If you’ve been given a celiac disease diagnosis, a wheat allergy, or gluten intolerance diagnosis, then it’s important for you to create a wheat free diet plan. One of the best ways to stay motivated as you begin to change your lifestyle is to understand some of the benefits you’ll gain as you begin a wheat and/or gluten free diet. In this article we’ll explore some of the benefits as well as provide a few tips for transitioning into a new way of cooking and eating.
Short Term Benefits
In a relatively short period of time you will notice a difference in how you feel. It may take a few months, but the symptoms you’ve been suffering from will disappear. It’s amazing what a simple gluten and wheat free diet can do for some people. You may notice you have more energy, feel more clearheaded, no longer have abdominal pain or digestive upset. Your overall feeling of well being will likely increase.
Long Term Benefits
Any time your body suffers from an autoimmune disorder it takes energy away from other things and weakens your system overall. By switching to wheat free diet foods you can reduce the stress of a constant autoimmune reaction. You will decrease your risks for related illnesses. If you have celiac disease this is particularly important as malnutrition can be a major risk factor and can lead to serious complications.
Wheat Free Diet Planning
There are a few things you can do to make your transition a bit easier.
- Don’t do everything at once – Make slow, consistent changes that you can stick with. If your doctor has found that you have several allergies, gradually introduce substitutions but don’t try to immediately begin a dairy and wheat free diet all at once. You’ll quickly become overwhelmed. Pick a meal – let’s say breakfast – and for a week just change your eating with that meal. Then move to the next meal. You won’t notice the benefits as quickly but you want to have a plan for success.
- Shop where you can find the items on your gluten free foods list. In the beginning convenience is everything. Some stores have better selection than others so try a few local stores or order from the internet.
- Find substitutes for favorites. If you love pasta, find a gluten free pasta you can enjoy. If you like having beer a few nights a week, realize it’s OK to have gluten free alcohol.
- Get support. There are many local gluten free support groups around the country. Having a regular meet-up with others can really help your motivation. You can quickly get new tips, find great celiac recipes and meet new friends.
The biggest benefit of a wheat free diet is improved health both in the short term and the long term. Get organized, make a plan and you’ll be well on your way to feeling great.