Gluten free life, recipes, & healthy tidbits

Gluten Free Hodgepodge AGAIN

Hello Fairy Followers.

I have been eating way too many GF carbs recently, but with that, have discovered some really good GF foods!!

I saw little Ava this week, and she is doing great on her GF diet.  Her older sister eats mostly GF, too, because they are served the same thing for each meal while at home.  Ava’s mom says her bloated stomach has gone down, she no longer has diarrhea, and her skin rashes have disappeared.  Ava loves the KIND granola bars, and she loves having small portions of several things in her lunch, which has been pretty easy for her mom to change over to GF:  cut up meat and cheese, GF crackers, fruit and GF KIND granola bar.

Her mom gave me a large bag of GF flour, called Cup 4 Cup, that can be substituted, you guessed it, cup for cup, for any other flour.  photo 2On the back of the bag is a short paragraph that says “After witnessing a diner at the restaurant (The French Laundry) shed tears of joy after trying our gluten-free bread, I realized we had something that needed to be shared.”  The French Laundry Restaurant is in Yountville, CA.  This flour is $19 for a 3 lb. bag and can be purchased on Amazon.  I will report back when I use it in a recipe.  Thanks Jenny!!

Last Sat. I walked with a friend to the local winter farmers market about 3 miles away.  One of my Tuesdays without Gluten friends has a cottage industry called That’s It! Gluten Free Home Bakery.  She sells her wares at the farmers market and I walked 3 miles down the hill specifically to buy a few of her english muffins which can double as hamburger buns, she says.  After a few minutes of shopping, I convinced myself that I would never make it UP the hill 3 miles without “a little something” for the trip home, so I purchased one of her cinnamon sweet rolls with drizzled frosting, and OMG, it was chewy and not too sweet and fabulous.  So this past Sat. I drove down for another roll, and bought a 2nd for Ava and her family to try. We all agreed that no one would know it was GF.  It had perfect texture, and was rolled into a pinwheel with cinnamon inside, just like a “regular” sweet roll out of one of those tubes that explode.  Tammy has perfected GF baking!!

photo 2I tried baking this weekend:  Pineapple upside down cake out of a box (Pamela’s white cake mix).  I followed the directions on the package, but used pineapple juice as the liquid in the recipe.  It was pretty good – dense and cut pretty easily.   After Tammy’s sweet roll, tho, it was just OK for me.  My sister thought this cake mix would make a great coffee cake with butter, brown sugar and cinnamon on the top (bottom actually).  FYI, I baked this cake in a cast iron pan, and thought the crust around the bottom (top) was the best part.

At a local coffee shop last week I was waiting in line to place my order, and I overheard a guy 3 people ahead ask if they had any GF pastries.  The gal said no, but they normally do.  Then when I got to the register to place my order, I played dumb and asked if they had any GF pastries.  So in 2 minutes we sent that coffee shop a message that GF pastries are in high demand, so they better make more!!

Last week I mentioned Allergytest.com for hair testing.  The correct address is Allergytest.co.  It is a UK company so I guess they don’t use the “m”.  Just visited the website and the price for the basic test has gone up since last week!!  Now the basic test is $105.

1 more food find from this week:  GF bread crumbs, panko style, made by Kinnikinnick.  $5.50 a box.  Have not tried them yet, but will report back when I do.  photo 3

A Fairy Follower from Texas told me about Gluten Free Nation bread, out of Houston.  $7.50 per loaf.  Yikes!!   But she said it is the best GF bread they have tasted.  Can be found at Sprouts and Kroger.  It is fairly new and I have not seen it in my town.

And I just found out today that my little town of Prescott, AZ is getting a Whole Foods.  The organic food store where I spend 1/2 my salary, has been purchased by Whole Foods.  We already have 2 organic food stores, a Trader Joes, and soon a Sprouts about 4 miles out of town, so there must be the demand in this area.  Whole Foods is on the forefront of Non-GMO action and by the end of 2018 will have any GMO products in their stores labeled as such.  They currently have 4800 products under 250 brands that are Non-GMO Project verified.

What does this Unknown have to do with this?  Unknown-1

ADA is a chemical used to make yoga mats.  It is also a foaming agent and dough conditioner for bread used by Subway, Pillsbury, Sara Lee, Smuckers, Jimmy Dean, Little Debbie, Tyson and Wonder.  Aren’t you glad you’re gluten free!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Tom, my sometimes contributing editor, sent me this.  He finally sent me something I could use in my (our???) blog.  Check out this new pizzeria in Troy, Michigan.  Totally GF and nut free.  THE WORD IS GETTING OUT!!  Remember, it is estimated that 1/3 of the population is sensitive to gluten, so this pizzeria might be the next best thing since sliced bread…or sliced pizza!!  Go to Crain’s Detroit Business and search for the article about Renee’s Pizzeria.

I read a lot of food and health articles in magazines.  Sometimes I get the feeling the authors just make up stuff to fill the pages.  Case in point:  because it is close to Easter, someone came up with the idea of a Peep Smore.  Are you kidding?  There are GF graham crackers out there, but Peeps have gone sooooo down hill in the last few years.  I did a test last Easter:  I took a bite of a Peep and closed my eyes and really concentrated on the flavor in my mouth.   THERE WAS NOTHING!!  There is absolutely NO taste to a Peep.  They are made of spun sugar, corn syrup and food dyes.  They are supposed to taste like marshmallows!  Did you know you can now buy Peeps lip balm in several flavors?  And Peeps nail polish!!  What is this world coming to??  I sound like my mother!!Unknown

In the same magazine where the Peep smores appeared, there was an article about coconut macaroons, and how Danny became famous with his (Danny Macaroons).  Well, his recipe is the exact recipe of my mom’s macaroons that I posted months ago.  He adds bittersweet chocolate or espresso to his basic macaroon recipe, and even wrote a book called The Macaroon Bible.  You saw the recipe here 1st, folks.  If this guy’s macaroons are famous, then my mom’s must be famous, too.  They are with my friends and family anyways.

imagesPeeps doing yoga.  The amazing internet.  Don’t ya love it??

