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Gluten-Free with Diabetes

Gluten-Free with Diabetes

The rates of both Diabetes and Celiac Disease continue to climb. For anyone diagnosed with both of these conditions or who lives in a household where both are concerns, grocery shopping may feel like a downright daunting task.

Use this Aisle Guide to help you find nutritious options that are both diabetic-friendly and gluten-free.

PRODUCE: All fresh, unprepared fruits and vegetables are naturally gluten-free. But be cautious of the risk of cross contamination with pre-cut fruits and vegetables. When it comes to vegetables, fill up on non-starchy vegetables, which are high in fiber and lower in carbohydrates.  Keep in mind that starchy vegetables although they are
nutritious and gluten-free (potatoes, corn, peas and winter squash), all types of fruit need to be counted as carbohydrates on a diabetic diet.

MEAT/SEAFOOD: Plain, raw meats and seafood are all naturally gluten-free. Avoid pre-seasoned and prepared options such as crabmeat, stuffed flounder or breaded chicken, as these may use gluten-containing ingredients. Skinless poultry, extra-lean ground meat, pork tenderloin, salmon and cod are all lean, carbohydrate-free choices, making them excellent choices for both a diabetic and gluten-free diet.


EGGS/DAIRY: Eggs, egg whites, 1% no-salt-added cottage cheese, and the occasional reduced-fat cheese are all nutritious, low-carbohydrate and gluten-free options. Though still nutritious and gluten-free, items like plain yogurt (Greek-style or regular) and low-fat milk do contain carbohydrates and need to be counted on a diabetic diet. Many dairy-free milk alternatives such as Blue Diamond Almond Breeze and 8th Generation Soy Milk are also gluten-free. Be sure to choose the unsweetened varieties to keep the carbohydrate count low.


FROZEN: ShopRite has a lot of frozen gluten-free options, but when you’re also shopping for diabetic friendly foods, don’t forget to keep the carbohydrate content in mind. Some better-for-you options include: Three Bakers Whole Grain White Bread and Van’s Gluten-Free Waffles; Applegate Farms turkey burgers and Franklin Farms veggie burgers; Seapoint Edamame; Ruby Rocket’s fruit and veggie popsicles. Don’t overlook the naturally gluten-free frozen fruits and vegetables either! Simply choose ones without added sauces, syrups or seasonings.


GRAINS & STARCHES: Look for naturally gluten-free, high fiber grains like wild rice, quinoa, amaranth, buckwheat, teff, kasha and certified gluten-free oats. When only pasta will do, opt for whole grain or try Explore Asian’s fiber-packed line of bean pasta. Black bean is our favorite!


  • Smart Snacking: Beanitos chips, Wonderful brand nuts, Sabra hummus
  • On-the-Go: Larabars, Kind Bars
  • Sweet Treats: Endangered Species Chocolate, Lundberg Apple Cinnamon Rice Cakes

When in doubt, use ShopRite’s convenient shelf tag program to identify gluten-free, heart-healthy, and no-sugar-added products throughout the store or ask one of ShopRite’s many in-store dietitians for help finding the right products for you and your family.

Gluten-Free Thanksgiving Guide


It may seem like being on a gluten-free diet could throw a wrench in your Thanksgiving dinner, but with a little planning you’ll be able to enjoy the festivities alongside everyone else.

If you’re not cooking the meal, let the host know about your gluten-free needs, emphasizing the importance of keeping gluten-containing foods and ingredients away from gluten-free options. It’s always helpful to offer to bring at least one dish that you know you can feel safe eating.

If you are responsible for the cooking or you’ve been asked for suggestions from the host, here are some top sources of gluten and solutions for turning them gluten-free with ease:


  • Avoid ones that have been brined or pre-seasoned, and steer clear of any flavoring or gravy packets that may be included with the turkey.
  • Opt for a homemade gravy thickened with arrowroot starch or rice flour instead of all-purpose flour. Be sure to read labels on any bouillon that may be used.
  • Ask that the stuffing be cooked separately from the bird, even if you make a gluten-free stuffing (It’s recommended from a food safety standpoint!)


  • Use gluten-free bread and broth in the stuffing.
  • Try a gluten-free cornbread instead of a classic roll.


