Times have changed since I was diagnosed with celiac disease in 1993. Then, gluten free groceries were scarce and tasteless. Now, I am so happy that stores like Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s and many natural foods stores are carrying tons of gluten free products and are marking their shelves with signs to help you find gluten free products more easily. Here are some tips for shopping gluten free…while keeping it healthy!
It is really important for everyone to eat a healthy diet of natural, fresh foods and very few processed foods. Although we all like convenience, be careful not to get caught in the trap of buying unhealthy gluten free foods. Too many moms end up filling their children's plates with gluten free processed foods which really do not support a healthy immune system. Stay away from products in which the main ingredients are white rice flour, potato starch flour or sugar. These are refined products that offer no nutritional value. Look for products made with brown rice flour, buckwheat, millet, quinoa and flax meal toward the top of the ingredients list. Why eat foods that don't have nutritional value, especially if you already have a sensitive system! All of The Pure Pantry products meet these important criteria.
Fill your plate with fruits, vegetables, grains such as rice, buckwheat and quinoa, nuts and seeds, lean protein such as fish, turkey, chicken and occasionally lean cuts of red meat. If you or anyone in your family is a vegetarian or vegan, our Buckwheat Flax pancake and baking mix would be a good choice for your diet as it contains 6 grams of protein per serving. If you can tolerate dairy, stay away from high-fat dairy products and watch out for overly processed products that are high in sugar and high-fructose corn syrup. Many yogurts and frozen desserts fall into this category as they contain additives, sugars and dyes.
You don't need to give up good taste when you "go" gluten free! Occasionally offer your family home-made treats. This is where The Pure Pantry can really helps out. With our versatile, organic Old Fashioned Baking Mix on-hand, you can create delicious desserts, breads, muffins, scones, cakes and more. Check out our recipe page for gluten free and casein free recipes. If baking is not your forte, our cookie mixes can really come in handy. Baking two dozen fresh cookies will take less than 15 minutes. Made from whole grain ingredients such as buckwheat, flax and brown rice flours, your kids, family and friends will love them and you will love that they are so easy to make! (hyperlink to products)
The Celiac Disease foundation has some great resources for gluten free shopping: Gluten Free Resources (PDF Format)