For the many people out there that either choose or need to eat gluten-free products, things are getting a bit easier. The amount of gluten-free foods are on the rise with new pastas, breads, cakes, mixes and even alcohol like gluten free beer. In fact the demand and sales for such products have increased 74% from 2004 to 2009 according to the Nielson Company and is thought to grow another 15 – 25% a year!
Gluten intolerance or celiac disease is a medical condition where the part of the intestine that absorbs nutrients such as protein, fat, carbs, vitamins and minerals is damaged by a substance called gluten. Gluten is a protein found in wheat, rye, barley, and can be found in food that many of us include in our usual diet. Some foods that don’t contain gluten may be processed with wheat like oats or soy or contain fillers (such as lunch meats, sausages or hot dogs).
With Celiac Awareness Month going on during May, there will probably be many more people out there informing people about gluten-free diets and products. Such products include Duncan Hines gluten-free cake mixes, King Arthur Flour has gluten-free flours and baking mixes, and for those who like beer without the gluten there is Redbridge, brought to use by the lovely folks at Anheuser-Busch.
Photo by Vanessa Pike-Russell