Is Gluten Free Soul Food A Thing?

Hey Ya’ll!

I know it’s been a while since I’ve updated you on life (and maybe you can relate..), but your girl has been going THROUGH it! Surprisingly it has nothing to do with being a mom of a toddler lol but rather the troubles I’ve been having with my digestive system.

December 2018, I came down with the stomach flu, which I didn’t even know was a thing, and was literally unable to keep water down (has anyone else been there?)   So, what do you do when you get sick, and follow the doctor/specialist’s orders?  You stick to the B.R.A.T (Bread, Rice, Applesauce Toast) diet.  So, I did that.. I was making waffles and pancakes on the weekend to have for breakfast during the week, and basically ate that every day.

I was vomiting every morning at 5:00 am (precisely, in fact..) and could not for the life of me figure out if I wasn’t pregnant (the first thing on my husband’s mind lol) why in the world was I getting soooo sick.

I had already cut out dairy when I had the stomach flu back in December, so I made the decision to cut out Gluten next to see if I was having a gluten reaction.  And sure enough… I… the Southern girl who grew up around amaziiiing home cooks eating homeade biscuits and rolls since I was knee high.  Literally.

Turns out, I the remedy that I thought was harming, not helping me.  Sooo, I took that and cut out sandwiches, toast, traditional pasta (whole ‘nother story), and anything that has wheat in it.  Fine…done right?! Absolutely NOT! You see, I’m a scientist at heart.  I love to know WHY things aren’t or, “can’t be done”.  So, I conducted tests to see if I really was, “doomed to a life” (or so I thought) of gluten free living.  Every.Single.TIME I tried something with wheat in it I 5:00 am would come waay too soon!

Then, the next day when I went back to GF living,  I wouldn’t vomit,  So,I put on my big girl britches, and went to work educating myself on what exactly, “Gluten Free” is, what constitutes something as, gluten or containing gluten; “Gluten Free” labeling, is, “gluten” the same protein in rice which makes it glutinous (sticky, or gummy if overcooked)?  After endless hours of research, here is the best summary I can give you:

Gluten is a general name for the protein found in wheat, barley, rye, tricalate (a cross between and some oats.

The protein Gluten is not the same as the reason rice is glutinous. This mindbend comes from the fact that rice can get sticky, or feel like glue when cooked, or gummy when overcooked.

There are levels to this GF game.  Just because I have a GF allergy or intolerance right now, does not I will or do have Celiac Disease .  But, the reality is,  if I continue to eat gluten I likely will. That alone is bone chilling.   Here’s a checklist of all the major symptoms.  Again, instead of having a pity party I went to work trying to figure out what I COULD eat, because I was starving out here, for fear of now knowing what to eat.  I knew I didn’t want to be sick every night, but I also know I would miss donuts, cake, bread, rolls, biscuits, etc.

If you are already eating Keto (typically just meats, and particular veggies and fruits), then you got GF in the bag! If you’ve been wanting to move towards GF, going Keto is a great way to start.  Both are surprisingly easy to incorporate, but it HAS to be a conscious decision that you stick to..YOU GOT THIS!!

If you’re interested in the white paper regarding the health benefits and adverse effects of a GF diet for those who don’t have Celiac disease, feel free to read more here.

Living gluten-free has tons of benefits including:

Distinct awareness of foods that may have an adverse effect on your health

Reduces your risk of diabetes, heart disease, and certain cancers

Promotes healthy weight loss

Promotes digestive health

Eliminates unhealthy, processed foods from your diet

Your body will overthrow colds, germs, and viruses

Improved health of people with Arthritis and Irritable Bowel Syndrome

Even if you aren’t even if you wanted to stick to traditional breads, using other flours here and there never hurt anyone ;).  Right now, I use cornmeal, almond flour and GF panko.  I just got Cassava root flour from an international market, so I’ll make a separate post re that; but here’s a quick list to get you started.

Gluten-free foods are “everyday foods” you’re already eating; just got to read the labels of everything and stay away from the words, “Wheat”, “Barley”,  “Rye”, “Tricalate” (a cross between rye and wheat), and some, “Oats”.

Don’t overthink it.  Here are some ideas of what most people eat every day:

Cheerios -I love the unflavored, and Apple Cinnamon kinds

Fruits and Veggies– Alllll the fruits and veggies you want!

Salads- just watch the dressing

Meat, Rice, Beans-  cooked in cast iron, wok, baked, sauteed, grilled, and if fried I use a cornmeal/GF panko, or cornmeal/almond flour mix.

Desserts- just make sure it uses a wheat flour alternative

Frito Lay the only national snack brand with a page dedicated to addressing their GF options.

I was abruptly thrown into the GF life, (read.. I didn’t choose this life, this life chose me.. lol),  but have become INSANELY passionate about advocating at the intersection of the most amazing foodie foods, and living gluten-free.

If you want to know more about my journey to Gluten Freeism, just hit me upWe have to stick together! And, for any newbies?  We welcome thee!!

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