Sunday, September 9, 2012

Gluten Free

Within the last couple of years so much has changed.  I don't want to use the term "gave up" because that would make it seem like I am suffering in some way.  I no longer eat processed or fast food, dairy or meat.  I hate to put a label on myself, but I suppose I am sort of a vegan. 

Not fully vegan.  Maybe plant strong is a better term.

I also eat honey because I like it, it's healthy, the bees make it and it's suppose to help with allergies to consume local honey.  The bees are doing what they do and most beekeepers take very good care of them.  I really love animals and I hate the factory farm machine and I am proud to say I no longer help fund their operations.  But I don't have an issue with a beekeeper or my friend Kimberly who adores and appreciates her chickens and the eggs they lay.

There are times where I have slipped, those times away from home or on vacation.  One thing I have stayed away from completely is dairy.  Because I can't have it really.  Now there is another thing I need to omit.

Wheat Gluten.

I have recently been battling this occasional sore abdomen and sinus problems. I am currently taking meds for another sinus infection.  This time stronger antibiotics and prednisone.  I'm tired of taking pills and tired of feeling anxious, bloated, sore and having pain.  I don't like having a close relationship with my pharmacist or worrying about what crazy or dangerous side affects these pills may cause or not cause or what organs will get pissed from all of this.

So I looked into the link between sinus infections and gluten.  I can't believe I just now dug into this.  There it was, in black and white for pages and pages.  The testimonials, the research, the documentation regarding the link between wheat gluten and migraines, (which I already knew because my friend Janet and a relative of mine no longer suffer from them since they stopped) digestive problems, depression, anxiety, eczema, and sinus infections. 

I am still in research mode on this subject so I don't have a full list of facts to serve you.  It all makes sense now. When I went fully vegan I began consuming more seitan and vital wheat gluten as meat subs.  So eating actual wheat gluten tossed with pasta (more gluten) and dipped with bread (even more) I ended up getting more and more of these symptoms.

I am going to abstain from gluten to see what happens.  It's only a grain.  Too bad it's added to just about everything, and that means no bread or traditional pasta but still I have tons of alternatives.  I have fruit, vegetables, beans, nuts, rice, tofu, quinoa and plenty more to choose from.  I'm not afraid.  I love a food challenge in the kitchen.  Now there are many gluten free options and I'm excited to see how I will feel and what food I will make.

Here are day one and day two for dinner.  I was thinking of creating another blog and calling it Crazy Gluten Free Vegan, but I'll just number my meals I guess.  I barely have time for this blog, I don't know if I can manage another!  :)
Day 1.  Seared tofu with avocado "cream", roasted cauliflower and wilted dandelion greens
Day 2.  Red Thai coconut curry with kale, tempeh and assorted veg with rice noodles

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