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Gluten-Free Guide for Guys

  • Editorial Staff
  • May 2014
  • 5 min read

Everyone needs food, but men and women tend to think about food, nutrition and dieting differently. When embarking on a gluten-free lifestyle, guys may have their own set of concerns. Here’s a quick guide: 

“Can I still have…”

  • Beer?
    • Yes! There are plenty of gluten-free beers on the market. Men's Fitness offers a list of recommendations to try. 
    • For spirits, there is still some disagreement over whether distillation actually removes all of the gluten. For someone with celiac disease, this may be something to avoid.
    • Wine is naturally gluten-free. Aging and fining practices (which clarify the wine) that include the presence of gluten are rare these days, and if still used, have been shown to introduce no more than 20 parts per million of gluten, the FDA’s definition for gluten-free.
  • BBQ?
    • Yes! Meat is naturally gluten-free, but pay attention to the sauce. Whether it’s homemade or store bought, make sure none of the ingredients contain gluten.
  • Pizza?
    • Yes! There are now plenty of gluten-free pizza crusts on the market or offered at your favorite pizzeria. Toppings like cheese and vegetables are naturally gluten-free. Check pizza sauce and any processed meat labels to make sure gluten isn’t hiding in the ingredient list.
  • Breakfast?
    • Of course! Although many traditional breakfast items— like cereal, toast and muffins—are common gluten-containing foods, there are gluten-free counterparts available. Start selecting these, and check out these gluten-free breakfast recipes.

Starting any new eating plan also requires planning to ensure all calorie, vitamin and mineral needs are met. Here are a few to keep in mind:

  • Calories
    • Why? In general, men require more calories each day than women due to having more muscle mass and a larger body size.
    • How? If you’re at a healthy weight, “diet” doesn’t need to mean “restriction.” Consuming enough calories to maintain a healthy body weight is important, especially if you’re active. Add some healthy snacks throughout the day if you notice weight loss.
  • Fiber:
    • Why? Americans tend not to eat enough fiber anyway, but men require even more than women since fiber recommendations are based off of the amount of calories consumed.
    • How? Focus on eating plenty of fruits, vegetables, beans and gluten-free whole grains to reach the recommended 38 grams daily for men.
  • Magnesium
    • Why? Involved in more than 300 metabolic reactions, magnesium is essential. And men need more of it than women.
    • How? Include more seeds, nuts, beans, leafy greens and gluten-free grains like quinoa and brown rice into your daily diet. Try reducing your caffeine and alcohol consumption, as these can affect magnesium’s absorption.
  • B vitamins
    • Why? Like iron, many gluten-containing foods are also fortified with or are natural sources of B vitamins. These nutrients convert food to energy, fueling bodies for activity.  
    • How? Incorporate more fruits, vegetables (especially leafy greens), beans into daily eating habits. Milk, meat, poultry and fish can also be good sources of B vitamins.
  • A gluten-free multivitamin supplement may also be needed.

Sources: Gluten Intolerance Group |  National Institutes of Health | WebMD | The Celiac MD