Starting something new is often easy, exciting and motivating, especially at the start when we’re all gusto and ready to take on the world! Changing to a gluten-free diet can be life changing and the results you can experience are worth every bit of overwhelm and confusion, but once the honeymoon period wears off, just a slight sniff of some freshly baked bread or having to choose a simple salad when you’re out can totally derail you and find yourself wondering if this whole gluten-free thing is worth all the effort. (It is.) If you’re on the verge of packing it in, here are a few ways to help you stay on track.
Remind yourself how great you felt when you were eating gluten-free
Remember those symptoms you had before eliminating gluten? Severe stomach cramps, wind, gas, sore joints, bloated like you were 6 months pregnant, no energy or a foggy brain, just to name a few!
You need to tap into those feelings and just remind yourself that you just don’t want to go back! And if you haven’t experienced how it feels to be gluten-free yet, give yourself a couple of weeks being completely clean and you’ll know what I’m talking about! Your body will thank you for it. Commit today to eliminating gluten and just do it.
Keep Your Pantry & Fridge Well Stocked
Convenience can be our biggest weakness.
If you are in a hurry, feeling stressed, and have the choice between going out to get a gluten-free meal or grabbing something with gluten in it out of the pantry, you would be forgiven for taking the easier option!
Instead of needing to grab whatever is on hand, spend a little extra time stocking your fridge and pantry with gluten-free foods, and you will find it much easier to stay consistent.
Make Your Goals Bite-Sized
The thought of having to be on a gluten-free diet for the rest of your life could be somewhat overwhelming. This is particularly true if you are just getting started.
Instead of thinking in such broad terms, try committing to being gluten-free for just two weeks to begin with. Chances are, it will feel much more manageable and achievable and by the end of the fortnight, the changes to your health and how you feel will hopefully be significant enough to encourage you to keep going.
Plan Your Meals & Snacks
There is nothing more satisfying than being planned and organised and knowing what’s on the menu for meals and snacks, especially when you’re busy and on a gluten-free diet.
Making meals that are simple and quick are your go to. Maximise your time by doubling batches, adding grated veggies, legumes and beans to bulk out dishes and use your slow cooker to keep things super easy.
Snacks can include veggie sticks & hummus, hard boiled eggs, yoghurt, nuts and berries, trail mix including nuts, dried fruit and chocolate chunks, cheese and gluten-free crackers, avocado & tuna on rice wafers or a smoothie, just to name a few.
To help with your planning, if you haven’t already grabbed it, download my brand new ‘A Delicious Gluten-Free Day’ Recipe Guide and put all these things on your menu!
Keep It Interesting
When you have to cook each and every night, it is easy to fall into a rut without even meaning to.
If you are always eating the same thing, boredom could be your downfall and lead you back to gluten foods!
A gluten-free diet doesn’t have to mean missing out. Take time regularly to hunt out recipe inspiration and start experimenting – there are honestly so many amazing gluten-free ingredients out there to cook with, it just takes a little bit of exploring to find them. Try cooking with chickpea flour for savoury fritters or pancakes, or almond flour in baking, or polenta as something different to potatoes and kumara, which can either be used as a crumb, polenta mash or even polenta cakes. Take a look at the Recipes section on my website for inspiration.
Do your Research on Gluten-Free Restaurants
We all need to eat out every once in a while, right? But how do you deal with eating gluten-free at a restaurant? It’s about learning what to ask so you can make good choices. In the beginning, it’s not easy but you’ll definitely get more confident as time goes on. You’ll need to get comfortable asking lots of questions. For example, with dressings, ask if they’re made in house or bought and if they contain any gluten ingredients.
There are many restaurants that state if a dish is gluten-free but you can’t be completely assured that it will be gluten-free. For breakfast or brunch, ask if the eggs are cooked on the same hot plate as the pancakes to avoid cross contamination. Are fries or wedges cooked in the same oil as the gluten chicken nuggets. Do they cook gluten-free pasta in the same water as regular pasta? Your waitress/waiter should be happy to answer everything – and if they can’t help you, ask to speak to the head chef – don’t feel bad advocating for yourself.
Surround yourself with inspiration and support
Find the people in your life that will encourage and motivate you to stay on the gluten-free track. Rely on friends, family, or your favourite health practitioner for advice, or look to health influencers who provide you with lots of inspiration (aka me!).
Search out like-minded people in an online community or at a support group. If you haven’t already joined my free Facebook group, Easy Gluten-Free Eating for Busy Mamas, come on over and join us for that camaraderie and support that everyone needs when on this journey.
Download ‘A Delicious Gluten-Free Day’ recipe guide for FREE today!
So, you find gluten-free food boring & bland right? What if I could change your thinking and get your taste buds singing for more?
Grab this FREE recipe guide and enjoy 5 quick and easy nutritious gluten-free recipes, including a breakfast, lunch, dinner, baking, snacks and a delicious dessert! Also includes a baking mix recipe & dairy-free alternatives for all the recipes!