8 January 2021

Going vegan if you have coeliac disease

Are you a vegan who has just been diagnosed with coeliac disease? Or perhaps you have coeliac disease and have decided to change to a vegan diet, either temporarily for veganuary, or you are looking to make a more permanent lifestyle change. A gluten free diet alone is a challenge, but if you are also vegan your options suddenly start to feel a lot more limited. Suddenly, many of the meal options that you may have enjoyed previously are now off limits. Don’t panic! We at Glutafin are here to help you navigate through this tricky time and provide you with nutritional advice, product information and recipe inspiration.

What is a vegan diet?

Following a vegan diet means eating an entirely plant-based diet. This means all animal products including meat, fish, eggs, cheese and milk are off the menu, along with ingredients derived from animals such as honey.

What is coeliac disease?

Coeliac disease is a lifelong autoimmune condition, the treatment for which is strict adherence to a gluten free diet. It is important for people with coeliac disease to ensure they are getting the nutrients they need from their food, so we have created our top tips to ensure your gluten free, vegan diet is nutritionally balanced.

Our top 5 tips for making sure your diet is nutritionally balanced

We asked our dietitian, Katie, for her top tips to ensure you get all the nutrients you need if you have coeliac disease and are also following a vegan diet. 

  1. Balance is key

The guidance for someone following a vegan diet is the same as the general population, in that you should be eating three meals a day with small snacks in-between to help maintain energy levels. Your meals should be based on starchy carbohydrate foods, for example gluten free bread, gluten free pasta, potatoes, rice or other gluten free grains such as quinoa or buckwheat. Remember to include plenty of fruit and vegetables (at least five a day). Your meals should also include protein. Good sources of plant-based protein are beans, lentils, tofu and Quorn.

TIP 1:  Not all gluten free breads are vegan, we recommend checking the ingredients deck on the back of the packaging. We have included a list of the Glutafin products that are vegan at the bottom of this article.

  1. Eat a rainbow

If you are following both a gluten free diet and a vegan diet, it can feel restrictive. Keep an open mind! There are lots of delicious, nutritious meals that you can make, we recommend you use it as an opportunity to try some new foods. The natural colours of the foods we eat often relate to the nutrients they contain. For example, bright orange citrus fruits provide antioxidant vitamins and dark green vegetables provide essential minerals such as iron and calcium.

TIP 2: BBC Good Food have lots of great vegan recipes on their website just check they are gluten free too! And if you have a specific vegan recipe request, we’d love to hear from you, you can contact us by email glutenfree@glutafin.co.uk, or via our social media channels.

  1. Count your calcium

Calcium is important for healthy bones, teeth and hair. Many of us fail to meet the daily calcium requirement of 700mg per day for the general population. If you have coeliac disease your calcium requirement is even higher, at 1000mg per day. Good plant-based sources of calcium are fortified soya, nut and oat drinks along with tofu. Green leafy vegetables, nuts and dried fruit are also useful to top up your calcium intake.

TIP 3: Plan ahead. Make a list of the meals and snacks you usually eat, and then consider how you can incorporate more sources of calcium, for example, add a dollop of calcium-enriched soya yogurt to chopped fruit for a healthy pudding option, or make a soya or oat milk latte instead of your regular morning cuppa.

  1. The importance of iron

Iron deficiency is common and can leave you feeling lethargic. A poorly planned vegan diet can result in a lack of iron. We recommend you include a variety of plant-based sources of iron every day. Great sources of iron for vegans include beans, pulses, lentils, dried fruit, nuts and fortified gluten free breakfast cereals. The naturally occurring compounds within tea and coffee reduce iron absorption whereas vitamin c increases it.

TIP 4: Include a glass of juice high in Vitamin C like fresh orange juice with your main meals to help increase your iron absorption.

  1. Boost your B12!

Vitamin B12 is essential for maintaining energy levels. Plants don’t produce vitamin B12, so the only source for vegans is fortified foods or a nutritional supplement. Sources of B12 include some brands of plant based dairy alternatives and some brands gluten free breakfast cereal. You need to ensure you are consuming fortified foods at least twice a day to make sure you’re getting enough B12.

TIP 5: Although there are a number of ways of boosting you B12 intake through your diet, we also recommend speaking to your GP or dietitian to see if they think you need a supplement – especially if your energy levels have reduced. If you live in Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland, Glutafin Cornflakes are available on prescription, and they also contain B12.

Which Glutafin gluten free foods are also vegan?

Glutafin gluten free foods are only available for patients who are diagnosed with coeliac disease and receive foods on prescription.  A number of our products are also suitable for those with coeliac disease who are also following a vegan diet, please refer to the list below:

Bread and Rolls

Glutafin Gluten Free Select Fresh Brown Loaf

Glutafin Gluten Free High Fibre Loaf

Glutafin Gluten Free Select Fibre Loaf

Glutafin Gluten Free Part-baked 4 White Rolls

Glutafin Gluten Free Part-baked 4 Fibre Rolls

Glutafin Gluten Free Part-baked 2 Long White Rolls

Glutafin Gluten Free Part-baked 2 Baguettes

Mixes

Our Glutafin Gluten Free Multipurpose Fibre Mix and Glutafin Gluten Free Fibre Bread Mix are suitable for vegans, please see our pdf.

Available in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland only:

Pasta & Pizza Bases

Glutafin Gluten Free Pasta Spirals (Fusilli)

Glutafin Gluten Free Pasta Penne

Glutafin Gluten Free Pasta Spaghetti

Glutafin Gluten Free Fibre Fusilli

Glutafin Gluten Free 2 Pizza Bases

Crackers and Biscuits

Glutafin Gluten Free Mini Crackers

Glutafin Gluten Free Crackers

Glutafin Gluten Free Crispbread

Glutafin Gluten Free Digestive Biscuits

Cereal

Glutafin Gluten Free Cornflakes

Looking for gluten free vegan recipe inspiration?

Look no further! Glutafin have developed some delicious recipes that are both gluten free and vegan.

Vegan Banana Bread

Vegan Chocolate Brownie

Salsa Pasta Salad

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