Yes, gluten-free can be part of a Mediterranean diet. Gluten is a protein found in grains such as wheat, rye and barley, which are common ingredients in Italian, Greek and other Mediterranean cuisines.
However, there are still plenty of naturally gluten-free Mediterranean dishes and ingredients such as vegetables, fruits, nuts and seeds, fish, eggs, legumes, dairy, and healthy fats like olive, walnut and avocado.
Additionally, there are many alternative grains such as gluten-free oats, quinoa, buckwheat and amaranth which can be used to replace wheat-based dishes. It’s important to note that unless you are medically diagnosed with celiac disease, there is no need for a strict gluten-free diet.
The Mediterranean diet is more critical about what type of grains, meats, dairy and seafood are consumed and where they come from, rather than eliminating certain ingredients altogether. Overall, gluten-free can be included as part of a Mediterranean diet, while still maintaining a balanced, healthy diet.
What grains are allowed on Mediterranean diet?
The Mediterranean diet, a heart-healthy eating pattern, is typically high in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans, nuts, and seeds; moderate in fish, poultry, and dairy; and low in red meat and sweets.
When it comes to grains, whole grains are encouraged on the Mediterranean diet. Whole grains are filled with essential vitamins and minerals, such as B vitamins, magnesium, and iron. This eating pattern recommends for individuals to replace refined grains such as white bread and white rice with whole grains such as whole wheat bread, brown rice, quinoa, and farrow.
Other recommended grains for the Mediterranean diet include barley, spelt, bulgur and millet. Grains should be consumed in moderation, depending on an individual’s caloric needs and overall diet. For a person following the Mediterranean diet, it is best to focus on consuming fiber-rich whole grains as part of a balanced diet including a variety of nutrient-dense and fiber-rich foods.
Are Mediterranean olives gluten-free?
Yes, Mediterranean olives are gluten-free. Olives are naturally gluten-free, so any olives labeled as “Mediterranean olives” will also be gluten-free. Olives are small fruits that are eaten in many Mediterranean dishes and are made from unripe green or black olives.
The olives are usually cured in brine, herbs, spices, and/or olive oil to achieve either mild or intense flavors. From the widely known Kalamata olives to the more obscure Halkidiki olives. While many olives are sold in jars with vinegar, oil, or spice mixes added, it is important to read the labels carefully to ensure that gluten is not an added ingredient.
Otherwise, you can be sure that olives labeled as “Mediterranean olives” will be gluten-free.
Is there gluten in Kalamata olives?
No, there is no gluten in Kalamata olives. This is because olives are naturally gluten-free. Olives are a type of stone fruit (like peaches, cherries, and plums), made up of a single seed surrounded by a fleshy pulp.
Kalamata olives are a type of Greek olive that is purplish-brown in color and contains a higher amount of oil than other types of olives. These olives are popular as both a table olive and as an ingredient in cooking.
Since they are 100% natural, they do not contain any gluten. If you are looking to add olives to a dish and need to avoid gluten, adding Kalamata olives is an excellent choice.
Can celiacs eat green olives?
Yes, celiacs can safely eat green olives. Olives are naturally gluten free, which means they are safe for celiacs to enjoy. However, be sure to check the labels before consuming any processed olives, as some companies may add wheat-containing ingredients like flour or grain-based starches.
For added safety, double-check with the manufacturer to ensure that their ingredients and processing doesn’t pose a risk of cross contamination. Additionally, some olives come pre-stuffed with ingredients like garlic or anchovies, so be sure to check those labels as well to make sure they are gluten free.
If in doubt, only purchase whole, unprocessed olives.
Do pimento olives have gluten?
No, pimento olives typically do not have gluten. Pimento olives are primarily made up of olives, which are naturally gluten-free, pimento peppers, which are also gluten-free, and a brine solution which can vary in ingredients.
Most pimento olives sold in grocery and convenience stores are made with a brine solution comprised of water and salt, which are both naturally gluten-free. However, some brands may add other ingredients to their brine solution that contain gluten such as malt vinegar, wheat starch, or wheat-based flour.
To avoid any potential gluten contamination, it is important to check the ingredients list of the pimento olives before purchase to make sure that it does not contain any gluten containing ingredients.
What kind of olives are Mediterranean?
The Mediterranean region is home to a variety of different olives, all of which vary in size, shape, color and flavor. Some of the most common olives cultivated in the Mediterranean region are manzanilla olives, which are small, round and green in color; kalamata olives, which are large and oval-shaped and usually dark purple in color; and niçoise olives, which have a small, round shape and a reddish-brown color.
Other, less popular olives that are cultivated in the Mediterranean region are Greek or Ascolana olives, Amfissa olives, and black Taggiasca olives. All of these olives are packed in brine which helps preserve their flavor and texture.
These olives are often used in salads, as an appetizer, on pizzas, and for cooking to add flavor.