A list of naturally gluten-free food is all you need to lead a healthy life irrespective of if you have celiac disease or gluten sensitivity.
Are you in need of a list of naturally gluten-free food because you suffer from gluten intolerance?
This article compiles a healthy list of naturally gluten-free food to keep your gluten-free diet in check.
What is Gluten?
Gluten is a mixture of storage proteins (prolamin and glutelin proteins) that naturally exist in some cereal grains such as barley, wheat, or rye. They are also responsible for the chewy elastic texture you find in the dough.
That is because they act like a bond that sticks food together while providing that stretchy quality. Furthermore, in their absence dough feels dry and is known to break apart easily
What is Gluten Intolerance?
Gluten Intolerance or Celiac disease is your body’s rejection or immune response to eating gluten.
This condition over time can lead to serious medical issues and also damage the small intestine’s lining. Also, it makes it difficult for the body to absorb certain nutrients.
How would you know if you are allergic to gluten?
To find out if you are allergic to gluten, conduct a human leukocyte antigen genetic testing or a Serology test. The Serology test helps locate certain antibodies in your blood that also signify your body’s reaction to gluten.
Human leukocyte antigen testing (HLA-DQ2 and HLA-DQ8) on the other hand, is used to confirm if you have celiac disease or not.
What are the symptoms of gluten intolerance?
The major symptom of gluten intolerance or celiac disease is diarrhea. Additional symptoms you might also experience include fatigue, anemia (low blood count), osteoporosis, and bloating.
Furthermore, you might experience pain in your joints or abdomen, nausea, indigestion, fat in stool, vomiting, heartburn, or flatulence.
You could also suffer from malnutrition and bone loss, while developmental issues like stunted growth or delayed puberty are also symptoms of gluten intolerance.
Also, other common symptoms associated with gluten intolerance include itching, weight loss, lactose intolerance, cramps, or skin rash.
What is the list of naturally gluten-free foods?
From whole grains to proteins, fruits and vegetables, beverages, and dairy products, here is a list of naturally gluten-free food you can enjoy.
These gluten-free grains can also be used to make products like bread, crackers, pasta, cereals, baked goods, and snack foods.
- Brown rice
- Gluten-free oats
- Wild rice
Fruits and Vegetables
Fresh vegetables and fruits are naturally gluten-free. However, processed vegetables and fruits have a considerable risk of having gluten due to thickeners or flavorings used.
The following fruits and vegetables are naturally gluten-free;
- Swiss Chard
- Bell Peppers
- Green beans
- Green beans
Spices, Condiments, and Sauces
- Coconut aminos
- White vinegar
- Distilled vinegar
- Apple cider vinegar
Most unprocessed or fresh plant and animal proteins are naturally gluten-free.
However, note that sauces or condiments which are often used as flavorings or fillers may possess gluten-based ingredients such as malt vinegar, soy sauce, or flour.
The following proteins are gluten-free and suitable for consumption if you’re on a gluten-free diet.
- Red meat (pork, bison, fresh beef, lamb)
- Legumes (peanuts, nuts, seeds, peas, beans, lentils)
- Poultry (fresh turkey or chicken)
- Unflavored Soy foods (Tofu, edamame, Tempeh, etc)
- Seafood (shellfish, scallops, shellfish)
- Cottage Cheese
- Sour cream
Fats and oils
- Olive oil
- Avocado Oil
- Coconut Oil
- Sesame Oil
- Sunflower Oil
- Canola Oil
- 100% fruit juice
- Gluten-Free Alcoholic Beverages (made from gluten-free materials like sorghum or buckwheat)
Also, note that most soda, energy drinks, or sports drinks are gluten-free. However, check their label to see if they contain additives that might be gluten-based.
