Tag Archives: gluten-free

Gluten-free diet may increase risk of arsenic, mercury exposure

I’m sure you have encountered friends and acquaintances who are going ‘gluten-free.’ I have observed, I don’t think imagined, a certain smugness about the announcement. Like they have elevated themselves above the masses. Well, It turns out maybe not.

People who eat a gluten-free diet may be at risk for increased exposure to arsenic and mercury – toxic metals that can lead to cardiovascular disease, cancer and neurological effects, according to a report in the journal Epidemiology.

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Gluten-free diets have become popular in the U.S., although less than 1 percent of Americans have been diagnosed with celiac disease – an out-of-control immune response to gluten, a protein found in wheat, rye and barley.

A gluten-free diet is recommended for people with celiac disease, but others often say they prefer eating gluten-free because it reduces inflammation – a claim that has not been scientifically proven. In 2015, one-quarter of Americans reported eating gluten-free, a 67 percent increase from 2013.

Gluten-free products often contain rice flour as a substitute for wheat. Rice is known to bioaccumulate certain toxic metals, including arsenic and mercury from fertilizers, soil, or water, but little is known about the health effects of diets high in rice content. (my emphasis)

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10 Benefits of Quinoa

I am a big fan of quinoa. Here are 10 more reasons.

If you find you have an appetite for more information on this ‘mother of all grains,’ you can read further at the links below:

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Keen on Quinoa

Why You Should Add Quinoa to your Diet

Quinoa and Brown Rice – Seeds of Change

Are You Getting Enough Magnesium?

Nuts Offer Great Nutritional Benefits

14 Foods That Fuel Your Brain

Tony

Our Better Health

Quinoa isn’t just some hipster food, it’s actually incredibly nutritional and versatile. It’s a grain that’s grown and the seeds are eaten. It’s not quite a grass and not quite a cereal, but it’s related to other healthy vegetables like spinach and beetroot.

A common ingredient in vegetarian food, there’s no reason why carnivores and herbivores alike can’t enjoy quinoa. It can be served alongside meat, used in a wide range of cuisines, and it has a huge number of benefits. Here are the top ten reasons why you should start eating quinoa today.

1. It has an amazing nutrient breakdown
Ever wondered what quinoa actually offers you? This is a breakdown of the nutritional value of quinoa. Each percentage relates to your recommended daily allowance and the quantity is just one cup.

  • Potassium – 9%
  • Zinc – 13%
  • Iron – 15%
  • Copper – 18%
  • Folate – 19%
  • Phosphorus –…

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10 Reasons to Include Buckwheat In Your Diet Plans

I am as new to buckwheat as you are. I always thought it was the stuff they put into airplane neck pillows. This post shows how wrong I can be.

Tony

Buckwheat for your health

bowl of buckwheat seeds

  1. Buckwheat is high in fiber; good for those with constipation.
  2. The protein in buckwheat has all 9 essential amino acids (that the body cannot manufacture), making it closer to being a “complete” protein.
  3. Buckwheat is high in the amino acid lysine, which is used for tissue growth and repair.
  4. Buckwheat is gluten-free so this makes it suitable for those with wheat allergies.
  5. Buckwheat is rich in calcium, iron, vitamin E, and B vitamins, magnesium, manganese, zinc and copper.
  6. The magnesium in buckwheat, helps relaxes blood vessels; helps improve circulation, decrease blood pressure and reduce cholesterol.
  7. Buckwheat helps to stabilize blood sugar levels. Due to the slower breakdown and absorption of the carbohydrates in buckwheat, this helps to raise our blood sugar levels more evenly. This especially good for those suffering with diabetes by helping to control their blood sugar levels.
  8. Buckwheat is low in calories

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Is A Gluten-free Diet Really Good for Your Health?

According to a survey from market research company NPD Group, almost 30 percent of adults in the US claim to be reducing their gluten intake or cutting the protein out completely – a proportion that is much higher than the number of people who have celiac disease.

But there seems to be limited evidence that – outside of celiac disease – gluten is bad for our health. A 2011 study, conducted by Peter Gibson and colleagues from Monash University in Australia, claimed that NCGS may be a legitimate disorder, after finding participants that consumed gluten experienced increased bloating and fatigue.

Gluten and gluten free are hot topics these days. Check out the following posts if you want to learn more:

Gluten-free Food – Against the Grain
Sensitive to gluten? Traditional sourdough offers a unique solution to bread woes
Gluten-Free’ Now Means What It Says
Should You Try a Gluten-Free Diet?
Gluten Free Diets Don’t Equal Weight Loss Plans

Tony

Cooking with Kathy Man

Gwyneth Paltrow, Ryan Gosling and Jenny McCarthy are just some of the celebrities who have adopted a gluten-free diet – not necessarily because they have a gluten intolerance, but because they deem the diet to be healthier. As such, the diet seems to have become the latest “trend.” It is estimated that around 1.6 million people in the US follow a gluten-free diet without having been diagnosed with celiac disease – a severe gluten intolerance. But does this diet really benefit our health?

