Taking gluten out from the diet of many gluten intolerant sufferers is a must in order to allow them to recover and lead normal lives, free of the symptoms associated with the condition. However, there are many foods that are available for purchase that contain gluten, some of them properly labeled as such, some of them not. Within this article we will try to sketch a list of foods that can be included on a all gluten free menu, foods that can be used to treat the intolerance, many of them that can also be enjoyed by other people.
It is very important for a gluten free menu to be tasty, appetizing and also fulfills the caloric and nutrient needs of those that consume them. So, let’s see what a gluten free menu can and should contain.
A Gluten Free Menu ca include:
- Meats.Everything is allowed, fish, chicken and other poultry, pork, mutton, beef and an assortment of game. Preparation method however is critical. No marinated sauces that may contain gluten sources should be used. Neither should the meat be covered in gluten rich crusts, batter, etc.
2. Seeds, and beans, nuts. These foods don’t contain gluten, except for those that may have been processed or coated. Again, to make sure, the best thing to do is avoid the items that have been preceded. Seeds and nuts can be processed at home where you can fry them yourself. Beans as well, should be processed free of gluten sources.
3. Fruits, vegetables and legumes are the most used in a gluten free menu, again, making sure that preparation methods don’t include gluten.
4. Dairy. From fresh milk to most cheeses, as long as the recipe doesn’t include sources of gluten, intentional or cross contaminated, everything should be ok.
A word about cross contamination is due as gluten free menu can actually contain traces of gluten, especially for the foods that have been processed in the same facilities. Therefore, it is important to try to avoid processed foods as much as possible, and, when consuming them, make sure that you cease consumption at the first sign of any of the symptoms associate with the problem.
Among the foods that are most probable of being cross contaminated the following:
- Pasta. Pasta can easily become contaminated, even before it is processed as such. Gluten rich rye, barley and other seeds can contaminate the seeds from which the gluten free pasta is produced. Be very careful and consume with moderation and also check for gluten free signs on the package.
- Bread and other bakery products, whether fresh or individually packaged. In most bakeries different dough sentiments will be prepared using the same surfaces. Only purchase from trusty sources.
- Most canned foods. Luncheon meats, pate, and other canned foods can be cross contaminated due to production facilities using the same production lines for gluten and non gluten containing foods, so, again, practice caution.
- Food dressings (sauces, gravy, pastes). May contain traces of wheat flour. Flour is usually used as a thickening agent so cross contamination is possible.
- Commercially available soups and soup mixes. The easiest to cross contaminate, given that these products are made with powders obtained by grinding using the same mills.