-free diet is that it reduces joint pain.   

How often do you experience joint pain?  

Celiac disease and gluten sensitivity are most commonly linked to the gastrointestinal tract, but they can have far-reaching effects. Wrist, knee, and back pains are all common symptoms of celiac disease. This is because the celiac disease causes an abnormal immune reaction, which causes inflammation to develop. A gluten-free diet will help to prevent this type of joint discomfort, but make sure you don’t eat even a small amount of gluten because it can cause your symptoms to happen again. 

5. A gluten-free diet can cure digestive discomforts 

Bloated? Frequent constipation?  

Bloating, diarrhea, constipation, and severe stomachache are examples of digestive problems that may quickly disrupt your day. If you quit eating gluten but still experience digestive issues, you should see your primary care provider. You may contact Simple Choice for health coverage. 

6. A gluten-free diet could help you feel more energized, less fatigued, and sluggish.   

Tired? Weak? Can’t get things done on time? 

We all have busy schedules and high energy is crucial to get our tasks done well. A shortage of vitamins and minerals that contribute to your energy levels makes your body feel extremely weak. Imagine doing your unlimited task unwell, that’s really the worst day of your life, right? Nutrient deficiencies as a result of gut damage may be the cause of these symptoms. Anemia, for example, can be caused by an iron shortage, which is frequent in celiac disease. Don’t let fatigue, sluggishness, and brain fog get in the way; it’s never too late to make a switch. A gluten-free diet gives you high energy to do impossible tasks and be active. Don’t forget to consult your doctor before starting this diet to know the cause of your symptoms. 

7. A gluten-free diet had a positive impact on depression symptoms and can assist in enhancing a person’s quality of life.    

Sleepless nights? Depression? Mood swings? 

Gluten was linked to mood disorders in recent research, and it’s difficult to manage our thoughts when we are weak, alone, and hungry. For some people, stress-eating is the answer but the problem occurs when you’ve been eating gluten non-stop and don’t realize you’re intolerant to it, it’s entirely possible to suffer from depression, anxiety, or mood changes. You may consult a dietician or your primary care provider for solutions and suggestions. It’s still not too late to make a lifestyle change. 

8. A gluten-free diet reduces hair loss. 

Suffering from severe hair loss? 

Nothing is more annoying than unlimited hair falls before, during, and after taking a bath or brushing our hair. That’s basically what most women are experiencing. According to research, a gluten-free diet can reduce or even stop the inflammation experienced by those who are gluten sensitive; so that means that your body and scalp can function as they’re meant to and that’s where healing begins as well. You can confidently say goodbye to hair loss and say welcome to new ones.  

9. Worried about autoimmune diseases? 

Eliminating gluten reduces your risk of getting autoimmune diseases. Not all people know this but according to studies, gluten can cause a lot of inflammation in your small intestines, which can lead to a condition known as leaky gut. Toxins, protein, and gluten can now pass into your bloodstream since your small intestine has become permeable. The damage generally leads to autoimmune disorders. If you’ve been experiencing severe discomforts, go to your doctor right away. Health medications can be expensive, so it’s good to know the right plan for you. Simple Choice can help you choose a plan that suits you and your present needs. Click here to know more. 

10. Do you want to lose weight? 

It’s common for people to lose weight when they switch to a gluten-free diet, especially if they’ve following this diet for quite a while. This is because it eliminates numerous junk foods from the diet, which are very unhealthy and have unnecessary calories to your system. Fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins are frequently substituted for these items you may check the cheapest supermarket near you, and don’t forget to watch out for cross-contamination. Packaging that says “gluten-free” foods such as cakes, pastries, and snacks should be avoided at all costs because they can quickly add a lot of calories to your diet and that’s the last thing we want, right?! So, stay on track to achieve your dream body weight. 

Summary 

A gluten-free diet can have a lot of health benefits, especially for people that have been diagnosed with celiac disease or people with gluten intolerance. This diet may ease digestive discomforts, may reduce or eliminate chronic inflammation, increase energy, and promotes weight loss. Still, it’s very important to consult first with your primary care provider to know the risks and benefits of this diet to your health. If you’re not sure about your health coverage and your benefits, you may ask for help from a licensed insurance agent like Simple Choice Insurance Brokerage. 

Need Gluten-Free Recipes? 

1. Gluten-Free Oatmeal 

Gluten-Free Oatmeal
Gluten-Free Oatmeal

2. Gluten-Free Macaroni & Cheese 

Gluten-Free Macaroni and Cheese
Gluten-Free Macaroni and Cheese

3. Gluten-Free Pizza 

Gluten-Free Pizza
Gluten-Free Pizza

4. Gluten-Free Pizza 

Gluten-Free Fried Chicken
Gluten-Free Fried Chicken

What is the Bottom Line? 

A gluten-free diet can be difficult to maintain in social circumstances.  At first, adopting a gluten-free diet may appear overwhelming. However, with the current gluten-free obsession, it shouldn’t be too difficult, especially if you live in a city.  

If you’re a beginner or still checking whether or not this diet fits you – well, I hope this blog helps. And if you’re experiencing serious and chronic illnesses or have a history of any illnesses or diseases, make sure to consult your doctor first. And if you need help with your health coverage, Simple Choice can help you choose what’s the right and affordable health plan for you and your family. Call us at 832-626-7791 or book an appointment here.