Forego the prepared, more processed ingredients and opt for a sophisticated yet simple side dish of green beans sautéed in garlic and olive oil, topped with toasted sliced almonds and caramelized onions. A balsamic vinegar drizzle adds a nice touch.


  • Enjoy a pumpkin “pie” custard or mousse with a dollop of vanilla Greek yogurt.
  • Instead of apple pie, try a baked apple or a simple apple crisp using gluten-free oats.
  • Try a crustless pecan pie recipe, or use one of the premade gluten-free crusts that ShopRite carries around the holidays.

If you’d like to break away from tradition slightly, try starting with a spinach salad or gluten-free butternut squash soup, and serving plenty of roasted root vegetables with dinner. A flourless chocolate cake, though not a Thanksgiving staple, is always an irresistible, gluten-free treat. Often, when you have a dessert that rich, just a taste is enough to satisfy!

Of course, there are also plenty of traditionally gluten-free Thanksgiving favorites including sweet potatoes, mashed potatoes and cranberry sauce (but it’s always good to double-check).

Whether you choose to follow tradition with a few gluten-free tweaks or start some new, healthy traditions of your own, we wish you and your loved ones a wonderful holiday season!


Facts about Gluten-Free Eating

What Is Gluten?1st

Gluten is a protein naturally found in certain grains such as wheat, barley, rye and some oats. Foods that are made with these grains also contain gluten – that includes foods like bagels, breads, cakes, cereals, cookies, crackers, pasta, pizza, and more.

Who Should Avoid Gluten?

About three million Americans suffer from a serious medical condition called celiac disease. For someone with this disease, eating gluten-containing foods causes damage to the lining of the small intestine (where foods go after they have been eaten and digested). This damage makes it very difficult for the body to absorb nutrients from foods. Over time this damage can lead to malnourishment and possibly other complications. While there is no cure for celiac disease, the good news is that eating gluten free is the best way to prevent further damage to the small intestine. Gluten may also be avoided by those who are sensitive to it or make a personal choice to avoid it. If you think you have celiac disease, be sure to get tested before starting a gluten free diet.

Health Gluten-Free Eating

Many foods are generally free of gluten, unless it was added in processing. People who follow a gluten-free diet can enjoy a variety of foods, including:

• Plain beef, pork and lamb
• Rice, Wild Rice
• Plain fish and shellfish
• Quinoa
• Plain chicken and turkey
• Lentils
• Plain fruits
• Corn
• Plain vegetables
• Potatoes
• Plain beans
• Soy
• Eggs
• Nuts and seeds
• Milk
• Flaxfoods


Knowing What To Look For: Reading LabelsSide

The best way to know if a product is gluten free is to read the ingredients label. To determine if a product contains gluten, there are four key grains to look for:

• Wheat
• Barley
• Rye
• Oats

In addition to these grains, look for these two ingredients:

• Malt
• Brewer’s Yeast

Looking for these grains and ingredients will help you identify products that contain gluten. You need to check labels often. Ingredients can change over time, so checking the ingredients label every time is the most accurate way to identify what is in a food or beverage product. After you have read the label and determined that the product does not contain these obvious sources of gluten, you may always contact the manufacturer to confirm.

Frequently Overlooked Foods That May Contain Gluten

• Broth
• Imitation seafood
• Soy sauce
• Candy
• Marinades
• Thickeners
• Coating mixes
• Processed meats
• Vegetarian meat
• Croutons
• Sauces and gravies substitutes
• Imitation bacon
• Seasoning


Cooking in a Gluten-Free Kitchen

When you have celiac disease, eliminating wheat, oats, barley and rye from your diet is a must. These grains, and derivatives of them, are used in the preparation of many products so this task may seem difficult. Actually, there are many ways to avoid these grains and substitute safe alternatives. Of course, serving your favorite naturally gluten free gluten foods such as meat and poultry (without breading), fish, fresh fruits, and vegetables is a great starting point, but you can also adapt many combination foods to exclude gluten. Here are some tips and recipes to help make the transition to a gluten-free diet easier.

Start Simply

A first and simple step is to look for dishes that need very little customization, perhaps just the substitution of one gluten-free ingredient. For example, make macaroni and cheese or baked ziti with rice, corn, or lentil pasta, or prepare enchiladas with corn tortillas instead of the wheat flour variety. Also, familiarize yourself with cuisines that frequently cook with no gluten at all such as Indian, Asian, Mexican, South American or Middle Eastern. Remember, too, that many dishes are naturally gluten-free such as stir-fry, risotto, shepherd’s pie, chili and omelets.

