Tips for Making the Switch to a Gluten-Free Life
There are many benefits to switching to a gluten-free diet, from weight loss to alleviating the symptoms of celiac disease or gluten sensitivity, and even helping to reduce the symptoms of ADHD. If you’re considering making the switch, you’ve probably been overwhelmed by the realization that gluten is in practically everything in your diet. Today going gluten-free is easier than ever, especially if you know a few tricks of the trade.
Make Food Labels Your Friend
There are so many foods that contain gluten that it can be a bit of a shock for people who decide to go gluten-free. From ketchup to soy sauce, and even ice cream, gluten-containing foods aren’t always what you’d expect. That’s why reading food labels is a must in a gluten-free diet.
Because some brands of certain products, like ketchup, contain gluten while other brands do not, there is no way to simply exclude foods by category. You could, but then you’d risk missing out on indulging in something delicious.
Know Where to Find Gluten-Free Foods
The idea of a gluten-free diet wasn’t a concept widely known until a few years ago, but suddenly
it seems everyone is going gluten-free. Buying gluten-free products once meant a trip to an off-the-beaten-path specialty health food shop. Today you’ll find many gluten-free products at your local grocery store thanks to brands like Betty Crocker and Bisquick, which offer gluten-free alternatives to some of their most popular products.
Get a Bread Machine
At one time, gluten-free breads weren’t all that fabulous. Some might say a gluten-free hamburger bun was akin to eating a hockey puck. That’s changed dramatically for the better. There are some fantastic bakers who can do incredible things with gluten-free cookies, cupcakes, breads, and more. Find one local to you and make them your new BFF.
For all those daily occasions, a bread machine will become your go-to appliance. There are thousands of gluten-free bread recipes to be found online, or you can score a gluten-free cookbook at your local book store.
Pay Attention to Your Health in All Areas
Switching to a gluten-free lifestyle might initially seem all-consuming. You have to get used to identifying gluten-containing foods, figure out where the best restaurants are that offer gluten-free options, and hone your culinary skills to put that shiny new bread machine to use. But be mindful of maintaining healthy habits in every area of your life.
If weight loss is your primary motivator for adopting a gluten-free lifestyle, exercise is a great supplement to your new diet that will help you shed the pounds quickly.
Not a big fan of high-impact exercise? Think about ways to incorporate exercise into your daily routine. Like taking your dog for a daily walk (and reap the other health benefits of dog ownership while you’re at it) or making it a habit to take the stairs instead of the elevator. Swimming is also a great way to get a good workout while avoiding extra stress on your joints. In fact, swimming is one of the most effective ways to strengthen your body, boost your self-esteem, and build your energy levels.
Going gluten-free can be one of the most beneficial things you can do for your overall health and well-being. These tips will help you transition into your new lifestyle while maintaining and improving your health in every area.
Jennifer McGregor has wanted to be a doctor since she was little. Now, as a pre-med student, she’s well on her way to achieving that dream. She helped create PublicHealthLibrary.org with a friend as part of a class project. With it, she hopes to provide access to trustworthy health and medical resources. When Jennifer isn’t working on the site, you can usually find her hitting the books in the campus library or spending some downtime with her dog at the local park.
(Image via Pixabay by ikon)