Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Living Vegan and Gluten Free

I have been neglecting this blog lately but I have decided to change my direction slightly and am working to get into the habit of posting more often.   I’m going to use this space as a way to spread information and upcoming local events, in addition to recipes.   I don’t always have the time to create new recipes but I find myself reading articles and finding new books and inspiration for a vegan or gluten free lifestyle everyday.
My most recent favorites include this spectacular list (good for vegans too!) from
Gluten-Free Food Rules (in no particular order)
1. Choose fresh, organic, whole foods. They’re gluten-free by default. No labels to read.
2. Make plant sources, especially vegetables, your foundation.
3. If it’s made in a plant, don’t eat it – if it is a plant, do eat it.
4. For the most part, choose foods you can hold in your hands and wash. Can you wash a box of Kraft mac and cheese, oreo cookies or a Hostess ding dong? You can wash cabbage, apples, tomatoes and you can rinse brown rice and quinoa.
5. If animals, insects and bacteria won’t eat it, we shouldn’t either. Food that has been sprayed with chemicals to repel critters isn’t a good choice for people either.
6. Don’t eat food that never spoils. If it doesn’t rot, it’s not food.
7. Stop eating when you’re no longer hungry, not when you’re full. No longer hungry is different from full.
8. Choose products (gluten-free flours, grains, etc.) that have been tested and are certified gluten-free. The Celiac Sprue Association (CSA) and the Gluten Intolerance Group (GIG) currently have certification programs. The National Foundation for Celiac Awareness (NFCA) is in the process of creating a similar certification program.
9. Ingredients are listed by weight on labels. Any product that has more sugar than other ingredients has too much sugar. Avoid HFCS (high fructose corn syrup).
10. If you can’t pronounce the ingredients, don’t eat them.
11. Avoid impostors (foods pretending to be something else). Think, “I can’t believe it’s not butter.” Eat real butter, not fake butter.
12. Eat a good portion of your veggies raw. Organic is best. Click here for a pocket version of the Environmental Working Group’s guide to organic produce (the dirty dozen and the clean 15).
13. Buy oils packaged in dark bottles and store away from heat. This prevents the oil from going rancid (very unhealthy).
14. Use the water you’ve steamed or cooked veggies in. Save it for smoothies or soups. It’s packed with good plant nutrients.
15. Pay more, eat less (see photo above).
16. “Eat breakfast like a king, lunch like a prince, dinner like a pauper.” I don’t know who originally said that, but it’s true.
17. Don’t eat food that has been tossed to you through your car window. Don’t eat and drive.
18. Prepare your own food, don’t get it from a vending machine or a gas station.
19. Eat all your meals at a table.
20. Be wary of supplement claims. If you want to increase your antioxidant amounts, eat beets, asparagus, blueberries, chard and cherries. Eat colorful fruits and veggies. Choose real food in its natural form. Don’t count on supplements unless you REALLY need them (verifiable deficiencies).

In addition, in case you have never heard of Dermatitis Herpetiformis, which is part of the Celiac Disease that I suffer from, I found this video explaining it:
It may not be the most riveting video but it is very informative – check it out!
I have joined the Hudson Valley Celiac Support Group and there are lots of great Gluten Free events coming up!  If you are interested in attending, volunteering, or would like the Hudson Valley Celiac Support Group to participate in your event, please contact me.
May 21, 2011 (Saturday):  Gluten Free Food Fair at Shop Rite in Kingston, NY  12pm-5pm
May 22, 2011 (Sunday): Hudson Valley Spring Festival hosted by Soul Dog, Waryas Park, Poughkeepsie, NY  2pm-8pm
May 24, 2011 (Tuesday): Hudson Valley Celiac Support Group Meeting 6 – 7:30pm
June 17, 2011 (Friday): Walkway Over the Hudson, Community Night:  Celebrate Health and Fitness 5:30-8:00pm 
June 18, 2011 (Saturday):  Gluten-Free Food Festival, Mercy Center Auditorium, St. Peter’s Hospital, Albany, NY
TBD: Gluten Free Night at Hudson Valley Renegades
Celebrate Gluten Free or Celiac Awareness Month at with 30% off gluten free products:

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