Gluten is a protein found in wheat, barley, rye and triticale (a combination of wheat and rye). It acts as a “glue” in foods such as cereal, bread and pasta, helping them hold their shape. Gluten can also be found in some cosmetic products, such as lip balm, and it is even present in that nasty tasting glue on the back of stamps and envelopes.

In some…

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Survey: The 7 Biggest Diet Trends in 2015

There are tons of blogs out there that dish about healthy eating—and 42 percent of nutrition experts say that that’s where many of us are getting our health info. But many of those experts also say that not all of the blogs are giving out the right info, and there may be even more misinformation out there as the new year progresses. In fact, the majority of the experts surveyed say that there the wrong info found on nonprofessional websites may be more likely to lead to confusion. The upshot: When in doubt, ask a registered dietitian, who can provide you with the most up-to-date and accurate nutrition information.

Note for the record. This blog is written by a retired financial journalist who is now a health aficionado. I worked for Reuters for 20 years. I always source my posts and, when possible, also include links back to the original item. So, the observation about unprofessional websites does not apply here. 

Tony

 

 

Cooking with Kathy Man

This year’s “What’s Trending in Nutrition” Survey from Pollock Communications and Today’s Dietitian surveyed more than 500 dietitians to see what they think will be the biggest trends in the coming year—and here are a few of them.

1: Seeds and nuts.

54 percent of the surveyed dietitians said that these will be the go-to superfoods in 2015 (even though they acknowledged that kale, Greek yogurt, avocado, and coconut products—like coconut oil—will continue to see an upswing).

2: Anything but beef.

The nutrition experts suggested that fish and seafood, eggs, legumes and nuts, poultry, and dairy are the healthiest, most high-quality proteins (followed by soy). The nutrition pros think red meat is less healthy—most likely due to the saturated fat, cholesterol, and high environmental demands required to produce beef.

3: Going gluten-free.

The vast majority of dietitians think gluten- or wheat-free diets will continue to be a thing in 2015…

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Low Glycemic Diet does not Improve Risk Factors for Cardiovascular Disease and Diabetes

“Our findings demonstrated that using glycemic index to select specific foods did not improve LDL cholesterol, HDL cholesterol, triglycerides, blood pressure or insulin resistance.”

Cooking with Kathy Man

Nutrition experts are continually debating the nutritional value of carbohydrate-containing foods and whether some are healthier than others. High carbohydrate foods are classified by how much they increase blood sugar; known as glycemic index. In new findings led by researchers at Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH) in Boston and Johns Hopkins University (JHU) in Baltimore, researchers looked at glycemic index’ effect on cardiovascular disease (CVD) and diabetes and found that low glycemic diets did not improve insulin sensitivity or cardiovascular risk factors. These findings are published in JAMA on December 17, 2014.

“The study results were very surprising. We hypothesized that a low glycemic index would cause modest, though potentially important improvements in insulin sensitivity and CVD risk factors,” explained Frank M. Sacks, MD, a physician and researcher in BWH’s Channing Division of Network Medicine BWH and lead author of this study. “Our findings demonstrated that using glycemic index to…

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Gluten-free Food – Against the Grain

… according to a survey by Kantar, a research firm, only 22% of people who buy gluten-free food say they do so for non-medical reasons. This could be one foodie trend that turns out to be much more than a fad.

Cooking with Kathy Man

A growing desire to avoid gluten is changing the food industry.

McDonald’s is by no means the most accommodating of fast-food chains to people with special dietary requirements. Many of its restaurants in America and Britain do not even serve a meat-free burger for vegetarians. But in a week-long trial ending on October 21st, the chain’s British outlets offered a new burger whose fillings did not contain gluten, an allergen commonly found in wheat, with a view to making the new product a permanent addition to its menu.

At first, that may seem to be an odd decision. Vegetarians outnumber those who avoid gluten. But the food industry is finding that there is no longer much money to be made in making meat-free products. Sales of alternatives to meat have flattened in America in real terms since 2008; in Britain they have plunged by a third.

Consumer demand for products…

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What is a Super Healthy Energy Treat? – nogii’s Protein D’Lites

I must apologize for the lateness of this write up. I found nogiis in Costco over a year ago and I have probably consumed five bags of them by now. I kept thinking about writing them up, but just never got around to it. Till now.

If you haven’t run across them, they are wonderful little very healthy energy bars put out by Elizabeth Hasselbeck. Yes, she is the one from TV.0085651300224_500X500

Nogiis measure about 1.5 inches square and they are less than an inch thick. Individually wrapped, they travel well. I stick a couple in the pocket of my jersey when I go off to bike.

What are they? Very tasty chocolate, caramel, crunchy and chewy quasi cubes. There is a light milk chocolate flavor that I find very appealing. They almost taste like healthy Reese’s peanut butter cups. Since they only amount to 120 calories, they are perfect for my biking energy snacks. I eat half of one for 60 calories. That way my body isn’t bogged down digesting a ton, but I get an energy boost.

Nutrition Breakdown:
One bar = one ounce, or 28 grams
Calories 120
Total fat 4.5 grams
Saturated fat 2 grams
No cholesterol
Sodium 90 mg
Carbohydrates 13 grams
Fiber one gram
Sugar 8 grams
Protein 7 grams

They are gluten-free if that appeals to you.

