Tag Archives: gluten free dairy free

Gluten Free Musings

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Set up at The Gluten Free Garage

This past weekend I attended the Gluten Free Garage in Toronto organized by Ronnilyn Pustil.  This dynamic lady sure knows how to do an event right and for the right reasons.  It was a fantastic event to showcase local companies from around Toronto. It was also a nice intimate venue that enabled not only the attendees but the vendors to get around and visit all the booths.  As I made my way around to each vendor I was so happy to see the number of companies that were there because they had a personal story about the effects of gluten and they were also providing a much healthier product.

There were also a few companies that had products that were naturally gluten free.  All of these naturally GF products were actually very healthy.  There was a tea company called The Honest Leaf, that had a line of tea blends that specifically support various systems in the body.  A vegan raw line of very healthy salad dressings (yes some salad dressings do have gluten) called Raw FoodzKe-Wa-Za a line of raw, all natural snacks that gives you energy.  The Mad Mexican with gourmet Mexican food from premium, fresh and local ingredients with the bold flavours of Mexico.

Those were just a few of the fabulous products I found.  For more check out The Gluten Free Garage 

Now why am I musing about this.  Way back when I went Gluten Free there were not a lot of choices.  The last 5 years there have been more and more companies jumping on the GF food train.  On one hand I think it is great for us GF Foodies. We have more choices but really how healthy are these choices?  Yes you can buy GF Betty Crocker mixes but they are full of crap I just don’t want to put in my body.  If you do that is cool, we all make choices that meet our needs.

Here is the problem.  If we are healthy individuals with nothing wrong (thinking of my junk food eating teenagers here) you can get away with eating the crappy food without much immediate impact.  If you are Celiac or like me Non-Celiac gluten intolerant then the effects of the crappy food can be felt fairly quickly.  This is not always GI related.  Low energy, achy joints, headaches, skin problems, depression, muscle pain, insomnia etc. can be felt because of a crappy diet.  So many times I hear Celiacs tell me, “I stopped eating gluten but I still feel like crap”.  The old saying “you are what you eat” isn’t just a cute, catchy phrase.

Trust me I am not perfect when it comes to my diet.  I get into ruts when I just don’t care (there is a therapy session in that statement) but I also know how I am going to feel because of it, the one thing I am not is oblivious or in denial about how my diet correlates to how I am feeling.

As a group who eats gluten free because of a medical need NOT a fashionable, trendy way to eat we need to start paying attention to what we eat and the companies providing us with these foods.  The small companies I discovered at the show this past weekend are concerned with your health and have put their blood, sweat and tears into their business because they are concerned.  Trust me creating a healthy product, throwing your life savings into it and working harder than you could ever imagine is not easy.  But like me the owners of these companies had a vision of changing the way we eat and providing a healthy option to the mass produced chemical laden food on the market.

Will Betty Crocker ever go under?  Probably not but every day small mom and pop companies that bring us healthier options go under because they just can’t compete with the big guys.  Think Walmart vs the small family run stores that have gone out of business once Walmart moves in.

So what am I trying to say?  When you can, support these smaller companies whose ingredient list you can pronounce and get through without a chemical engineering degree.  Recognize that the reason their products are more expensive than the mass produced stuff is not because they are greedy and just want to make money.  It is because the natural healthy food ingredients are more expensive.  It  is because they can’t order large quantities of  packaging  and get a price break. It is because they manufacture on a small scale and pay a premium price  because if it. But what they offer is a product that is healthy and convenient for you, that was created with you in mind. It was created to solve a problem they recognized in the food market and then bring that solution to you. I thank these small companies everyday because they provide me with amazing products.

Every purchase I made from these companies this past weekend made me happy because I knew I was buying from an entrepreneur that had the same vision I did 4 years ago. 

 

Apple Blueberry Breakfast Cake (gluten, egg, dairy, nut, soy, corn FREE)

Apple Blueberry Breakfast Cake

appleblueberry1

 

 

 

 

You will need:

  • 1 T oil ( we use olive oil)
  • 2 small macintosh apples [cored but not peeled pureed with water to total 1 1/2 cups liquid]
  • 3T water (or apple juice)
  • 2 T chia seeds
  • 1/2 t. cinnamon
  • 1/4 t. nutmeg
  • 1/4 c. dried apple pieces
  • 1/2 c. sugar
  • 1 pkg Allergic SolutionVanilla Cake Mix
  • 1c. frozen wild blueberries

 Preparation Instructions:

1. Preheat oven to 350°F and grease bottom of a 9” square cake pan.

2. Place oil, apple puree, chia seed, cinnamon, nutmeg, dried apple and sugar in a large bowl.

3. Using an electric mixer, blend on low speed until sugar is dissolved.**

4. Gradually add entire contents of pouch and mix on medium speed until completely combined and smooth.**

5. Fold in 1 c. blueberries

5. Pour batter into greased cake pan.

6. Bake for 45 – 50 minutes.

7. Allow to cool for approximately 20 minutes.

 

**If electric mixer is not available use a whisk.

This mix also makes 18 cupcakes or 36 mini-cupcakes.

