Eating gluten free

I recently read an excellent book on the topic of eating gluten free:

glutenfreeIn Eating Gluten Free, Shreve Stockton, author of “The Daily Coyote” and a professional photographer, presents a unique blend of information and recipes, including helpful cooking and preparation hints.   Stockton was diagnosed with gluten intolerance in 2003 and has devoted herself to sharing all that she has learned about living well, and eating well, with this prevalent condition.

 

From the book:

“The wheat-free/gluten-free diet is one of the fastest growing nutritional trends in this country. …  Gluten intolerance causes an auto-immune reaction in the body, which means that the body basically attacks itself.  … The resulting damage can be physical or neurological, and symptoms can range from gastrointestinal distress to depression, anxiety and fatigue.  …  In its most severe form, celiac disease, damage shows up in the small intestine.  When even the smallest amount of gluten is ingested, it triggers the body to attack itself, a process that inflames the lining of the small intestine, which makes it impossible to absorb nutrients.  … Gluten intolerance is frequently misdiagnosed and symptoms are often ascribed to numerous other conditions.”

“Many people who are not gluten intolerant are nevertheless discovering the health benefits of a wheat-free/gluten free diet.  …  Grains containing gluten are difficult to digest, they compromise the body’s ability to maintain maximum health, and they can even have an adverse effect on brain chemistry.”

While I’m not gluten intolerant, I found the book inspirational in general as far as healthy eating and making changes to one’s eating habits is concerned.  I’m intrigued with the health benefits a diet lower in or free of wheat and other harmful grains and plan to investigate further.  The book may even get me to start cooking, since the author makes getting started sound fairly manageable.  As a confirmed non-cook (my stove currently serves as an extra desk ….), that’s saying something! 

Many of the recipes sound absolutely delicious, from the hot cakes made with sorghum flour and applesauce to the buckwheat banana bread to the creamy cauliflower soup to the hippie bars (part cookie, part cake).  A wide variety of smoothie recipes is already getting me out of my protein powder/banana smoothie rut.

Humans are not the only species who can have problems with digesting grains.  Our pets also do better on grain-free diets.  See my previous posts “Amber is on a diet”  and “How to choose healthy foods for your pet” for more information about healthy and grain-free diets for your pets.

2 Comments on Eating gluten free

  1. Ingrid
    April 19, 2009 at 10:10 pm (8 years ago)

    Thanks for the link to the elimination diet, Julia – what a great resource!

    I think we often tolerate things liike fatigue or headaches as “normal” because we think we have no influence over our health. Once we understand that we have far more control over our bodies than we think we do, and we start exploring how to eat better, take better care of our bodies, minds and spirits (and yoga is such a wonderful way of doing that), we realize that anything less than feeling good is simply not acceptable.

    Reply
  2. Julia Kalish
    April 19, 2009 at 5:20 pm (8 years ago)

    Great post, Ingrid! I’ve read that up to 60% of Americans are intolerant of wheat / gluten and aren’t aware of it. The intolerance might show up as bloating, fatigue, headaches – all of which we can easily write off as “well this is just the way I am” or attribute to stress. One of the best ways to figure out how these foods affect you is to go on an elimination diet – I did this diet in 2004 and it was really eye opening and helped me develop an eating plan that works for me. I posted a copy of the diet on my website – perhaps your readers will be interested in trying it 🙂

    http://doubledogyoga.com/FreeStuff.html

    Reply

Leave a comment

First time visitors: please read our Comment Guidelines.