gluten intolerance

Gluten-Free Mondays: Pinterest Recipes

Hi friends!  I wish I had a good post for today, but I’ll be honest, I’m feeling a little uninspired.  So what better place to find some inspiration than Pinterest?!  Here are a couple of mouth-watering recipes that I think I will have to make very, very soon!

glutenfreemondays

Pumpkin Pie Custard

If you’ve spent more than a couple of minutes around here, you will quickly find out that I am obsessed with all things pumpkin. This looks absolutely delicious and I will be making this very soon!

Two-Ingredient Peanut Butter Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Bars

This uses the gluten-free Pillsbury cookie dough.  I might have to make these for Bible Study on Tuesday night if I can get my hands on the GF cookie dough.  Anyone seen it around town?!

Pumpkin Pie Waffles

And because I’m obsessed with pumpkin-flavored everything, I HAD to include this on the list!  I’ve been craving waffles and pancakes, so this will be made in the next week or so!

If you want any more GF recipe ideas, check out my board on Pinterest and follow along:

Follow Sophi @ Simply Sophisticated’s board Simply Gluten-Free on Pinterest.

Gluten-Free Mondays: Must-Read Articles

There were two really good articles I stumbled upon this weekend about gluten, gluten-intolerance, wheat, etc. so I had to share them for today’s Gluten-Free Monday post.

glutenfreemondays

one // Modern Wheat Isn’t Really Wheat at All

This article is very intriguing if you have been wondering why gluten-intolerance is on the rise.

But I will also point out something that the article doesn’t mention: it was not with ill intentions that people started modifying wheat. It was to make it hardier and more affordable in an effort to address the world’s hunger issues and not be so reliant on specific conditions to grow wheat  (I wish I could find the article that I got this information from— it was several months ago that I read it). Now it can be grown in many places that it never could be before and feed people during what normally would have been “famine” times. 

But everything comes with a consequence and this is it. Frankly, I’d rather have to cut out gluten from my diet but know hundreds of other people got to eat.  However, I do think we need to evaluate some of the chemicals used to grow wheat— and a lot of other crops— to see if we can make that safer.

two // Where Did All the Gluten-Free Haters Come From?

This article sums up what I wrote here but does it WWWAAAAYYYYYY better.  This is just one of the many great quotes from the article:

“I see way too many people react to others’ gluten-free preference personally, when they shouldn’t. Seriously, folks, it’s not a morality decision; it’s a medical one.”

It really is ridiculous that I am scared to tell people that I am gluten-free because I know I will most likely get an eye-roll, an exasperated sigh, or the question “Why? Just because or because you have to be?”  I think I am going to just start answering that question with “Does it matter?”  Because really, why does it matter to someone why I am gluten-free?  Whether it is because I need/have to be for my health or because I am doing it as a “diet”, why do people think it’s something they can give their opinion about?

I don’t mind answering people’s questions about what is gluten, why does it affect me, and other similar questions, but I am so tired of feeling like I have to defend myself for being gluten-free.

 So I would love to hear your feedback! Did you learn anything from these articles?  If you are gluten-free, do you experience the hate the second article talks about?

Enough with the Gluten-Free Haters

Just to warn you, I am going on a rant today.. feel free to read. Or don’t. This is just something I have to get off my chest.  And in case you are new here, I have Hashimoto’s disease and am gluten-intolerant (but I do not have Celiac’s— there’s a difference!).

Lately, I’ve been hearing from a lot of people that gluten-intolerance is not real. That it’s a fad. That it’s all in my head.

And frankly, it pisses me off.

Many of the people who have said this bring up the fact that the doctor who’s published a study in 2011 finding that many of the participants benefited from a gluten-free diet. But he decided to retest the study (as any good doctor should) and limited some of the variables even more. After doing the second study, he is quoted as saying “In contrast to our first study… we could find absolutely no specific response to gluten.” The study found that FODMAPS reduced the gastrointestinal symptoms and fatigue in the participants who were on that diet versus just a gluten-free diet. {Read more about this here or just Google “gluten-intolerance not real”.)

