Living Sustainably with a Gluten-Free diet

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Living sustainably, in an unsustainable world can be a challenge at times. From reducing meat, plastic and considering it’s source; the foods we choose to buy and consume can take a lot of consideration. Throw in a gluten-free food allergy or intolerance and it can be a whole lot harder too.

In 2020 I developed a gluten intolerance. A severe one. Everything I eat (containing Wheat I would later work out) would cause me to run to the loo (sorry to be frank), I broke out in an extremely painful rash on my hands, lost weight… the list goes on. Having read on the NHS website that it could be down to gluten, I cut it out completely and low and behold all my symptoms eased. Fast forward to 2021 and I now live a strict Gluten-Free diet, I do not experience any more discomfort and it works for me.

(For context, I visited my GP; blood tests were done and they ruled out Coeliac disease etc. – if you have any health concern please visit your GP.)

Having switched up my diet pretty dramatically, it took away a lot of freedom when doing a food shop. It has been a complete learning process of how I’m able to live sustainably with a gluten-free lifestyle. But, over the past year, it has gotten a whole lot easier. So, now you know my back-story, I wanted to provide some tips on how I live as sustainably as I can, on a Gluten-Free diet.

It has been a complete learning process of how I’m able to live sustainably with a gluten-free lifestyle.

In terms of foods, I tend to eat lots of vegetables, rice and meat-free meats. Oddbox are a great company who reduce surplus fruit & vegetables that would otherwise have been thrown away. We have a box delivered every other week.

The Gluten-free section in large supermarkets, despite being irregularly stocked I have found (frustratingly) do have lots of sauces in glass jars. Some freezer items too often are plastic-free – a simple shake often revealing if the produce are loose in their cardboard box.

For item’s such as GF pastas etc. Refill shops often tend to not stock these. But, recently I have discovered that both the Coop and Tesco now have soft plastic recycling bins. They recycle food packets that otherwise are not taken with household recycling.

Quorn’s meat-free Pieces, Mince, Steak and Bacon are all Gluten-Free but do be careful as their Vegan range sadly all contain wheat. As you maybe well aware by now, reducing meat consumption is one why of helping fight the climate crisis. The food bags Quorn comes in can be recycled at larger supermarkets with plastic bags too.

I still struggle with lots of elements of having to eating gluten-free. Often wanting to eat Vegan but finding the meat version is GF and Vegan version not. It’s tricky, but these are just some of the things I do to live sustainably whilst eating Gluten-Free.

A note to end. If you too follow a Gluten-Free due to a condition or intolerance, Coeliac UK are a great source for information. With recipes and guidance if you ever need!

Disclaimer: The above article contains information about my own experiences, health and diet & should not be taken as fact. If you have any concerns about your own health, please visit your doctor.

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