10 things to know about eating gluten free

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Gluten free is one of the most popular dietary options we offer over on Shape Me and with 1 in 70 Australians with coeliac disease this is no surprise. Of most interest is the fact that 80% of people out there who do have coeliac disease actually do not realise they have it, which means a lot of us are choosing gluten free foods by choice rather than necessity. So if you do prefer to eat gluten free, here are 10 things to know about eating gluten free.

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1. While many people think that gluten is the cause of their gut issues, often it is the sugars found in wheat as opposed to the protein gluten actually causing gut issues including bloating and wind. These individuals will benefit from a low FODMAP diet as opposed to eating gluten free. Learn more about that here.

2. Many gluten free foods are not healthy; gluten free cakes, biscuits and other sweet foods are just as unhealthy as regular cakes, biscuits and sweet treats.

Try my gluten free Choc Peppermint Bliss Balls recipe for a perfect afternoon snack. 

3. If you choose gluten free foods, still look for wholegrain options where possible otherwise you end up with a diet that remains relatively high in refined carbohydrates.

4. If weight control is your goal, you still need to count carbohydrates when choosing gluten free biscuits, bread and cereals. Ideally <20-30g of carbs per serve is the goal but often gluten free products are much more concentrated in carbs than this so you do need to be mindful of portions.

5. Autoimmune conditions including coeliac disease, PCOS and thyroid dysfunction tends to run in families so it will serve all family members to be tested for coeliac disease if anyone is showing symptoms.

6. A diagnosis of coeliac disease can be masked if your diet is relatively low in gluten as you avoid bread, pasta and cereal grains. For a correct diagnosis you will need to eat foods that contain gluten prior to being tested.

7. Unless your child has been tested for coeliac disease and tested positive they will not benefit from a gluten free diet any more than they will benefit from a general healthy diet that contains as little processed food as possible.

8. Anyone with chronic gut issues will benefit from adding a probiotic into their day.

9. A true coeliac will experience negative symptoms from even a slight trace of gluten compared to someone with ‘gluten intolerance’ who will generally not react as strongly to small amounts of gluten in their diet.

10. Individuals managing coeliac disease and trying to control their weight will still benefit from a higher protein diet which controls the amount of concentrated carbs such as pasta and bread as opposed to thinking a gluten free diet is good for weight control.

Shape Me is a individualised dietary program overseen by Dietitian Susie Burrell and offers calorie controlled, gluten free meal plans along with gluten free recipesto help you achieve your diet and weight loss goals with the help of a Dietitian. 

Recipe: Brown Rice Lunch Bowl

gluten-free | low FODMAPS | dairy-free | nut-free | egg-free | wheat-free

Serves 1 – per serve: 320 cals | 12g fat | 24g protein | 24g carbs | 6g fibre


1/2 cup cooked brown rice

70g cooked chicken breast

1 tomato, chopped

1/2 carrot, grated

1/2 Lebanese cucumber, chopped

20g goat’s cheese

Preparation Method

1. Combine chicken with brown rice and salad ingredients.

2. Sprinkle with goat’s cheese and serve.

To try some of my additional gluten free recipes, such as Quinoa and Prawn Salad or Roast Veg Soup, click here.