In a word, no. But as you can see in the above picture, there are lots of ways to be gluten free, and healthy too.
But it absolutely can be, if you make some changes. I know, you’ve already made changes, and sacrifices, when you gave up those gluten filled foods you loved. But I am talking about swapping some gluten free foods for more healthy foods. And I am also talking about giving up some unhealthy gluten free foods as well.
It is truly miraculous to me that my husband was given a second chance at life by getting the warning of a mild heart attack. Luckily, he heeded the warning and has made great strides in changing his lifestyle. This made me look at my own eating habits.
Since I went gluten free almost two years ago, I was solely focused on replacing my favorite cookies, snacks, baked goods and pastas with gluten free alternatives. I couldn’t possibly give up my sweets and carbs. No way!
Now don’t get me wrong, I am not here to judge. I would like to share some tips on how to make changes for those who want to do so. I am certainly not fanatical about making healthy changes to the point of completely depriving myself or my husband of certain foods. But then again, there are certain foods that he has to avoid, and I have decided to avoid them with him. Not only as a means of support, but for my own health as well.
I still bake with gluten free bisquick, I still eat gluten free pasta, and I still use rice flour. I am still the gluten free lady!
Here are some tips to help you make some changes:
- use healthy oils in cooking like olive and coconut oil
- try eating a salad with at least one meal a day. But don’t pile on the dressing, croutons and cheese! Use these sparingly.
- Eat more veggies-make them the main part of your meal
- cut back a bit on protein. If you can, aim for the size of a deck of playing cards
- get a spiralizer-replace pasta with veggie noodles once in awhile
- aim to eat more fish such as salmon and tuna
- butter is ok! I can’t tolerate it because it is dairy, but it’s ok in moderation
- cholesterol is NOT your enemy. The real enemy is trans and saturated fats
- cut back on junk food-even the gluten free variety is unhealthy
- eat a serving of fruit at least twice a day
- look for healthier versions of the foods you love such as low sodium, NOT LOW FAT!!!
These are small and easy changes. The other things to look out for are sugar and sodium. In fact, these two are more likely to cause heart disease than fat or cholesterol. Our carb, fat, sugar and salt loving society will be our downfall if we don’t take our own health in hand and stop the madness!
But we do have our limits-I refuse to eat salt or sugar reduced ketchup. I won’t eat something if it tastes like crap just because I should. If you want to enjoy life, there have to be some exceptions. And yes, you can splurge once in awhile, like a special dinner out or maybe at a wedding.
You can be gluten free and healthy at the same time. We all have that wake up call that says-hey! You can’t do this anymore! But you don’t have to wait for that.
I have to say, since I cut back on all the junk food, I am practically IBS symptom free. I feel much better both physically and mentally. You can too!