I have been eating gluten-free for quite some time now and the selection of gluten-free foods has grown tremendously since I embarked on this lifestyle.
Some of us (like me) have to eat gluten-free out of necessity, while others are simply trying to eat better by avoiding wheat and refined grains.
The question is: are they really healthier for you?
Make healthy choices.
Gluten, the protein in wheat, barley and rye can be difficult to digest and may create inflammation in the intestinal tract, leading to further problems down the line.
Gluten-free foods are marketed towards all kinds of diets: meat-eaters, vegetarians and vegans.
There are options for almost anything you can think of: pancakes, cereal, pizza, bread and frozen meals. There are also kid meals, dairy mac and cheese, non-dairy mac and cheese, veggie burgers, condiments, snack bars and snack foods: cookies, candies and cakes.
You can see it starts out pretty well, but quickly spirals down in to a lot of highly processed foods.
What exactly is in these foods?
- fat (oils)
Don’t be taken in by organic sugar, it is still sugar!
A variety of gluten-free flours are used.
These are not the healthiest foods and may be problematic in themselves.
Read the labels…
Be aware, it’s not just gluten-free foods. Low-fat foods use salt and sugar to replace the fat, resulting in unhealthy, calorie-laden foods. Less fat, more calories!
Not a win-win situation.
Having so many gluten-free options can be really convenient, especially when socializing or throwing parties. Keep them to a minimum, use them on special occasions and they can be a welcome addition when needed.
Whether your goal is gluten-free, low-fat or something else, limiting processed, convenience foods is a good idea.