Monday, 16 September 2013

Oh it's easy! Just cut out gluten, dairy, meat and (most) soy!

        Well, this is my first blog post...EVER, so with that in mind I am just going to talk about what brought me here.
     After I had my daughter, about a year and a half ago, my hormones went a bit wacky. I later found out that I had developed hypothyroidism (likely as a result of pregnancy) which, to my surprise is common?! I thought discovering this meant that I had now figured out why I wasn't losing my post-baby weight. Oh, even better there is a pill I can take, and the weight will melt right off, right?! No. 
     Okay, so hormone imbalances are a little...ehem..WAY more complicated than I had ever imagined. By the time I researched the effects of an imbalanced endocrine system, weight loss was no longer my main concern. But, I am not hear to talk about my thyroid, just to touch on it enough to say that the whole thing started me on a path to better, holistic health.
     The first thing I did was cut out gluten. I know, everyone is giving gluten a hard time these days. During my "gluten-focused" research I came upon a lot of information suggesting that gluten has a similar molecular structure to the thyroid gland. In the case of Hashimoto's disease, where the body attacks the thyroid, having gluten around would only make the condition and symptoms worse. While I was not diagnosed with Hashimoto's myself, I still figured with all things considered cutting out gluten was probably wise. 
     There is a lot of information out there on the "evils of gluten", and a lot of it I agree with. What I know is that gluten is a protein found in foods that I generally find fatigue-inducing, nutrient-light,  and generally not all satiating. The overall improvement in how I feel (and how my husband feels) with a gluten-free diet is life-changing. I have more energy, am more clear headed and less bloated! It's a bit crazy but I don't miss bread, there I said it.

         I decided that while I was going to cut out gluten I wasn't going to replace all the gluten-filled foods I had been eating with a gluten-free option. I wasn't going to buy gluten-free bread, muffins, breadcrumbs, and cookies, I was just going to stop eating these things -unless I made them myself! And well this is where all the recipe-ing and experimenting began.
        Dairy got cut simply because it just doesn't always agree with me and I can't guarantee myself that it is completely hormone-free.
         Meat got cut for the same reason, too many hormones that aren't mine!! Here I am trying to stabilize my own hormones, why am I eating all these foods with hormones in them!

       I also decided that is was necessary to REALLY limit my soy and stay away from highly processed items like imitation meats. My first consideration was that soy can affect the absorption thyroid medication if they are consumed too closely together. My second consideration, the ongoing  controversy around  how the isoflavones in soy affect human estrogen levels (again, hormones that aren't mine). However, I do on occasion cook with soy (limiting to about once a week), usually tempeh as I prefer the process through which it is prepared. 
     Well after deciding that I needed a clean diet I started to look at some of the things I was putting on my body. Hmmm....what's in my shampoo?  Wait..what IS that? More on going chemical-free another day!

     I am hoping that with this blog I can share some interesting and delicious gluten-free, soy-free, meat and dairy free recipes! And maybe let you all know which products and potions work for me on my quest back to wholly healthy self and family!


  1. Thanks for the inspiration and the recipes Alicia! On a similar quest myself! xo S

  2. I am glad to share the recipes, the great ones can be a bit more difficult to find! :)