Good day to you. If you follow me on Twitter (@GFDougie via https://twitter.com/#!/GFDougie), you know me to be very Nutrition-conscious and Health-minded in regard to what a celiac diet should be.
While noting the celiac diet is not a very easy diet to follow for all the ingredient reading, ingredient interpreting, and internet research; there are easier methods in following the diet which are more stress free. What are those methods? I’m glad you asked. There are many ways you can enjoy, yes I said enjoy, a celiac diet and maintain nutrition relatively stress free. Let’s start at the local Grocer, and the Produce department. Many vegetables and fruits await you there – and they have no ingredient list to read! There are different squash varieties you can sauté in olive oil together with onion, herb and spice; you can cook together tomato, okra, herb and spice in a saucepan; or you can make a soup of potato, onion, herb and spice, and cream. You can also find “stir-fry vegetables” in a bag, add chicken or tofu, gluten-free soy or tamari sauce, and call it dinner! What about making a fruit salad, grilling pineapples, or sautéing apples with sugar and cinnamon? Can you say “peaches & cream?”
If you are into more wholesome, organic produce choices for your celiac diet, a cheaper alternative to the grocer is the farmer’s market. Buying from locally grown vegetable/ fruit markets supports your local economy. The benefit to you is “natural.” Buy in-season vegetables and fruits at these markets at “rock-bottom” prices and save yourself some money. Corn on the cob and lima beans can be transformed into fried corn or succotash. You can use gluten-free bread and make breaded tomatoes. Heck, you can even use an All Purpose Gluten-free Flour blend and make … fried green tomatoes! How about fresh-snapped green beans and mashed potatoes? What about stuffed bell peppers with rice, beef, and gluten-free seasonings! The choices for menu options are endless.
Let’s go back to the Grocer, and Frozen Foods, and see how easy this can be for the celiac diet. Again, the ingredient list is not hard to comprehend: peas, corn, onions, green beans, cauliflower, broccoli, etc. Not much to read there, right? How many meals can you make with so many combinations? Almost endless, I think. You can make stews, soups, casseroles and many more things I’m not thinking of at a fraction of the cost of fresh produce. Side dishes made with these items are even more unlimited!
If you are not vegan, other stress free celiac-friendly departments at the Grocer are the Meat and Seafood departments. Obviously chicken, turkey, pork, and seafood are more healthful than beef. But, with moderation, all can be included in a celiac diet at no risk of ingesting gluten.
The bottom line – instant, boxed, or microwaved entrées and other food items are not as nutritional. Cook from scratch and know what you are eating. The burden is upon you on how nutritious you are.
Research, educate, and advocate all celiac and gluten-free – and Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) Awareness in April.
Peace be with you.