On Going Gluten-Free

>> Saturday, March 19, 2011

Align Centerlast night's dinner: feta and sundried tomato quinoa, organic green beans from TimberCreek Farms and organic Sablefish from Wallace Farms

Last October when I met with the homeopathic MD, she laid before me a somewhat strict diet she thought I should follow to help me with the overwhelming Lupus symptoms I was having at the time. No wheat/gluten, no dairy, limited poultry, mostly beef and leafy veges. Protein in the morning and before bed. Nothing acidic or processed. Only certain fruits and one-two eggs/week. And some other rules that are too many to mention....but those are the basics.
I sat kinda shell-shocked, unsure if I could do it or not but knowing that SOMETHING had to help. It couldn't hurt to try and maybe it would even help.

So I jumped in. Gluten-free, limited dairy (I can't give up butter and cheese completely yet) and lots of beef. I was/am actually following a modified version of the BloodType diet. And 5months later, I am still kinda doing it. I say kinda because I have slacked a bit on the beef/protein in the morning thing and have been allowing myself too much dairy. But for the most part, I am pretty good.
I am gluten free (most days) and no milk. I do have cheese and butter now and then but I have cut those way back. I eat soy milk and soy yogurt and am learning which GF foods I like and which I don't. My first experience with GF bread was not a pleasant one. I got some brown rice bread from TraderJoe's and it was like eating a brick. But since then, I have found a few things that I do like:
Namaste Foods Muffin Mix. They also have a pizza crust mix that I really want to try.
Glutino Blueberry breakfast bars. And strawberry too. A little dense but so, so yummy! Glutino also makes yummy crackers and some donuts that I haven't tried yet but I plan too. :)
Udi's Cinnamon Raisin Bread and Cranberry Granola. Of all the GF breads I have tried, this is BY FAR the best. I haven't ventured much into the world of GF baking from scratch. It scares me a little. It seems like such a delicate science. I have slowly been accruing the neccesary flours and binders I need to bake from scratch. And I'll get the courage one of these days. Until then, I have found some yummy baking mixes and such that are getting me through.
Stonyfield's Fruit on the Bottom Soy Yogurt- Not all soy yogurt is good. In fact, most is not. But this yogurt is delish!

And it really does help, this whole gluten-free thing. The theory is to reduce the amount of potential allergens in my body so as to calm down my immune system in general and keep the Lupus subdued. Some days/weeks I am better than others. But when I see results (ie: less joint pain, more energy) it is hard to justify eating those chips or cookies or whatever else I am craving in that moment if it will mean discomfort a little later.
So I am sticking with it for now. I am getting into a groove with it and finding things I enjoy. I am playing with the idea of making the boys GF or at least mostly. Everything I read seems to point out that our bodies don't process it well. But that would be a bigger undertaking so we might have to do that slowly and gradually. And I have no idea how it will go when Hubby and I are in Costa Rica in a few weeks, but I imagine I'll be eating lots of fresh fruit and rice and fish. Even when I am tempted to cheat or there doesn't seem to be any good options for things I can eat, I am grateful to have found something that is working for me and I pray for the strength to keep going.

If you are GF or know a lot of great GF recipes, feel free to send them my way. I am always on the hunt. Here are a few blogs that I live by:
Gluten Free Goddess
Gluten Free Girl
The Perfect Pantry

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Atwood-Family of 4 March 19, 2011 at 10:03 PM  

Have you checked out the 365 crockpot website? she's GF so maybe she would have some good recipes and/or recommendations.

melanie April 2, 2011 at 4:45 PM  

my friend has celiac disease and is an EXCELLENT cook: http://toleskitchen.blogspot.com/

i hope it helps!

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