Until next time, stay healthy.  The Gluten Free Fairyfacebook95-1149764328

 

 

Environmental Factors and Gluten Testing

Hello Fairy Followers.

First of all, my husband wanted everyone to know that he was NOT the leprechaun in last week’s post.Unknown-1

You know, I keep having coincidences “happen” to me, and this week was no exception.  The topic of last week’s Tuesdays Without Gluten group at the library was  allergy testing, because people with a sensitivity to gluten always have other allergies or sensitivities.  You may not know about them yet, but they are there.  And then last night I randomly clicked on another Gluten Summit lecture to listen to, and what the heck, it was about allergy testing!!!  What a co-inky-dink!!  So the topic for today’s post IS:  allergy testing.

Dr. Vojdani is a PhD and CEO of Immuno-Science Labs, sits on the editorial board of 4 scientific journals, and has done research for the EPA, NIH and Inst. of Allergy and Infectious Disease, and is an expert on environmental factors in complex diseases.

There are 4 branches of the immune system, and all 4 must be tested to get an accurate assessment of your sensitivities.   The old skin prick test that has been around for 120 years is only 40% accurate on children and 50% accurate on adults.  Blood tests are more accurate and will detect the dangerous allergies like peanuts.  And it depends which lab your Dr. uses for your allergy analysis, also.  How pure are the antigens they use?  Some labs use raw foods instead of cooked foods for their testing, which will affect the outcome.  And some foods may give you a delayed reaction.  Some antigens need to bind with cells then circulate in the blood for a while before they are detected – some take up to 8 days!  You may not be sensitive to beef or corn or spices, but if you mix them together in the form of a hot dog, you may have a reaction to that food because the processing of foods changes the end product.  Eat more God-made food and limit man-made food.

In 2011, 5000 Italian children were screened for celiac disease with almost 100% accuracy using the saliva test.  Saliva antibodies appear 5-10 yrs. before onset.  These antibodies are present in a baby’s mouth by the age of 3 months.   Take preventative measures – do not wait for symptoms.  Symptoms mean damage has already occurred!!

Dr. Vojdani says 50% of celiacs have elevated antibodies.  That means 50% do not!!  There are more than 10 components to gluten.  If all 10 are not tested, you may receive a negative test result.

Most Drs. are against a “gluten challenge”, which is when you’re so sure you have cured whatever was ailing you by eliminating gluten from your diet, so you add it back in and “challenge” the theory.  BAD IDEA!!  First of all, gluten antibodies can stick around for 3 months after you start a GF diet.  Each “challenge” requires less gluten to trigger an inflammatory immune response, and each time you will have a more violent reaction.  Turns out your immune cells have a memory, so don’t try to sneak anything by them!!

Have you heard of a rotation diet?  Every 4 days you can eat a small amount of allergenic food.  NOT!!  Gluten has a zero tolerance.

Detecting autoimmune antibodies NOW will prevent the development of full-blown diseases like celiac, MS, lupus or rheumatoid arthritis.  Remove the triggers early, and slowly the immune reactivity will go away.  After a full-blown disease has taken hold, tho, all you can do is treat the symptoms – it is too late to reverse.  Such is the case of Dr. Terry Wahls, the U of Iowa professor with MS who is effectively managing her symptoms with the paleo diet.

You need to know what your immune system is fighting.  Is it gluten, dairy, mercury….or what??

This brings me to Linda, a member of my GF group who was the guest speaker last week.  She is highly allergic to gluten, eggs, dairy and peanuts, and is a highly-educated consumer .  She started out with heartburn and reflux (GERD) 4 years ago.  She tried the elimination diet, which is extremely hard to stay on.  For 2 weeks she ate veggies, rice and lentils.  Then she added 1 suspect food at a time, waited for any reactions, then tried the next.  She quit after 30 days and started researching allergy testing.  Her opinion is that the Elisa test from U.S. Biotek Labs is the most comprehensive and pure.  The Elisa test at Biotek Labs is used by manufacturing facilities that want to become GF certified.  She bases her opinion on her research of these 6 tests:

Skin test – discussed above.

IGE (Rast) test:  Blood antibody test.  Like Dr. V. said, if it doesn’t cover all the gluten components, you may get a false negative.

Alcat test/ACT/Elisa blood test:  You can have 2 samples from the same patient on the same day, and get different results.  Cost is $1000 + 2 Dr. visits.

Muscle testing:  Hold a suspect food or substance in your hand, push down on your arm to measure resistance.  Your energy is affected by what you are holding.  Not scientific.  Chiropractors may use this method.  I have had this done in a casual setting, and it is astounding how you can resist a push down on your arm with some things, and have absolutely no resistance with others.  You have to experience it to believe that it works.

Elisa Antibody test:  Not the same Elisa as mentioned with the Alcat test.  This is the test Linda recommends.  $190 + 2 Dr. visits.  Tests 92 foods.

Hair analysis:  I mentioned this a couple weeks ago.   http://www.allergytest.com.  $95 to test 600 foods, or $210 to test metals also.  Send a small pc. of your hair thru the mail.

She stresses that for these tests to be accurate, the lab your Dr. uses needs to have very tight quality control standards.

