Gluten Free-Casein Free Foods for a Healthy Life
Gluten Free-Casein Free Foods
Many people who switch their family to a GFCF lifestyle are often worried about the health factors and risks of eliminating nutrients that we have been taught are essential to an appropriate diet.
There are many choices of typical food, easily found in any grocery store that fulfils the GFCF diet requirements without losing proper nutrition. Sometimes, just choosing basic, single ingredient foods can achieve a completely balanced diet, while still being GFCF.
Many people feel that consuming protein is often a strong component attained by eating dairy products. With the GFCF diet, dairy products are forbidden, as casein is milk protein.
Protein is vital for cellular growth and repair. Protein helps rebuild muscles and generates new skin and tissues. Protein also produces enzymes in the body and breaks down food for digestion. There are many other ways to obtain protein in the diet, besides animals’ milk and products made from animals’ milk.
Protein is found in meats, poultry, fish, beans, legumes, nuts, nut butters, rice, some breads, a few vegetables and eggs. If soy is tolerated, that is another source of protein (many children with ASD cannot tolerate soy). Many of the alternative milks can be good sources of protein, too.
Many parents are also worried about calcium when dairy products are not consumed. Again, there are many other ways to put calcium into one’s body, without drinking animal milk. There are milk alternatives in the form of soy, coconut, almond, hemp, hazelnut, potatoes, and rice. All of these alternative milks have calcium and other nutrients added to compensate for not drinking animal milk. Juices are also often enriched with calcium.
Other sources of calcium are found in deep green vegetables or by taking a supplement. (Make sure the supplement is GFCF and dye free.)
By removing gluten from the diet, one might think that acquiring the correct amount of fiber in the body could not be possible.
Fiber is important to our bodies. It helps lower cholesterol and assists with waste elimination. Fiber also plays a vital role in weight management and blood sugar control. Alternative grains have plenty of fiber! Besides GF grains, fiber can be obtained from consuming fruits and vegetables, lentils, beans, rice and legumes. Alternative breads and baked goods are made from rice and other ingredients, such as tapioca, potatoes and beans. These all have a good amount of fiber.
When preparing GFCF foods, do not think of packaged foods. So many people comment that going GFCF is so expensive. It does not have to cost a lot of money if you just cook and prepare foods like your grandmother used to, many years ago. Simple, plain, non-packaged, non- processed food!
Here is a list of food in the protein group that can be served just by itself. Of course you can add spices or other GFCF toppings/sauces for flavor.
Eggs, seafood, beef, chicken, pork, beans, nuts, nut butters, seeds, soybeans (if tolerated), lentils, corn, rice, sweet potatoes, potatoes, avocado, and some vegetables.
Some foods highest in protein are: 6 oz of seafood (30-40 grams), beef (6 oz has 38 grams), chicken 6 oz. (42 grams) and pork 6 oz. (30 grams). Pumpkin seeds have 19 grams for 2 oz. Nuts have about 6 grams per 1 oz. Nut butters have 6 to 8 grams for 2 tablespoons. Beans have 14 to19 grams per one cup.
Here are foods in the fiber arena that can provide plenty of nutrition: Fruits, vegetables, nuts, rice, rice pasta, and beans. Some items high in fiber are: pears, 5 grams, 1 cup raspberries, 10 grams, 1 cup lentils, 15 grams, _ cup cooked spinach, 7 grams, or 1 small potato, 5 grams.
So, again, going GFCF doesn’t have to cost a lot of money, nor does your body have to be deprived of proper nutrients. It is all about education and knowledge to know how to make the diet work, in the most healthful way.
Barrie Silberberg is the author of The Autism & ADHD Diet: A Step-by-Step Guide to Hope and Healing by Living Gluten Free and Casein Free (GFCF) And Others Interventions. Her web site is: www.puttingyourkidsfirst.com
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This post originally appeared on our March/April 2012 Magazine