Adapt Recipes

Many recipes can be adapted to the gluten-free diet. Here are some substitution suggestions:

  • For gravy: Use arrowroot starch as a thickener.
  • For stuffing: Make your favorite recipe with gluten-free cornbread or gluten-free white bread (homemade or store-bought) or experiment with rice stuffing.
  • For flouring or breading meat and fish: Season with a gluten-free coating to taste. Try cornmeal, potato flakes or mixtures of gluten-free flours. Whirl some dry bread or corn tortilla chips in a food processor until fine. Or, some people enjoy crumbled gluten-free waffles or crisped rice — these are not usually sweetened and, when seasoned, create a tasty, crunchy coating.
  • For pudding and pie filling: Try gluten-free starches such as cornstarch, potato starch, tapioca or arrowroot.
  • Find a prepared gluten-free baking mix to keep handy in your refrigerator. These tried and true mixtures of gluten-free flours, starches, and leavening agents can usually be substituted with wheat flour on a one-for-one basis.
  • Use rice flour for a roux or white sauce — you will find that bean and soy flours have too strong a taste.

Don’t let a gluten-free diet restrict you; use it instead as an opportunity to experiment with new ingredients and flavors. Look for alternative ingredients in your local ShopRite store or use the “Ask the Dietitian” feature at to submit a question or favorite recipe. You can also find a listing of our gluten free products on the health and wellness section of

For more recipes:

The Gluten-Free Gourmet by Bette Hagman, The Gluten-Free Gourmet Bakes Bread by Bette Hagman

Kids with Celiac Disease: A Family Guide to Raising Happy, Healthy Gluten-Free Children by Danna Korn

Incredible, Edible Gluten-Free Food for Kids: 150 Family-Tested Recipes by Sheri Sanderson


A Ghoulishly Gluten-Free Halloween!

Halloween can be a difficult holiday to navigate for a gluten-free child. Here are some tips for easy, gluten-free trick-or-treating.

1. Organize a gluten-free party for kids

At a party, you can control the treats and goodies, making sure they are gluten-free. Offer a few healthy snacks for a pre or post trick-or-treat get together. Here are some gluten-free, kid-friendly favorites:

  1. Granny Smith apple slices with low-fat caramel dip
  2. Hot chocolate made with low-fat milk
  3. Gluten-free Chex Mix® or trail mix
  4. Vanilla pudding mixed with a few dollops of pumpkin puree and a pinch of cinnamon

2. Plan ahead for trick-or-treating

Most kids like to snack along the way as they trick-or-treat. Send them off with a small bag of their favorite gluten-free candies to prevent them from reaching into their treat bag. Be sure to tell them that all candy collected throughout the night should be kept safely in their bag until a parent can check it at home.

3. Trade it up

Purchase some gluten-free candy prior to Halloween night. Once trick-or-treating is done, let kids trade the collected candy for gluten-free.

4. Read all labels

It is important to read all labels before allowing your kids to dig into their candy bag since many of the “mini versions” of Halloween candy are made with different ingredients than the larger versions. Here’s a list of some of the most popular gluten-free candies:

3 Musketeers fun size Milk Duds
Baby Ruth fun size Mike and Ike
Almond Joy fun size bars Nestle Milk Chocolate fun size bars
Butterfinger fun size Reese’s Pieces
Charms Blow Pops Raisinets
Dum Dum Lollipops Skittles fun size
Hershey’s Milk Chocolate snack size bars Tootsie Pops
Jolly Rancher Swedish Fish treat size
LiveSavers Gummies Snickers fun size and minis


For additional treat ideas, check out for their gluten-free snack and candy list. Have a Safe and Happy Halloween!

Grab and Go– Gluten-Free!

Grab and Go– Gluten-Free!

Whether you’re heading to class, work, or the library, when you’re on a gluten-free (GF) diet you need GF foods ready to Grab ’n Go! Keep these snacks handy to throw into your backpack, briefcase, or purse and head for the door! Always check ingredients on labels. Call manufacturers. When in doubt, leave it out.