She eats crystalized ginger if she mistakenly eats one of her allergens.

Cross-reactive foods:  foods with similar proteins or substances that mimic gluten, and can cause leaky gut, more allergies and a gluten-type reaction:  corn, dairy (butter, cheese, milk), legumes, peanuts and soy, and lectins from beans, seeds and seed flours.

May is National Celiac Month.  Autoimmune diseases are the #3 killer in the world.  Cut gluten, processed carbs and sugar from your diet every chance you get, and find out what your other allergen are.

“What day is it?” asked Pooh.  “It’s today” squeaked Piglet.  “My favorite day!” said PoohUnknown

8ozGFStick_HBW_thumbMy new favorite snack:  Snyders of Hanover Hot Buffalo Wing GF pretzels dipped in sour cream.  Lots of finger licking required.

photo 4

And another round of applause for Canyon Bakehouse 7 grain bread.  It is so dang good.  It does not fall apart, it is fluffy and soft, it has a great taste, and the crust is fabulous!

photo 2

And look at this gorgeous piece of nature that was sunning itself on a large pine tree at the end of my driveway this week!!

OK kids, until next time, stay healthy.

The Gluten Free Fairyfacebook95-1149764328

GMO – OMG

Hello Fairy Followers.

Thank you for all the great comments this week!!  Please let me know if you have specific topics you’d like to see on this blog.  I love doing research and learning as I go.  Little Ava is less moody these days according to her parents, but ate pancakes at school last week and got a tummy ache.  She said “I’m sure they were gluten free, mom”.  Poor thing could not resist eating what everyone else was eating.

GMO-OMG is a movie about GMO foods that was recently shown at a local college.  It was quite entertaining because it was expertly filmed, and came across as a regular movie instead of a documentary, about a darling hippy family who is on a quest to learn about grains and GMO farming and foods.  It all started with the older son’s fascination with seeds.   It took them across the country to visit Washington, and of course, Monsanto (never got past the front office and never talked to anyone besides the receptionist and the marketing woman who urged them to leave). The movie was sponsored by several organic food companies.

Some of this info is from THE NON GMO PROJECT:  GMO’s are plants or animals created thru gene splicing that merges DNA from different species, creating things that do not occur in nature or in traditional cross breeding.  Virtually all are engineered to resist herbicides and insecticides.  GMO’s do not offer increased yields, drought tolerance, enhanced nutrition or any other consumer benefit.  A growing body of evidence connected GMO’s with health problems and environmental damage.  More than 60 countries have significant restrictions or outright bans on the production or sale of GMO’s.  The U.S. Government has approved GMO’s based on studies conducted by the same corporations that created them and profit from their sale, so the results, of course, will be predictable.  Sales of Roundup have increased 15 times since GMO’s were introduced.  GMO’s are responsible for the emergence of “super weeds” and “super bugs” which can only be killed by poisons (some contain Agent Orange derivatives) more toxic than  Roundup.  Because GMO’s are a novel life form, they are able to be patented.  Independent researchers rarely get the chance to study GMO’s, courtesy of strict patent laws.  If a GMO seed drifts over to a non-GMO field and sprouts, the GMO seed company can sue the farmer for unauthorized use of its seeds. Unbelievable!!

UnknownAlso, farmers using GMO seeds are not allowed to gather and re-sprout seeds for the next year.  Can’t have heirloom anything with those laws!!  Foods most likely to be GM’d:  Alfalfa, corn, sugar beets, zucchini and yellow squash, canola, cotton, papaya, soy, rice, flax and wheat.  Other suspect foods (because of feed):  milk, meat, eggs and honey.

In 2012, Italian scientist Dr. Seralini finished a 2 year safety study on GMO’s by feeding rats food grown with Roundup, and GMO food not treated with Roundup.  BTW, a rat’s lifespan is about 2 years.  Between months 7 and 13 (about 40 yrs. old in human life), adverse affects were equally dramatic in both groups.  They grew huge tumors (mostly mammary).  This study was published in the Food and Chemical Toxicology journal after going thru twice the peer scrutiny of other studies before publication, and a year-long review after publication.  Then it was retracted in 2013.  A scientist who had worked for Monsanto for 7 yrs., was made editor of that publication shortly before retraction.  This Monsanto scientist is an affiliate of the International Life Science Institute – a GMO industry-funded group.  Prior to Dr. Seralini’s study, the safety of GMO’s had never been tested for more than 3 months.  And Dr. Seralini used the same type of rats that Monsanto used to prove GMO safety.  GMO’s have been on the market for 10 years, so if Dr. Seralini’s study has any merit, we can expect the “adverse affects” of what you’re eating now to surface in about 30 years.  I, for one, am not waiting around!!  The New Yorker magazine published an article rebutting a lot of the info in the documentary, which also discredited Dr. Seralini’s research work.  OK – freedom of the press.

The documentary contained interviews with a few conventional farmers.  They believe the chemicals are necessary to produce high yields and that “we need to feed the world”.  According to the Rodale Institute and their 30 years of experience and research on organic gardening, organic farming can yield the same as conventional farming.

Did you know The White House has an organic garden out back?  If the government stands behind the safety of conventional farming and GMO foods, why does the 1st Family eat organically?

