Gluten Intolerance - what to eat and what to avoid

Gluten Intolerance 


Introduction to Gluten:


Gluten is a protein found in wheat, barley, rye, and oats. It provides elasticity to dough, helping it rise and maintain its shape. While many people consume gluten without issue, some individuals experience adverse reactions due to gluten intolerance or celiac disease.


Gluten intolerance and celiac disease both involve adverse reactions to gluten, a protein found in wheat, barley, rye, and oats. Gluten intolerance, often referred to as non-celiac gluten sensitivity, manifests as discomfort or symptoms like bloating, abdominal pain, or headaches after consuming gluten-containing foods. It's more of a general sensitivity.

On the other hand, celiac disease is an autoimmune disorder where the body's immune system mistakenly attacks the small intestine when gluten is ingested. This can lead to serious damage to the lining of the intestine, affecting nutrient absorption and causing long-term health issues if not managed properly.

In summary, while gluten intolerance causes discomfort, celiac disease involves an autoimmune reaction that can result in significant intestinal damage and requires strict adherence to a gluten-free diet to maintain health. It's crucial for individuals experiencing symptoms to seek proper diagnosis and management from healthcare professionals.


If you believe you have either or any gut issues 



Difference Between Gluten Intolerance and Celiac Disease:


Gluten Intolerance

Celiac Disease


A general term referring to adverse reactions to gluten.

An autoimmune disorder triggered by gluten consumption.

Immune Response

Non-autoimmune reaction to gluten.

Autoimmune response to gluten.

Nature of Condition

May involve various degrees of sensitivity or intolerance.

Characterized by an autoimmune reaction causing damage to the small intestine.

Common Symptoms

- Bloating - Abdominal pain - Diarrhea

- Digestive discomfort - Fatigue - Skin rashes

Long-term Effects

May lead to discomfort but typically does not cause permanent damage to the intestines.

Can result in intestinal damage and malabsorption of nutrients, leading to long-term health issues if not managed properly.

Diagnostic Tests

No specific test; diagnosis often based on symptom relief after eliminating gluten from the diet.

Blood tests to detect certain antibodies, followed by a biopsy of the small intestine for confirmation.


Avoiding gluten-containing foods.

Strict gluten-free diet for life.


Understanding the differences between gluten intolerance and celiac disease is crucial for proper diagnosis and management of symptoms. If you suspect you may have either condition, consult with a healthcare professional for appropriate testing and guidance. Please free free to reach out to us on : to know more about our Gut Health Program 



What is Gluten Intolerance 


Gluten intolerance, also known as non-celiac gluten sensitivity, can manifest in various symptoms, although they may vary from person to person. Some common symptoms of gluten intolerance include:

  • Digestive Issues:
    • Bloating
    • Abdominal pain
    • Diarrhea or constipation
    • Gas
  • Fatigue:
    • Feeling tired or fatigued even after getting enough rest
  • Headaches:
    • Migraines or headaches after consuming gluten-containing foods
  • Joint and Muscle Pain:
    • Pain or stiffness in joints and muscles
  • Skin Problems:
    • Eczema, acne, or other skin issues
  • Brain Fog:
    • Difficulty concentrating
    • Memory problems
    • Feeling foggy or unfocused
  • Mood Changes:
    • Anxiety
    • Depression
    • Irritability
  • Weight Fluctuations:
    • Unexplained weight loss or gain


It's important to note that these symptoms may overlap with other health conditions, making it challenging to diagnose gluten intolerance solely based on symptoms. If you suspect you have gluten intolerance, it's advisable to consult with a healthcare professional for proper evaluation and diagnosis. They may recommend tests or advise you to try an elimination diet to identify potential triggers for your symptoms.


You can also reach out to us for help on WhatsApp chat :

And set up a free discovery call 


Food Items Containing Gluten


In India, a variety of commonly consumed food items are crafted from ingredients like wheat, barley, rye, or oats, all of which contain gluten. While this isn't an exhaustive compilation, here are some widely known gluten-laden items:

  • Wheat-based items, including:
    • Rotis, paranthas, pooris, noodles, pasta, macaroni, daliya, couscous, and sooji, semolina, rava
    • Maida-infused delights like samosa, spring rolls, naan, kulcha, ice cream cones, jalebi, and various commercially available mithai (sweets)
    • Bakery treats such as breads, pastries, cakes, pizza, biscuits, buns, patties, rusk, and cookies
    • Chaat essentials like papdi, mathri, golgappa, panipuri, and sevpuri
    • Sooji-based dishes like dosa, uttapam, seviyan, upma, and pasta
  • Barley-based products, such as:
    • Barley water, barley tea
    • Beer and other fermented beverages brewed from barley
    • Barley malt flavoring, malt extract, malt syrup
    • Products containing malt, including malt-based drink mixes, often derived from barley
    • Breakfast cereals like cornflakes, rice krispies, often with malt flavoring
  • Rye-based delicacies, including:
    • Rye bread
    • Rye crackers
  • Oat-based offerings, like:
    • Oatmeal
    • Oat flakes
    • Oat porridge

The safety of oats for a gluten-free diet is a subject of ongoing debate. Refer to the FAQs for more information.



List of Naturally Gluten-Free Items (Not Exhaustive)


In India, a variety of grains, vegetables, fruits, and other foods are naturally free from gluten, making them suitable options for individuals with gluten sensitivities or celiac disease. Here's a list of inherently gluten-free items:

  • Grains: Many alternate grains, which were traditionally used in India but have fallen out of favor in recent decades, are naturally gluten-free. These include:
    • Rice (all varieties and colors)
    • Millets such as pearl millet (bajra), sorghum (jowar), and finger millet (ragi)
    • Amaranth (ramdaana/cholai/rajgira)
    • Buckwheat (kuttu)
    • Corn (makka)
    • Quinoa, wild rice, teff (less commonly used in India)
  • Fresh vegetables
  • Fresh fruits
  • Plain meat and fish
  • Plain milk
  • Daals/Pulses
  • Arrowroot, tapioca, sago (sabudana), soya, water chestnut (singhara)
  • Plain nuts and seeds
  • Egg
  • Whole spices (sabut masala)
  • Salt, Sugar
  • Tea, Coffee
  • Vegetable oil
  • Honey  

Please note the following:

  • Heeng (asafoetida), though inherently gluten-free, could contain gluten in commercial packaging due to the use of wheat flour as an anticaking agent. Until we have information from the manufacturers, it is advisable to avoid using heeng.
  • Many of these flours are commercially available in India but may be milled in factories where wheat is also processed, posing a risk of cross-contamination with wheat. It is recommended to grind these flours at home using an electric grinder.
  • We also recommend grinding spice/masala powders in your own grinder or in a shop where wheat is not used.
  • Do remember NOT to use the grinder meant for gluten-free flours and spices for grinding any gluten-containing items.
  • Soya Sauce might contain gluten and it is best to check the label 

 Sometime gluten containing items might be hidden and here are specific words to look for in labels : click here 


Processed or Restaurant Foods that might have gluten : Click Here 

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published