Family Life

Benefits to Reading Ingredient Lists Goes Well Beyond Eliminating Gluten

Before going on a gluten-free diet, I must admit I rarely read the ingredient labels on food I ate.    Maybe once in awhile when I would look at the number of calories or the amount of fat.  And when I was pregnant with my daughter, I did begin to pay attention to sugars and serving size.

My happiest lesson then was learning that 5 Dove minis equates to just one serving.  If being able to eat that much ice cream while pregnant doesn’t make you happy,  I don’t know what will…

Anyway, the point is when you begin a gluten-free diet you have to actually stop and read the ingredients.   This at first is very overwhelming.   Your quick trip to the grocery turns into a depressing long excursion as you realize how little you paid attention to what you put in your body and how much junk there is in most of the food you buy.

As you adjust to the diet, you begin to buy more fresh produce and less processed foods.

You cook more at home with basic food groups.  You are conscious of giving up tradional “whole grains” and so you begin to educate yourself about what foods contain what nutrients and find your meals now are more diverse and colorful.    You become willing to try new combinations of fruits and vegetables.

And you learn why good old fashioned ice cream (with 5 ingredients or less) is still around and that you will pay more for it and eat less of it because it fulfills a craving that high fructose corn syrup and unpronounceable ingredients cannot.  And you will realize there are benefits beyond eliminating gluten to reading ingredient lists.

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Happy Gluten Free