GMA (Grocery Mfg. of America) is an organization whose members include Kellogg’s, Pepsi, Coke, Kraft, Nestle, General Mills, and Monsanto.  During last year’s GMO labeling proposition in WA state, GMA formed a “brand defense” account, so companies could anonymously donate to fight the proposition…to avoid consumer backlash in the grocery isle.  GMA was sued by Attorney General Bob Ferguson and the identities of the donors were revealed.  Here is a list of supporters and non-supporters, published by the Cornucopia Institute:  GMO I-522 Wash State.  The GMA contributed over $7M, and some organic labels are owned by larger companies that funded the defeat of the proposition.  The GMA is pushing for a voluntary federal labeling law.  Last Dec. they sent a letter to the Chief Counsel of the FDA, informing her that “GMA asks the FDA to issue a regulation authorizing foods containing ingredients derived from biotechnology to be labeled ‘natural’.”  Keep reading those labels, but heck, you have to be some kind of detective to know what everything means.

Last week I mentioned Trader Joes and their GMO policy.  According to the FOOD BABE, Trader Joes has been secretive about their GMO testing/certification process.  From her website:

           Trader Joe’s Official GMO Statement:

Our approach to Genetically Modified Organisms is simple: we do not allow GMO ingredients in our private label products (anything with Trader Joe’s, Trader Jose’s, Trader Ming’s, etc. on the label).

TJ’s does not show country of origin on their labels.

“The Non-GMO Project has reached out to Trader Joe’s a number of times over the years, and we remain hopeful that at some point we will be able to forge a meaningful partnership with them. To date, it has been very difficult to ascertain the credibility of their non-GMO claims.We know that many consumers believe Trader Joe’s to be a GMO-free store, but without transparent standards or third-party verification this is impossible to confirm. Many other retailers–independent grocers, co-ops, and Whole Foods Market–are leading the way by requiring rigorous testing and labeling, and it would be great to see Trader Joe’s follow suit.”

From the Cornucopia Institute:

“It is very hard to figure out sourcing with Trader Joe’s.  They heavily depend on private label products which are based on secrecy.  We have said that private-label organics is an “oxymoron.”  Organic consumers want to know “the story behind their food.”  They want to know where it was produced, how it was produced, how the animals and workers involved have been treated, etc.  None of that is possible with Trader Joe’s. Unlike the majority of all responsible brand marketers in organics they have refused to participate in our research studies and are thus rated very poorly on our scorecards that critique dairy foods, eggs and soy foods (etc.)”

Happy belated St. Patrick’s Day.  This is my attempt to make something festive for a corned beef and cabbage dinner at a neighbors.  Like I’ve said before, I’m not much of a baker, but they were pretty tasty!!   After putting 3 leftover cupcakes in the freezer for safe keeping, my husband took them out the next day, so then I had to have one for breakfast!!  Thick and chewy like brownies (GF chocolate cake mix, 1 can pumpkin, 2 eggs), with Marshmallow Fluff frosting and sprinkles.  They kind of look like poached eggs…

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Last week I discovered something really good:  toasted GF Glutino bagel with almond butter.  Talk about a really delicious breakfast, besides chocolate cupcakes!!

home-breadsAlso, I need to thank my sister again for recommending Canyon Bakehouse bread.  Their 7 grain bread, toasted, with eggs…another fabulous breakfast.  That bread is so delicate and buttery and soft.  The crust is unbelievably good.  I used to think Food for Life rice almond bread was good.  Not anymore.  And you don’t need to toast it for it to hold together like other GF breads.

From a Fairy Follower:  “Our current agricultural system uses taxpayer $ to subsidize the planting of GMO’s, while organic farmers are required to pay fees for certification.”  Doesn’t that sound like it should be the other way around?  

And from another Follower:  “A nation that destroys its soil destroys itself.”  FDR

Until next time, stay healthy, and stay away from GMO’s!!

The Gluten Free Leprechaun Fairyphoto 2

Little Ava and the Gluten Free Child

Hello Fairy Followers.

Today I blog about Ava, a darling little 4 year old who may be gluten sensitive.  Before getting started tho, my thoughts about children and food and health and concern were intertwined with church this past Sunday.  The young pastor of my church is in Korea right now picking up his adopted 2 yr. old son, after waiting a year for that special phone call.  That announcement made me remember my previous boss, who adopted a baby girl from China about 8 years ago.  That little girl came to America after sharing a crib with 2 others in the orphanage, and she stored food in her cheeks between meals for 6 months, until she was sure there would be another.  There are no unwanted children – just unfound families.  

Well, little Ava is a sweet thing with lips that honestly look like a heart. Unknown  For about 6 months she has had stomach aches, diarrhea and distended tummy.   She has been gluten free for a week and her diarrhea has stopped, but she still has a distended tummy.  Maybe she needs more time being GF, or maybe she also has a dairy allergy??  We will check back in a few weeks.

1 out of 17 children have some sort of food sensitivity according to the AllergyKids Foundation.  Hospitalizations for severe food reactions rose sevenfold in just the past 10 years (European Academy of Allergy and Clinical Immunology).

Why?

TOO CAUTIOUS?  For years, the Am Academy of Pediatrics recommended these 8 common allergen foods be withheld for the 1st year of life:  milk, eggs, peanuts, tree nuts, fish, shellfish, soy and wheat.  After 1 year, introduce 1 at a time and look for any adverse reactions.  In 2008 the AAP changed their recommendation to start exposure to these 8 as early as 5 months old.  A 2013 paper in The Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology states that introducing allergenic foods at 4-6 months reduces the risk of developing a food allergy.  Hmmmm.  Remember Dr. Fasano, Chief of Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition at Mass General who spoke at the Gluten Summit?  See the Fairy’s Jan. 25th post.  He referenced a Swedish study from the 1970′s that started babies on fortified formula with wheat between 2-4 months of age, which increased the celiac occurrence in that generation from 1% to 7-9%.

TOO CLEAN?   What is The Hygiene Hypothesis?  In 1989 “it” theorized that because we are not exposing our children to enough germs,  their immune systems are not trained to differentiate between harmful and harmless agents.

