Friday, March 12, 2010

Gluten-Free Month

I am trying an experimental gluten-free month to see if it has any impact. Since day 2, I've felt unusually uncongested.

I was really disappointed when I started to look at GF cookbooks. Most cooking isn't a problem, but baking, of course, relies entirely on wheat. Barley flour has gluten in it, so that's out. Ditto for rye. Most GF recipes use a combination of a grain flour and grain starches (such as cornstarch), which have very high glycemic indices. There are some recipes that use alternatives such as chickpea flour or almond flour.

I thought I did a fairly good job of balancing my diet before, but it is really surprising how often I would reach for something that contains wheat. There are many foods that I like to eat on something - and that something usually was a form of bread. Hummus, avocado, almond or peanut butter...

Thus far, I've tried 3 GF recipes. 2 were successful: some simple chickpea flour crackers, and some GF corn muffins. The pizza base recipe that I tried (cornmeal and millet flour) was an abysmal failure.

Overall, my assessment is that eating GF is not easy, but neither is it extremely difficult. Certainly dining out would be more difficult than eating at home. I find that taking all the wheat out of my meals means I eat a lot more vegetables - and, significantly - a LOT less sugar, because sugar tends to be in many things made with wheat.

If you have any favorite GF recipes, I'd love to try them!

What's the most difficult dietary change you've made?

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