We live in a marketing world of gluten free, dairy free, fat free, sugar free…
The list could go ON and ON. And yet, these are the food items that are so NOT free.
Finding out that I had a gluten allergy in college about broke my piggy bank.
(If you can picture me grasping on to the glass bank, flipping it upside down, and spewing a few curse words here and there – then you have an accurate description of my “meal prep” style. )
I just wanted food that was genuinely good for me. So did or does that mean gluten free?
Kind of. Hang with me and I’ll tell you all about the foods your gut will LOVE, easily digest, and soak up all the nutrients within.
Let’s get started!
What is Gluten?
Gluten seems to be the hot and trendy food item of the 21st century. Everyone wants to know about it, yet nobody wants to eat it.
Why is this, though?
Well, let’s start with what it is – gluten is a protein found in wheat.
And this protein holds many of our foods together like a “glue” – helping them to be able to take and maintain their shape.
However, over the years our wheat is no longer the wheat of our ancestors. Thanks to the food industry, these strains of wheat have become incredibly processed – making it more difficult on our digestive system to be able to digest these foreign substances.
This can result in a slew of uncomfortable side effects, including, but not limited to – bloating, inflammation, unwanted weight gain, higher blood sugar levels, increased cholesterol, and so much more.
So is Gluten Free the Answer to Health?
I was one of the people who were pushed to the edge and forced to examine my health (eating habits) in order to actually feel good.
To be vulnerable, I was bloated. I mean reallll bloated, so much that I was congratulated multiple times about my pregnancy… You can see the picture below for full proof.
(I wish that were a joke, but when I laid in the hospital cot in the hallway, people were passing by saying their congratulatory remarks.)
And the root cause of this? A gluten intolerance.
Which SO many – TOO many – people have without even realizing it. You yourself may have it and not even know it.
But why? Why is gluten THIS bad?
Our Gut & Gluten: An Oil + Vinegar Combination
Our gut consists of our stomach, small intestine, and large intestine and is comprised of over 100 trillion microbes (that can work in our favor or against us).
⇨ If you’re interested in learning how healthy your gut is at the moment, here is a complete guide to the signs and symptoms your body may be sending to you that your gut is in dire need of redemption: 8 Poor Gut Health Signs + 7 Simple Ways to Fix It!
Our gut seems like some crazy foreign concept, but in reality, all our digestive system needs in order to be happy and healthy are simple, recognizable foods.
But ever since our food became industrialized, we have moved so far away from this concept: added sugars, chemical additives, fake “food” like products – and to top it off – processed wheat strains that are found in nearly everything!
Gluten Free Meals: What the Heck Do We Do?
It didn’t take long for me to understand that gluten was hard for our bodies to digest and break down because of how processed this material has become – but what did take a long time was learning how to eat gluten free in a way that was healthy.
See, too many products that are labelled “gluten free” are actually just packed with a crap load of sugar.
So sure, it doesn’t have gluten in it – but it has tons of added sugar, which is arguably just as bad – if not worse for your blood glucose levels.
But yet there I stood – in a Walmart aisle, crouched over reading nutrition labels – casually and ever so frequently losing my mind.
(The picture you just painted in your mind is embarrassingly true – even more vulnerably I will admit that I cried over being so frustrated.)
In the Walmart aisle – no jokes, no lies. All truth for you guys.
Focus on New Key Words
The real win with one’s health comes from learning what are actually IN the foods, not what is being kept OUT of the foods.
I would strive to focus on specific keywords in ingredient lists to avoid – specifically anything that ends in “ose” because this is a clear indication of sugar content.
Marketers will always try to grab you with the “____- free” statements, because it makes their product look healthier than the rest. But then if they can get you hooked on the taste (with the sugar content that actually makes up their product) then they’ve got you hooked as a loyal, returning customer!
It’s a terrible scheme that I personally fell into for quite some time.
So what I’ll leave you with today are my best recommendations when it comes to eating gluten free…
Choose foods that are naturally healthy and that don’t try to sell themselves to you to be
Avoid gluten for your gut – it is incredibly processed and even more difficult to digest
Be kind to your body, and that starts with what’s in the ingredient list
Find a routine that is easy for you to maintain – if meal prepping works, then go for it. If you’re overwhelmed by it, I’ve got you.
What ended up being easiest was having these meals prepared ahead of time and delivered.
That way I knew for sure that based off the service I was using, all the meals were naturally gluten free, but also low sugar, tasty, well portioned, and rich in nutrients.
If you’re interested, I HIGHLY recommend giving Freshly a peek. Their food philosophy can be found above, but in every delicious meal they guarantee less sugar, less processing, and more nutrients.
And hey! All the meals are naturally gluten free and low carbohydrate – so that’s a win in my book.
No more crying in Walmart! My advise: Investing in my health has been the greatest decision of my life.
If this appeals to you, there’s a 30% coupon below to get you started!
Let me know in the comments below what works best for you! I can’t wait to hear your responses!