Food allergies or sensitivities to gluten, soy, dairy and egg are relatively common and can make meal planning a complicated endeavor. Reading the food labels and the ingredients list is crucial to avoid any traces of the foods you are trying to avoid. Gluten, a protein found in wheat and other grains, cannot only be found in the obvious bread, pasta, crackers, baked goods and breakfast cereals, but it is also in soy sauce, marinated chicken and gluten-contaminated oats. Soy, dairy and eggs are also commonly used as an ingredient in many processed foods. The key to keep your diet gluten-free, soy-free, dairy-free and egg-free is to stick to unprocessed whole foods.
Vegetables, such as broccoli, kale, tomatoes, mushrooms and cauliflower, are a good source of nutrition as they are packed with fiber, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. All vegetables are free of gluten, eggs, dairy and soy. Stay away from vegetables that are flavored or in a sauce to avoid trace amounts of these unwanted ingredients. Starchy vegetables, such as potatoes, sweet potatoes and corn, also provide a significant source of carbohydrates. Avoid frozen french fries as they may contain traces of wheat, gluten, eggs or dairy.
Fruits are a safe food if you need to avoid gluten, soy, dairy and eggs. Choose fresh fruit as much as possible. Frozen and canned fruits may also be a convenient option, but read the label carefully to ensure they do not contain any ingredients you need to stay away from.
Rice is a good gluten-free source of carbohydrate. You can choose white rice, brown rice, Basmati rice or wild rice. Avoid seasoned rice because it is likely to contain gluten or another ingredients you need to avoid. Instead, prepare your own rice and season it with safe seasonings, such as salt, pepper, herbs and spices.
Meat, Poultry and Fish
Meat, poultry and fish are excellent sources of protein and do not contain any gluten, eggs, dairy or soy. Use these protein-rich foods at most of your meals to get enough protein into your diet. Buy fresh meat, poultry or fish whenever possible. Avoid any option that is marinated, seasoned, breaded or in a sauce to avoid the ingredients you cannot tolerate.
Olive oil and other vegetable oils are safe for your gluten-free, soy-free, dairy-free and egg-free diet. Use these oils for cooking your vegetables and protein foods. You can also use extra virgin olive oil mixed with your favorite gluten-free vinegar to drizzle over your vegetables and salads.
Nuts and Seeds
Nuts and seeds can make a great addition to your diet if you do not have any nut allergies or intolerances. Choose natural or raw nuts and seeds and avoid the ones that are seasoned because they may be contaminated with gluten or other ingredients that are unsafe for you. Nuts and seeds, such as almonds, walnuts, macadamia nuts and sunflower seeds, can be added to your meals to boost your protein and healthy fats or can be eaten on their own for a satiating snack.
- Food Allergy Research and Education: Soy
- Food Allergy Research and Education: Egg
- Food Allergy Research and Education: Milk
- Gluten Intolerance Group Education Bulletin: Celiac, Allergy or Non-Celiac Gluten Intolerance: What is the Difference?
- National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases: Food Allergy -- An Overview