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    Do you have questions about celiac disease or the gluten-free diet?

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I may have Celiac Disease and I am very worried about the diet involved with it. I have always been a girl who loves starches and wheat. My favorite foods are mashed potatoes, white bread, fresh bread, pasta, etc. Are there many varieties of foods that can closely replace my favorite foods? I go to our local Buehler's grocery store, and I see a single isle with gluten free items. I'm very very nervous about the seemingly in satisfying prospects. Help!

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I replaced  potatoes with sweet potatoes.  I am now excited each and every day I can eat sweet potatoes.  Lately I discovered that Jerusalem Artichokes can be grated and fried like potato hashbrowns.  I also use muffins made with nuts to replace bread at meals.

 

Most of the gluten free products are outside of the gluten-free aisle.  These include meats, eggs, vegetables,  fruits, and nuts.  There are many good foods.  I keep surprising myself by coming up with new foods that I really like.

 

I know you can find safe foods that you like too.  It will take a while to learn and adjust, but if you keep heading in the right direction; you should be able to get it done.

 

Wait to cut out gluten until your blood tests are done.  After the tests are done, then you can try the diet regardless of the results.

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Hey, mashed potatoes are gluten free, so its not so bad already. Just use real potatoes (the boxed mashed potatoes are probably not). You know, a lot of people with gluten-problems crave wheat products, especially the unhealthy ones like white bread...its kinda like an addiction to wheat. Eventually that does go away. There are tons of gluten-free products out there, you'll find them. Good pasta does exist (its a little more expensive). good white bread doesnt - but there is some decent bread- but u get used to enjoying whats on the bread more than the bread. We have a bakery that just opened nearby, all gluten free with fresh muffins & fresh bread...it is possible! Fruits, vegis & meat are all good - and you might be surprised that normal foods like Chex cereal & Tostitos are gluten free too! There are lots of delicious healthy choices, it doesn't have to be such a sacrifice.

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Mashed potatoes are gluten free so there is no need to replace them. Not only can you use real potatoes to make them but there is more than one variety available that is gluten free. I believe (but you will need to verify by label reading EVERY label with EVERY purchase) that the Betty Crocker boxed mashed are gluten free as well as the ginormous blue-ish box you can get at Costco, I think the brand is Excel. The Costco ones are really good and only take water so are great to keep around for those off times you just didn't think to be prepared.

 

There are a lot of options for pasta. There is rice pasta, which I use as my macaroni because I can buy it in bulk for an insanely low price here. (I don't buy it from the actual bulk section because of possible cross contamination, I buy the entire 10 pound unopened box.) For a replacement for spaghetti, I used to like angel hair and there is no angel hair replacement that I can stand so instead I like quinoa pasta. There is also corn pasta and some others I'm sure I'm not thinking of or familiar with. You'll find them either in the health food or gluten free section of your store or in a health food store.

 

With bread it will simply be trial and error. I recommend Udi's or Rudi's or Genius bread. Mostly Genius bread but even living in a huge city with over a dozen grocery stores to shop at I've only seen it available once in my area while the other two are in multiple stores. Nutritionally they are completely useless, they are expensive also, but they don't suck. If you try them and don't like them my recommendation is to go about 3 months totally bread free then come back to them. You may find that having gone that long without any bread at all your taste buds may have had time to adapt to the changes and you will also have had time to forget exactly what it is you are replacing. This is what I did and after that time gap the breads I tried tasted like bread to me, or at least enough like it that I could enjoy them. Another piece of advice about bread is attitude about it. Rather than resenting or hating gluten free bread for what it isn't (your beloved white gluteny bread), try to appreciate it for what it is. This shift in attitude can make all the difference in enjoyment. And, all of these breads are frozen and you will want a new toaster for them for defrosting on the lowest setting or toasting. If you use your old toaster it will cause cross contamination and make you sick, it can not be cleaned and unless you have others in your house who will continue to use the old one for gluteny things I recommend donating it to charity.

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I use maifun noodles now as my main pasta.  I never found a 'gluten-free' pasta that I liked (in taste or texture) and they are all horribly expensive, so on a whim I tried the cheap rice noodles found in the 'ethnic' section of nearly any grocery store.  They are gluten free - at least the brands I've found - cheap, and stay firm instead of mushy for hot pasta dishes as well as cold. 

 

I haven't found a bread I like, sorry.  Udi's bagels are a little ok.

 

Good luck!!

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