As the article states, FODMAPS are largely found in bread products so when you adopt a gluten-free diet that cuts out bread products all together, you are cutting out those FODMAPS which could really be what is bothering you, not necessarily gluten.

So it is possible that someone is not actually gluten-intolerant but may be experiencing reactions to FODMAPS. Does that mean they shouldn’t adopt a gluten-free diet? I don’t think so, but many people are using this study as a case against being gluten-free.

But why?  Why does it matter so much to people whether gluten-free is beneficial or not? if you are doing a gluten-free diet, and it is making you feel better, then clearly something is working.  Even if it is technically the FODMAPs being cut out, not the gluten itself, the point is it is still helping you feel better.

I think that’s been the biggest thing that has irritated me lately.  Why does someone else get to tell me how my body works?  Unless you are my doctor or have somehow pulled a Freaky Friday and are now living in my body, how do you know how I feel when I eat something with gluten in it? And let me tell those nay-sayers, if there is anyone who was more opposed to accepting that I needed to be gluten-free, it was myself.

I still try to convince myself I will be ok and eat something I shouldn’t.  And then within minutes I feel yucky and bloated and tired, even depressed sometimes.  I wish it wasn’t that way.  I resisted for nearly two years after being diagnosed that I could still eat the same foods. Being from a Greek family, I love pasta and bread, and all that other deliciousness.  Then you have my husband’s side which love all things Southern-style (breaded and fried).  It SUCKS not being able to eat those foods that I love.

However, I don’t think this is just a gluten-diet issue. Even though it’s more common now, I remember the backlash that came when a lot of people adopted a vegetarian/vegan diet (or even more recently, the Paleo diet).  Maybe it’s just because “gluten-free” is such a buzzword these days and talked about constantly in the media, people feel they “know” what gluten-intolerance is and feel they can make comments on your personal choices.

They other thing people tell me is that it’s just a fad.  And I can see where they are coming from on this— but the assumption that ALL of us who choose to eat a gluten-free lifestyle just because it’s “cool” is absolutely absurd.   I am sure there are many who are trying it because they have heard about it and figure what can it hurt to see if it helps them feel better. Or that just because you are limiting gluten in your diet, that you are a hypocrite if you occasionally cheat.  Sometimes you have a moment of weakness and cheat (unless you are celiac, cheating is not really an option since you’ll get extremely sick).  For someone like me who is gluten-intolerant, I will probably feel crappy pretty soon after eating whatever the non-GF food is, and will probably be bloated.  But as long as I get back on track, I am not going to have a horrible reaction so I might choose to indulge once in a blue moon.

There’s also a lot of talk in the media about how companies are marketing towards those of us that are gluten-free by creating products that fit that dietary need and making lots of money on catering towards this market.  And yes, I am sure that there are many people getting on the gluten-free bandwagon just because it is the “newest thing.”

What I don’t really understand is why people see this as a bad thing.  Now, let me make a point to say that I am not dumb and I do not to think most of these companies are doing this because they actually care about the food they make and care about the health of their customers.  I know that the majority are doing this because they can make money off of it (though there are several companies out there that are not doing it just for the pay-off).  But it provides those like me with gluten-sensitivities— and especially those with Celiac’s disease— more options, why is that a bad thing?

My mom’s cousin was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s disease (same thing I have) in the 80’s, and she has talked about how hard it was to find anything to eat, especially at restaurants.  Because of major increase in public demand for GF foods, restaurants, food manufacturers, and even companies in the health/beauty industries are now offering GF options.  This is awesome for anyone who is gluten-sensitive.

I probably could write for days about my frustrations with this but I will wrap it up.  I just want to reiterate that whether someone is choosing to be gluten-free or because they have been diagnosed with gluten-intolerance, it is their body and they should be able to nourish it in the way that they feel works best for them.  If you know someone who is gluten-free, be supportive of them.  You don’t have to go buy a bunch of GF items to have when they come over, and don’t be afraid to ask them questions about their diet, but do it in a way that it doesn’t feel like you are criticising them or discouraging them.

If you have any questions for me, please feel free to email me (sophi[at]simplysophisticatedblog[dot]com) or comment below! I love talking to people about being GF, I just don’t need the hate.  ;-)

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