When I first started out eating gluten free, I was completely overwhelmed. Not only were so many of my favorites off limits, but it seemed like everything was so complicated. Gluten was literally lurking everywhere (ice cream, salad dressings, ketchup…) and before long it became too much. Slowly gluten found its way back into my life and my health begin to suffer. (Hello red face and upset stomach!)
Luckily Skye’s gluten allergy forced me back on the straight and narrow, and I’m feeling much better for it.
For those of you who are either just starting out or are struggling with a gluten free diet, here are ten things I’ve learned along the way.
- No matter how shy you are (and I’m shy) don’t be afraid to be your own advocate when eating out. For a long time I assumed if I just stuck with a salad and skipped the croutons I was going to be ok. I can’t tell you how many times I glutened myself because I didn’t realize that most salad dressings in restaurants have gluten in them. This is true for restaurants that are seemingly gluten free friendly. As an example, at Hard Rock Cafe you can get a hamburger or veggie burger on a gluten free bun, but sadly they don’t offer a single gluten free salad dressing. Another surprise culprit of gluten is vegetable seasoning.
- Even if you are someone who prides yourself on staying away from all packaged foods, there is no shame in stocking up on bread for those days where you just don’t have time to make bread. I had a hard time with this one, which is one of the reasons I fell of the wagon for a while. These days, I make sure I have gluten free bread and tortillas in the freezer at all times. Sometimes you just need to be able to grab a quick sandwich.
- At the same time, plan on eating a mostly whole foods diet. It is just as easy to eat an unhealthy gluten free diet as it is and unhealthy diet packed with gluten. Most people begin a gluten free diet because they want to feel better. Fill your diet with real food and you will find that you are moving in the direction of your goals.
- Make your own salad dressings. They will be healthier, free of gluten and taste much better!
- Many gluten free products are also GMO – don’t assume that just because something is gluten free it is healthy! Here is an article that talks about how the majority of gluten free products contain GMO’s. You can browse for Non-GMO Project certified items here.
What tips do you have for gluten free living?
Learn more about living gluten free! Visit http://udisglutenfree.com/community
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Udi’s Gluten Free. The opinions and text are all mine.