Gluten Free Diet- Simple Meal Plans
Gluten intolerant individuals suffer from an auto-immune response that damages the inner lining of the intestines (known as villi) caused by the storage protein, gluten. When our intestines are damaged, our body is unable to absorb the full range of nutrients and minerals from foods that are required for our growth and development . Celiac Disease (CD) is a life-long health problem and can also result in other health issues such as obesity, anemia, low bone mineral density and low fibre intake just to name a few .
Individuals with CD, gluten intolerant or on a gluten- free diet (GFD) generally avoid foods produced from Wheat, Rye, Barley, Oats (or their derivatives), processed foods like canned products, sausages, salad dressings, seasonings, ice cream and many more. As mentioned in the previous article, gluten-free foods are also a high source of saturated fats, high sugar levels and are generally not fortified with any minerals or vitamins, further widening the nutritional deficient gap that CD individuals and GFD people have. You can refer to our blog entry 2 weeks ago ‘Is a Gluten- Free Diet healthier?’ for more detailed information.
Research has shown that undiagnosed and recently-diagnosed CD sufferers are generally lacking in B Vitamins, Calcium, Vitamin D, Iron, Zinc, Magnesium and Fibre . This can lead to possible malnutrition as the individual is unable to absorb and utilize these nutrients for their body to function effectively [2, 3]. Improving their absorption level can easily be carried out by altering the diet and reducing or completely cutting out all gluten-containing foods. It is important to discover other nutrition sources that is lacking in gluten-free foods, and try to increase your intake, such as through supplementation. A typical GFD consists of foods such as gluten- free products, unprocessed meats, unprocessed food, fresh fruits and vegetables, nuts, seeds and legumes. The diet should continue for life and minimal complications have occurred once the problem is treated .
Here are a couple of meal time plans you can follow when trying to follow a GFD. A wide variety of these foods should be consumed to ensure you are providing all the necessary vitamins and minerals your body requires.
Simple Gluten Free Diet Plans
v Vegetable sticks (Celery, Cucumber, Carrot) with cream cheese
v Plain rice cakes, cheese, smoked salmon, fresh avocado
v Low- fat vanilla yoghurt and and Morlife Gojí Antiox Wholegrain Gluten Free Museli
v Handful of gluten-free nuts (Almonds, pistachio, Cashew, Macadamia)
v Eggs, bacon and fresh fruit
v Bircher Museli with Morlife Gojí Antiox Wholegrain Gluten Free Museli and fresh fruits
v Vegetarian Omelette (Eggs, potatoes, fetta cheese, pumkin, spinach)
v Gluten- Free toast and jam with fresh fruits
v Grilled chicken or fish, baked pumpkin and potato
v Steak in black pepper sauce (be sure it is a gluten-free brand), steamed carrots and corn
v Stir- fried seafood (prawns, fish fillets, mussels) with Asian vegetables (bak choi or won bok) in wheat-free tamari, pinch of pepper, sugar and salt. Serve with brown rice.
v Corn tortillas with meat and diced tomatoes, cucumber, black beans (or kidney beans)
*Disclaimer: The information contained in the article is based on published nutritional research. The diet plan provided should be followed in moderation with sufficient physical activity and plenty of water. It is not designed to treat specific medical conditions. If you suffer from chronic health problem, take prescription medication or are pregnant or lactating, please speak to your health professional.
- Medical Encyclopedia 2010 ‘Celiac disease- Nontropical sprue; Gluten intolerance; Gluten sensitive enteropathy’, PubMed Health, A.D.A.M
- Kupper. C, 2005 ‘Dietary Guidelines and Implementation for Celiac Disease’, Gastroenterology: 128, pp. 121-127
- Barton SH. et al., 2007 ‘Nutritional Deficiencies in Celiac Disease’, Gastroenterol Clin N Am 36, pp. 93- 108