By Faith McGee, eHow Contributor
Gluten free diets are critical for those who suffer from wheat allergies, celiac disease, and dermatitis herpetiformis. Also, there is initial evidence that links autism to gluten consumption. Because it is used in the preparation, manufacturing, and ingredient list of many foods, you must be extremely careful when designing a meal plan.
Gluten has the tendency to pop up in the most unexpected foods. Used as a thickening agent, it can be found in sauces, condiments, and dairy products. Surprisingly, everyday ketchup can be toxic to those with a gluten allergy. But there is also a plethora of gluten free products on the market. Start off your day with a breakfast full of protein and nutrients. Breakfast tacos can be made with pure corn tortillas, eggs, tomatoes, onions, and aged cheese. For a quick meal, top a banana with natural peanut butter and make a fruit smoothie by using fruit with ice. Other ideas include hash browns, fruit salad, and gluten free muffins.
Lunch and Dinner
Eating out on a gluten free diet can be difficult. Never take someone's word that their product is gluten free. Numerous products do not list gluten on their ingredient list; however, during the distribution or preparation of the ingredients some form of gluten could have been used. For example, conveyor belts are often sprayed with gluten to prevent food from sticking.
Snacks are important for keeping up your metabolism and preventing your blood sugar from fluctuating. Apples, carrot slices, and nuts are easy to carry. Lunchtime meals may include salads with gluten free dressing, roasted chicken on a bed of spinach, or rice and beans with a splash of gluten free hot sauce. Be wary of lunch meats, imitation seafood, soy sauce, and soups.
Where to Buy Gluten Free Meals
Check out your local food speciality store for gluten free products. The gluten free trend has skyrocketed in recent years and many manufacturers are making it easier for people. Gluten free breads, muffin mixes, cookies, crackers, ice creams, gravies, and pasta have hit the grocery aisles. Look for the gluten free label before purchasing. If you have any questions about a product call the hot-line number.
Add more fresh fruit, vegetables, and meats to your diet. The more processed a food is, the more likely it contains gluten. Be sure to get the correct amount of calories every day. Living gluten free requires a bit of planning, but you will be amazed by the variety of foods available to you.