CORRUPT FOOD SUPPLY?  That, of course, gets my vote.  Chemicals (like washing meat with chlorine), and GMO foods.  “Although European animal studies have linked eating GM foods to allergenicity, this research has largely been dismissed by the U.S. because of concerns about study design, reporting or analysis.”  The dramatic increase in food allergies that began in the 90′s coincides with the introduction of GM crops in 1996.  “Are we allergic to the food, or are we allergic to what we have done to it?”  GM ingredients remain unlabeled in the U.S.

I’m sure the U.S. food industry lobby had SOMETHING to do with the dismissal of the European study.  Wait till next week when I blog about the documentary “GMO – OMG” that was shown at a local college last week!!  Scary.

Ava’s mom is concerned about replacing gluten grains with a lot of corn, because most is genetically modified.  She should be concerned!!  Foods labeled as “certified organic” can contain up to 5% GM ingredients.  Foods labeled “100% organic” contain no GM ingredients.  Before I attended the GMO movie, I always thought organic food contained zero GM ingredients.  But 5% is a lot safer than 90 or 100%.

In search of the most popular GF foods for kids, I paid a visit to Trader Joes.  Their customer service is fabulous, and I was led around the store by an employee and then the “Captain” – who happened to have  2 kids who eat GF.  By the way, their GMO policy is:  all of their non-animal products do not contain GM ingredients (digging deeper into that statement next week).  Also, TJ’s labels their products with and extra “contains wheat, contains eggs, etc.” if it contains 1 of the top 8 allergens.

They have a large GF display –  stage right.  The papers hanging to the right of the display are a complete list of store products that are GF (6 1/2 pgs.)  Their favorite GF kid food recommendations are:

photo 2

Puffins cereal, microwave Mac and Cheese (frozen), 3 cheese pizza, soft bake snicker doodles, Vanilla Meringue cookies, Joe-Joe cookies (with real vanilla bean filling), Gorilla Munchies cereal, brown rice crispy treats, chocolate chip cookies, GF and diary-free pancakes and waffles (both frozen).

Natural Grocers, a local organic food store, had these recommendations (the manager also has a GF child):  Against the Grain Pizza, Sharkey organic fruit chews, Lucy’s cookies, Snyders pretzels (my personal favorite), Lucky Spoon Cinnamon muffins, Annie’s Mac and Cheese (frozen), Applegate chicken nuggets (frozen), Enviro kids cereal.  Fruit leathers up near the check-out counter are excellent, too.  That reminds me of a funny story.  My 30-something niece (who reads this blog) was not allowed to beg for candy or gum at the check-out counter when she grocery shopped with her mom.  So instead, she would pick up a pack of gum and just smell it, and then put it back on the rack.  That still makes me laugh after all these years.  Hi Shannon  Unknown

UnknownSome of Ava’s favorites:  Van’s GF waffles, cheese crackers, chocolate chip granola bars and cinnamon haven cereal, and Natures Path chunky chocolate peanut granola bars.  Ava had a hard time eating GF at Disneyland, but I will bet in a few years there will be many GF goodies for sale – if they know what’s good for business…and they obviously do!!!  Speaking of Disneyland, did you all see “Saving Mr. Banks”?  Old time Disney at its best.

Did you know that Olive Garden has a GF menu with a children’s portion of  GF penne pasta with marinara sauce and a side of grapes?  And Dominos has a GF pizza now.  My sister tells me it’s good!!  And then there’s In and Out Burger.  I am ashamed to admit that I think about those burgers all the time – wrapped in lettuce with that special sauce.  I wonder if a kid would enjoy eating a burger like that, tho.  I’ve seen plenty of teens eat it that way, but never a youngster.

Last week I decided to try a frozen GF pizza.  We have Bill’s Pizza in town, serving the world’s best GF pizza, so why waste my $ on a frozen one?  Just wanted to try one.  Waste of $.  The brand was “Contes”.  The crust tasted like ground up saltine crackers – dry and brittle.  The strange part of this  story is that the pizza was made in NJ, on Wheat Road.   Made me hesitate mid bite.

One more tidbit:  If you are interested in finding out everything you are allergic to/intolerant of – besides bad coffee, lumpy beds and neighbors who let their dogs poop in your yard, you can send a hair sample to The Intolerant Testing Group.  Take a look at http://www.allergytest.com.  Prices start at $75 and go to $210.

‘I only hope that we don’t lose sight of one thing – that it was all started by a mouse”.  “I love Mickey Mouse more than any woman I have ever known”.  Walt Disney.

Until next time, stay healthy.  The Gluten Free Fairyfacebook95-1149764328

GF on a Budget, and Wrinkles

Hello Fairy Followers.

I have a couple new followers this week – wooo hooo! UnknownThank you for your interest everyone. 

From my buddy Tom, who feeds me info from the Am College of Gastroenterology, here are their tips on how to eat GF a little cheaper.

Sales of GF foods in 2010 were $2.6B.  By 2015 they are expected to be $5B.  The cost of some GF foods is high because of the specialty ingredients like amaranth, quinoa, brown rice, buckwheat, agave, coconut sugar and honey.  Wheat is very cheap and that is why it is used as filler.  Cheaper GF alternatives are corn, rice and GF oats.

Some price gouging is going on due to its recent popularity, and most GF producers are small compared to the big cereal and bread companies, so they don’t have the economy of scale.  By 2015, more companies will surely throw their hats in the ring to get a pc. of that $5B pie, creating more competition and lower prices (hopefully).

Avoid buying packaged GF foods.  They are expensive and some are highly processed and should be eaten moderately, anyways.

