Gluten-Free Eating

The big feast is behind us, but the rest of the holidays are upon us. It’s hard to stay on track if you’re following a diet plan or have dietary restrictions during this time of year, but that’s where ChipMonk comes in. Below, I’ve broken down the dos and don’ts for gluten-free lifestyles. I’ll be covering more throughout the month like diabetes and the low carb/keto lifestyles.

If you have Celiac Disease, gluten sensitivity, a wheat allergy or just like to avoid gluten in general, then the most important things to understand are where gluten comes from and what it is. Gluten is a combination of proteins, glutenin and gliadin, and they’re found in wheat, barley, and rye. It gives our bread and doughs a lot of their elasticity and can be found in any and all products containing wheat and all-purpose flours. That’s why it’s so hard to avoid gluten. 

The Do’s And Don’ts Of Gluten-Free Eating


Do: Check the labels to make sure there is no wheat, rye or barley in the ingredients.

Don’t: Assume something is gluten-free because it doesn’t look like a baked good, a lot of sauces use wheat as a thickening agent for example.


Do: Stay in the perimeter of the grocery store for foods such as produce, meats, and dairy. 

Don’t: exclusively shop through the aisles as a lot of the shelved goods are processed and are more likely to have wheat and gluten. 


Do: Vocalize your gluten-free needs to friends and family and explain what foods you need to avoid.

Don’t: Assume people will know how to tell something is gluten-free.


Do: Plan ahead and look at the menu items of places you’re likely to visit. 

Don’t: Hope every restaurant will have options for you.


Do: Ask if the food you’re eating is gluten-free. If you’re not sure whether the food has gluten or not, stick to single item foods like fruits, vegetables, and meats.

Don’t: Test your luck and gamble with what you eat! 


Do: Bring your own gluten-free foods like bread and pasta to big dinner gatherings. Plan ahead.

Don’t: Be left out of the meal because of gluten-filled options. 

Do: Use separate cookware and utensils if you share a kitchen to avoid contamination.

Don’t: Share cookware without properly cleaning them.

Do: Get checked by a physician to make sure you’re gluten intolerant or sensitive.

Don’t: Stop eating gluten because you may think you are, as you’ll miss out on lots of nutrients. 


Gluten-Containing Foods:

  • Baked goods (crackers, donuts, pastries, etc.)

  • Beer

  • Bread

  • Cereals

  • Chocolate bars

  • Corned beef

  • Couscous

  • Gravies

  • Malt containing products

  • Monosodium glutamate (MSG)

  • Pasta

  • Pizza

  • Sausages

  • Salami

  • Sauces – many have wheat as a thickener

  • Soups – many have wheat as a thickener

  • Snack foods

  • Wheat flour

Gluten-Free Foods

That’s the bad news, the good news is that you can have all of the following:


gluten free foods.jpg


That’s a big list, and it goes to show you that you have plenty of options. The key is remember where gluten comes from - wheat, barley and rye. Read the labels carefully or limit yourself to the produce, dairy and deli sections of the store. If nothing else, you can always make your own gluten-free products like we do! 

For more food options, check out the following online resources:

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