Friday, May 20, 2011

A Few of My Favorite Things

If you weren't already aware, May is National Celiac Awareness Month (NCAM). And thanks to some wonderful organizations like the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness (NFCA), the Celiac Disease Foundation (CDF), and the American Celiac Disease Alliance (ACDA), the media is brimming with information about both Celiac disease and gluten-free living.

Of course, living requires one to eat.

If you've ever thought about transitioning to a gluten-free or gluten-reduced diet, now would definitely be the time. It is discount and coupons galore for the entire month at many grocery stores, and for those of us already in the gluten-free lifestyle, it's like a month long holiday.

I'm not joking.

So, in celebration of not only increased awareness but also increased access to gluten-free food products, I thought I'd share a list of some of my favorites to either 1) help you get started or 2) help you diversify your GF pantry.
I have discovered these brands/items over the last 4 years and have come to rely on them as some of my off-the-shelf "basics."  So here we go:

  • Pasta: Tinkyada Rice Pasta; Soba King Noodles. Scared you'd never have pasta again? Both of these offer great GF alternatives with nice texture and flavor.

  • Breads/Pizza Crust: Udi's Multigrain; Gillian's French Rolls; Rudi's Multigrain, Chebe, Gluten Free Kneads Pizza Dough. These are found in the freezer section. Either keep the bread frozen or refrigerated and I definitely recommend toasting the bread in a GF toaster for optimal taste and texture.

  • Breakfast: Bakery on Main Granola; Bob's Red Mill GF Hot Cereal; Van's GF Waffles, Nature's Path Mesa Sunrise Flakes. It's the most important meal of the day, so why not make it a delicious one?

  • Nut Butter: Earth Balance or Arrowhead Mills Peanut Butter, Maranatha Almond Butter, Sunbutter. These always hit the spot, whether it's making a sandwich, spreading on apples slices, or eating straight out of the jar.

  • Meats: Applegate Farms sliced meats, bacon, hot dogs; Aidell's Sausages. There could be gluten in my meat? Yup, there could be, but not these.

  • Snacks: Lundberg Rice Cakes; Mary's Gone Crackers; Crunchmaster Crackers; FoodShouldTasteGood Chips, Beanitos; Kettle Brand Potato Chips, Blue Diamond Baked Nut Chips. OK, I'm a snacker, so sue me. I have the metabolism of a bird.

  • Cookies: Pamela's Simplebites; Mi-Del Cookies. I'm not much of a sweets guys, but when I get a craving for cookies and I don't have time to make my own, these are easy go-to's.  If you are dairy free as well, make sure to look at the allergen statement - not all of them are GFDF.

  • Protein Powders: Nutribiotic Spectrum Rice, Nutiva Hemp; Garden of Life Raw Meal. Great sources of quality protein and fiber suitable for the GF, DF, or even Vegan canary.

  • Energy Bars: Larabars; Kind Bars; Mrs. May's Trio Bars. Great for on-the-go snacking. I buy them by the case, particularly Larabars.

  • Condiments: Veganaise; Emerald Valley Salsa; Bragg's Amino Acids and Nutritional Yeast; San-J Gluten Free Tamari. To assist you in elevating your already delicious foods to dizzying heights.

Hopefully, through reading this you might be able to resist what I lovingly refer to as the "gluten-free food fetish" (buying anything and everything that's certifiably gluten-free) or the "tyranny of freedom" (too many choices overwhelming you to the point of no choice being made at all). And if you're a newbie, maybe these suggestions can help make your next trip to the grocery store a bit more structured and a little bit less like nails on a chalkboard.  Of course, ino way am I claiming that these products are universally palatable - they're simply my version of canary comfort food.  You'll find yours soon enough. :)

At the end of the day, they're just choices - that's all. If you just remember why you're making the choice in the first place, you won't go wrong. For me, I make these choices to further improve and sustain my quality of life. I make these choices because I have a responsibility to take care of my body. I make these choices because I love my self.

What about you?

1 comment:

Thank you so much for visiting The Canary Files. I hope you have enjoyed what you have read and seen. Your feedback is valuable to me and I read and reply to every single comment. So sincere thanks in advance for sharing not only your thoughts, but your time as well.

All the Best,

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