Is your friend or relative following a gluten-free diet and avoiding regular bakery products at your place? Do you know why they made this switch?
You might have heard from people around you about following a gluten-free diet. They eat bakery products and meals that do not include gluten. They are always careful about what they are consuming.
Though you have heard the term, you might not know what gluten-free means and why they obey the diet. And this is why we are here with this blog to enlighten you about the topic and help you make the right decisions if you are thinking of switching to gluten free diet for weight loss or detoxification.
1. What Is A Gluten-Free Diet?
2. Gluten-Free Diet Benefits
3. Gluten-Free Diet Food
4. Gluten-Free Indian Diet Plan Sample
5. Dietitian’s Recommendation
6. The Final Say
A gluten-free diet is a diet that eliminates gluten, a protein found in grains like wheat, barley, and rye. It can cause problems for individuals with celiac disease, gluten sensitivity, or wheat allergy. These conditions can lead to inflammation, digestive issues, and other health problems in the case of gluten consumption.
A gluten-free diet avoids foods that contain this protein, like bread, pasta, cereal, and some processed foods. Instead, individuals on a gluten-free diet can choose alternative grains and natural foods without gluten, like rice, quinoa, fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins.
It is important to note that a gluten-free diet should only be followed if necessary for medical reasons because it can be challenging to get all essential nutrients without careful planning and monitoring.
A gluten-free diet may not be beneficial or necessary for everyone, and some gluten-free foods can be higher in calories, sugar, and fat than their gluten-containing counterparts.
A gluten-free diet may have benefits for people with certain health conditions, such as:
This autoimmune disorder damages the small intestine due to gluten consumption. A gluten-free diet is essential for managing celiac disease and can help to relieve symptoms like bloating, gas, diarrhoea, and fatigue.
This condition involves experiencing symptoms similar to celiac disease after consuming gluten, but without the autoimmune response or intestinal damage. A gluten-free diet can aid in controlling these symptoms.
Wheat allergy is an allergic reaction to wheat that can cause a range of symptoms, like itching, hives, and difficulty breathing. A gluten-free diet can help to prevent allergic reactions and trouble-causing symptoms.
Some people may follow a gluten-free diet to manage other health conditions, like irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) or inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), as gluten can be difficult to digest and may exacerbate symptoms.
Also, people with specific liver issues avoid gluten in some situations to support liver cells. People with some inflammation are also sometimes asked to avoid gluten as it might increase inflammation.
Nowadays, people also go on a gluten-free diet for weight loss. However, it is a therapeutic diet, and one should only use it for specific medical conditions.
Here are some food examples for a gluten-free diet one can consider including in their day:
All fresh fruits and vegetables are naturally gluten-free as long as they are not processed or coated in gluten-containing sauces or seasonings.
Some grains are gluten-free naturally, like rice, quinoa, corn, and specific oats certified gluten-free. Other gluten-free grains and grain-like products include millet, sorghum, buckwheat, amaranth, and teff.
Meat, poultry, fish, and tofu are naturally gluten-free as long as they are not breaded or marinated in gluten-containing sauces.
Most dairy products, like milk, cheese, and yoghurt, are naturally gluten-free.
Beans, lentils, and peas are naturally gluten-free and a good source of protein and fibre.
Though all nuts and seeds are naturally gluten-free, you should check for cross-contamination in case of processing in a facility that also processes gluten-containing grains.
Many gluten-free substitutes are available for gluten-containing foods, like gluten-free bread, pasta, and flour.
Here, it is important to read food labels carefully to check for gluten-containing ingredients and to be aware of hidden sources of gluten, like soy sauce, malt vinegar, and certain types of flavourings and thickeners.
An example of a gluten-free Indian diet plan for non-vegetarians:
An example of a gluten-free Indian diet plan for vegetarians:
Raita made with gluten-free yoghourt, cucumber, and tomatoes
Individuals with celiac disease, gluten sensitivity, or wheat allergy must follow a gluten-free diet to manage symptoms and prevent long-term health complications.
People should know about a gluten-free diet, including which foods to avoid and which to consume, how to read food labels for gluten-containing ingredients, how to ensure adequate nutrient intake, how to manage diet on dining out, travelling, and handle social situations while following a gluten-free diet plan. -Dietitian Aditi Upadhyay
In conclusion, a gluten-free diet is a dietary approach that involves avoiding foods that contain gluten, a protein. This diet is for individuals with celiac disease, non-celiac gluten sensitivity, or wheat allergy, as consuming gluten can cause adverse symptoms and lead to other health complications.
Following a gluten-free diet requires careful attention to food labels and ingredients, as many common foods contain gluten. However, a gluten-free diet can still be healthy and balanced with the help of a healthcare professional.
It may also benefit some individuals without gluten-related disorders, like improving digestion and increasing energy levels.
1. What foods are allowed on a gluten-free diet?
Foods allowed on a gluten-free diet include naturally gluten-free foods like fruits, vegetables, meats, fish, dairy, legumes, nuts, and seeds. One can incorporate a few gluten-free grains and starches into the diet, like rice, corn, quinoa, and potato.
2. Can a gluten-free diet be unhealthy?
While a gluten-free diet can be healthy, it can also be unhealthy if heavily reliant on processed gluten-free foods high in sugar, salt, and fat. It is vital to incorporate a variety of nutrient-dense whole foods into the diet to meet nutritional needs.
3. Is a gluten-free diet suitable for everyone?
A gluten-free diet is not beneficial for everyone. It is a therapeutic diet, and only individuals with celiac disease, non-celiac gluten sensitivity, or wheat allergy should follow it.
For others, eliminating gluten from the diet may not provide any health benefits and lead to nutrient deficiencies if not done correctly.
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