Eat more foods that are naturally GF – like nuts, fruits, veggies, beans, dairy and meats.

Make your own GF baked goods.  HA – easier said than done!!  Steep learning curve here.

Make large batches and freeze 1/2.  Nothing new here – that goes for any food, GF or not.

Buy in bulk…but not necessarily from the bulk bins.  Cross contamination highly probable!

Change over the whole family to GF, so you don’t have to make 2 versions of everything, and you don’t have to stock specialty items in your pantry.  I disagree on this one.  Walmart vs Vitacost pricing:  Regular macaroni = $1.46/16 oz.  GF macaroni = $3.89/12 oz.   GF bread = $4.50/loaf.  Regular Snyders pretzels = $2.98/16 oz.  GF Snyders pretzels =  $6.39/14 oz.   Flour tortillas = $ 1.60/10 med.  Food for Life brown rice tortillas $5.20/6 large.  Bisquick baking mix = $3.28/40 oz.  Bobs Red Mill baking mix = $9.58/44 oz.

Changing the whole family to GF will also boost the morale of the celiac, so they don’t feel different.  I don’t know any celiac kids to ask, but maybe this statement was meant for them.  We gluten intolerant people are specialand I would guess that most of us eat a lot healthier than the average person because we read labels and try to keep inflammation out of our bodies.  If a person’s morale needs boosting because they have to eat gluten free, hopefully it’s short lived, and their GF diets eventually lead them down a path to a healthier and happier life.

Shop around.  Trader Joes has $1.99 brown rice pasta.  You can find GF snack foods at TJ Maxx and Marshalls.

Create easy 1-pot meals (that’s pretty much the only way I know how to cook anyways).

Internet shop for GF foods.  Vitacost always sends E-coupons, and both Amazon and Google advertise GF foods.

OK, to the wrinkle part now.  Unknown

This info is from the health column in my local newspaper.

Foods that spike blood sugar (carbs and sugar) create inflammation that produces an enzyme that breaks down collagen, resulting in wrinkles.  Stress releases the hormone cortisol, which elevates blood sugar, resulting in inflammation.  One of the main causes of stress is lack of sleep.  High levels of cortisol lead to decreased bone density, breakdown of muscle (including heart muscle), weight gain and collagen breakdown.  And we all know that smoking and exposure to ultraviolet light causes premature aging.

Collagen is a protein, so a diet supplying ample protein is necessary to regenerate the skin.  In just 3 days, a diet rich in protein can produce noticeable differences in skin appearance, including improvement in dark circles, puffiness and fine lines.  This article says a vegetarian diet does not supply enough protein, so by age 50, a vegetarian’s skin will show accelerated aging.  Not sure if I believe this last sentence because look at Christie Brinkley, who looked smashing on the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition 50 Year Anniversary Show last month.  Still GORGEOUS at age 60.

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No mention of good fats in this article, and how important they are for your skin.

3 more famous vegetarians who have nice skin for their age.

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From the American Diabetes Association website:  10% of type 1 diabetics also have celiac disease.

Did you know that rickets has made a comeback in the UK?  Rickets is a childhood disease that once caused an epidemic of bowed legs and curved spines during the Victorian era.  It is caused by a severe deficiency of vitamin D.  It used to be a disease of poverty because poor children toiled in factories instead of playing outside in the sun.  The disease largely disappeared from Britain in the 1950′s due to mass programs to feed children cod liver oil.  In the last 15 yrs. British hospitals have seen a 4 fold increase in cases – from 183 in 1995 to 762 in 2011, but may be higher because there is no formal surveillance system in place.  Cultural changes are likely to blame:  children spending more time inside on computers and video games, the stringent use of sunscreens, and religious beliefs that skin needs to be covered.

In the US, there has also been an increase in rickets, tho there are no solid figures to confirm it.  Dr. Tosi at Children’s Medical Center in Washington DC say kids stop drinking milk as soon as they are weaned, and some public health campaigns are trying to eliminate flavored milks from school lunches, which could hurt children’s bone health.   Flavored milks…hmmm.  Would the drink described below actually help a child’s bone health, or would the sugar, colorings and processing be more hinderance than help?  Those are the types of decision we all have to make every day, unfortunately.

Flavored milk is a sweetened dairy drink made with milk, sugar, colorings and artificial or natural flavorings. Flavored milk is often pasteurized using ultra-high-temperature treatment, which gives it a longer shelf-life than plain milk. Wikipedia

Get the kids off their bums and scoot them outside, force-feed them wild-caught oily fish once in a while, organic eggs, and other dairy products like organic yogurt, cheese, cream cheese (on celery – yum), sr. cream, and plain old milk how it tastes right out of the cow.  Don’t let them do the shopping!!

My son, who is 26 now, used to come home from grade school with stories about green hotdogs at lunch.  Instead of eating them, they would have contests to see how high they would bounce.  I tried to get on the nutrition board for the school district, but I’m sure they sensed a renegade before they finished listening to my voice mail.  They never called.  I really only wanted to get ketchup re-classified from a vegetable to a condiment.

Quote of the week:  “Hot dogs and Red Vines and potato chips and french fries are my favorite foods.”  Betty White.  OK, one of the websites I consulted for this post is lying.  Or maybe she eats tofu hotdogs, or maybe this is an old quote.  Gotta love her either way.

Until next time, stay healthy.   The Gluten Free Fairyfacebook95-1149764328

Tuesdays Without Gluten, and Other Nuggets

Hello Fairy Followers.

My 2 frozen sisters from MN Unknownhave been visiting my unseasonably warm town for the past week, so again, I am off my blogging schedule.  Sorry for the delay!!