The package suggests “in the car, gym bag or at the movies” for other uses. This portable protein is always on hand.

Tony

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Sensitive to gluten? Traditional sourdough offers a unique solution to bread woes

Under normal circumstances, it’s necessary for individuals with a gluten sensitivity to completely eliminate the troublesome offender from their diet. However, two small studies involving sourdough bread give hope to the millions who believe they need to swear off gluten containing grains forever.

Our Better Health

Wednesday, November 06, 2013      Carolanne Wright

(NaturalNews) Jack Bezian of Bezian’s Bakery in Santa Monica, California, has an eye-catching sign behind his loaves of bread, stating: “Roman soldiers had only sourdough bread to get protein.” But this is only part of the story. For those who suffer from gluten intolerance or celiac disease, Jack’s naturally fermented bread is surprisingly easy to digest. Interestingly, several studies have also found true sourdough to be well tolerated by individuals sensitive to gluten.

Celiac disease is an autoimmune disorder triggered by consuming the protein in wheat, barley and rye – otherwise known as gluten. If a celiac ingests this protein, the immune system mistakenly attacks the villi in the small intestine, causing a cascade of health issues, including leaky gut syndrome, malnutrition, lactose intolerance, osteoporosis, neurological disorders and cancer.

Under normal circumstances, it’s necessary for individuals with a gluten sensitivity to completely…

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‘Gluten-Free’ Now Means What It Says

Before the rule there were no federal standards or definitions for the food industry to use in labeling products “gluten-free.” An estimated 5 percent of foods formerly labeled “gluten-free” contained 20 ppm or more of gluten.

I have posted on the gluten issue previously. Check out:What is Gluten-Free – FDA Has an Answer, Should you try a Gluten-Free Diet? Gluten-Free Diets Don’t Equal Weight Loss Plans.

Tony

Cooking with Kathy Man

In August 2013, the Food and Drug Administration issued a final rule that defined what characteristics a food has to have to bear a label that proclaims it “gluten-free.” The rule also holds foods labeled “without gluten,” “free of gluten,” and “no gluten” to the same standard.

Manufacturers had one year to bring their labels into compliance. As of August 5, 2014, any food product bearing a gluten-free claim labeled on or after this date must meet the rule’s requirements.

This rule was welcomed by advocates for people with celiac disease, who face potentially life-threatening illnesses if they eat the gluten found in breads, cakes, cereals, pastas and many other foods.

Andrea Levario, executive director of the American Celiac Disease Alliance, notes that there is no cure for celiac disease and the only way to manage the disease is dietary—not eating gluten. Without a standardized definition of “gluten-free,” these consumers…

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What is Gluten-Free? FDA Has an Answer

Before the rule there were no federal standards or definitions for the food industry to use in labeling products “gluten-free.” An estimated 5 percent of foods currently labeled “gluten-free” contain 20 ppm or more of gluten.

Less than two percent of us has celiac disease. Not everyone belongs on a gluten-free diet. Be sure to read Should you try a gluten-free diet?

Tony

Cooking with Kathy Man

People with celiac disease can now have confidence in the meaning of a “gluten-free” label on foods.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued a final rule that defines what characteristics a food has to have to bear a label that proclaims it “gluten- free.” The rule also holds foods labeled “without gluten,” “free of gluten,” and “no gluten” to the same standard.

This rule has been eagerly awaited by advocates for people with celiac disease, who face potentially life-threatening illnesses if they eat the gluten found in breads, cakes, cereals, pastas and many other foods.

As one of the criteria for using the claim “gluten-free,” FDA is setting a gluten limit of less than 20 ppm (parts per million) in foods that carry this label. This is the lowest level that can be consistently detected in foods using valid scientific analytical tools. Also, most people with celiac disease…

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How Do I Give up a Favorite Snack?

I wrote about food sensitivity in late March. In that post, I also mentioned that I feared I suffered from food sensitivity as I have arthritis, nasal congestion and post nasal drip. Since that time, I have contacted a nutritionist and am beginning the elimination diet. Briefly, in the elimination diet, I will be eliminating dairy and gluten foods from my consumption. After a couple of weeks, I hope to see the symptoms of my ailments becoming less aggravating. If that is the case, I will have established that I have a sensitivity to either (or both) gluten and/or dairy.

The nutritionist was great to talk to. She gave me lots of materials to read that will aid in my following the diet.

The apple part of the snack was easy

The apple part of the snack was easy

This brings me to one of the first ‘challenges.’ Back in April of last year I wrote A Tasty Apple Dessert or Snack.

This snack consists of apple slices eaten with crumbled gorgonzola cheese. I love it and eat it every day. However, now that I am eschewing as opposed to chewing dairy, I can not have it. To put it mildly – darn! Continue reading

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Gluten Free Diets Don’t Equal Weight Loss Plans

I seem to come in contact with more and more people these days who tell me they’ve had difficulties with foods high in gluten, a protein that’s in wheat, rye and barley. Gluten-free bakeries and restaurants are popping up in Chicago, for example, to give these folks some foods they can eat without pain.
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