Fed Up with Food Restrictions

I’m really, really hating the food restrictions (gluten free and casein free). I know my last couple of posts sounded so positive and I’ve been trying really hard to be optimistic about the whole thing, but it’s wearing me down. It’ exhausting! Saying “no” to the kids (and myself) too often, finding gluten free substitutes for staples like bread and crackers (which so far taste horrible and are unbelievably  expensive), searching for gluten free recipes, missing warm, chewy bread… homemade ice cream and yogurt, macaroni and cheese… And you know what else? The second ingredient in soy sauce is wheat. Who knew!? (Hello? My mother is Korean… We use soy sauce at least a couple times a week.) I had no clue that gluten is in so many things – things I never would have even thought to check, like soy sauce. This gluten free thing may not go on much longer. Totally eliminating gluten doesn’t feel well balanced. This has been an eye opening experience and we’ll never go back to eating as much gluten as we were before, but my gut is telling me that a little is okay. All things in moderation…

I’ve been loosening up on the dairy a little (reintroducing it) to see if it negatively affects Linsey. A little goat cheese here. A little cottage cheese there. A little ice cream here and there. Sadly, she’s been getting stomach aches and digestive issues shortly after eating these foods. There also seems to be a slight increase in irritability and behavioral issues, but I can’t be sure.  She is so aware of the effects herself that she’s been reminding us that she should not eat dairy. She even admitted that she got a stomach ache after having a pretty small amount of ice cream. For her to admit that, is a major step on her part. I think the connection has been made for her and skipping dairy won’t be hard for her anymore. (Though I’m sure there will be occasions when she won’t be able to resist and will be willing to risk a stomach ache for something really yummy, like a little bit of ice cream. I think very small amounts every now and then are still okay.)

In light of the fact that she is most likely intolerant to casein (dairy), once we get her all better and give her a week or two to really make sure her gut has completely healed, we’re going to reintroduce some gluten and see what happens. My guess is that small amounts will be okay.

Now just some random stuff…

These came in the mail this week.

I’m looking forward to making my very own vanilla extract, vanilla sugar and having real vanilla beans to flavor foods (like ice cream)!

Here’s something else I love:

I had tons of mint growing in a container out front and I had to do something with it quick.  Having this mint infused simple syrup around is making it really difficult to drink unsweetened green tea. And do you see that wad of mint leaves that was left over? I worked really hard to fight an urge to put that in my mouth like chew (or dip, or whatever it’s called) to get the remaining sweet, minty syrup out of it before tossing it in the compost. I had a little argument in my head while I cleaned up the rest of my culinary mess: Don’t be ridiculous. If you stick that in your mouth, you’ve gone over the deep end. But wait… in the interest of frugality, using every morsel of food and not being wasteful… maybe I should. It took a couple or ten, fifteen minutes to come to my senses, but of course I couldn’t resist – and I’m not ashamed to admit it. It was unimaginably delicious and took me by surprise. I literally had to stop what I was doing, lean against the counter and savor the thing. I’d do it again (and probably will). I even pondered duplicating this in some way as candy. Maybe… candied mint leaves? This was definitely the best candy I’ve ever had! Pondering again…

This is not purple broccoli. It’s purple cauliflower. (I’ve had to repeat this several times to my family.)  I love how the farmers market broadens our view of food. Good luck finding it in the grocery store. Beautiful and yummy!

More goodies from the farmers market. I split these carrots in half, tossed them in a little olive oil, honey, salt and pepper, then threw them in a grill pan and roasted them in the oven. They were good enough to be eaten for dessert. Carrots lose their flavor quickly after being harvested and these are fresher than any you’ll find at the grocery store.

Proof my garden is organic. There are no pesticides here. I don’t mind sharing. There is plenty for everyone!

Food my kids love:

Guilt Free Banana Popsicles: Cut a banana in half, insert popsicle sticks and freeze for at least 2 hours (longer is better). My kids also love frozen grapes pierced with toothpicks. (Thanks mom!)

And of course their very favorite – kettle corn – a traditional part of our family movie nights!

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About Michele
Wife and Mom of three girls doing her best to lead the family into a healthier lifestyle and evolve gracefully.

3 Responses to Fed Up with Food Restrictions

  1. Monica says:

    this post reminded my of a book I bought recently and have flipped through but haven’t used yet. it’s called Make it Fast, Cook it Slow and it’s a cookbook made for slow cookers. the author explains in the beginning that her family eats gluten-free so she makes notes related to that for all the recipes but she points out that of course readers don’t HAVE to be gluten-free, but if you follow her recipes exactly, you will be by default. I thought that was pretty interesting since I’ve also heard it’s extremely difficult to eat gluten-free since the stuff is EVERYWHERE.
    http://www.amazon.com/Make-Fast-Cook-Slow-Everyday/dp/1401310044/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1307017441&sr=8-1

  2. Monica says:

    oh and I also just wanted to say your food photos look so good! I have never seen or heard of purple cauliflower but it is so pretty. and those carrots look amazing! 🙂

    • healthymamma says:

      Thanks! I just checked my public library and they actually have that book, checked in at my branch. I’m going there later to pick up another book on gluten and casein free, so I’ll just grab this one too while I’m there. I’m going to give the GFCF diet a couple more weeks…

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