Thursday, May 28, 2009
Coining A New Term
The new road to health is now missing the scenic part of the drive: eggs and dairy. Yup, bye, bye my dear friend cheese.
For those of you keeping tabs, here's where I stand: no gluten, dairy, eggs, sugar, preservatives & food dyes. What do I eat? Great question. Even better question I've been asked, what does Rich eat? No sweet "Meals and Memories Are Made Here" signs hanging in our kitchen. It's "If I'm miserable, damnit, so are you".
I could lie and tell you it's been a fulfilling road to discovering new recipes and ways of cooking. But like I said, it'd be a lie. I'm filled with a lot of head-banging and a pissed off stomach begging for a morsel of chocolate. You've learned to cook one way your entire life then suddenly you're faced with the need to change. I feel like I've grabbed a wasps nest and started shaking it vigorously. Typical gluten-free recipes contain sugar & eggs. Vegan recipes tend to have gluten. And lets be honest, the American diet basically consists of dairy and fat.
Hence my need to coin a new term. And develop new recipes. We've had a few failures, I mean, bad. But have had just as many hits that keeps the addict coming back for more, searching for that first high. We've discovered egg replacer, coconut milk and agave nectar and are trying to stay away from the globular cheese substitutes all together.
Now that Tayden is completely weened (barring the occasional public attempt to slip his hand down my shirt) I am able to get more aggressive with treatment. To be frank, I'm looking forward to getting this baby weight off. Apparently I have my adrenals to thank for that one. My moodiness has drastically mellowed out (just ask Rich) and every session Jim & I can see my body strengthening. Exercise has also been a big push to help with the PCOS so I've been diligent with that and do feel great when I can get out daily on 6+ mile walks with the kiddo.
I have been surprised by the amount of friends that have taken up the gluten-free lifestyle or shown interest in learning more. I know the largest obstacle lies in not knowing where to start. And lets be honest, giving up bread so that those around you are a little less miserable is not a huge motivating factor. So here's two pointers that worked well for us.
First, become an avid label reader. I keep a handy sheet on the fridge that lists all the crazy things they put gluten into (like soy sauce) and what good wheat substitutes are, like potato flour. Of course, if the product says "Gluten-free", you're good to go, but still read the ingredients!! At home, start by not buying or consuming any bread-like products for 2 weeks. Then you can start introducing the gluten-free products. By getting back to the basics, you realize your cravings and how to work with them, not mask them with other substitutes. Your tastebuds do change and start to favor the healthier tastes.
In knowing there are others out there like me, I will try to be more diligent in posting recipes I develop to help inspire others. Be sure to post comments on anything you find or learn as it motivates me too, and I need all I can get!
Here's an easy summer dessert we did tonight:
1 pint organic strawberries
2 tbsp. lime juice
1 tsp. lime zest
2 tsp. diced, fresh mint
Edible flowers (like borage or nasturtium) to garnish
Hull and thinly slice strawberries. Mix first four ingredients into bowl. Garnish with flowers, enjoy!