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When my daughter was diagnosed with celiac disease at age 2, the mandate was clear - no more wheat, rye, barley or oats. Oats, it was explained to us, do not contain gluten but are highly cross-contaminated because they're often grown and harvested alongside wheat, rye and barley. Since then, research has shown that most celiacs are able to tolerate pure, uncontaminated oats - but with some limitations. In the past five years, a handful of companies have begun to market specially produced oats that are carefully monitored and tested to prevent any contact with gluten.
After a short prayer of thanks and a slightly longer prayer for protection, Cindy and her 12-year-old daughter Meagan begin eating the macaroni and cheese they picked up at the food bank in Akron, Ohio. Cindy enjoys every bite, as does Meagan. But Cindy knows that in a few short hours, shell be holding Meagans hand and offering comfort because, as a celiac, Meagan cant handle this meal. Yet without it, Meagan will go hungry.
Power flours provide more protein, as well as a host of vitamins and nutrients and theyre higher in fiber, which helps reduce cholesterol levels. Whats more, many are quite flavorful and they produce baked goods that help us feel fuller longer. The higher protein content in power flours provides elasticity to baked goods too, an added bonus for gluten-free bakers. (Elasticity, a key to baking success, is often hard to come by in gluten-free baking.) The result is that finished baked goods are moister, have a finer crumb and better texture.
People with food allergies and sensitivities have digestive systems that arent functioning efficiently. Healthy digestion breaks down food into usable elements and screens out potential reactors. A poorly functioning digestive system will absorb partially digested food but will not necessarily take in all the essential nutrients. As a result, even the best, most balanced diets can end up being inadequate.