Drizzle a little maple syrup on top before eating a slice. YUM!

Autism and It’s Impact On One Family- An Interview with Sue

Autism and It’s Impact on  Family

When my oldest son was 18 months old he had a very violent reaction to his MMR vaccination. This is when I first heard the word autism.  I had no idea what autism was but was concerned enough to listen to the person who told me about it. She believed there was a link between bad vaccination reactions and autism.  Seventeen years later and the jury is still out on that one.  Thank God my son was lucky and he is neuro-typical today but from what happened to him I began to be very interested in autism and its cause and effect and in turn started a career in nutrition. I had the pleasure of working with many families affected by autism helping them navigate the gluten free/dairy free (GF/DF) diet. Parents of autistic kids are truly amazing people and I generally stand in awe of them at what they go through day to day. -Tammie

Sue and Her Family

Sue and Her Family

One amazing mom and her journey is the subject of this blog post- An Interview with Sue Taylor 

The Annual walk for autism events coming to up and I wanted to take a closer look at what autism means to one family dealing with it every day.  Meet Sue Taylor and her boys Ryland and Michael both boys have autism and Sue is very involved with her local autism Ontario chapter.

AS (Allergic Solution):  Sue how has autism affected you?

Sue: Autism has affected me in more ways than I can ever imagine. I have learned that you always have to expect the unexpected. You live like you are walking on eggshells a lot of time as you do not really know what might cause the next meltdown. You have to be a very patient person but also very creative in how you deal with situations as the way you respond is so important. You run on very little sleep as sleep is an issue for quite a few autistic children so you learn to function in spite of being dead on your feet.

AS: What does it mean to you to participate in the Autism walk?

Sue:  Planning and participating in the walk is an amazing feeling. Words cannot describe the way that I feel when I have an ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder) parent say to me “I cannot thank you enough for doing this as it means so much to my family”. To raise the awareness and to see the children’s and families faces when they are at this day that is honour of them is so fulfilling. If we can inform one more person what ASD is about then we have succeeded.

AS: Are you doing any dietary interventions for your kids?

Sue:  My boys are allergic to eggs, nuts, seafood and dairy so they are avoided. We also limit the wheat intake but right now they are both waiting for biopsies for Celiac so wheat has to be in their systems.

AS: Do you feel those interventions have helped?

Sue:.  Yes we do feel these have made a difference, especially the wheat. We notice with my youngest son almost immediate changes in his behaviour and his inability to cope with issues he normally can deal with fairly easily. The meltdowns are more frequent, he can’t think clearly and is easily set off.

AS: What is the one thing you want others to understand about Autism?

Sue:  One thing I would like others to understand is that Autism is a very broad spectrum. It truly does come in many colours. There are verbal, non-verbal, some are social some are not, some flap their arms, some like to hum. There is such a difference in each and everyone. I have heard a few times “well he doesn’t look like he has Autism” Now I say  “What should it look like?” “Come to my house after school and you will see his Autism.”

AS: Do you ever go through : “why me”?

Sue: I go through the why me more than I am willing to admit. I struggled with infertility, miscarriages and high risk pregnancies for a lot of years. So when I had my boys they had issues right from the beginning. But, when I see them struggle with the smallest tasks like getting socks on cause there is a string or a bump. Or curling up in a ball screaming because someone made a loud unexpected sound,  it is hard to watch. When you see them so angry they hurt themselves you ask yourself “why me”. Why did this happen to me, why did I bring them in to this world when they have to struggle so much with everyday life? Even though you didn’t know it would be like this, you never want to see your child suffer and struggle.

AS: What do you hope for your kids?

Sue:  My hopes for my boys are that they can be accepted into the world for who they are. Autistic children are extremely smart and Autism is on the rise so the world should prepare as I believe we have a lot of Einstein’s out there.

AS: Do you think there will be a day when Autism will be a thing of the past?

Sue: I don’t think there will be a day that Autism will be a thing of the past but I do believe they will find out how to deal with it better. Proper therapies, earlier interventions and dietary changes right from infancy will go a long way to help. For myself,  I still question vaccines as both my boys reacted quite seriously and we also noticed changes in behaviour with each. Hopefully one day we will have a definite answer about that issue.

AS: What is the hardest part of having children with Autism?

Sue: Oh wow, if I have to name the hardest part of having Autistic children it is not having  a magic cure. There are so many days when I see them struggle,  I wish I could just wiggle my nose and it would all be gone. I would have neuro-typical children that would play at the beach, go to birthday parties, sleep on their own all night long, have friends, etc.  I guess to sum it up I would give them the opportunity to do what the average child does. It is a day to day challenge that we face that affects all of us in the family in so many ways. But, they are my boys, I love them to death and will except them for who they are and that will always be enough for me.