Are you trying to avoid gluten? Did you know that about 30% of the U.S. population is actively trying to avoid gluten? If you are one of those people, here are some tips:
Naturally gluten free - Learn to love naturally gluten free foods such as vegetables, fruits, nuts and seeds, rice, potatoes, and corn, among many others.
Traps - Foods like licorice, dressings, sauces and gravies may contain gluten. Be sure to read the ingredients label on every packaged food item you buy.
- Wheat-free does not mean gluten free. A food labeled as “wheat-free” might still contain rye or barley, which means the product is not gluten free.
You may think it’s impossible to go gluten free on a plant-based diet since most of the whole foods in a vegan diet contain gluten. However here are a few different grains that are gluten free and should be a staple in what you consume.
Buckwheat: Despite its name, buckwheat is not related to wheat and IS gluten free. This grain is often processed into groats, flour, and noodles. The groats, used in much the same way as rice, are the main ingredient in many traditional European and Asian dishes.
Buckwheat is popular as a health food due to its high mineral and antioxidant content. Its benefits may include improved blood sugar control.
Gluten-free oats: Yes oatmeal is gluten free but it turns out that oats are the most cross-contaminated grain with gluten. If you are sensitive to even trace amounts of gluten then it’s critical you look for oat brands that are certified gluten free which will be printed on the packaging.
Manufacturers in the United States have to abide by the FDA’s definition of gluten free which means they have to ensure that the final products have less than 20 ppm of gluten.
Quinoa - Quinoa is gluten free, high in protein and one of the few plant foods that contain sufficient amounts of all nine essential amino acids. It is also high in fiber, magnesium, B vitamins, iron, potassium, calcium, phosphorus, vitamin E and various beneficial antioxidants.
Rice - Rice is considered a naturally gluten-free food - even sticky and glutinous rice. Brown rice is said to be healthier than white rice and has a lower GI index. Be cautious with rice mixes as they often contain gluten ingredients — always read labels carefully. And also beware of sushi rice, since it can be made with a grain-based vinegar that may cause reactions in people who are particularly sensitive.
To read more about other grains that are gluten free, check out this article. To learn more about eating gluten free, visit the Celiac Disease Foundation. You can also find our gluten-free donuts here, which are made with rice flour.