Guide to gluten

Some people suffer from gluten intolerance, allergies, or celiac disease. Acquired sensitivity to gluten most often occurs after eating wheat. And it can lead to bloating, abdominal pain, vomiting, or toilet problems. If symptoms are expressed in itching, sneezing and wheezing, then this may be an allergy. To confirm whether this is true or not, you should consult a doctor and possibly undergo a diagnostic test.

A very serious form of gluten-induced disease is celiac disease. When celiacs consume gluten, their immune systems attack their own tissues. Symptoms can range from bloating and diarrhea to mouth ulcers, sudden or unexpected weight loss, and even anemia. If a person with celiac disease continues to eat fiber in the long term, this can lead to serious damage to the intestinal mucosa, preventing the body from effectively absorbing nutrients from food.

What does gluten contain?

Bread. Most breads are made from wheat flour and therefore contain gluten. Rye bread, which is often considered healthier by people due to its dense texture and brown color, is also not suitable for those who are gluten-free, as rye is one of the gluten-free grains.

Cereals. Breakfast cereals, granola, rice cereal, and even oatmeal can contain gluten or traces of gluten if they were made in a factory that produces gluten-containing products.

Pasta. The basis of most pasta is flour and hence most pasta will contain gluten. 

Pies and cakes. Gluten in pies and cakes is most commonly found in flour, but some flavorings and even some chocolates you use in your baked goods may contain traces of gluten.

Sauces Flour is often used as a thickening agent in sauces. Many brands of ketchup and mustard contain traces of gluten.

Cous cous. Made from coarse grain wheat, couscous is actually a miniature pasta and contains gluten.

Beer. Barley, water, hops and yeast are key ingredients in beer. Therefore, most beers contain gluten. Gluten-free people can drink gin and other spirits because the distillation process usually removes the gluten from the drink.

Seitan. Seitan is made from wheat gluten and therefore contains gluten, but there are other meat alternatives for those on a gluten-free vegan diet. 

Convenient Alternatives

Quinoa. Quinoa is gluten-free, but contains beneficial amino acids. 

Gluten free flour. Brown rice flour, tapioca, and almond flour can replace wheat flour for those on a gluten-free diet. Cornmeal is made from corn, so it does not contain gluten. It’s great for thickening sauces and gravies.

Gluten free tempeh. Tempeh, made from fermented soybeans, is a good gluten-free alternative to seitan. Just make sure the tempeh you buy is gluten free. 

xanthan gum is a polysaccharide and a natural food additive that acts as a stabilizer. Gum provides elasticity and thickening of the dough.

Gluten Free Baking Tips

Don’t forget xanthan gum. Dough or cookies made with gluten-free flour can be too crumbly unless xanthan gum is added. The gum retains moisture and gives the baked goods their shape.

More water. It is important to add enough water to the gluten-free dough to rehydrate the flour. 

Bake homemade bread. Baking your own bread can save you hours of researching store-bought ingredients.

Leave a Reply