Gluten Free...I need help!

I need help in understanding what is and isn’t ok to eat in a gluten free diet. Reading articles online isn’t helping a lot…some list ingredients that none of the other articles mention. If I go by the total of the articles…I’d have to clean out my cupboards of just about every processed food my boyfriend and I own.

…Here’s the backstory. I have Type 1 diabetes, but I do not have Celiacs. I do however notice that many of the more obvious gluten-containing products cause crazy spikes in my BG. My boyfriend, who I live with, is a self-diagnosed Celiac. He’s been attempting a gluten-free diet for the past week, subsisting mostly on fresh produce, tuna, and a home-made trail mix. He is feeling better, but wants to find other options to add back into his diet. We found a pretty tasty gluten-free rice pasta so we can have spaghetti but we aren’t sure about many other processed foods, unless they are specifically labeled ‘gluten free’.

For example…one article I read said to avoid flavored yogurts. Another said yogurts are ok. One said to avoid citric acid (which seems to be in EVERYTHING), the others didn’t mention citric acid at all.

So I need your help, TuD community! What are the ‘dos’ and ‘donts’ of a gluten-free diet? If my boyfriend has to do this, I’m going into it with him part of the way (we eat dinner together, so dinner for me will have to be gluten-free as well) and I really want to know what is ok to eat or not ok, because I do much of the shopping.

Is there any great list out there of ingredients to avoid? (The lists I’ve found are so…different from one another, as I said earlier; it’s hard to know what to trust).

Thanks for your help.

Your safest bet to look for labels that specify gluten free because gluten sneaks in to most every prepared & packaged food in one form or another. On a brighter note, there are many more gluten free foods available than previously–crackers, pretzels, cookies & cakes. I’ve seen frozen gluten free pizza. Downside is that these foods are expensive.

Citric acid can be derived from corn, wheat or rye. Since there’s no way to know, people with celiac disease steer clear of citric acid. Gluten can make its way into flavorings, so plain yogurt is better. Maltodextrin can also be made from wheat, so that’s another thing to avoid.

Gluten can also be in cosmetics (not a problem for your boyfriend) & in vitamins, unless they’re labeled gluten free.

Thank you Gerri!

(I’m going to get up and check his multivitamin bottle right now!)

We’ve been shopping at Aldi grocery stores lately and I love that they are able to specify ‘gluten free’ on so many of their foods that are actually cheaper than the ‘normal’ ones in other grocery stores. We’ll keep looking though.

Last week we went to an Outpost Natural Foods store and my bf found some gluten free bread he wanted to try…and he I both thought it was horrible. But we won’t give up!

Maltodextrin is gluten free. It can be made from a variety of starches, including corn, potato, rice or wheat. However the source does not matter because maltodextrin is such a highly processed ingredient that the protein is removed, rendering it gluten free. If wheat is used to make maltodextrin, “wheat” will be appear on the label. Even in this case, the maltodextrin would be gluten free.

I have never had a problem with maltodextrin. Malt has gluten but maltodextrin is not malt. I was dx’d celiac last year. i try to avoid most processed foods because they seem to be loaded with wheat products. gluten free “gf” products can be had but they tend to be very high carbohydrate and not necessarily very good for a diabetic. Rice noodles are gf and very tasty but also high carb. Shiritaki noodles are 0 carb and can be quite good. It turns out the best diet for my celiac/diabetic diet is also a low carb diet. they tend to go hand in hand. How has he been doing with his diet since you started this post? forbidden and approved food lists are great.
And my Mom does fine with Yolplait flavored…

The easiest way is to to take the plunge into a primal or paleo style eating plan. I buy no boxed foods at all except for whipping cream. I eat local grass-fed meats, veggies, fruits, nuts, EVOO, high fat cheeses, and other as natural as possible high fat low carb foods (HFLC). I don’t offer much chance for labelled foods to sneak gluten in.

However, this requires you to buy into a few things:

  • sugar kills and carbohydrates are not essential
  • moderate ketones are healthy, not dangerous
  • hyperinsulinemia [and other hormone imbalances] is the main cause of obesity
  • the cholesterol and lipid hypotheses are bunk
  • sugar cause small dense LDL and LDL MGmin
  • lipid targets are very low triglycerides [ < 80] and high HDL, and if possible a VAT profile
  • fats, especially saturated fats are good for us, not bad
  • grains are not designed for human consumption

    I won’t recommend anyone simply rush head first without doing their homework, but I’ve bought into it. It’s working for me :slight_smile:

    Some sources to examine:
  • Gary Taubes’ Why We Get Fat and what to do about it and Good Calories, Bad Calories
  • Jimmy Moore’s Livin LaVida Low-car Blog
  • Underground Wellness with Sean Croxton
  • The Diabetes Warrior

The easiest thing to do is find a grocery store that has an organic/gluten free section. The Giant food stores where I live (DC area) have whole gluten-free sections. There’s also Whole Foods, which contains a lot of gluten-free foods. I am not “gluten free” but I do try to follow a relatively low-carb diet. I also noticed that when I cut out a lot of the gluten from my diet (I was eating way too many carbs last year), some minor stomach issues I had disappeared (I did have a blood test for celiac’s but it came back negative). I’m type 1 and started having some tummy issues over the last 5-10 years. Nothing severe, but enough to make me take notice and ask a doctor about it.

And, yes, when you eat gluten-free, you’re BGs are going to be better, in large part because you’re removing those slow-digesting carbs from your diet. The only caution I would give you is that the rice pastas and some other similar products are NOT low carb. For me, they make my BGs spike as much as regular pasta. But your results may vary, so give it a try and see how it goes!

I find Whole Foods to be ridiculously expensive compared to where I normally shop. I absolutely can’t afford to spend more on food right now :confused:

Yes, but can you afford not to eat whole foods?

We have found our grocery bills dropped. Sorry I don’t have numbers. Items are individually more expensive, but we do eat less. That’s kind of the point of low carbing: carbs drive insulin, insulin stores food, active cells go hungry so you eat more. It’s the vicious cycle that gets us into obesity epidemics.

Bisquick has a gluten free version. I ordered some online then found it in WallyWorld for about $4.50 a box. I made some pizza crust with it and it wasn’t that bad for the first go around. It came out too thick for my liking but I should have spread it out further. I don’t have a problem trying it again. I Googled gluten free pizza sauce & read that Contadina was GF and I was able to find that. From reading reviews about it, the pancakes are supposed to be good but the biscuits aren’t – I may try them just to decide for myself. Betty Crocker also has some gluten free cake & brownies mixes that WallyWorld carries.

Before I found the Bisquick in WallyWorld (I read they supposedly had it but it did not come up on their website so I figured they didn’t), I ordered it from Gluten Freely – they have a bunch of recipes on their site. They also have a FB page that you can get recipes & reviews of stuff on.

Amy is a type with with celiac’s