When following a diet without soy, dairy or wheat, it may seem you have few choices. Fruits, vegetables, lean meats, plant oils and many grains are naturally free of soy, wheat and dairy. These foods serve the foundation of soy-, dairy- and wheat-free plans and still provide adequate nutrition, taste satisfaction and calories for energy.
Diets that exclude wheat, soy and dairy may be used to determine food intolerance or allergies. The Food and Drug Administration lists soy, dairy and wheat among the eight most common food allergens. A physician may place people suffering from digestive problems, such as diarrhea, bloating and gas on a soy-, wheat- and dairy-free diet to see if symptoms resolve. Breastfeeding mothers who have colicky babies may also follow a diet without soy, wheat and dairy to resolve their infants’ symptoms.
A raw diet that involves eating primarily uncooked plant foods, is an example of a wheat-, soy- and dairy-free diet. These diets are built around fresh vegetables, seeds, nuts, sprouted grains, fruits and cold-pressed oils. You do not have to become a vegan to eliminate soy, wheat and dairy. Plain meat, poultry, fish and eggs are also dairy, soy and wheat free. Grains such as quinoa, millet, amaranth and teff also fit into soy-, dairy- and wheat-free diets.
Many processed products contain ingredients featuring soy, wheat or dairy, such as soy lecithin, food starch or sodium caseinate. If you eat processed, packaged foods, read labels carefully and learn to identify possible ingredients that are hidden sources of soy, wheat and dairy. You may lose weight when following wheat-, soy- and dairy-free diets because you eliminate many high-calorie foods that contain white flour, sugar and excess sodium. Seek out non-dairy, calcium-rich foods to obtain enough of this bone-building mineral. Fortified almond milk and juices, canned salmon with bones and leafy green vegetables provide calcium without dairy, soy or wheat.
Breakfast may include scrambled eggs with vegetables, cooked quinoa with rice milk and dried fruit or smoothies made with fresh fruits, nut butter and hemp protein powder. Large green salads with beans, nuts or grilled meat, roasted fish with quinoa and steamed vegetables or rice-based pasta with fresh tomatoes, basil and ground turkey are potential lunches and dinners. Snack on nuts, fresh fruit or air-popped popcorn.