January 13th is National Gluten Free Day!
Updated: Jan 29
Over the last few years, eating a gluten free diet has gained in popularity. While eating gluten free may seem like a fad, for a lot of people it’s an essential tool for recovering and maintaining their health.
So, what is gluten? Gluten is the name of a group of proteins found in wheat, barley, rye and triticale. People who have a food sensitivity to gluten can have different physical symptoms like bloating, gas, brain fog and joint pain. For people with celiac disease, they have a severe sensitivity to gluten that causes an immune system reaction that causes damage to the GI tract as well as other parts of the body. In either case cutting gluten out of your diet can have profound health benefits. Many people, especially those with autoimmune diseases other than celiac disease, find that they can lower the inflammation in their body when they follow a gluten free diet which helps them feel better.
So how do you start eating gluten free? Well, once you decide to eat gluten free you suddenly realize that gluten is in EVERYTHING especially many of your favorite foods. Wheat, modified food starch, malt flavoring and other gluten containing ingredients can be found is so many foods. Educating yourself on gluten containing ingredients and checking food labels is incredibly important to being successful on a gluten free diet. Working with a dietitian knowledgeable in this area can help you to be successful.
Eating a gluten free diet doesn’t mean your food has to be tasteless and boring. There are so many great gluten free ready-made foods and recipes out there. Working with a dietitian knowledgeable in this area can help you to be successful and avoid feeling deprived.
To help you get started here are some of my favorite gluten free recipes including some desserts because life without chocolate chip cookies would just be cruel.
Laura Stavely, MS, RD, CDCES is a Registered Dietitian, Certified Integrative and Functional Nutritionist, and Certified Diabetes Care and Education Specialist.
Visit her website sosimplehealth.com for more information.