Okay, I’m not really sure how to start this, but let me just apologize for being M.I.A. lately!
So where have I been?
Well, a lot of places…and nowhere all at the same time! I have been alternating between feeling sick and being in pain for years now. I have gone from being on my parent’s health insurance, to not having any, to being on my husband’s, to losing it, to finally having some again! This last round of doctor visits has finally yielded a possible answer.
Celiac disease. I have tried explaining it to multiple people and every time I think “silly yak.” But the pain and discomfort is anything but silly! Basically, celiac is an autoimmune disorder that affects the small intestine. There is no cure, but there is one effective treatment - a lifelong gluten-free diet. Simple, right?
Well, as I’m finding out, not exactly. The problem with gluten is that it seems to be everywhere! It is used as a binder in many foods. But it’s not just that, it can be found in beauty products like lotions, shampoos, makeup and even toothpaste. Even foods that are naturally gluten-free can become contaminated with gluten.
I have even found products that proclaim GLUTEN-FREE happily on the front and “processed in a factory that also processes wheat products” on the back. Gluten-free crackers that go down the same conveyor belt as regular ones are no longer gluten-free! With some online research I can find out that some of the companies put it on there for liability reasons, but they do actually use separate equipment.
I have to admit that I am completely overwhelmed in this. I have no idea what I’m doing! I have some recipes to try, but I don’t have most of the ingredients for them.
I have basically started this gluten-free journey with eating way more processed foods than I was before. Pretty much seeing what says gluten-free on it and eating that. I just feel so completely out of my comfort zone without being able to lean on the whole grains I know and love!
I don’t eat meat and my stomach can only handle limited dairy, so trying to get in enough protein has been interesting! My stomach is testy if I eat too much soy or beans in a sitting. AGH! Frustration…
So my food has been a pretty big repetition of the following:
Breakfast Quinoa (Yummy! Too bad, eating this a couple of days in a row made my stomach burn like someone threw a match down my throat.
(recipe by Caitlin at Healthy Tipping Point: www.healthytippingpoint.
FSTG chips, of course
Cut up veggies and hummus
Zing Bars (I have tried the chocolate peanut butter and the chocolate chip. The one in the picture tastes way better, but has whey in it, which my stomach doesn't always appreciate).
Van’s Frozen Waffles (Definitely not the same as regular waffles, I really have no idea why anyone would want to go on a gluten-free diet unless they really have to!)
Amy’s is a brand I trust and they have numerous gluten-free items. Some have been good, others not so much.
Amy’s Gluten-Free Dairy-Free Enchilada Dinner (doesn’t look that great, but it actually tastes really, really good).
Amy’s Gluten-Free Dairy-Free Burrito (the best gluten-free thing I have tried. I’m not really sure what the tortilla is made out of, but it actually tastes good!)
Amy’s Gluten-Free Dairy-Free Pizza (while the sauce and toppings are amazing, I really, really, REALLY miss soft chewy crust. The crust on this is crunchy and tastes too much like corn for some reason).
Dinner last night was what my husband and I called the “bean wrap” dinner. But, now that I can’t have my soft, chewy flour tortilla (corn tortillas are NOT the same!!) I just went without.
Here is my pile of bean mush (aka black beans, greek yogurt, green onions, bell pepper, lemon juice, cumin and other spices)
Looks much prettier when it is in a tortilla with the lettuce! Lol
On the side I had steamed broccoli, cauliflower, brown rice and salsa. At least I know I can cook one thing that works!
Next up I will try something with this Udi’s bread I bought.
Definitely wasn’t cheap! Luckily a friend gave me some coupons and another one told me how good it is. So hopefully that’s a good sign!
I have been told to invest in a bread machine. Which is probably true, but I have already bought some new pans, a new toaster, and some new plastic containers.
Throughout this week I will be going through the process of decontaminating my kitchen. I want to have one full cupboard dedicated to my gluten-free food and cooking ware that is free of gluten contamination. The holidays will definitely be an interesting experience….
Ok, that’s all I have for now. I’m sorry I don’t have any new, fun recipes to share with you! But, hopefully soon I will.
Had you heard of celiac before? Is anyone else having to live gluten-free?