Health-conscious shoppers are beginning to perceive food without gluten as healthier than traditional options, causing the market for gluten-free foods to boom.
Beyond that, food companies are trying harder to make their gluten-free products as healthy as they can. Early gluten-free products often featured high levels of sugar, sodium and empty calories, mimicking their wheat-filled counterparts in the grocery aisles.
But as gluten-free foods go mainstream, attracting attention from people without either celiac disease or gluten sensitivity, commercial food producers are seeing the wisdom of improving the nutritional value of their offerings, speakers at the Food and Nutrition Conference and Expo said this month.
Cooking Light Magazine offers on its website a list of what its editors consider to be the 12 healthiest packaged gluten-free foods, lauding products like Bob’s Red Mill gluten-free rolled oats, with no sodium and 7 grams of protein; Udi’s gluten-free bagels, made of brown rice and teff flours with 7 grams of protein and 3 of fiber and Kettle Cuisine ready-to-microwave three bean chili with a whopping 13 grams of fiber and a livable 450 milligrams of sodium.
Healthy gluten-free options are becoming more common, a boon for the gluten sensitive and the merely health conscious alike.