When you are following a gluten-free lifestyle, a food list is very helpful to navigate the sea of choices in the grocery store. When you walk in to the grocery story prepared, you are setting yourself up for success. When you walk in hungry or unprepared without a list, you are more likely to make poor choices. We have curated a grocery list below, which contains gluten-free options for you to consider when shopping. This can be modified as you develop your skills into menu preparation for your week, adding only those items required for your recipes to your grocery list. Remember, walk the perimeter of the grocery store, and do not wander through the middle aisles unless you know exactly where you are going to locate a certain item, if needed.
The good news is that many foods are naturally gluten-free.
When following a gluten-free diet, you must avoid wheat, barley and rye. Many grains are available which are gluten-free, including quinoa, millet, rice, corn, and buckwheat. Oats are a very common source of gluten
contamination. Do not purchase them unless they are labeled gluten-free.
Great news for you – all vegetables are naturally gluten free! It is important to eat a wide variety of colorful choices to get the vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients your body needs to thrive. If you are following a lifestyle plan, which eliminates certain classes of vegetables, note that on your grocery list as a reminder when shopping. Choose fresh or frozen for best quality, and buy organic whenever possible. Refer to the Dirty Dozen list here from the Environmental Working Group to determining which vegetables buying organic is most necessary due to high pesticide use.
Great news again – all fruits are also naturally gluten free! There are many different fruits and it is fun to add new ones to your menu. For example, try watermelon, kiwi, clementine, star fruit, mango, pomegranate, and papaya. If you are on a lifestyle plan which eliminates certain fruits, note that on your grocery list as reminder when shopping. Refer to the Dirty Dozen list here from the Environmental Working Group for determining which fruits buying organic is most necessary due to high pesticide use.
Beans are a great source of carbohydrates and proteins when you are eliminating gluten from your diet. Black beans, navy beans, pinto beans, and white beans all are great choices. Where you need to pay attention is with prepared soups and other flavored beans that might contain gluten. Always read the labels. Be especially cautious of any cream-based options. If you are following a lifestyle plan, which eliminates beans, note that on your grocery list as a reminder when shopping.
Many milk products are gluten-free. You may choose milk from nuts or from animals. Try different nut-based milk products from almonds, cashews, sunflower seeds, hemp seeds, or coconuts to add variety to your diet. A note of caution is that prepared nut milks in grocery stores contain many additives and sugar. Choose organic when possible. Good milk products include plain milk, cheese, yogurt (link to yogurt blog), sour cream, and cottage cheese. You may be able to find many of these products cultured with probiotics (link to probiotic blog) Some flavored yogurts contain additives that could contain gluten, so make sure to read the labels. For optimal health, choose organic and grass-fed milk products when possible, when your milk is animal-sourced. If you are following a lifestyle plan, which eliminates dairy, note that on your grocery list as a reminder when shopping.
If you are a vegetarian, you may be finished reading this blog. Most meats are going to be gluten-free. That includes beef, chicken, pork, and turkey. Where you need to pay attention is when it comes to processed meats. Make sure to carefully look at labels of sausage, hot dogs, lunch meats, and any other packaged meats. These can sometimes have gluten added to them. For maximum health, avoid as many processed meats as possible and add in more organic, farm-raised, grass-fed meats. You may be sensitive or intolerant to a certain meat simply because the animal ate gluten. Remember you are not only what you eat, you are also what your food has eaten!
Fish are generally gluten-free. Again, you will need to look at processed fish to make sure. For example, breaded fish filets are probably breaded using wheat flour-based breadcrumbs. That means they contain gluten. Avoid these choices. Move toward choices such as wild caught or sustainably farm-raised fish.
Gluten-Free Flour Substitutes:
Most of your diet should be filled with foods that are naturally gluten-free. But for special treats you may want to consider gluten-free flour options. This is not recommended if you have diabetes or other metabolic issues. A common misconception about the gluten-free lifestyle is to replace the junk you used to eat such as bread, cookies, and cakes with gluten-free bread, cookies and cakes. In some instances, this is worse and can lead to plateaus in weight loss or even cause weight gain.
Keep all these helpful tips in mind when creating your weekly grocery list for your gluten-free lifestyle. Most of all remember to have fun and try new foods.You can be successful with a little preparation!