GF Breakfast/Granola Bars:

  • Enjoy Life Breakfast bars (contain sorghum)
  • Bakery on Main GF granola bars
  • LARA bar organic bars — all varieties

Candy Bars:

  • Hershey’s chocolate bars
  • Reese’s Peanut Butter cups
  • Snickers

GF Cereal:

  • EnviroKidz — GF varieties
  • General Mills Rice, Corn, Honey Nut Chex

GF Cookies:

  • Enjoy Life varieties (contain sorghum)
  • Kinnikinnick varieties
  • French Meadow Bakery, GF Brownies, Chocolate Chip cookies (single servings)

GF Crackers:

  • Blue Diamond Nut Thins
  • Glutino crackers
  • Mr. Krispers

Eggs: hard boiled in the shell — naturally sealed!

Fruit: apple, banana, oranges, applesauce, fruit cups

Nuts, GF Dried Fruit, GF Cereal in a Bag:

  • Eden Foods – packaged fruit, nuts, seeds

Peanut/Sunflower Butter Packets:

  • Jif, Peter Pan, Skippy peanut butter
  • Sunflower butter

Popcorn: plain or check micro-wave ingredients

GF Pretzels: ENER’G, Glutino

Veggie Bags: cut up carrots, cauliflower, celery, grape tomatoes. Add a packet of GF salad dressing for dip.

Compiled by Beckee Moreland, Make It Gluten Free, LLC

Reviewed by Jean Guest, PhD, RD, LMNT Jamie Kabourek, MS, RD, UNL Food Allergy Research & Resource Program Barbara Kliment, Executive Director, NE Grain Sorghum Board Alice Henneman, MS, RD, and Jenny Rees, MS, UNL Extension Educators

For more tips, information and healthy recipes, visit the health and wellness section of

Gluten Free Stocking Stuffers

Pollyannas, advent calendars, stockings: the holiday season is full of smaller gift exchanges that are often food-based. If you’re shopping for someone on a gluten-free diet, you can still find plenty of fun and delicious items. Here are just a few perfectly sized products that fit the bill and, better yet, can be found at your local ShopRite!


Kind Bars (try Strong & Kind for savory snack, or one of the sweeter bars with less than 6g sugar)

ThinkThin protein bars

Superseedz Gourmet Pumpkin Seeds

Wonderful brand nuts (almonds, pistachios, etc.)

Sensible Foods freeze-dried fruit



Bai5 Antioxidant Drinks

Bigelow tea bags and k-cups

Celestial Seasonings tea

Swiss Miss Simply Cocoa (or, make your own with some canning jars, cocoa powder, and a bit of sugar!)



Enjoy Life chocolate bars

Schar cookies (the vanilla sandwich cremes are our favorite)

Suncups (think, a gluten-free option for Reese’s lovers)

Endangered Species chocolate

GoNaturally candies


When in doubt, keep an eye out for ShopRite’s new shelf tag system, which highlights various nutrient claims – including gluten free – for all relevant products throughout the store.

Don’t forget about all of the fun non-food items! Gift cards, gloves and socks, arts & crafts, small books, kitchen gadgets, quality mugs, and even new techie items can all be found at ShopRite and help take the focus away from food altogether.

No matter which of these fantastic products you choose for stuffing your stockings, we hope your holidays are “filled to the brim” with health, happiness, and wonderful new memories!

For more tips, information and healthy recipes, visit the Health and Wellness section of

Gluten Free ShopRite Products

For those with celiac disease a gluten free diet is essential. Any foods thatcontain gluten – a protein found in wheat, rye and barley – must be avoided. The good news is that eating gluten free is easy at ShopRite with the wide variety of ShopRite products. From grains to ready to eat soups there are plenty of choices throughout the aisles to help you maintain your gluten free diet. Always remember to read labels and when in doubt ask your ShopRite Dietitian or call us at 1-800-ShopRite.

Click to view our list of  Gluten Free ShopRite Items


Sneakiest Sources of Glutenceli

 Going gluten-free can be a daunting task. Learning to read the labels for all of the different forms gluten can take, calling companies when you aren’t sure, rearranging your pantry, and knowing what to ask at restaurants takes a lot of getting used to. Unfortunately, there’s one more thing to consider when removing gluten from your diet: all of those non-food products that may contain gluten.

It’s true! Gluten is often used in makeup, medications, and even some children’s toys. It’s important to know what to look for, and who to ask, to find safe, gluten-free alternatives to these often overlooked sources of gluten.


