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Wheat-free people, would you be able to give me some pointers please?

(15 Posts)
prioneyes Thu 20-Oct-11 20:54:51

My GP has advised me to reduce my wheat intake to see if it helps with my bowel problems. I am really struggling to avoid it. I'm not being too strict but even just going without bread, pittas, wraps, pasta etc is so hard. I am busy, work so need to consider lunches, and gluten free things are so expensive. Any suggestions please?

MrsJasonBourne Thu 20-Oct-11 21:03:47

I'm sure somebody more qualified will be along in a minute, but just wanted to say a friend of mine has a bad wheat allergy and can eat hardly anything processed or out of a packet. It's in everything, chocolate, ice cream, you name it, it's in it. How severe is your allergy?

ballstoit Thu 20-Oct-11 21:08:28

My DBro is Coeliac, tips from regular catering for him are as follows...
as you say Gluten Free are expensive so try to stick with naturally free where possible.
New Potatoes and salad, or chunky home made veg soup or jacket spud for lunch.
Rice is your friend for dinners...risotto, paella, chilli and curry.
It's a good time of year for mash so indulge yourself with loads of butter in it!

If you could invest in or borrow a breadmaker then you can make your own gluten free bread which is both tastier and cheaper...add seeds, olives, dried fruit etc.
Replace normal flour with rice flour in cakes and add spoonful of xantax gum powder to improve flavour...gluten free baking powder helps with raising.

Chocolate is gluten free smile

SkivingAgain Thu 20-Oct-11 21:09:49

I've also been avoiding wheat for the last three weeks, but don't need to be very strict about it so don't have to avoid things with small amounts of flour in. I'm finding that salads, baked potatoes, rice and curry etc are all fairly easy wheat free meals. Some of the wheat free breads I've tried are not especially appealing, but try the Genius brand which is soft and light. I bought some wheat free pasta in Waitrose, the spirals were fine but the spaghetti was not so nice. For sweet treats, I love coconut macaroons, rice crispy bars and, of course, chocolate!! Hope this helps, good luck. biscuit

SkivingAgain Thu 20-Oct-11 21:10:30

unsuccessful attempt to strike through the biscuit which you can't have if it has wheat in it

prioneyes Thu 20-Oct-11 21:10:59

I don't know if it's an allergy or what. I bloat really easily, always have, and in the last few months I've had totally random constipation and diarrhoea. Nothing of note was found on sigmoidoscopy and she'd suggested reducing my intake after I confessed my bingeing on bread and cakes.

onepieceofcremeegg Thu 20-Oct-11 21:16:44

do you mean wheat free or gluten free?

if you are wheat free you can have rye, barley or oats. However you cannot have some gluten free stuff. (for example, my dh is coeliac and his bread is gluten free but not wheat free). As you probably know the gluten is just one component of the wheat.

Anyway, things that dh has regularly:

jacket potatoes, Heinz beans are gluten free, as is cheese.

Mcain wedges (frozen) are clearly labelled but only the plain ones, not the coated ones.


greek salad.

We have asked in our local takeaways and they are helpful. The indian restaurant told dh that they use traditional recipes and no wheat at all.

The Chinese takeaway will do him a special "starch free" chow mein with boiled rice.

Most of Mcdonalds stuff (apart from the bread rolls!) is ok.

Chip shops not so good as they often cook the chips in with the battered items such as fish and sausage. Worth asking though as they may fry them separately.

I buy Dove's Farm gluten free flour and have good results with baking. smile

Mrs Crimbles does some lovely stuff (crackers, macaroons, cakes etc) - try the free from section.

We eat loads of rice. I make wedges in the oven. I cook fish in little foil parcels (e.g. salmon) with whatever veg I have to hand, e.g. green beans. Add some pesto.

Not all chocolate is gluten free, for example Cadburys and Galaxy have started to label as containing/may contain wheat so if you are very sensitive then take care.

prioneyes Thu 20-Oct-11 21:25:18

I'm not entirely sure, cremeegg. She advised reducing my wheat intake, but said although she wasn't suggesting I was coeliac it might still be a good idea to check my blood for antibodies. I guess I don't know enough about this stuff to know what I should be doing!

prioneyes Thu 20-Oct-11 21:26:58

Thank you all for the ideas, really helpful! My main problem is going to be organisation because without bread to fall back on in a hurry it will be tough.

onepieceofcremeegg Thu 20-Oct-11 21:28:11

Perhaps she would refer you to see a dietician? Or perhaps you could ask her to clarify?

Good luck anyway, I am used to catering for dh now (and he was well established on a strict gluten free diet when I met him) but it does take some getting used to it if you are new to it.

Thankfully all the supermarkets have free from sections now although they are expensive of course. Even 5-10 years ago it was quite tricky getting stuff in "normal" shops!

onepieceofcremeegg Thu 20-Oct-11 21:30:25

prioneyes - keep some rice cakes or wheat free crackers to hand at home/at work.

I do this for all of us; dh and the non-coeliacs. Very handy generally if you are disorganised/can't have normal bread. (I just get normal cream crackers for the rest of us and gluten free cheese crackers - Mrs Crimbles - for Dh)

Crackers stay fresh for ages compared to bread!

Also I buy frozen rice, it is just over £1 for 4 packs and microwaves in 3 minutes or so. I get it from Tesco or Waitrose.

nightcat Thu 20-Oct-11 23:17:33

if you really want to get better then go completely gluten free, no grains except those that don't have gluten in at all (can have rice, millet, buckwheat). You can be gluten sensitive and not coeliac. Read up on gluten sensitivity. But any of these shouldn't be main part of your meal, you need to bulk it out with various veg/salad/protein ingredients to get quality nutrients (carbs are just energy but very little nutri value).
The improvement is well worth sticking to the diet, bloating will go within days. Don't realy on processed gf substitute foods too much as sweet stuff contains glucose syrup that could make you put on weight/make it harder to shift it. Just use fruit or chocolate as a treat.

SusanKiss Thu 20-Oct-11 23:28:00

I've been following a wheat free diet for a couple of weeks now to reduce bloating and lose some lbs - wheat free is part of the Anna Richardson diet that I'm on - her book is helpful as it includes loads of recipes that you can have including a fab chicken risotto, curries etc .... I thought it was going to be really hard to be wheat-free (and boring), but it's been fine to date, it's just a different way of thinking about and cooking food !! I think you can also download her diet app if that's easier for you that also has the recipes in it ... but I got the book from Amazon ... just a thought for you !

prioneyes Fri 21-Oct-11 06:56:42

This thread is so helpful, thank you.

I'm eyeing up the oats but not sure if I should have any or just poach an egg for breakfast. Times like these I wish I liked bananas!

nightcat Fri 21-Oct-11 18:45:14

bananas are mainly carbs, so no loss

egg is fine, nothing to stop you from having cold meat, cheese, salad with olives, oats prob OK too

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