A 2012 study published in BMC Medicine estimates that approximately 10% of the general population may have gluten sensitivity. The publication identified gluten sensitivity as a legitimate gluten-related disorder, similar yet distinct from celiac disease and wheat allergy.
Gluten sensitive persons may experience abdominal pain, eczema, rash or headache after ingesting gluten. If you suspect you may have gluten sensitivity, minimizing gluten from your diet is a clear choice. Although gluten is a prominent dietary component for many, lessening one’s intake is a realistic and achievable goal.
Gluten-Free Meal Options:
- Eat oatmeal, fruit with yogurt or an omelet for breakfast. Other gluten-free breakfast options include puffed rice cereal or rice cakes topped with nut butter and banana slices. Starting your day with a gluten-free breakfast every day for a week will gradually minimize gluten in your diet.
- Eat lettuce wraps filled with tuna or chicken salad for lunch. A hearty chicken and rice soup or green salad with cheese cubes, avocado, nuts and seeds are other gluten-free lunch choices. Initially, try eliminating gluten from your diet one meal at a time.
- Eat grilled fish with vegetable medley or stir-fried shrimp/chicken over quinoa for dinner. Depending on your personal goals and the level of your dietary restriction, avoiding gluten all day, every day may be unnecessary. In this case, make a commitment to eat wheat at only one meal or snack during the day. For example, have a roll with dinner or tortillas with a wrap at lunch, but not on the same day.
Unfortunately, a “gluten-free” label does not always mean a product is healthy for you. Check the Nutrition Facts and ingredients labels for added fats, sugars or food additives.
In Lexington, check out the cafes at Whole Foods or the Good Foods Co-op for gluten-free fare served up hot and ready to take back to work or enjoy at the tables within. Other restaurants with gluten-free menus include Puccini's, Olive Garden, Bella Notte, Wendy's and Outback Steakhouse.