Dietary Management for Gluten, Wheat and Cow’s Milk Allergies

Many people suffer from Food Allergies and Intolerances.  Some common food allergens are:

  1. Gluten

  2. Wheat

  3. Cow’s milk Dairy

Here we cover the description and dietary management of each of these, including alternative food options and a sample menu.

1. GLUTEN

  • Gluten is one of the proteins found in the flour of wheat, rye, barley, and to a lesser extent in oats.
  • Gluten in flour contributes to the elasticity and viscosity of the dough. Kneading dough will result in gluten forming a framework in which gas is captured, which expands during heating: i.e. the dough rises easily (satiny surface).
  • Thus, when gluten flours are omitted in recipes, the resulting product is often crumbly and/or firm.
  • Hard flour, i.e. bread flour, contains more gluten than cake flour.
  • Durum flour (in pasta) contains more gluten – adding to the stretchability of the product

Because gluten is a member of the grass family, there MIGHT also be possible allergic reactions to other grasses in addition to actual wheat / rye / barley products. This is known as cross-reactivity.

Other kinds of cereals of the grass family include maize and rice. It is important to determine exactly to which grasses (cereals) you may react.

GENERAL GUIDELINES

When one is allergic to gluten: AVOID all foods containing wheat, rye or barley (test tolerance to oats).

The diet must be healthy and nutritionally adequate within the gluten-free limitations.

As wide a variety of foods as possible should be eaten.

Due to the gluten-free limitations, extra IRON and FOLIC ACID must be eaten daily – so ensure that you have leafy green vegetables in your diet.

Eating at least 1 fresh fruit/veg daily will ensure an adequate intake of folic acid.

Other sources of folic acid include: fish, legumes, broccoli, meat, grapefruit.

Good sources of iron are: liver, egg, kidneys, beef, dried fruit, molasses.

*** READ LABELS CAREFULLY – AVOID ANYTHING CONTAINING THE FOLLOWING:

Wheat flour Wheat germFlour Graham flour
Wheat bran Germ Bran Gluten (Vital gluten)
Wheat starchGerm oil Starch Thickening
Wheat protein Enriched flour Bran Modified starch
WholewheatBreadcrumbsSemolinaHydrolysed protein
The following may contain gluten proteins:
Gelatinised starch Natural flavouring Soya sauceVegetable gum
Vegetable starch

Alternative starches that CAN be INCLUDED: 

  • Soya products, soya flour
  • Maize (mealies, sweetcorn, cornflour/maizena)
  • Rice
  • Potato
  • Sweet potato
  • Sorghum
  • Tapioca, sago (and flours)

 Use substitute flours in cooking and baking: sometimes a combination of flours results in a better end-product (examples of substitute flours that could be used include: soya flour, potato flour, buckwheat flour, millet flour, oatmeal, cornflour, fine mealie meal, rice flour, sago flour, tapioca flour).

Of note is the fact that soya flour improves the elasticity and viscosity of the product. Adding eggs into baked goods also improve the rising ability of baked goods.

FURTHER TIPS FOR THIS DIET:

  • To replace breadcrumbs for crumbing used crushed rice or cornflakes.
  • Crushed potato crisps are good for toppings on casseroles and pizzas.
  • Soya porridges and cereals provide excellent balanced nutritional alternatives to typical wheat/gluten-based cereals.

2. WHEAT

A wheat – free diet is one which is free of wheat or wheaten products.

The diet must be healthy and nutritionally adequate within the wheat-free limitations.

As wide a variety of foods as possible should be eaten.

Due to the wheat-free limitations, extra IRON and FOLIC ACID must be eaten daily: a least 1 fresh fruit/veg daily will ensure an adequate intake of folic acid. Also: fish, legumes, broccoli, meat, grapefruit.

Good sources of iron are: liver, egg, kidneys, beef, dried fruit, molasses.

*** READ LABELS CAREFULLY – AVOID ANYTHING CONTAINING THE FOLLOWING:

Wheat flour Wheat germFlour Graham flour
Wheat bran Germ Bran Gluten (Vital gluten)
Wheat starchGerm oil Starch Thickening
Wheat protein Enriched flour Bran Modified starch
WholewheatBreadcrumbsSemolinaHydrolysed protein
The following may contain gluten proteins:
Gelatinised starch Natural flavouring Soya sauceVegetable gum
Vegetable starch

ALTERNATIVE STARCHES TO WHEAT:

  • Rye
  • Barley
  • Oats
  • Soya products, soya flour
  • Maize (mealies, sweetcorn, cornflour/maizena)
  • Rice
  • Potato
  • Sweet potato
  • Sorghum
  • Tapioca, sago (and flours)

3. COW’S MILK DAIRY

*** READ FOOD LABELS – AVOID ANY FOOD CONTAINING THE FOLLOWING:

Milk Casein Curds Lactoglobulin
Milk powderCaseinates CheeseLactalbumin
Milk Solids WheyYoghurtLactose
Milk BlendsWhey proteinButterLactate
Margarine Whey syrupSweetenerLactic Acid
Buttermilk
  • Good substitutes for cow’s milk include soya milk / rice milk/ rooibos tea / fruit juice / water
  • A milk-free cream substitute OR soya milk can be used on cereal / porridge
  • Serve stewed fruit (eg strawberries) on dry cereal
  • Use fruit ices instead of icecream

Click here to download our sample menu and recipes for these food allergies.

 

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