Certain foods, such as wheat, barley, rye, durum, spelt, emmer, semolina, and farro, contain the protein gluten. Since gluten is a protein that gives dough its elasticity, it is present in the majority of baked goods made with flour.
For the majority of people, gluten is not harmful; however, those who have celiac disease or non-coeliac gluten sensitivity may experience health issues. Thus, for those with gluten-related conditions, a gluten-free diet is essential.
Five suggestions for a successful gluten-free Christmas
Although managing a gluten-free diet can be difficult, with careful preparation, you can still enjoy the holidays. The following advice may be useful to you:
Offer assistance to your host
Making Christmas dinner is a difficult task. For at least a small get-together of family and friends, the hosts will probably prepare a large number of dishes. Giving them your assistance will benefit you as well as them. To learn what to eat and avoid, you can assist in the creation of gluten-free dishes and observe how other foods are prepared.
Bring an item
Bringing food is a thoughtful gesture that will ease your mind if there are no gluten-free options available on the table. You can make your signature gluten-free dish or traditional Christmas fare in gluten-free versions, so you know that everyone will enjoy it.
If you are certain there won’t be gluten-free options available, you can select a meal, dessert, drink, or all of them. You can prepare a festive-feeling butternut squash soup without gluten. Consider Christmas pudding, which is delectable and simpler to prepare.
You can bring non-alcoholic or alcoholic gluten-free mulled wine along with your favorite fruit slices, juices, cinnamon, and sweeteners like maple syrup or honey for drinks.
To identify naturally gluten-free foods, enquire about ingredients
Always ask the host what’s in there before consuming anything that appears to be gluten-free. For instance, while turkey is naturally gluten-free, most of its sauces are not.
Make sure the restaurant offers gluten-free options when dining out
To make sure a restaurant prepares gluten-free food and doesn’t contaminate it with gluten during the preparation, cooking, and serving process, it’s best to give them a call in advance.
Typical gluten-containing foods
It will be simpler to navigate a gluten-free Christmas if you first know what foods to avoid. Foods that contain gluten include, but are not restricted to:
- Wheat and its various varieties, including spelt, durum, einkorn, emmer, and kamut
- Brewer’s yeast for barley
- Malt Rye Pumpkin Spice Triticale
During Christmas gatherings, a lot of baked goods are typically made with flour containing gluten. When it comes to food ingredients, you should ask your host.
Typical Christmas fare and beverages that may contain gluten include:
- Gravy: Typically served with turkey, this gravy is composed of flour, fat, and stock.
- Cookies with candies, typically made with wheat flour
- foods, such as meat products
- alcoholic drinks manufactured from non-distilled gluten-containing grains
Foods in the “gray zone” could contain gluten
Naturally, gluten can contaminate foods that are supposed to be gluten-free. Since oats are most likely to become contaminated during production, if you have a gluten sensitivity, you should only eat oats that are labeled as gluten-free.
It may also occur if food is prepared or served using the same utensils. Foods free of gluten should be prepared, cooked, and served differently from foods that contain gluten.