Sunday, November 23, 2014

Healthiest Lifestyle On The Planet Excludes Gluten

Almost 18 years ago, I was forced to convert to the mysterious gluten-free diet with my Celiac Disease diagnosis. Nobody in my family or friends had ever even heard of what the heck gluten was and yet my current and long term health was now dependent on avoiding gluten without medication. It wasn't a nightmare though, because the more I read and learned, I realized that gluten was found in all of the the foods that I ate that were unhealthy, addicting and affected my sports aspirations and everyday health. Gluten-free food is sprouting, harvesting, swimming and grazing all around you... not found in a box.

Avoiding Medication Is Amazing!

There is no cure or Rx treatment for Celiac Disease. That may be scary to most people, but hallelujah for others!  Are you saying that I can treat myself and prosper by avoiding gluten, a grain found in certain grains that are commonly associated with obesity, food addictions and not be dependent on taking pills?  Amaaaaaazing! It is more complicated than that for me and others, but critics will tell you that eating breads, pasta, pastries and various other common wheat based products are perfectly fine. However, I think anyone with common sense will tell you that eating in moderation is fairly okay, but when you realize that avoiding gluten and wheat based products have show significant improvements in gut and brain health then perhaps you should make your own opinions about what's good and bad for you. When people diet they cut out the sweets and snacks, and those are mostly made from gluten and high sugars. The main stream media and the uneducated public will always believe alternative lifestyles are crazy, stupid or fads, because someone is always affected, such as wheat farming industry, and other culinary based gluten industries. Do you realize that most cultures in the world already adhere to a near gluten-free diet but tend to include cultural breads and pastries? Let's look at the low fat diets that had way too much sugar or calories in the products and were merely fads. For gluten-free living, there is no fad here, and there is no drugs necessary, just requires an honest education and will power to change bad American eating habits.

Obtaining A Food Education 
Saved My Life

I was tired of eating the same gluten-free foods everyday and knew that something better was out there than a basic salad, plain chicken, potatoes and the occasional gluten-free sweets. However, I didn't know what to do or where to find the unknown ahead. I went to farmers markets, read cooking books and and watched chef TV shows, attended lectures on gluten-free health, and asked family members questions who were wise, like my brother, a former organic farmer.  Gluten-Free diet has taught me about all of the amazing leafy green vegetables, alternative grains that have more protein, shopping for more diverse fruits, trying new things like making kombucha and nut/coconut milks, new spices and tasting new meat and fish products.  For the critics that tell you gluten-free dieting is unhealthy or dangerous if you don't have Celiac Disease, they are protecting themselves or hiding something. Yes. Everything I Just mentioned above is gluten-free unless it's contaminated in the farm, manufacturing kitchen, your own kitchen, or a restaurant kitchen with gluten because gluten is littered in the eco-system! Our Paleo ancestors and recent family survived for thousands of years on the countless yet basic options in the world with or without grains like gluten. So ask yourself, how are the thousands of food options that are legitimately natural, diverse in nutrients and minerals, unhealthy for those who are attempting a gluten-free diet without Celiac Disease? Simply it's not and it's a very healthy lifestyle if you gather a well-rounded food education that we rarely receive in an American family home and don't get in schooling.  American food is typically fast food, unhealthy coffee chains, hot dogs, burgers, chips and soda. How many of these are you consuming per week, per day? I plan ahead by bringing snacks like nuts, seeds, fruits and vegetable with me to work, on the train traveling, in the car, always having re-usable water bottles and other tasty and nutritious packaged treats that I use only when being active and exercising on the go, so that I don't subdue to impulsive 'cravings'.

Gluten Free Packaged Goods 
Only In Moderation

Gluten-Free products at Wholefoods, Sprouts, Wegmans, Natural Grocers and found at Walmart, Albertsons, Target and Safeway may be growing by the day and tastier than ever before, but are not actually good for your body and mind. The kid in all of us crave chocolate, bagels, easy dinners, pretzels and snacks, and we are so ecstatic to find a gluten-free option that is NonGMO, Organic, and we buy it at high cost and eat those food replacements as they're easy and don't require any cooking, just like me. As a newly diagnosed Celiac, or another auto-immune Disease, child who is just being a child, or the average converter to lose weight, must realize that these replacement options have very limited nutrition in them because they're processed, and you're not adhering to the gluten-free lifestyle correctly by choosing real food first. Gluten-free foods may be easing your Celiac Disease or other health and behavior needs, but you're not going to be long-term healthy and happy until you develop a holistic, full education on health and nutrition which starts with learning how to cook and why GMOs and other foods are may be dangerous for you. You don't have to replace anything from your former life, you should create new food from real natural ingredients and enjoy this second chance at living well with your family and friends. However, I have seen many new nutrient dense products with alternative grains, seeds, nuts, veggies and removed unecessary sugars, fats and carbs appearing in the market and that's a great sign ahead! It's fun to learn, it's invogorating to try new foods solo or with others (and you can share them on Instagram or a blog) and being in tune with  how your gut and mental health will save your life.

Listen & Look Carefully At Your Body Signals

Don't get grossed out by the body noises, appearance and scents that you create. They dictate your health and often guide you for change and treatment. Your bowel movements, stomach/gut and brain are not lying to you... The proof is is right there as you analyze yourself. Get more comfortable with what's happening inside and out and discuss concerns with family, friends or someone who may be able to connect with you and go to a doctor that is right for your needs. 

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