If you can’t have dairy or gluten, what do you eat? If you’ve just decided to switch to the GF+DF Diet (gluten-free & dairy-free eating), you’re probably looking at that long list of foods you can’t have and are feeling overwhelmed. That’s OK. It’s easy to get frustrated. The good news is that there are tricks that make it easier to stick to the GF+DF Lifestyle.
Successfully stay on the GF+DF diet by following these diet tips: plan ahead, know what you can eat and keep yourself satisfied with nutrient-dense, delicious foods. Sure, it’s difficult to stick to a gluten-free diet and a dairy-free diet when there’s so many delicious foods that contain allergens. But you can find success if you a few GF+DF tips and tricks.
I have been living the GF+DF Life for 15 years, and I know you can thrive by eating only foods that are free from gluten and dairy. I know it takes a lot of work and time – that’s why I call it a lifestyle. And it’s worth the work! Eating GF+DF can help with weight loss, improve health and energy levels and can even help with arthritis and irritable bowel syndrome. Here’s a few tips to get going with the GF+DF Lifestyle.
Gluten-Free & Dairy-Free Lifestyle Tips
The key to success with a GF+DF Lifestyle is planning ahead! Plan out your meals every week and put in the time to make healthy, nutrient-dense foods at home. Make sure that your snack spots are always stacked and keep yourself prepped with plenty of dry goods like pasta for a quick dinner.
Streamline your mealtime even more by subscribing to a meal planning service like Freshly, which is endorsed by the Gluten Intolerance Group. With Freshly, you get a customized set of ingredients delivered to your door as often as you’d like, making GF+DF meals a breeze.
Always Have Snacks
I find the best way to avoid cheating on the GF+DF diet is to keep yourself well stocked with nutrient-dense, healthy and delicious snacks. Use our GF+DF Snack Guide to make a list of snacks that work for you and always keep something filling on hand so you can stay satiated and energized!
Favorite GF+DF Snacks
- At home – Snyder’s Pretzels, Cold-Pressed Juice
- Car Snacks – CHOMPS beef jerky sticks, Second Nature Trail Mix
- Office Drawer – FreeYumm Pizza Crackers, Blake’s Snack Bars
- Sweet Treats – Rickaroons Megaroons, Mint Chocolate Power Balls
If you don’t want the hassle of hunting down new snacks, keep your stash fresh and fun with Fit Snack, a company that delivers subscription gluten-free and dairy-free snack boxes to your door every month!
Speak Up At Restaurants
Let your server know about your allergies when you go out to eat. And you should tell your server about your allergies and ask about menu suggestions as soon as you sit down. Most restaurants can accommodate GF+DF diets if you ask and many have separate menus dedicated to GF+DF dishes. Servers like to know about allergies as soon as possible to avoid setting the table with foods that contain allergens – like baguette or other bread appetizers.
Keep Enzymes On Hand
If you do get into gluten or dairy, you’re going to want to take something to help process that, and pronto! Keep an assortment of enzymes on hand. In my car, for instance, I keep a bottle of Gluten Digest from NOW Company – just in case I get into trouble.
Focus On What You Can Eat
Yeah, there’s a lot you can’t eat if you’re GF+DF. But, there are plenty of foods that you can eat! Keep yourself focused on foods you can have and it’ll be easier to transition to a GF+DF Lifestyle. One of my tricks is to keep one of our GF +DF EDIBLE Wallet Cards (in development!) on hand for moments when I’m hungry and at a loss for options. Having that card in my wallet also helps me at the grocery store.
Read Every Single Label
Read every label. I’ll say it again – read every label. When you first begin your GF+DF Lifestyle, you will be surprised at what contains gluten and dairy ingredients. You’re going to have to get comfortable reading ingredient labels before you buy food at the store.
Check the ingredient label on everything or you’ll find yourself eating trace amounts of those allergens. Once you’ve learned the GF+DF Lifestyle ropes, you’ll be surprised how often companies change their recipes – and ingredient lists. Sometimes those changes add gluten or dairy to what used to be a perfectly good snack!
What foods contain high gluten levels?
Foods that contain high levels of gluten include bread, pancakes, cookies and cereals. Breaded meats often contain gluten, as do many sauces and some brands of potato chips and chocolate.
What foods contain hidden gluten?
Sneaky sources of gluten can include licorice, processed meats, faux meats, premade sauces and dressings, bouillon cubes, alcoholic drinks and cornbread.
What foods should I avoid with a dairy allergy?
Foods you should avoid on a dairy allergy include milk and products that contain milk. Other foods that contain dairy include baked goods and breads, snack foods and flavored chips, yogurt, cheese, and coffee creamers.