Tuesday, October 11, 2011

In the Kitchen

It didn't start just one day. I didn't wake up so sick I thought I was dying and then decided to get help. It was a long process of "what is going on?" and "why do I feel like I'm running to keep up but always falling behind?" In Dec. 2010, I was diagnosed with Celiac disease. This, another on the long list of things I've been given as diagnosis since I was 16. Luckily, or unluckily, at least they didn't add another medication to my daily routine. Wohoo! Gluten is the offending protein; I'm told and avoid that to live a long healthy life. My particular case was caught as a result of malnutrition. I was starving to death, trying to eat and never getting anywhere. I also have blood sugar issues - blood sugar roller coaster with a disastrous crash at the end. They said to cut out bread, pasta, pancakes, and soy sauce.

I wonder how many people even think about the amout of wheat they eat in a day? If you've ever listened to health or nutrition gurus they tell us to eat a "colorful palette" or varied diet. Diets rich in one thing is always a bad thing. So, why is America and many other places, eating so much wheat? Go into your cabinets, grab something in a box and tell me if wheat is on the ingredients. Do you have bread in the house? Cereal? How often do you eat that in a day? Here is a sample of a typical American menu for a day:

Cereal with milk, OJ, toast and butter, maybe an egg.

Turkey cheese sandwich, apple, soda, granola bar

Pasta with tomato sauce, cheese, green beans and garlic bread.

Now, I'm being seriously generous with the "healthy" menu here. Many people have just the cereal, or a pop tart for breakfast, school lunches are notorious for bad things, and dinner could be just a McD stop away. This was the diet that was killing me. Too much sugar, and too much wheat, a combination that made me feel like I had been placed in a corner. Everyone else got to socialize, have fun, go to parties. I was stuck to the side, trying to avoid the pies, lasagnas, dips and sushi. GASP. Sushi.

I love cooking, I've always liked playing with food. There's nothing better than finding something you like and sharing it with friends. Food's always been my thing. Until this year. And something changed. I didn't want to eat anymore. I just didn't want to socialize. It wasn't any fun. It wasn't enjoyable. Meals consisted of meats, vegetables and dairy. Imagine for one moment never ever being able to have a slice of cake, a piece of pie or a cookie again. Or just a piece of toast for that matter. Then something hit me one day. I just wanted to be normal. And, for the most part, people are horribly brainwashed as to what "healthy" is. Hint: Listen to those people who say eat a varied diet.

More and more people are being diagnosed celiac. And wheat happens to be a huge staple in our very much NON varied diets. Fast food is wheat bun and meat patty with wheat filler. Fries are fried in oil with wheat stabilizer. Sauces and flavorings have wheat fillers and thickeners in them. This is just "normal" food. Not the cakes, pies and crackers that are obviously made with flour and sugar. There is sugar in bread. Obesity is a huge problem too (no pun intended,) perhaps we have a correlation.

So, here's where I start. I have searched the web for recipes that are sugar free gluten free and I'll give those people credit if I loved their recipes. Otherwise, this is just me, not being cornered anymore.