  1. Makeup: all types of makeup have the potential to contain gluten, but anything applied directly to your lips (lipstick, liner, gloss, balm) has a good chance of being inadvertently ingested.  Read ingredient lists carefully, as you would a food label, and contact the company about the specific products you use.
  2. Beauty and Skin Care Products: Similar to makeup, products such as shampoo, conditioner, lotions, and soaps may contain gluten. Although the risk of ingesting these products is lower than that of a lipstick or balm, follow the same precautions as you would a makeup: read ingredients carefully and check with the company to be sure.
  3. Communion Wafers: these religious crackers are traditionally made from wheat. Although some approved low-gluten wafers exist, different churches have taken various stances on the issue. If you have Celiac disease, it is important to speak with your pastor or priest about alternatives to the traditional wafer.
  4. Prescription and Over-the-Counter Medications: Medications, as well as supplements, vitamins, and minerals, may use gluten as a binder. Ask your pharmacist if any of the medications you take are made with gluten. If needed, discuss possible alternatives with your doctor.
  5. Play-Doh: if you have a child who needs to avoid gluten, reconsider giving them Play-Doh as a toy, since this product is made with wheat. Although physical contact with wheat will not trigger a reaction, children often place toys or fingers in their mouths while playing, and this can lead to them ingesting traces of gluten. You can find gluten-free alternatives along with easy DIY recipes online.

Keep in mind that a gluten-free diet is specifically meant to treat Celiac disease, a condition in which the body becomes intolerant to the gluten found in wheat, barley, rye, and cross-contaminated oats. There is no current evidence to support removing gluten from your diet for any other reasons. If you have questions about Celiac disease or whether a gluten-free diet may be right for you, feel free to speak to your local ShopRite in-store dietitian, along with your primary care doctor.


Gluten Free Doesn’t Mean Grain Free

People following a gluten-free diet may be surprised – and delighted – to learn that most grains are gluten-free. Only three common grains (wheat, barley and rye) must be avoided on a gluten-free diet, leaving lots of great choices, including:

  • Amaranth
  • Buckwheat
  • Corn
  • Millet
  • Quinoa
  • Rice
  • Sorghum
  • Teff
  • Wild rice

Oats – when certified gluten free – can also be a good choice; they’re naturally gluten free but can become cross-contaminated during growing or processing.

All of these gluten-free grains are healthier when they’re enjoyed in their whole form. Whole grains include all three of a grain kernel’s edible parts – the bran, the germ, and the endosperm – in their original proportions. All too often, grains are refined, which means their bran and germ (the healthiest parts!) are removed, leaving only the starchy endosperm. Whole grains have two to three times more of most minerals and vitamins than refined grains, and more fiber too.

They also have more flavor. If you’re accustomed to refined grains, at first you may be caught off guard by the fuller, nuttier taste of whole grains. Soon, you’ll find that you’ve become fond of whole grains and the “white” grains you used to eat seem bland in comparison.

To get your taste buds in shape gradually, start with grains that have a more neutral flavor, such as sorghum and brown rice. Corn is a good choice, too; it has a distinct but familiar flavor (look for whole cornmeal; degerminated has had the healthy germ removed). As the flavor of whole grains begins to grow on you, experiment with more grains: try some wild rice mixed in with brown rice, or toss some cooked quinoa with chopped vegetables and your favorite salad dressing for a great warm-weather meal. Less common grains – amaranth, millet, buckwheat and teff – await you down the line.

When you’re looking to bake with gluten-free grains, look for mixes that feature whole grain ingredients prominently. Some gluten-free baking mixes and flour substitutes rely almost exclusively on ingredients like potato starch and white rice flour, leaving these mixes short on important nutrients and fiber. Better mixes include high levels of a variety of tasty whole grains – because people on a gluten-free diet deserve the best!

Even those who don’t need to follow a gluten-free diet will benefit from eating a wider range of whole grains. Broccoli is a great vegetable – but eating a wide variety of vegetables gives you a wider variety of nutrients (and tastes). It’s the same with whole grains: whether you’re eating gluten free or not, treat yourself to the wonderful tastes of a wide array of naturally gluten-free grains, for good taste and good health.

Resource: Oldways Nutrition Exchange and Pamela’s Products