Gluten free, whole-grain choices

Whole grains are important for everyone. They're naturally high in fibre, low in fat and filling to eat. And, when eaten regularly, whole grains help reduce the risk of heart disease, diabetes and certain cancers.

It is recommend that at least half of your daily servings of grains be whole grain. This means three servings a day for most people. But this is normally easier said than done.

The most common whole-grain foods (breads, baked goods, cereals, pasta and crackers) contain gluten. This makes getting enough whole grains even tougher for those with celiac disease, gluten intolerance, or just prefer to avoid gluten (as I do, for its inflammatory properties).

So, here are 10 gluten-free whole grains, how to cook them and how to add them to your diet. Remember to aim for three servings of whole grains a day.

Amaranth: About the size of a poppy seed, this pseudo-grain has a light peppery taste. Use 3 to 6 parts water to 1 part amaranth. Boil water, add grain and gently boil for 15 to 20 minutes. As it cooks, amaranth softens from the inside, releases a lot of starch and thickens the cooking liquid. Rinse cooked amaranth and let it drain before using. Use amaranth to thicken soups and stews. Add milk, fruit and a bit of honey for a healthy breakfast. You can even "pop" dried amaranth and make it into a granola-type bar. It can also be used as flour substitute for baking.