We’ll take a look at the foods sold in the regular departments of brick-and-mortar stores that can be eaten by people on a gluten-free diet, as well as what should be avoided.
The most important question that arises at the beginning of a gluten-free diet is which foods contain gluten and which do not?
Let me start with two important points:
- First, let me draw your attention to the fact that if the decision to refuse gluten was made on the basis of a gluten intolerance identified by a doctor/diagnostician, then absolutely all foods that may contain gluten to some extent must be excluded from food.
- Secondly, the moment in connection with which the first point was mentioned. There is a concept of ” hidden gluten“. What it is: Wheat may be used in the production or processing of certain foods. At the same time, it does not get on the label, In the information on the composition of the product, but the product may contain its particles. Another option for hidden gluten: using the same conveyors/mills/other equipment to produce different products. Surely you have noticed strange inscriptions, for example, on chocolates – it may contain particles of nuts. This is due to the fact that chocolate with nuts and without nuts is produced on the same equipment, which means that particles of nuts can get into pure chocolate. Similarly, gluten can get into products that theoretically do not contain it. Some manufacturers approach the issue more responsibly and write about the possible gluten content, while others do not.
Hidden gluten in these products can be very small and may not cause intolerance symptoms if consumed once, but if you buy the product regularly, it can cause serious consequences. Personally, I completely eliminated dubious foods from my diet.
List of foods that are naturally GLUTEN-FREE:
- Fruits and vegetables
All fresh vegetables and fruits are gluten-free. But frozen and canned fruits/vegetables, as well as dried fruits, should be treated with caution, as they may contain hidden gluten. (Personally, I completely excluded everything canned from the diet. But I left dried fruits for now, there is less likelihood of gluten, in my opinion.)
- Grains and legumes
The following grains and legumes are naturally gluten-free: rice, buckwheat, millet, corn, quinoa, amaranth, peas, chickpeas, beans, lentils, soybeans, and other beans.
- Gluten free cereal flour
The following types of flour do not contain gluten: rice flour, corn flour, pea flour, buckwheat flour, almond flour, chestnut flour, potato and soy flour, corn and potato starch, etc.
Please note that all of the listed cereals, beans and flour mixtures from them may be contaminated with gluten during industrial processing, packaging and transportation, and it is recommended to buy such products only if they have a special label with a crossed ear icon or the words “gluten free” / “wheat free”.
Fresh chicken and quail eggs do not contain gluten.
- Nuts and seeds
All nuts and seeds that have not undergone industrial processing and do not contain other ingredients in the composition do not contain gluten.
- Meat, poultry, fish
Fresh meat, poultry and fish without additional ingredients and not processed – do not contain gluten.
Any meat, chicken or fish semi-finished products (cutlets, etc.) are prepared in breading containing wheat flour. Even if it is not indicated in the ingredients, such semi-finished products should be completely excluded from the diet.
- Milk and dairy products
Fresh milk, butter, yogurt, curdled milk, kefir, fermented baked milk, cream do not contain gluten. But keep in mind that gluten can get into these products during industrial processing. The same goes for cheeses.
- Vegetable oils
Pure sunflower, olive and other vegetable oils do not contain gluten.
Tea without flavorings and additives, coffee beans, as well as unground spices – do not contain gluten.
The following thickeners do not contain gluten: guar gum, locust bean gum, pure pectin and gelatin, agar-agar.
List of products CONTAINING GLUTEN
- The following grains contain gluten:
Wheat, rye, barley, spelt, Kamut, spelled, triticale, durum. These cereals should not be consumed by people with gluten intolerance in any form, including in the form of sprouts. In Russia, hidden gluten is also found in oats. In other countries, you can find oats and oatmeal labeled gluten-free.
- Also, gluten contains all products from the above cereals:
Wheat and oat flour, pasta, bakery and confectionery products (except those specifically labeled “gluten-free”), bran, barley malt, brewer’s yeast, pearl barley, barley, semolina, corn flakes and sticks.
Almost all types of sauces contain wheat, which means they are absolutely contraindicated for people with a gluten-free diet. Ketchup, mayonnaise and mustard contain flour as a thickener, and soy sauce is made from wheat (as indicated right in the composition). But there are 3 types of soy sauces that are made specifically gluten-free.
Please note that not only ready-made sauces contain gluten, but also those prepared in restaurants, visiting relatives and friends, since wheat flour is a classic thickener for almost all types of sauces.
- Condensed milk
All types of condensed milk contain wheat flour as a thickener, that is, they contain gluten.
- baking powder
Baking powders and baking powders contain wheat flour, that is, explicit or hidden gluten.
Foods That May Contain Hidden Gluten
- Finished products and semi-finished products;
- Frozen food;
- Sausage, ham, pate and other industrially processed meat products;
- Crab sticks and other seafood, frozen or industrially processed (including smoked);
- Starch, modified starch, peptized starch, maltose;
- vegetable protein;
- Various confectionery toppings, confectionery decorations, icing, powdered sugar, baking powder (except soda);
- Dried fruits;
- Marinades, canned food;
- Dairy products and cheeses;
- Ice cream, whipped cream, desserts;
- Chocolate, sweets, sweets;
- Juices (everything except freshly squeezed), compotes, fruit drinks, nectars, lemonades;
- Ground spices, yeast, gelling mixtures;
- Dry mixes, concentrates and powders for preparation of drinks (cocoa, instant coffee, etc.);
- Baking mixes not labeled as “gluten-free”;
- Gluten-free cereals or a mixture of cereals, muesli, not labeled as “gluten-free”;
- Syrups, vinegar, milk and cream of non-animal origin;
- bouillon cubes;
- Vegetable resin, chewing gum;
- Various aromatic extracts, including those of plant origin;
- Artificial dyes, caramel color dyes;
- Flavors, including natural, caramel flavors.
This is a sample list of foods that may contain gluten. People with celiac disease and gluten intolerance should completely eliminate gluten-containing foods and preferably avoid foods on the hidden gluten list. Especially with celiac disease!