Typical Pinoy Gluten-Free Food You Should Know

In general, those of us in the Philippines who are avoiding foods with gluten, won’t have a difficult time finding food that is gluten-free in this country. We’re happy to say it actually fits well in the typical Filipino diet. (Rice, anyone?) Most of the carbohydrates and starch sources that we have in our local dishes are commonly gluten-free.

We have already discussed what gluten-free food is, and what the common sources of gluten-free food could be, even grains you’d definitely be glad to know are gluten-free. Let’s see 3 important food items to add to your gluten-free list.

Rice

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Yes, the Filipino stomach won’t be satisfied without this Filipino dining staple. Though a lot might already be aware that rice is not in the gluten foods roster, there are still some that are quite uneasy about it. The good news is, rice is safe for the gluten-intolerant. So, it’s not necessary to avoid rice, when you are craving for it.

Sweet Potato

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Craving for a stick of kamote-cue this afternoon? Go ahead! Though it’s one of the most underestimated carbohydrates around, is lower in the glycemic index  than its other variety: the regular potato. So this is safer for those watching their blood sugar levels. And of course, it’s one of the foods without gluten (Yay!).

Rice Noodles (Bihon)

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As a rice source, we can all instinctively declare now that bihon is not a gluten-laden food. As one of the party favorites that symbolizes “long life”, noodles such as bihon, though will not literally “extend” your life, is technically safe for consumption for our gluten-intolerant friends. However, it needs to be thoroughly washed first, especially if you are not sure where it was manufactured to avoid the risk of cross-contamination[1]. Not a fan of rice noodles? There are some more pasta items you can find in your typical grocery store that are gluten-free. You can even have some home-delivered.

We’ll get to know more gluten-free foods in our next posts so, stay tuned!

Source:

  1. 4310830, 95 -. Sources of gluten – celiac disease foundation. Celiac Disease Foundation, 1998. Web. 4 Nov. 2016.

What’s up with Grains?

glutenfree grains

A common assumption (and paranoia) for the gluten intolerant is that any food that is made with grains is laced with our enemy gluten. But let’s clarify. Not all grains contain gluten, but these are the culprits: wheat, barley, and rye, also triticale which is a hybrid of wheat and rye.

Another interesting fact is that pure wheatgrass and barley grass are gluten-free. What we’re concerned about is the gluten in the seeds. However, most find it less risky to simply stay away from the byproduct of these grains altogether, as they may be contaminated during harvest and manufacturing.

There are plenty of other gluten-free grains. It’s the reason why there are still bread, desserts, and even pizza and pasta out there as alternatives for those staying away from gluten.

corn

Corn for example is gluten-free, and it is one that is very readily available here in the Philippines in different forms and varieties: sweet corn, white corn, yellow corn. You can buy them fresh on the cob, frozen or canned in kernels, the white bloated addictive version binatog, served with coconut shavings (also gluten-free–getting the craving, yet?) and of course, popcorn.

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Rice and potato that a typical Pinoy consumes in pounds per day thankfully, is also gluten-free (so worry not as your pure potato fries, and unli-rice food tripping is safe. 😉 ) If you’re not on the prowl for extraordinary food adventure, the typical meal of rice plus viand, won’t actually be such a hassle.

taho

Soy is also gluten-free and soy-made product if in pure form (without extenders) are safe such as tofu (you can enjoy your tokwa’t baboy guilt-free) and warm and sweet dessert-breakfast taho. Though, since gluten might be a cross-contaminant in the harvest, transport, and storage of soy as most is grown in wheat farms, it is best to still be cautious with this item.

Here are some more samples of gluten-free grains to help when faced with such a dilemma.

– tapioca

– quinoa

– beans

– flax

– chia

– nut flours

– gluten-free oats

– sorghum

– millet

– buckwheat groats (aka kasha)

– arrowroot

– amaranth

– teff

– yucca

You may also visit the complete list from Celiac.org here.

Have some of your own tips you would like to share to help with the gluten-free diet?

Leave some in the comments! 🙂