The cost of gluten-free living

It’s probably no surprise that living in Vancouver is expensive with its high costs of living, followed by limited choices when it comes to places to live. For some, another added cost is high-priced groceries because either they choose to live gluten-free or simply cannot eat gluten because they are intolerant, or even worse, have celiac disease.

Let’s look at what options people have and how much more it would cost weekly for the average person if they were to adhere to a gluten-free lifestyle.

Non Gluten Free = $1.99

Gluten Free = $5.99


This is probably the most inexpensive time of day for gluten-free eaters but can be the most difficult because of how rushed people are with getting to work and attending to their families while searching high and low for gluten-free options because of the limited choices at the local Starbucks and grocery stores.

Options: if you decide to take the simple route, you can opt for a piece of fruit, piece of toast, eggs, gluten-free sausages that cost around $15 if you were to purchase these and make at home. If you find that you’re far too busy to make breakfast in the morning, you have the option to purchase at a restaurant, which has a downside of its high cost. You also wouldn’t be able to get another meal out of it seeing as you’re eating out.

On average, if you were going to buy something like oatmeal, you are looking at $7 for a box or $5.99 for a box of waffles, which would cost an average of $3 for non-gluten free choices.


For those who are committed to eating clean, I highly recommend that you pack your lunch ahead of time to be the most cost effective.

Options: fresh veggies with your choice of dip is a great snack for those looking to save some money. You could also do some nuts that would cost you $17/bag, but would last you a while and prove to be one of the more filling options. Also, some of the best inexpensive options for people who are choosing to eat gluten-free food are fresh, wholesome food because you can usually find some good deals if you stick to seasonal produce, which help keep costs down.


It’s true that dinner takes the most preparation and has potential to be the most expensive, but it doesn’t have to be if you prep your food ahead of time.

Options: Opt for healthy options because it will save you money in the long run and will make you feel like the best version of yourself, especially for those who can’t tolerate gluten. You can use a slow cooker to help create optimal flavours, while keeping carbs down. This makes dinner the most exciting meal of the day because of the endless choices with the most time to enjoy your food.

It’s true that sometimes eating gluten-free feels more like a chore because in some cases you don’t even know if you have an intolerance or have celiac disease.It’s a blessing in disguise, because people don’t always eat the healthiest. It’s clear that people need to be made clear of the potential repercussions of eating gluten, especially if they suffer from such a life-changing condition.

Mark Hamilton

Mark Hamilton is the instructor for the course and a faculty member of the Journalism and Communications Studies program at Kwantlen Polytechnic University, in Surrey B.C.

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