The notion of gluten enteropathy came to medicine at the end of XIX century. It is the name of the chronic intestinal disease that is triggered by some sorts of eatable cereals (wheat, rye, oats, and barley) which contain gluten protein. At the same time, the first types of diet were designed for people with the chronic intestinal disease. The symptoms of the disease are frequent diarrhea, flatulence, vitamin deficiency, and abrupt children growth impairment. Nowadays every 100th US and Europe citizen is advised to follow this diet.
What is a gluten-free diet
The main purpose of this “medical” gluten-free diet is to render null the signs of allergies for those people who suffer gluten intolerance. Though many people choose the diet because the refusal to eat foods that contain gluten (which is mainly bakery and sweets) is a way to lose weight.
The ration completely excludes flour and many kinds of cereal since they are the main sources of gluten. This protein or, to be exact, its elements move through the small intestine and can damage the fringes of its mucous membrane. The fringes, in their turn, are designed to digest food by pushing it through the intestine.
Gluten-free diet benefits
By eliminating products containing gluten from your meals you help the fringes to strengthen themselves and, as a consequence, stabilize the work of gastrointestinal tract and lose some weight.
Gluten-free products list
The products that are allowed:
- Rice, corn, buckwheat, millet, as well as amaranth and quinoa (the products made of these are also included).
- Natural meat, fish, eggs, butter, all vegetables and fruit, vegetable oil (sunflower, corn, olive, soy), natural tea, coffee, and cocoa.
The following products should be completely excluded from your diet:
- Everything that contains wheat, rye, oats, and barley.
- Flour and some groats (semolina, pearl barley, fine-ground barley) as well as starch which can be found in sausages and dairy products (some yoghurts and curd products).
- Tomato sauce, instant coffee, and instant cocoa.
- Juices, corn cereals, and sweets (they may contain malt extract).
If you choose to follow a gluten-free diet you will need to eat 4 to 5 times a day, with the last food intake before 6 p.m. It is very important to stick to the diet not only to reduce the symptoms but also to provide your organism with full-blown development (in case your child is the one who suffers from gluten intolerance). At the age of 12-19 the symptoms may disappear, even a complete remission may take place, but that doesn’t mean you need to withdraw from the diet – the disease may come back anytime.
How to start a gluten-free diet
Consulting your doctor is only a half job done. It is very important to stick to these pieces of advice without feeling deprived of anything. Read the ingredient lists very attentively. Look for all the new information about gluten to be ready to correct your lifestyle. You can follow the examples of other people (an American TV-host Elisabeth Hasselbeck).
Diversify your menu, especially at the beginning of your diet. Gluten-free pasta, grains, bread, and bakery are going to help you. Don’t forget about gluten-free cereals (such as Glutano new, Nature’s Path, Gullon, Racio). Or you can always prepare some rice in a stainless-steel rice cooker!
Gluten-free approximate meal plan
- Breakfast: a curd dessert with fruit, slices of rice bread, honey, cocoa.
- Lunch: Cauliflower soup with sour cream; fish, mashed potatoes, green salad, stewed fruit or berries.
- Afternoon snack: a roll from corn flour with jam and tea.
- Dinner: Millet gruel with dried fruit and nuts, kefir (kind of yoghurt – buttermilk; can be replaced with any bifido product).
The gluten-free diet is very diverse and balanced, contains a minimum of calories, and helps to lose weight.