Joined: 25 May 2005
User's local time:
2017 Dec 14 - 10:20 AM
Food Intolerances : gluten, dairy, soy, corn, yeast, chocolate, tomato, white potato, celery, sesame, carrot, yellow squash, lamb, pork, mango, strawberry, almond, cashew, vanilla, grapefruit, raspberry, avocado, mustard, paprika, cauliflower, cucumber, plum, and more!
|Posted: Sun Jun 19, 2005 8:59 pm Post subject: So you're thinking of trying the gluten-free diet......
|So you're thinking of trying the gluten-free (GF) diet................
You've been reading and asking questions, and now you are wondering if it might be worth trying the gluten-free (GF) diet. The most difficult part of the diet is often just making the initial decision to try it. No lifestyle change is ever easy. The major challenge in this diet is the "hidden" gluten in so many processed foods. Gluten can be hiding in any of the following ingredients listed on a label: malt extract, "enriched" rice, modified food starch, additives, preservatives, flavorings, colorings/dyes, etc. The fewer processed foods you eat, the less hidden gluten you will encounter, and the more opportunity your colon will have to heal.
Here are some "quick and dirty" suggestions for getting you started:
1. Read the book "Against the Grain" by Jax Peters Lowell. It is informative and funny.
2. Review the last paragraph (by Dr. Fine) in the article in this Forum titled "What is a gluten? What is a gluten-free diet?". Although an "optimal" GF diet eliminates virtually all PROCESSED foods, this may be difficult or impossible for you to do, especially initially. Therefore, it is important to learn how to read labels in order to avoid products that contain gluten. When in doubt about the possible presence of gluten, call or email the manufacturer to find out. Or ask the GF dieters here on this Board.
3. It helps to keep a little notebook to record your findings about safe GF products. Before you know it, you will have a long list of acceptable foods.
3. Check out resources for lists of GF or "safe" foods: www.celiac.com, the delphiforums website*, and the booklet titled "Cooperative Gluten-Free Commercial Products Listing", which can be purchased for a small fee from the Celiac Sprue Association (402-558-0600); You might like to print-out safe food lists and carry them with you to the grocery store.
4. Make a trip to a health food store to purchase some "basic" GF products, like GF pasta (made from corn, rice, or quinoa), GF cookies (Pamela's and Glutano's are good), GF soy sauce (made with soybeans instead of wheat), GF toaster waffles, and GF cereal.
5. Make up a little "GF emergency kit" to keep in your car for situations where there may be nothing GF to eat. Suggested snacks include plain potato or corn chips, salsa, dried fruits, nuts, GF cookies, and rice crackers or cakes (can be spread with peanut butter).
6. What do we do about BREAD? Unfortunately, almost none of the commercial GF breads tastes like the "real thing". The Kinnikinnick brand breads seem to be the exception if you can find them in your health food store. You can mail-order tasty breads from www.kinnikinnick.com or www.mrritts.com - but this can be expensive. Some GF bread mixes work well in bread machines. One of the favorite GF bread mixes of our members here is made by Manna from Anna. Bette Hagman has authored a number of cookbooks for GF baking. We have found that you can make sandwiches without bread by using corn or rice tortillas, GF toaster waffles, rice cakes, or even lettuce or romaine leaves.
7. Ask lots of questions of the members here. You will find a wealth of information from the "experts" who have been living daily with this diet - some for many years now.
8. Good luck! And try to be patient. For most, the diarrhea disappears within 6 months (and often much more quickly). Other symptoms (aches/pains, "mental fog", bloating, and urgency) can improve within a few weeks. Those who are not improving as per these rough timelines may have other food intolerances, most commonly dairy, soy, eggs, yeast, etc. If another food trigger is found, it must be eliminated along with the gluten in order to regain full health.
*Go to www.delphiforums.com - On the left side, scroll down and click on "Health and Wellness Forums". Then click on the first option at the top, "Celiac Disease On-LineSupport Group". Scroll down and in the center click on "Gluten-Free Product Lists".
Blessed are they who can laugh at themselves, for they shall never cease to be amused.