Natural Foods with Gluten Risk
- any meat, poultry, or fish coated with flour or bread crumbs
- proteins that are combined with wheat-based soy sauce
- Microwavable TV dinners (Ready-to-eat proteins)
- processed or canned meats (hot dogs, pepperoni, sausage, salami, and bacon)
- meat substitutes (vegetarian burgers)
The following wheat grains should be avoided if you’re sensitive or intolerant to gluten ;
- whole wheat
- wheat berries
- bromated flour
- Beers, lagers, or ales made using grains that contain gluten
- non-distilled liquors
- pre-made smoothies
- Malt beverages
- Beverages with added flavorings
- Distilled liquors (gin, tonic, vodka – due to the way they are stored or processed)
- Malted milk drinks
- Flavored milk and yogurts
- Processed cheese products (cheese sauce, etc)
Fruits and Vegetables with Possible Risk of Gluten
- Canned fruits and vegetables
Spices, Condiments, and Sauces with Gluten or Possible Gluten Risk
- Malt Vinegar
- Teriyaki Sauce
- Wheat-based Soy Sauce
- Dry spices
- Barbecue sauce
- Worcestershire sauce
- Pasta sauce
- Tomato sauce
- Gravy and stuffing mixes
- Salad dressing
- Stock cubes
- Bouillon cubes
- Rice vinegar
What other food items contain gluten?
Except for natural foods that have been listed above which hold a possible risk of having gluten, the following food items contain gluten.
- Plant-based meat imitations
- Rice mixes
- Processed meats
- Self-basting poultry
- Seasoned Snack Foods (potato chips, tortilla)
How can you avoid gluten-based foods?
You can avoid eating gluten-based foods by avoiding processed or packaged foods that contain ingredients like stabilizers and emulsifiers. However, some packaged foods are labeled as gluten-free and do not possess gluten.
Also, you can avoid gluten-based foods by avoiding the natural foods that contain gluten which has been listed above.
What home remedies can be used to treat gluten intolerance?
You can use the following methods to manage or treat gluten intolerance at home.
1. Gluten-free Diet
Strictly and religiously maintain a gluten-free diet to avoid complications.
2. Papain Supplements
Using Papain supplements can help your body stimulate the enzymes needed in the small intestine to identify gluten and reduce your body’s response to it.
You can purchase these supplements at most pharmaceutical or health food stores. However, note that these supplements do not completely negate the effect of gluten intolerance and you may still suffer mild effects.
Yogurt is known to heal the digestive tract and combat bacterial infections. This also makes it a suitable home remedy for gluten-intolerant patients. Yogurt is also beneficial to those who have no idea that they suffer from gluten intolerance or sensitivity.
Additionally, people who have had their gluten intolerance unchecked for many years may have their intestinal lining badly compromised and suffer poor nutrient absorption. Using the healing powers of yogurt can help you minimize this damage.
4. Horsetail Tea
Drinking Horsetail tea helps reduce inflammation in the intestines and digestive tract. It also increases the digestive system’s durability and strength, thereby making it less sensitive to gluten intake.
5. Fish Oil
Fish Oil is great in protecting and coating your intestinal lining, thereby keeping your small intestines from also getting inflamed. It also prevents your gluten intolerance (celiac disease) from getting worse if you accidentally eat gluten.
6. Herbal Remedies
Olive leaf extracts or Goldenseal are popular in the treatment of gluten intolerance. That is because they help your body’s immune system to stay protected and regulated, thereby reducing the adverse effect of gluten on the intestine.
Additionally, chamomile which can be taken as a tea is a great herb that helps the body reduce stomach upsets and inflammation as a result of gluten allergies.
Can you treat gluten intolerance?
No, you cannot treat gluten intolerance which is also known as celiac disease. However, you can manage it by sticking to a gluten-free diet.
You can also manage celiac disease by using the prescribed dietary supplements and vitamins.
Does flour contain gluten?
Yes, all-purpose flour contains a considerable amount of gluten, depending on its wheat properties. However, there are gluten-free flour alternatives that you can use.
These include teff flour, sorghum flour, potato starch, rice flour, buckwheat flour, garbanzo flour, and tapioca flour among others.
Can gluten intolerance cause death?
Yes, celiac disease can result in death if not properly managed and also allowed to become severe.
Contrary to most beliefs, gluten is safe for consumption by most people and is also in no way harmful to the body. However, a select few with conditions like celiac disease are advised to avoid it since it can lead to severe health complications.
Additionally, if you live with a condition as serious as celiac disease (gluten intolerance), it is important that you only purchase items that are proven to be gluten-free. A good tip would be to read every label or ingredient information before purchasing.
Also, a majority of the foods you’ll find on the market in one way or the other contain gluten either by its base ingredients, or preservative method. I would also recommend you always check the ingredients to confirm.
Finally, are you gluten intolerant but consider preparing your gluten-free diet a hassle? Here are fast-food restaurants you can walk into to eat gluten-free meals.
I hope you found this article helpful. Thanks for reading.