How to Follow a Gluten-Free Diet

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The gluten-free diet cuts out many foods from the diet, especially highly processed foods. While not always easy, a gluten-free lifestyle gives those with celiac disease relief from the symptoms. For those new to this way of eating, the transition takes some time. If only one person in the family is going on a gluten-free diet, the transition can be even more difficult. Once you figure out what you can and cannot eat, the gluten-free diet becomes easier to follow.

Step 1

Clean out the cupboards, separating any foods that contain gluten. If the whole family is going gluten free, get rid of all those foods. If only some people are going gluten-free, keep the gluten-containing foods separate.

Step 2

Mark the shelves to designate the area for your gluten-free food. Make sure everyone in the household understands that all other foods should stay in a separate area pantry or cupboards. Keep separate utensils and a separate toaster for your gluten-free cooking to prevent cross-contamination.

Step 3

Center your eating on whole foods without gluten, such as lean protein, fruits, vegetables and low-fat dairy products. Avoid highly processed food, which is less healthy overall and more likely to contain gluten.

Step 4

Experiment with alternative grains and grain products, such as quinoa, buckwheat, corn, rice, tapioca, arrowroot and amaranth. Look for flour made from products that don’t contain gluten, such as rice, corn, bean, soy or potato flour.

Step 5

Read the nutrition label any time you buy a new product and avoid anything containing wheat, rye or barley. Pay attention to products like sauces, like malt vinegar and soy sauce, which often contain gluten. Watch out for words on the ingredients list that indicate gluten, such as emulsifier, hydrolyzed, stabilizer, starch, plant protein and flavoring.

Step 6

Write a list of your favorite products that don’t contain gluten. This makes grocery shopping much easier because you won’t need to read the labels on every single product you want to purchase.

Step 7

Plan out your meals and snacks ahead of time to better avoid gluten. Carry gluten-free snacks with you when you leave the house to keep them easily accessible.

Step 8

Follow the gluten-free diet with a friend or family member if possible to create a support system for yourself. You also get the chance to share gluten-free recipes and ideas with the other person.

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