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Sometimes I lay in bed and fret over what to blog about, and it seems whenever that happens, my friends, relatives, newspapers, internet, mail, a personal encounter, or my Tuesdays Without Gluten group comes thru and dumps all kinds of nuggets at my feet, and that is what happened this week while I was on vacation.  So this post will have no rhyme or reason –  just tidbits relating to gluten or food or healthy living.

I first want to share 2 personal stories.

My mother has always had what I call an unhealthy relationship with food.  She overeats and eats a lot of processed food, especially bread and sweets.  Since Christmas she has been getting “the shakes” – sweaty and weak, several times a week.  She also has excess stomach acid and reflux so she’s been on Prilosec for 30 years, and has been having stomach pains.  Her Dr. told her to eat a 1/2 sandwich before she goes to bed each night, so there is something for the acid to gnaw on, and so she doesn’t wake up hungry and “shaky” in the morning.  I’m glad I did not accompany her to that Dr. appt. or I would have kicked him in the shins.  After a week of no relief with the PB sandwich, her daughters persuaded her to cut back to 1 pc. of bread per day, and cut back on all processed carbs, and eat celery with PB instead of 1/2 PB sandwich before bed, and eat small meals every 2 hours, AND GUESS WHAT!!!  Her stomach aches have disappeared, and she has not had the shakes for 13 days.  That’s her, eating her favorite food group – dessert!!  As Dr. Davis says, wheat has a higher  glycemic index than sugar, and when you come down off the carbohydrate “high”, you crash with low blood sugar.   photo copy 6

My cousin, a Fairy Follower with MS, went gluten free about a year ago after hearing about the relationship between gluten and autoimmune diseases.  Last week she told me she has been able to cut back on her meds “considerably” since going gluten free.  The ALLELUIA chorus is singing right now!!!!  She follows Dr. Terry Wahls on Facebook and blog, and wants you all to know that Dr. Wahls has not cured her MS with the Paleo Diet.  There is no cure.  The damage to her myelin sheaths has been done, but she is effectively managing and slowing its progress.   And 1 more thing:  my cousin is an avid animal lover and says Xylitol, a sugar alcohol that is considered a “good” sweetener and has 0 calories, is very toxic to dogs, so if you are eating a snack that contains Xylitol, do not throw the last bite to your pup, no matter how much he begs.  Oh, but look how cute and sad he looks!!!  Unknown-1

OK, this week at the Tuesdays Without Gluten meeting, our guest speaker was an all-American athlete in college and now coaches track and field at a local college, and is a member of our GF group.  Before he dives into his athletes’ abilities and training, he looks at their diet because if their bodies are not firing on healthy cylinders, they will not perform well.  I wish more doctors would take that approach.  He wants his athletes to eat GF. He said drinking water is acidic to the body (it takes calcium from your bones), and suggests juicing a lemon or lime into your water 3 times/week to bring more balanced alkalinity to your system.  Even tho lemons are acidic, they are an alkaline-forming food.  This winter as the flu ran rampant thru the dorms, his athletes drank the lemon water as directed, and not 1 of them got the flu.  Unrefined salts (such as Himalayan pink sea salt) and fruit will also add alkalinity back to your system.  A few of his favorite books:  Wheat Belly by Dr. Davis, Nutrition and Physical Degeneration by Weston Price,  Prescription for Nutritional Healing (reference book),  and Food Politics by Marion Nestle.

Unknown-2And last month our guest speaker was an acupuncturist.  Did you know that you have 6 different pulses, and each tells a story about what is going on in your body?  Your tongue is also a very important diagnostic tool.  The color (white, yellow, red), the texture (smooth or bumpy, coated), the shape (scalloped edges) all tell a story to the acupuncturist.   She also uses touch, sight and smell as diagnostic tools.  She has treated fibromyalgia with her  needles.  Some of the needles are so thin that you need a dark background or light reflection to see them.

2 GF tidbits:  Nuts.com – a good source for super fine GF baking flours.  Great prices but you have to pay for shipping.

Websites for GF recipes:  Bakingbeauties.com, Theintollerantgourmet.com, glutenfreegoddess.com.

Unknown-4If you eat spinach because it has iron, but the soil it is grown in has been beaten down with pesticides to the point of destroying the iron in it, the spinach will have no iron.

The World Health Organization has just released the World Cancer Report.  This report is published every 5 years, and is a collaboration between 40 countries and 250 scientists.  Cancer rates are expected to increase 57% worldwide in the next 20 years.  Deaths are expected to rise from 8.2M to 13M annually.  They attribute these growing #’s to the aging population.   Hmmm.  I would say our diets,  food safety/manipulation and lifestyle choices should be considered, also.  Hey you scientists, get a clue!!!

Last week this topic came up in 2 conversations so I’m just going to put it out there:  radiation from Japan’s Fukishima nuclear disaster in 2011 is effecting sea life in the Pacific.  Water used to cool the reactor is STILL being pumped into the ocean, and currents are bringing the radiation closer to the US.  Alaskan wild-caught salmon and fish oil supplements….maybe take note of where your fish sources are coming from.

Did you know that IHOP puts a little pancake batter in their omelets for fluffiness?Unknown-3

Rinsing quinoa before cooking will take away potential bitterness.

Did you know that May is Celiac Awareness Month?

From the Gluten Summit:  Proteins from corn, dairy and legumes mimic gluten is some celiacs – called cross-reactivity.

People who cannot tolerate corn may be able to tolerate hominy (corn processed with lye – made into grits, and used in Mexican dishes like pasole stew).

Let GF baking sit for 1 hour before handling.

