It’s 2022 and if you’re someone who’s been recently diagnosed with Celiac disease I do have some good news. Now, more than ever, gluten-free living has become both widely accepted and increasingly accessible. That being said, it’s important to understand where cross-contamination is possible so that you can keep yourself safe. Despite that, living without gluten can be both delicious and nourishing with a few ideas to get you started.
Let’s start with the basics. Many foods will be safe to consume if you need to avoid gluten.
These include :
- Clean Lean Protein Powder
- Corn/ maize
- Nuts and nut butter
- Fresh fruit
- Fresh vegetables
- Herbs and spices
- Meats and fish purchased without sauce or seasonings
- Home-made soups (avoid bouillon cubes, barley malt, and all types of pasta)
And there are many more clearly labelled gluten-free products if you want to save time from bread and wraps to pancakes and biscuits. Nuzest’s products are all certified to be gluten-free without any risk of cross-contamination. Their Just Natural Clean Lean Protein powder in particular is unsweetened and works well as a substitute when a recipe calls for flour. It’s a great binder for vegan or meat-based burger patties and meatballs and can be used in anything from pancake mixes to cookies.
There are some foods that you will want to avoid, some more obvious than others. These include:
- Oats are generally avoided because they are almost always processed in mills that process grains containing gluten
- Modified food starch
- Barley enzymes (found in a majority of breakfast cereals), soy sauce, and distilled vinegar (malt vinegar)
You’ll want to do what you can to avoid cross-contamination including :
- Cleaning out cutlery drawers; they are great crumb collectors
- Replace old wooden spoons and cutting boards
- Wash dish rags/sponges frequently
- Use a new toaster for gluten-free foods only or buy toaster bags (do not use a toaster that’s already been used to toast regular bread)
- Use squirt bottles for condiments like mayonnaise, mustard, jelly, etc. to avoid contamination
- Mark containers with "GF" on the lid of gluten-free items.
- Clean food prep areas
- Dedicate shelves and cabinets in your kitchen and refrigerator to "gluten-free food only”
Now, once you’ve got your pantry stocked, there are so many delicious creations that you can easily make from home.
- Greek Yogurt with berries or your favourite fruit and some nuts/seeds.
- Gluten-free Vogels toast with peanut butter and banana (or your favourite toppings)
- A smoothie made with Nuzest Clean Lean Protein such as this delicious breakfast banana smoothie
- Omelette with diced capsicum, mushrooms and cheese.
- Mexican salad with brown rice, corn and other diced veggies, and black beans.
- Greek salad with cos lettuce, feta cheese, tomatoes cucumbers, red onions and olives.
- A sandwich with gluten-free bread and your favourite fillings
- A homemade wrap made with plenty of spinach and delicious fillings. Give this one a go - Green Protein Wraps
- Try these ultimate vegan meatballs with your favourite gluten-free pasta
- Can’t go wrong with your typical ‘meat and three veg!”
- Enchiladas with GF corn tortillas.
- Chicken noodle soup made with rice noodles and lots of your favourite veggies (make sure the stock is gluten-free)
While this guide can get you started, we encourage you to get support with your new gluten-free way of life to ensure your safety and inspire new ideas. Reach out to a clinical nutritionist or dietician – your GP can point you in the right direction should you need a hand. There are also heaps of resources and support available through Celiac New Zealand.
Gluten-free living does not have to leave you feeling deprived, it can be delicious, easy and even cost-effective when done right. You got this, and Nuzest has got your back!