I have labeled some of my recipes gluten free and low carb– the below is an explanation of what I mean by each, and why.
I try to eat low carb because I’ve got an endocrine disorder (PCOS) that makes me less able to efficiently process carbs– I get really heavy and unhealthy (migraines, IBS, sinus infections, amennhorea, etc.) when I am eating too much sugar. I lost 80 lbs when I first started low carbing, and when I am better about my diet, I can keep my weight level. Eating low carb is pretty self-explanatory– proteins, green veggies, small amounts of colored & root veggies, salad vegetables, and berries and stone fruits. Bananas, citrus, apple and pear are higher-carb, but within reason, OK. The real no-nos are: potatoes, rice, pasta, bread, white sugar and anything else sugary like honey, molasses, maple syrup, and large amounts of beans or grains. I do occasionally have whole grains like bulgur, cornmeal, and quinoa, and I do slip and have white rice or potatoes every once in a while, but it’s what you can tolerate and keep the weight off. There are lots of variations on the theme: Atkins, South Beach, Sugar Busters, The GI Diet, The Schwarzbein Principle, Protein Power, etc. But by labeling something low-carb, I am specifically labelling something safe for eating during a first or second phase of a low-carb diet, rather than a maintenance, see-what-you-can-tolerate phase.
I try to eat gluten-free because I am gluten intolerant, rather than stricken with full-on celiac, meaning I get low blood sugar, irritable bowel, inflammed rosacea, and increased mucous production when I eat things with gluten in them. There are lots of sources of gluten, and lots of better websites (see Gluten Free Girl) to guide you through the intricacies of eating without gluten, so please consult them about brands of things such as soy sauce and other condiments to make sure about what’s gluten-free. (I.e., some soy sauces and ketchups are gluten-free, some aren’t. While “hydrolyzed wheat protein” is a common indicator in an ingredient list, you should really consult GFG or another celiac website for more info.) But, assuming you’ve got gluten free condiments to use in making any recipe I’ve labeled “gluten free,” you should be fine.