I told you this would be unstructured!!

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If we are not meant to have midnight snacks, why is there a light in the refrigerator?

It’s amazing what you can find on the internet… an imaginary child named Quinoa.  She was created by an imaginary mom.  Bizzzzzaaaarrrr, but she’s so cute.

Until next time, stay healthy.  The Gluten Free Fairy

images-1 Haha.  Fooled ya.

Wheat Belly Dr. Davis

Hello Fairy Followers.

I listened to another Gluten Summit lecture this week, this time by Dr. Davis of Wheat Belly fame.  I have blogged about him before.  These Drs. at The Summit are soooo knowledgable and our population would be healthier if they practiced what these professionals are preaching!!

Dr. Davis is a cardiologist who advocates removing all foods that contain wheat from your diet, and all or most sugars.  He has seen these improvements in his patients:  weight loss, relief from acid reflux, increased energy, more stable moods, deeper sleep, relief from arthritis, improved cholesterol values, reduced blood pressure, reduced inflammation measures, asthma disappears, rashes clear up, migraines vanish, and bowel urgency from IBS disappears…some within 5 days of removing wheat.  His patients come to him because they have already had a cardiac episode, are at high risk of having one, or maybe had a parent die young of a heart attach, and are afraid.  In the past 18 years, he cannot remember a heart attach in his practice.

Whole wheat bread has a glycemic index of 72.  Table sugar has a glycemic index of 59-65.  So 90 minutes after eating, your blood sugar will measure higher with bread than sugar.  Then 1/2 hr. after than, your blood sugar plummets, creating a shaky feeling, which stimulates your appetite and a craving for carbs, and the cycle continues.

BTW, GF food substitutes like corn starch, rice flour, tapioca starch and potato starch also have a glycemic index above 70!!  Eating high glycemic index GF foods regularly is unhealthy.  Don’t replace a bad diet with a bad GF diet.

Dr. Davis says “modern wheat is a concoction of agricultural genetics.”  The gene GLIA Alpha A was absent from wheat before 1950.  Virtually all strains of wheat in 2013 have it.  It is the genetic sequence that most likely triggers the celiac response.  Modern wheat has 42 chromosomes.  Biblical wheat had 28, and pre-biblical wheat had 14.  All humans regardless of size, shape or color have 46.  The baboon has 48.  Look at the difference just 2 chromosomes make (or not…).

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About 50% of human caloric intake of the world comes from wheat, corn and rice.  Almost every official agency (Am Diabetes Assoc., Am Heart Assoc., USDA, FDA, Academy of Nutrition and Diabetes) recommends a grain-dominant diet.  Dr. Davis says “eating plenty of ‘healthy whole grains’ is exactly how you would create diabetes”.  You have to include junk food in there, too.  Last night my husband and I went to In-And-Out Burger, probably the only fast food restaurant we have visited in 5 years.  They have a double cheeseburger wrapped in lettuce (they call it “protein style”) that I heard about in my gluten group and wanted to try.  While we were there, I said “just think how many people eat at fast food places like this several times a week”.  The very thin – I mean VERY thin burgers came with lots of lettuce, thick tomato and thick onion.  It was really fresh and really tasty.  Be responsible for your food choices – and fall off the wagon once in while.

Dr. D says obesity and type II diabetes are the #1 threat to the US economy.  By 2044, the cost of caring for diabetics will exceed all the taxes the federal government collects.  He believes the high glycemic foods we eat early in life are 80-90% of the problem.

Large LDL particles are processed by your body in about 2 days.  Small LDL particles stay in your system for a week and oxidize, contributing to plaque.  Once you have plaque in your arteries and heart, it grows at 30%/yr.  If you don’t control blood sugar, you will lose control of your cardiovascular risk and the bad guys will take over.  3 foods trigger the formation of small LDL particles:  grains, sugars and starchy legumes.  Disrupted bowel flora also increases small LDL particles in the bloodstream.

“Glycation from high blood glucose is a fundamental process underlying multiple disease states and aging”.  Glycation is a haphazard process that impairs the functioning of biomolecules.  Example of glycation:  High blood sugar over time makes the cartilage in your knees brittle.  End of the Dr. visit.

OK, lets talk about food for a minute.  Another recommendation from my gluten group was a cook book called The Gluten-Free Asian Kitchen.  The author became a celiac after having her 2nd child.  She developed nerve pain, facial numbness and paralysis that eventually traveled down the left side of her body over the next 2 yrs.  After 4 yrs. of not finding the cause, she started her own 1-month elimination diet (gluten, soy, dairy, corn, caffeine, alcohol and sugar) and found herself feeling great and symptom free.  Then she ate a bagel and the facial numbness returned immediately.

The author “gathered 20 of her friends, all avid gluten eaters, and asked them to taste the recipes as she developed them.  The group offered great feedback and even tested the completed recipes in their own kitchens.  The home testing garnered overwhelmingly positive results from adults and children alike.  And except for the cooks, none was the wiser to the dishes’ gluten-free status”.   I hope to test some of these recipes over the next few months and will report back.

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“Grandma Ruthie and her sister Jettie hadn’t spoken a civil word in about fifteen years. Their last exchange was Ruthie’s leaning over Jettie’s coffin and whispering, “If you’d married and had children, there would be more people at your funeral.” Of course, at the reading of Aunt Jettie’s will, Grandma Ruthie was handed an enveloped containing a carefully folded high-resolution picture of a baboon’s butt. That pretty much summed up their relationship.”
― 
Molly HarperNice Girls Don’t Have Fangs

Until next time, stay healthy.  The Gluten Free Fairyfacebook95-1149764328


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