The Joy of Food

Up until now, I have kept my posts short and (mostly) impersonal. Today I want to do something different. I am going to explain a few main components of my diet.

Yes, I do have celiac disease. And yes, I am gluten free. However, I consider my diet to be far beyond gluten free. I do not eat grains or sugar. I do not eat potatoes, corn or soy. I gave up dairy a few months ago, though you will find recipes with it on this site as I do use dairy in dishes I make for my family.

As I usually say when asked about my diet, “let me tell you what I DO eat, this will far simpler.” I eat a combination of fresh, organic fruit and vegetables, nuts, fish, chicken, buckets of olives and of course a bit of agave. While many people think this is a restrictive diet, I have found it to be one upon which I thrive. I feel good when I eat these foods, beside which, not only are these ones my body can absorb and digest, I can make so many fun combinations from them –think sorbet.

People often ask, how do I know if there is gluten in this food or that? These questions always, without exception, regard processed foods. My answer –I don’t use a lot of processed items as there is no way to be certain that they are free of gluten and other hidden ingredients that my body rebels against.

Many of the foods that are commonly allergenic did not exist in their current, peculiar, omnipresent forms a century ago –think peanut oil, high fructose corn syrup and soy –cheap, subsidized products pervasive in today’s processed foods.

Flavoring? Lemon juice and garlic make great marinades. Once in a while you will find a processed condiment on this site such as toasted sesame oil , dijon mustard or ume plum vinegar –I have found these to be pure, with few ingredients, all of which I can pronounce. However, I do steer clear of tamari sauce (even the wheat free type), Bragg’s Liquid Aminos and all those other of flavor makers. I like to make my own combination and find that mother nature provides amazing ingredients.

I love preparing my own food. First, I know what’s in it, which eliminates the fear factor and increases the pleasure of eating. Next, I like to flavor things exactly to my mood, the time of day or the season. Most of all, I believe that digestion starts in the eyes and hands, not just the mouth. Touching my food lets my body take it in on many sensory levels before it even hits my tongue.

Simplify. Satisfy. Eating the old fashioned way, shopping for good organic food, in season, touching and preparing my food is a passion of mine, not a restriction. Although many items are not on my meal plan, I am overwhelmed at times, such as when I walk through our farmer’s market, at the cornucopia of things that I can eat!


55 responses to “The Joy of Food”

  1. I too follow a very similar diet as you. I find it makes my life simpler and I don’t get sick (as much). I have cross reactivity which means my body gets mixed up on what is gluten free and what is not. Reacting like I’ve eaten gluten when I haven’t, NO FUN. I just wanted to say that my Nutritionist says that Agava is not good for people. The way it is processes makes it High Fructose. She writes about it in her book “Food isn’t what it used to be” By Christine Andrew
    Good Luck

  2. Just need to say thanks for the personal info. Your site has been a blessing to me as my son is free of most of the things you mentioned as he is ADHD/asperges/dyslexic etc, and I have realized the need to take him back to simple, real food. I love having your posts come through with simple healthy ideas. Has helped shape my attitude toward what treats can be. My whole family has benifitted from this lifestyle change which makes me grateful that we were forced to do it. Keep up the good work.

  3. You really are an inspiration to all whether we have food limitations or not.
    I LOVE your site as your recipes make it so easy for us to enjoy food again. I no longer look at my restrictions as a punishment, but as the freedom and knowledge to give my body what it’s been crying for. The only question I have is how do you deal with eating out with friends & family? I’m finding it to be quite a challenge. Do you have any tips that you can share?
    Again, Thank you for all you do for us. I will never be able to express my gratitude fully.

  4. Hi!
    I find really great that you found the “diet” that suits your body needs and limits.
    I was diagnosed banana, egg, milk, red meet, gluten intolerant.
    While gluten provokes diarrea, egg and banana provokes constipation. So I have lived all my life, until 1 year ago, constipated. It is sad, dangerous and painful.
    I think we should all take our kids to the food-allergist to make sure we are really nourishing them.
    However my diagnose, I noticed long time ago, that porc, canned tuna and canned tomato also provokes so much acne. Also, grains (a plate of corn pasta for example) would block me as gluten…so I am slowly eating raw vegetables, fish & little amounts of chicken! Apparently, a very similar diet like you.
    But with the time, I meet so many people with the same problems and same solution.
    What I wonder is: do we have any phisical common factor? Which is it? Blood? Genetics? Environment ? How knows….

  5. I use coconut amino acids in place of Bragg’s, I always thought Bragg’s was supposed to be so good for your many years ago, then I found out it was soy based anyway. Elana do you have any information regarding Coconut Amino Acid?

  6. Hi,

    Just wanted to say, I have loved your site from the day I found it…and I think I know why now. You stated it so elegantly- others think of diets like yours and mine as restrictive, but really it is so freeing to eat food that makes your body feel fabulous! THANKS for helping me do that more simply than I had been prebviously. But- that leads to a personal queston…something I fear more than anything is going out to eat. I actually would prefer never to do it, but it is a must when travelling, andhonestly, to appease my family at times. How do you deal with that?? I find that I have become more and more sensitive to possible cross contamination, so that even places I have been able to tolerate in the past will make me regret eating there now.

    Thanks for everyting!!


  7. Thank you for your post! In the last year I have learned I have gluten sensitivity and autoimmune issues. I started a little blog to help track my eating and give me some type of outlet. My doctor also gave me a list of helpful resources and that is where I found your site! I’m so thankful I did! Love your recipes!!

  8. Thanks for the great recipes. I have adapted them to my no dairy, soy, eggs, gluten, & sugar baking…..but I am allergic to almonds. I have done your recipes with pecan butter or sunflower seed butter & they are ok. Have you thought of expanding to another nut meal for baking to get variety in your cooking?

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