October 02, 2012

Gluten Free... Where Do I Start?



I am a cook... and a baker... so I tend to jump right in and start experimenting, 
but ,what if you do not cook or bake much or at all?  

Where do you go for gluten free items?

There is good news for you.

There are more and more companies making gluten free products.
Companies are also labeling their items with the words "Gluten Free" to help those who need it, too.

When I first started researching the topic of gluten free I was limited to ingredients I could find at our local health food store.  The problem was that the store was about a 30 minute drive from my home.

I have been thrilled to see that the grocery stores within two miles of my home are now carrying more and more gluten free items.  The Albertson's has been carrying them for a few years and the new Walmart Neighborhood Market has a small gluten free section.  It is a start.  The more the mainstream grocery stores carry these items the more accessible and affordable these items will become.

You can get a quick start by purchasing the following to get you started as you progress to a more and more gluten free lifestyle.

Start with whole foods...

Unprocessed fresh fruits and vegetables are naturally gluten free.

Unprocessed raw basic meats are gluten free.

Eggs are gluten free.

Anything in the form God made it in outside of wheat, barley and rye is likely gluten free.

Read your labels... if the product contains wheat, barley, rye or any other wheat type grain or product then it is not gluten free.  Research your favorite product companies to see if they have a line of gluten free products.  Many are developing departments to serve the gluten free community.

Look for products that are made for gluten free diets.  Here is a small list of companies that sell gluten free products which are processed and packaged in gluten free facilities.

My favorite pasta is from Tinkyada... it is a brown rice pasta company.
It has been around for some time now.

There are more companies getting on the bandwagon weekly, it seems.
Ancient Harvest Quinoa company is developing more quinoa pasta products.

Check out your pasta aisle for more brands making the switch and adding products all the time.

A few other smaller companies that I have seen in the stores lately include...



One of the largest and most well known gluten free bread companies 

Check the websites for coupons and specials.  
Some might even be willing to ship you samples for free as a promotion event they are doing with new products.

Bob's Red Mill Company has a whole line of gluten free breakfast cereals and mixes when you are ready to start baking a little on your own.  He is my favorite for specialty flours and hot breakfast cereals.  You can even get gluten free oats from this company to make your own granola as well as just getting to have a bowl of oats for breakfast when you feel like it.

The key is not to overwhelm yourself...

Do what you can to start feeling better and the rest will come.  Start with prepackaged and simple and work your way up to purchasing a gluten free cookbook so you can experiment in your own kitchen.

The key is to start... no matter how little at first just START!

It will be important to prepare your kitchen, too, but do what you can as you are ready.  
I will talk about preparing your kitchen tomorrow.

ACTION SUGGESTION:
Next time you are at your local grocery store take a look around and see if they have a gluten free section.  If they do not you can always talk with a manager to suggest that they build one. They are there for the customer and if there is a need they will make it happen.  Their goal is to keep customers and if providing gluten free items is how they can do that they will take your suggestions gladly and you will soon see changes.  I requested almond milk and it was not a month before they had it on the shelf.  I have requested organic apples and they made that switch, too.  If you and others start to ask them to change then they will.  You just have to speak out.


2 comments:

  1. more and more shops and supermarkets in the uk have gluten free foods too. Its a great help as it increases the options for my husband. I have always baked and made meals from scratch but its nice to have the option not to occasionally.

    ReplyDelete
  2. hello ... i'm your neighbor on the list of the 31 Dayers at the Nesting Place ... thought I'd stop in and say hi :o) we've just decided to work toward gluten free at our house ... i'm so happy to see your series!

    ReplyDelete

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