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Fulfill Your Nutritional Needs with these 5 Gluten-Free Essentials!

Variety of whole wheat bread

 Some people suffering from celiac disease need to cut gluten completely out of their diet, as their immune system reacts strongly to this molecule found in wheat, barley, spelt, rye, and sometimes oats, as well as all their derivatives. These foods are an important source of carbs, fiber, and B complex vitamins. If you eliminate these products without replacing them with a proper substitute, you risk suffering from certain deficiencies, constipation, mood swings, and sweet cravings. I suggest you integrate the following foods to spice up your routine!

1.       Legumes

Not only are legumes a source of carbohydrates, they are also a great source of proteins! They are rich in fiber, iron, and calcium! Integrate chickpeas, beans, lentils, and soybeans to your soups, salads, stews, spreads… Be creative! You can also prepare your pastries with legume-based flours, which contain more fiber and iron than rice and corn flour!

2.       Root vegetables

Rediscover the traditional potato, add variety with sweet potatoes, and find out about manioc and taro! Because these vegetables contain a lot of carbs, we often classify them in the starches category. They are a wonderful alternative to grain products. What’s more, root vegetables are rich in potassium, vitamins C and A, and iron.

3.       Gluten-free grains (or pseudo-cereals)

Don’t forget about grains that are simply completely gluten-free! Rice, millet, and corn are excellent alternatives! Quinoa, buckwheat, and amaranth are pseudo-cereals that contain a little bit more proteins, and no gluten.

4.       Fruits

Rich in carbs, fiber, and vitamin C, they will help you refuel! Of course, fruits can’t completely replace grain products in a meal, but they are perfect in snacks, desserts, and some salads!

5.       Small treats

For nutrient-dense and gluten-free desserts, prepare tapioca, rice pudding, egg whites whipped into peaks, or “blancmange”! Most importantly, don’t forget the chocolate! Choose a chocolate with a high cocoa content (70 % and higher), and check the ingredients list to make sure there is no trace of gluten!

By Caroline Proulx, P.Dt.

Caroline Proulx

Holder of a bachelor’s degree in nutrition from McGill University, and member of the Ordre Professionnel des Diététistes du Québec, Caroline has been working as a nutritionist for Nautilus Plus since January 2013. A seasoned marathon runner with a passion for cooking, she also animates conferences and motivation groups about nutrition! “As I have not always been a keen athlete, I am very proud of having completed a marathon, and also of preparing the next ones! For me, nutrition is not only the key to optimal performance, but also a medicine in itself. Therefore, my objective is to encourage people to change their habits if they need to and motivate them to never give up, but first and foremost, make them realize that eating healthy is a pleasure that we are lucky to enjoy three times a day!”

Fulfill Your Nutritional Needs with these 5 Gluten-Free Essentials!is a post from I'm taking charge. I'm taking charge is a blog that aims to help people in their journey to fitness through articles on training, nutrition, motivation, exercise and healthy recipes.
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