The gluten-free diet is often touted by celebrities and fitness freaks for weight loss. Is substantial weight loss with a gluten free diet plan truly possible? Let’s find out.
Gluten free diet plan is not only healthy but also gratifying. There are many varying and often very conflicting opinions when it comes to the question of choosing a gluten-free dietary lifestyle. However, eating only gluten-free meals can be a life-changer for people with celiac disease and other forms of gluten intolerance.
Although a strict gluten free diet is mandatory for individuals suffering from wheat allergy, celiac disease, irritable bowel syndrome, non celiac gluten sensitivity, or gluten ataxia, is it beneficial for those trying to lose weight? Read on as we provide you with answers to all your gluten questions and provide you with a gluten free meal plan.
What is gluten?
Before you start your gluten free diet plan, it is important to understand what gluten is. Gluten is a protein found in grains – specifically, wheat, barley, and rye- which gives the dough elasticity and maintains its shape during the cooking process. It also affects texture by providing a chewy finish. Gluten is also often used as a food additive in processed foods like bread, pasta, cereal, and pastry.
Foods to eat/avoid when on a gluten-free diet
Gluten is found in a wide variety of foods, including bread, pasta, cereal, and pastry. It is also often used as a food additive in processed foods. Fortunately, there are many gluten-free alternatives to gluten-containing foods. For example, there are now gluten-free breads, pastas, and cereals available at most grocery stores.
In addition, there are a variety of naturally gluten free foods such as fruits, vegetables, meat, poultry, fish, shellfish, beans, and legumes as well as gluten free snacks such as trail mix that can be enjoyed on a gluten-free diet. The easiest way to redeem the benefits of gluten-free diets or achieve weight loss with a gluten-free diet is to eat single-ingredient, unprocessed foods.
If you’re gluten intolerant, or if you are avoiding gluten in order to lose weight, read the table below for a primer on what to eat/avoid:
|Foods to eat||Foods to avoid|
|Nuts and seeds||Baked goods|
|Beans and lentils||Processed foods|
|Fruits and vegetables||Brewer’s yeast|
|Healthy fats and oils||Rye, Barley, Malt|
|Animal proteins like eggs, poultry, meat, and seafood||Wheat and wheat-based foods|
|Gluten-free grains like oats, quinoa, millet, and buckwheat||Certain condiments like marinades, sauces, and salad dressings|
|Certain seasonings and condiments like hummus, pesto, and fresh herbs||Some snack foods like cereal bars, chips, and granola|
|Gluten free dishes like risotto, grits and salads||Beverages like beer, alcoholic beverages, premade coffee drinks, and drink mixes|
Pros and Cons of gluten free diet
Any diet has pros and cons. The gluten-free diet is no different. Here are the pros and cons of a gluten-free diet.
|More energy||Vitamins and minerals deficiency PubMed: Nutritional deficiencies in celiac disease|
|Clearer skin||Chronic fatigue|
|Weight loss||Expensive than a standard diet|
A gluten-free diet is generally considered a healthy diet. However, if you are not used to eating a lot of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, you may experience some side effects. It is vital to increase your fiber intake to avoid these side effects.
1 Week gluten-free diet plan
|Monday||Berries and Greek yogurt parfait, and Sausage and egg muffins (with cornmeal)||Vegetable salad, Chili turkey||Steak with yam and zucchini|
|Tuesday||Gluten-free pancakes, Skimmed milk||Cornbread, Fruit salad||Balsamic glazed mushrooms and chicken|
|Wednesday||Peanut butter & banana toast, Berry smoothie||Tuna salad, Bean & beef slow-cooked chili||Pork loin with rosemary, garlic, and basil|
|Thursday||Tomato and spinach omelet, Chocolate & nut smoothie||Shrimp avocado salad, turkey meatballs & Zucchini noodles||Garlic mashed cauliflower, Steamed rice|
|Friday||Zucchini parmesan waffles, Fruit smoothie||Creamy egg salad, Mediterranean chicken quinoa||Tuscan butter salmon, Stuffed peppers|
|Saturday||Banana nut muffins, Hard-boiled egg||BLT salad, Roasted chicken thighs||Pizza-style quinoa casserole, green beans|
|Sunday||Overnight oats with chia seeds, Almond milk||Quinoa tabouli, Grilled lamb chops||Cilantro lime shrimp, Roasted sweet potatoes|
Can you lose weight with gluten free diet plan?
