Weighing up the wheat free options

I’ve possibly been following a wheat-free diet for the past couple of weeks. I say ‘possibly’ because it turns out that this is quite difficult to know for sure.

Thankfully I don’t have any serious reaction to wheat, or gluten of any kind, and my venture was simply to see if eliminating it would boost energy levels, prompt a bit of pre-summer weight loss and all the other benefits advocates of such diets claim.

Travelling around a lot can all too often lead to a three-sandwich meal day so having to find alternatives necessitates more imaginative and healthy food choices. In fact the increase in fruit intake alone could be the cause of a definite upturn in energy that I’ve already noticed.

The main problem I’ve experienced in the change is just how many products contain wheat that you might not realise – sauces, gravy, cakes etc.

So label reading has become a major element of shopping – both to find products where wheat is unexpectedly lurking, as well as those where you might reasonably expect wheat and find it happily missing .

Take breakfast cereal as an example. Getting prepared for the experiment I invested in some wheat-free muesli (which frankly was a monotonous work out for the mouth) but have since discovered that many standard cereals are tastily wheat free and cheaper.

And then there’s bread.

One of the tastiest, and guaranteed to be gluten free loaves, so far discovered is Genius bread. Invented by a mother with three young children, two of whom have food allergies, it’s available in supermarkets – and they also serve it at the excellent Two Thin Laddies cafe in Edinburgh where I’m partial to breakfast.

But that’s as nothing compared to Morrisons Spelt and Rye bread. Light, fluffy and tasty, this specialist loaf seems too good to be true. And maybe it is. In seeking out an ingredients list it seems I’ve stumbled into a heated debate.

The Telegraph carried this call for Morrisons to come clean and provide an ingredients list and the subject is also well aired at this BBC Food forum where one poster claims Morrisons confirm the bread contains all sorts I hadn’t expected “wheat flour, whole wheat flour, oat flakes, spelt flour, oat bran, wheatgluten, extruded maize grits, soya grits, linseed, sourdough powder (wheat), oil (vegetable), iodized salt, malt flour, rye flour, fish oil granulate (contains omega-3 fatty acids), emulsifier E471, flour treatment agent E300, E920, enzyme (wheat)”

So it looks like that one’s off the menu, unless someone from Morrisons wants to contradict this.

The experiment continues……..any other recommendations for tasty bread gratefully received.


2 thoughts on “Weighing up the wheat free options

  1. I was speaking to a solicitor the other day whose daughter is allergic to wheat. He found a chip shop in Market Harborough which one day every week serve wheat free chips and fish. He said this has made all the difference as they have never been able to do this as a family before and eating out always needs bringing along their own ingredients. Its good to see even small towns taking into account allergies and trying to find ways to meet them even if it does mean cleaning out the chip fryers each week of all the wheat tainted oils etc


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