Foods that cause gluten intolerance symptoms and alternatives to enjoy
There are a few gluten intolerance symptoms that can provide important clues as to whether you tolerate gluten well and whether it harms your body:
After eating a larger portion of industrially manufactured cereal products (bread, pasta, baked goods, cakes), a strange fog spreads in your brain. You get tired, sometimes lethargic. Concentration and clear thoughts become increasingly difficult to grasp.
They always blame it on the ‘food coma’, which is considered as “normal” after eating.
In fact, it’s a sign that your body doesn’t like what you’ve just eaten. After a healthy meal that your body can tolerate perfectly, you will not experience a brain fog.
Leave out any cereal products for a while (ideally 30 days). How do you feel? How does your gut feel? Are all bowel problems and irritable bowel syndrome gone?
After the month, reintroduce grain products into your eating plan. Is the situation worsening again? Do you feel better or worse? Does irritable bowel syndrome develop again?
Then it is an indication that you do not tolerate gluten well. You can find more information on irritable bowel syndrome in this article (Irritable Bowel Syndrome).
Carry out a gluten-free or grain-free month as just mentioned. Are your allergic symptoms getting better? Do they even disappear entirely? Then reintroduce cereal products into your everyday life and observe: Are the allergic symptoms flaring up once more?
This is also an indication that the protein does not only damage the intestine. It also overly irritates the immune system, which can cause allergies.
What about sourdough?
Most of the negative effects of gluten on your body, intestines and immune system apply to industrially manufactured and non-fermented grain products.
Get good sourdough bread or make it yourself. Let the sourdough ferment for a long time, and put a lot of effort and love into it. Then it is likely that the gluten breakdown already occurred when consuming. Thus, you have nothing to fear.
In fact, sourdough is the only form of how grain we should eat.
In addition to sourdough, another way to deal with the problem is to try a gluten-free diet. With the omission of the protein and gluten-containing foods, many people affected experience less promounced symptoms. The intestine can regenerate faster. Autoimmune sufferers report fewer symptoms.
But what does a gluten-free diet look like? Where can you find it when gluten seems to be in every food?
Glutenous foods – occurrence
If you want to avoid gluten, you should avoid the following foods:
Einkorn, durum wheat, emmer, semolina
Beer (see What’s the Beer Diet about? Debunking Myths and Clarifying Benefits of Beer)
Soup base and soup seasoning
Ready-made food of all kinds
Do not contain gluten, but cross-contamination and cross-reactions often occur:
There are other substances in cereals that can harm your body, such as trypsin inhibitors, lectins and saponins. Gluten has been repeatedly linked to autoimmune diseases.
A gluten-free diet makes sense to give your gut the chance to regenerate, to calm the immune system or as an active part of an autoimmune treatment. Give it a try for around 30 days.
What do you have to lose? If you don’t feel good at all, and you don’t see any effects on your body, you can still go back to “normal” after the month.
But what if something changes fundamentally in your body? Isn’t it worth this opportunity?
Gluten-free diet in practice
In the course of this article, you learned what gluten is, what it can do to the body and what foods it contains. Now you need tips for everyday life to deal with it.
On the one hand, this means that you know which foods contain the protein.
The next step is to find good alternatives for established, familiar, but gluten-free foods/meals.
Cereals are a staple food and most people consume them several times a day. If you are considering a gluten-free diet, you should find good alternatives to these everyday foods.
As mentioned, you can try sourdough bread. For this, you need a reliable organic baker who demonstrably works with sourdough.
Or you can make it yourself. Otherwise, there are now grain-free bread baking mixes that do not use wheat, rye, oats and the like. Search for “gluten-free bread mixes” online, or I can recommend the following one:
As a substitute for cornflakes and oatmeal, there are now good mixtures for gluten-free and grain-free mueslis. Just search the internet for “gluten-free muesli”, “paleo muesli” or “low-carb muesli”.
Sourdough pasta exists, but it is not as tasty, as good and satisfying as normal noodles. Rather use vegetable-based pasta. Peel zucchini, eggplant, radish, beetroot or carrot with the peeler and use this as a pasta substitute.
There is also pseudo-grain pasta like buckwheat that you can try. If you can’t tolerate everything, but want to do something good for your body, the only thing left to do is to completely remove this dish from your diet for some time. Rather use healthy carbohydrate sources such as starchy vegetables and fruits.
Many familiar convenience foods such as sauces, bagged/canned soups, frozen pizza, cakes and pastries contain gluten. If you want to live a healthy life, avoid ready-made foods and industrial foods of all kinds.
Try making these convenience foods yourself without using the numerous additives and chemicals.
Next, try to get this gluten-free too. You can now purchase gluten-free pizza and other things, which makes it easier for you to switch.
What about pseudo-grain?
Cereals containing gluten are from the sweetgrass family (short-lived plants). Pseudo-grain has the form of cereals (grains), but the plants are long-lived (trees), not sweet grasses. They do not contain gluten, but they do contain other storage proteins that people do not like to eat.
They are not as aggressive to your body as gluten, but they should be used with caution. We recommend that you also omit pseudo-cereals in a gluten-free month.
In addition to the storage protein, pseudo-cereals contain other substances that hinder digestion and irritate the immune system.
So if you avoid gluten for certain reasons, you should also avoid pseudo cereals if you want to be consistent.
If you wish to live permanently gluten-free, pseudo-cereals are a welcome alternative every now and then. However, you should not eat them on a daily basis.
Conclusion – everything about gluten and why we should avoid it
Gluten is a storage protein in cereals and is found in a similar form in every cereal. It occurs not only in wheat, which contains the most aggressive form, but also in rice, corn, spelt, barley, oats, rye and other cereals.
Due to upbringing and the industrialization of the bakery trade, it is contained in the finished cereal product in excess, so that it has a harmful effect on the body:
It triggers inflammation and immune reactions in the body, favors leaky gut syndrome, is suspected of promoting autoimmune diseases, attacks the intestinal cells, triggers allergies and is a direct cause of celiac disease.
To get rid of the harmful effects, it is advisable to consume cereals only in the form of good sourdough or to avoid cereal products of all kinds altogether.
A cereal or gluten-free diet is very good for this. The Paleo diet deals with the renunciation of grain and offers good alternatives.
In addition to avoiding cereals and gluten-containing products, it is also best to find good alternatives to familiar cereal products such as pasta, bread, cereals and the like for a long-term solution.
There are already numerous good recipe books, as well as books for more detailed information.
A gluten-free diet is not a trend as long as it shows that gluten causes damage to the body and can have a negative impact on health.
So please always be critical if you find out in the mass media from so-called experts that this trend towards a gluten-free diet is dangerous and senseless.
You learned today that it is neither dangerous nor senseless to look out for gluten. Avoiding the protein is part of a healthy diet and lifestyle.