Nutritional Content of Alternative Gluten-Free Grains and Flours
An RN for 14 years, I have been following a strict gluten-free diet for six years of improving health! Now I help others as a Celiac Disease/Gluten Intolerance Educator. I work one on one with people on meal planning, shopping, cooking and dining out gluten-free. I will also work with children who have behavioral issues related to gluten or other food sensitivities.Â My book "Gluten-Free PORTLAND" is a comprehensive resource guide to the gluten-free diet and is available on my website www.glutenfreechoice.com. My other websites are: www.WellBladder.com and www.neighborhoodnurse.net.View all articles by Wendy Cohan
In eliminating gluten grains from your diet, have you wondered what you are missing nutritionally? Are you able to get adequate replacements for the nutrients in wheat, barley, rye, and oats, from the other nutritional components of your
Some commercial gluten-free flour blends seek to duplicate white flour, and are made primarily of white rice flour, tapioca starch, and potato starch (see the nutrition comparisons on the next page). These products are nearly devoid of nutrition and contain almost no fiber. Using these types of products result in baked goods that are the nutritional equivalent of wonder-bread. If you didn’t eat wonder-bread before going gluten-free, why should you attempt to duplicate it now? When making your flour blends, coming up with new recipes, and altering traditional wheat-flour recipes, try to include alternative grain products (and sometimes nut flours) that contain substantial amounts of fiber, protein, calcium, and iron, all nutrients found in whole grains, but in much smaller amounts in highly processed grains. Quinoa, sorghum, teff, amaranth, brown rice and millet flour are all good products to try.
See the chart attached to this article (the link to it is in the "Attachments" section below) for the nutrient content of the many gluten-free alternative grains, starches, and nut flours. The highest levels of nutrients in each category are noted, and you can see what nutritional powerhouses grains like teff, quinoa, sorghum, and amaranth are compared to white rice flour, tapioca starch, and potato starch.
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