HAPPY FRIDAY FAB FRIENDS!
I trust you are all catching your breath after a wirlwind few weeks of gift giving, family gatherings and celebrations. Have you taken some time to regroup, refuel and get some rest? Maybe this weekend will be your first opportunity. I encourage you to take some “Me” time, get caught up on sleep, hydrate with lots of water and fill your body with some healthy, antioxidant rich foods. Start next week feeling energized and shake off that sluggish holiday feeling from all the indulgence. My mom outdid herself with cooking and baking this Christmas and I’m SO grateful, but I’m ready to start a light detox/cleanse myself and back to my no dairy, no wheat/gluten, no sugar diet.
ARE YOU CONFUSED ABOUT THE GLUTEN-FREE CRAZE?
About 7-8 years ago, by the process of elimination, I figured out that I had an intolerance to wheat & gluten. I had already found out that I was lactose intolerant in my mid 20’s. Since then, I paid close attention to how foods made me feel. After eating bread or pasta dishes, I would literally get a stuffed up nose, itchy eyes, foggy head, felt sleepy and had a bloated stomach. Obviously, I just stopped eating the stuff then a few years later all this research surfaced about food allergies. Here’s a quick description from Allure.com that may enlighten you:
The Skinny: Gluten is a protein found in wheat, barley, and rye. Translation: It’s in practically everything. For starters, bread, pasta, cereal, and crackers, plus beer, some salad dressings, soups, and soy sauce. Gluten-free adherents learn to love alternative grains like amaranth, buckwheat, quinoa, and rice, but only those with a wheat allergy or, more seriously, celiac disease must strictly comply. When they eat gluten, it sets off an immune reaction that damages the lining of the small intestine, causing diarrhea, gas, bloating, and other symptoms: irritability, muscle cramps, skin rashes, anemia, plus a risk of developing intestinal cancer. (A blood test and an intestinal biopsy can confirm a celiac diagnosis.) Celiac disease affects about 3 million people in the U.S., but far more—as many as 20 million—have gluten sensitivity; bread or pasta leaves them bloated, foggy, depressed, and headachy. “Some people eat gluten safely for 20, 30, or 40 years, then suddenly develop a problem,” says Alessio Fasano, director of the Center for Celiac Research at the University of Maryland School of Medicine. Since no reliable sensitivity test is yet available, the only way to determine whether your malaise is gluten-related is to try the diet and see if you feel better—which should be apparent within a few days.
Benefits: Those with celiac or pronounced gluten sensitivity will see the most improvement. “Brain fog, bloating, and headaches should go away immediately,” says Fasano. “Many people feel remarkably better.” Some look better, too, since gluten sensitivity can trigger an inflammatory response that leads to acne, rosacea, or eczema, according to Fredric Brandt, a cosmetic dermatologist in Miami and New York City. But if you don’t have true gluten sensitivity, you’re not likely to notice any changes to your mood, skin, or gut.
Drawbacks: You could pack on the pounds. “It used to be that a gluten-free diet almost assured weight loss, because there were very few alternatives except for fruits and vegetables,” says Susan Bowerman, assistant director of the UCLA Center for Human Nutrition. But thanks to the gluten-free trend, there is now a glut of G-free muffins, pies, cakes, and pizzas. Some of these substitutes are more caloric than their standard counterparts, because manufacturers use corn or potato starch to add texture. Another problem? Avoiding gluten can set you up for a vitamin deficiency, since wheat is rich in thiamine and other Bs, says Cynthia Kupper, executive director of the Gluten Intolerance Group of North America. “B vitamins are important for the health of your hair, skin, brain, and nerves,” she says. “So you may pay a price if you’re not careful.” The other way you’ll pay: G-free foods can cost two or three times as much as conventional ones.
Bottom Line: The gluten intolerant now have a greater variety of appealing choices than ever. Everyone else: Skip the diet and count your blessings.
To learn even more, check out Shirley Plant’s book- Finally, Food I Can Eat! shown on the right sidebar of this website.
We’ve all given of our time & energy to your family and friends over the holidays, so please take some time to focus on YOU sista! The more vibrant, energetic and healthy you feel will effect every area of your life.
IT’S TIME TO SHINE!
REMINDER: I will be taking new mentoring/coaching clients in January. If you are serious about committing and investing in yourself, please take advantage of my offer of COMPLIMENTARY 15 MINUTE SKYPE OR PHONE CONSULTATIONS through Wed, Jan 15th. If you are interested, please feel out the contact form on the SERVICES PAGE. Those who take advantage of this January consultation will receive a 25% discount on all packages or single sessions. *If you are not committed to your personal growth, a coach or mentor will not help you. Again, serious inquiries only!
I look forward to hearing from you!