Gluten-free seems to be everywhere you look these days. My personal favorite is seeing it pop up on things that NEVER contained gluten, like water bottles. But is there any merit to the growing trend of gluten-free options?
The answer may surprise you, but if you are based in the USA the answer is yes you should consider making the switch. Why just the USA, you ask? As it turns out, during the processing of flour in the USA there are a number of steps that differ from other countries. This in turn makes our bread much harder to digest while also increasing episodes of inflammation throughout the body. That is why people who experience gluten sensitivity in the USA can enjoy bread, pizza, pasta, and more anywhere else.
Ups and Downs of Going Gluten-Free
The gluten-free diet can be frustrating at first when you think of all the things you can’t eat. Most of the stuff off the menu may taste good but are not particularly healthy for you anyway: beer, bread, cakes and pies, candies, cereals, cookies, French fries, processed meat and seafood, most pasta (although several gluten-free kinds of pasta are now available), processed sauces, oats, and vegetables in sauce, and some vitamins. If you have celiac disease, you need to avoid barley, rye, triticale, and wheat.
Focus on The Little Wins
But focusing on all the new and varied foods, you CAN eat can help divert your attention and increase success. Many of the foods you can eat, you probably already are. Many healthy and delicious foods are gluten-free by nature, including seeds, nuts, dairy products, vegetables, fruits, fish, meat, eggs, and beans. Be sure to select varieties of these foods that are unprocessed and contain no additives. There are also several grains and starches that are gluten-free, allowing you to be still able to bake some of your favorite treats. These include teff, tapioca, sorghum, rice, quinoa, millet, corn, buckwheat, arrowroot, and amaranth.
1. Quinoa, a member of the grass family, has cooking properties similar to grains—quinoa commonly used in salads, chocolates, and protein bars.
2. Millet is an excellent source of protein and rich in minerals.
3. Amaranth is a seed similar to quinoa and millet. It is also a good source of proteins and can help reduce cholesterol levels.
4. Flax is a nutritional powerhouse and rich in antioxidants. Flaxseeds contain omega 3 fatty acids, fiber, and proteins. It also reduces “bad cholesterol”—low-density lipoproteins—and maintains healthy blood sugar levels.
You can do it!
A gluten-free diet requires a lifestyle change, but it is a powerful, positive change that can significantly impact your overall long-term health. The more committed you are about avoiding gluten, the easier it will become, and the more you will enjoy the food you eat. Eventually, you will not even miss those processed foods that used to drag you down. Take some small steps today, and enjoy the benefits for a lifetime!
Looking for more?
If you really want to make a dramatic impact on your overall health and wellness you may want to think about trying an anti-inflammatory diet. Typically speaking, an anti-inflammatory lifestyle is one that is primarily plant-based. That doesn’t mean you can’t have any meat. It does, however, mean that about 90% of your meals will be plant-based. Why is an anti-inflammatory lifestyle an ideal fit? One of the main reasons why I recommend this lifestyle to so many of my clients is the fact that our body’s first defensive response is to activate inflammation. That means that the instant our body senses something or one that can do harm to it inflammation occurs as a way of transporting our white blood cells where they are currently needed the most.
All Puffed Up And Don’t Know What to Do?
Unfortunately, because our bodies rely so heavily on inflammation to prevent the spread of possible intruders or harmful toxins we can become overwhelmed by excess inflammation. Even under stress, our bodies stockpile inflammation which can create a traffic jam for all internal traffic both good and bad. With this gridlock occurring throughout our bodies we become unable to eliminate excess toxins or even get the appropriate nutrients to their locations. This leads to endless health-related issues which can often take years to fix. One of the best ways to prevent this overdose of inflammation is by enjoying an anti-inflammatory lifestyle along with dry brushing. Dry brushing is an additional way of promoting circulation throughout the body so it can do what it was designed to.
Coconut Fruit Tarts
Gluten-Free Vegan Serves 16
- 1 1/2 Cups Roasted Salted Cashews
- 1/2 tsp Cinnamon
- 1 Cup Unsweetened Coconut Flakes
- 3 Cups Full-Fat Coconut Cream
- 1 Cup Dates, Pitted
- 1/2 Cup Maple Syrup
- 1 tsp Pure Vanilla
- 1/3 Cup Fresh Lemon Juice
- Zest 1 Lemon
- 4 Cups Berries
Blend cashews, flakes, dates, zest, and cinnamon into a crumb state. Press dough into a pre-treated cupcake pan. In a pot, combine syrup and cream. Boil for 10 minutes and remove from heat, whisk in lemon juice, vanilla, and a pinch of sea salt. Pour cream over the crust and chill for 2 hours or until set. Top with fruit and enjoy!
Need A Hand?
A happy and healthy life is closer than you may think. We all have to deal with our health daily, and when we don’t feel our best, it shows. If you are tired of just making it through your day, you NEED to start investing in your health today! You are not alone on this journey. If you ever need any help, I am always here to do just that. Even if it is something as small as acting as a sounding board, do you have any questions or concerns I can help you with? Feel free to contact me directly at [email protected], or you can even book a one-on-one call with me. Be sure to subscribe to gain access to tons of free goodies and check back daily for more great recipes and information!