Besides people with gluten related disorders like wheat allergy, celiac disease, and non celiac gluten-sensitivity diseases, several other people are ditching gluten to lose weight. Recent trends claim that gluten free foods and completely gluten free diets National Library of Medicine: The Gluten-Free Diet: Fad or Necessity? can aid in weight loss. However, there is no clear evidence that simply avoiding gluten will lead to weight loss.
But, if an individual chooses to follow a gluten free diet, they may automatically make some healthier food choices to forego any food that contains gluten as an ingredient. This will result in consumption of lesser carbs.
While there is no specific number as to how much weight you can lose on a gluten-free diet, it depends on various factors such as your diet, physical activity, and medical condition. If you strictly follow a gluten-free diet plan and make healthier food choices, you might lose weight gradually.
Overall, the truth is, there is no one-size-fits-all answer to this question. Some people may observe some weight loss when they cut out gluten, while others may not see any change on the scale. Ultimately, you need to figure out what works best for you and your body.
Tips for eating gluten-free when trying to lose weight
The key to losing weight on a gluten free diet plan is to focus on healthy eating. There are a few tips to keep in mind when you’re following a gluten free diet plan for weight loss.
1. Eat whole foods
When going gluten free, eat more whole foods like fruits, vegetables, meat, poultry, fish, and gluten free grains. When you’re trying to lose weight, it’s important to limit your intake of processed foods, sugary drinks, or flavored alcoholic beverages. Try to cook your own food using gluten free products. If you are new to this, start by pulling out a good gluten free meal plan off the internet and try to follow it. Soon you will be able to reduce store bought unhealthy foods from your diet.
2. Get plenty of fiber
Fiber is an essential nutrient for weight loss. It helps to keep you feeling full and reduce the calories you eat. When you’re eating gluten free foods alone, you have to be sure that you get plenty of fiber by eating fruits, vegetables, and whole grains.
3. Get regular exercise
Eating gluten free alone will take you nowhere if your goal is healthy weight loss. Gluten-free dieters should ensure that they get enough regular exercise. Regular exercise is essential for overall health and can help speed up weight loss.
4. Try gluten alternative foods
Remember, gluten free diet is not only healthy but can also be tasty. There are many alternatives to gluten foods. For instance, you can try corn tortillas instead of flour tortillas.
5. Control food portions
Following gluten free diet plan can promote weight loss and improve your health over time. However, one has to keep a check of the portion sizes as well. No matter how strictly you follow a gluten-free diet plan, you will gain weight if you cannot control your food portions.
A sample gluten-free diet plan for weight loss
Here is a sample gluten-free diet plan for weight loss to help you kick start your diet. This diet plan includes foods that are high in protein and fiber, but is low in calories.
1 Week Gluten Free Diet Plan for Weight Loss
|Monday||Banana Oat Pancakes||Kale quinoa salad||Bean & veggie chili|
|Tuesday||Acai Berry Bowl||Roasted chicken breast||Peanut butter chicken|
|Wednesday||Casserole Breakfast||Vegetable stir fry with brown rice||Meat ball black bean chili|
|Thursday||Vegetable Frittata||Chicken salad wrap||Quinoa Salad with grilled halloumi|
|Friday||Savory Oatmeal||Honey sesame chicken with broccoli||Creamy salmon, leek & potato traybake|
|Saturday||Chia Pudding||Sweet potato, bacon and broccoli muffins||Persian lamb tagine|
|Sunday||Ham & Cheese Egg Cups||Roasted tandoori cauliflower bowl||Chicken Casserole|
In conclusion, adopting a gluten-free diet can be beneficial for individuals with gluten intolerance or celiac disease. By eliminating gluten-containing foods and incorporating gluten-free alternatives, one can improve digestive health, manage symptoms, and enhance overall well-being.
Consult a doctor or registered dietitian before choosing a gluten-free diet plan. They can help you create a healthy diet plan that meets your needs.