Thursday, October 27, 2011

Greenberg's Smoked Turkeys are GLUTEN FREE!


Yay! One of Oprah's favorite Holiday things and giveaways over the past few years was a Greenberg Turkey.  Guess what, they are Gluten free, Casein Free and Soy Free. I called and checked to be sure. All of the natural spices are as well. I had one shipped from Tyler, TX a couple of years ago and it was soooooo Good!  Since we are traveling this year, we decided to just order one and have it delivered to our destination since my external family is not quite on board 100% with our GF diet. (They have a taste phobia-Gotta die somehow mentality). You can't win everyone over but you can have some great options for your own family and anyone else who is curious enough to try. Most are surprised that this diet enhances the flavors because you dont have alot of additives and junk added in. So I am ordering a Greenberg turkey, one small enough for my family of 5 and will cook my sides when I get to my destination. If you are attempting a Gluten free thanksgiving this year,  this would definitely be a great option because all you would have left are the sides and a dessert. If I were home, I would be cooking my own Apple Rum Turkey (in my Holiday Recipes), but since I am traveling, this is a great option.  

Here's what Oprah had to say about Greenberg Turkey:

"This gorgeous turkey is made in an old-fashioned brick smokehouse with a dry rub of fresh, earthy spices and pure hickory wood. Sam Greenberg uses the same technique his grandfather taught his father 70 years ago, and he ships it fully cooked and ready to serve. This is hands-down the best turkey I've ever tasted; it's mmm-mmm smokin'!"
Starting at 6 pounds for $27, add $4 per pound | gobblegobble.com


Sunday, October 23, 2011

Baby Steps...




This diet may be a bit overwhelming to some, I recommend baby steps in breaking it into your family. It wasn't so hard for our family because we started working fresh vegetables in with simple meats prior to going completely gluten free. You can start the diet gradually, one meal or one food at a time.  That is, for a week , just make dinner gluten free and casein free.  Then once you've got that figured out, add in breakfast.  Then after that's done, add in lunch and snacks.  

Add more foods to your diet that are acceptable BEFORE you start the diet.  Start introducing rice and potatoes if you or your child only eats noodles.  Add fruits and vegetables to every meal so that your family may eventually try the new foods. 

Many people see dramatic changes the first few weeks.  It has been reported that this diet has helped children who have NOT tested positive for gluten and/or casein allergy. However, keep in mind that lab testing may help some parents make the decision to try the diet and stick with the GFCF Diet. 

An ELISA blood test measuring IgE and IgG anti-bodies will help you determine your child’s food sensitivities.  




STAGE ONE 
STAGE ONE 
REMOVE ALL DAIRY (CASEIN)


STAGE TWO
STAGE TWO
REMOVE ALL GLUTEN
STAGE  THREESTAGE THREE: ADVANCED DIETARY INTERVENTION FOR CONSIDERATION:

Some children may be allergic or intolerant to soy
 , corn or other food.  
STAGE  FOURSTAGE FOUR: ADVANCED DIETARY INTERVENTION FOR CONSIDERATION:Artificial/Synthetic coloring
Artificial/Synthetic flavoring
Aspertame (nutrasweet, an artificial sweetener)
Artificial (synthetic preservatives BHA, BHT
, TBHQ)

For more information contact:

The Feingold Assocation
www.feingold.org
554 East Main Street Suite 301
Riverhead, NY   11901
1-800-321-3287 (U.S. only)
1-631-369-9340





STAGE  FIVE
ADDITIONAL NUTRITIONAL SUPPLEMENTS 



Unhealthy Ingredients To Avoid: 

Monosodium Glutamate (MSG)/Hydrolyzed Protein
Artificial Sweeteners (Aspartame, etc)
High Fructose Corn Syrup
Excessive Refined Sugar
Trans Fat (Partially Hydrogenated Oil)


Read your labels!

Parents and individuals with food allergies and intolerances are responsible for reading the label of all products they intend to use regardless of how the product is represented. Certain unacceptable ingredients may be hidden under the name of natural flavorings.  Modified food starch is also a vague term which does not indicate the source of the starch (wheat or corn). Read all labels, verify that they are gluten and casein free.  When in doubt call the company.  Toll free numbers have been provided for most package foods. 

Cross Contamination

Gluten and casein cross contamination  is a legitimate concern.  Some manufacturers produce food on machinery that is also used to make many different products. The rinsing process on manufacturing lines may well vary between different companies. There are some companies that are not concerned with rinsing their lines but most companies are committed about thorough rinsing.   Some manufacturing companies sterilize and clean machinery between each item, using much higher water temperatures than water used in most households. Some of these manufacturing companies insist there is more chance of contamination in a consumer's kitchen due to improper washing of counter tops,  plates and utensils or pots and pans.

Gluten contamination from products which use flour ingredients is harder to control due to airborne flour dust. Dairy cross contamination may be easier to control when lines are washed between manufacturing products since airborne contamination at most times does not exist unless a powdered form is used.  It is important for you as consumers to contact companies and tell them these issues are important to you.  If you do not tell them, they will not know. Avoiding cross contamination  is a personal choice but one that should be based on being informed. 

Some other cross contamination considerations are listed below and recommended by the Celiac Organization (They restrict gluten from their diet).

*Use separate baking pans that have never been used with gluten-containing foods.  These baking pans should be used only when baking GFCF foods.

*A separate toaster or toaster oven should be used for GFCF breads, waffles, bagels, rolls, etc.
*A separate Waffle iron should be  used strictly for cooking regular waffles.
*Cross contamination can  also occur when a knife is used for spreading jelly, jams, peanut butter, etc. on breads. The knife can collect crumbs which remain on the utensil  after used on  regular breads and also gluten free breads. Keep two of the same product, labeling the products which are used for your gluten free family member(s).
*Also keep in mind that purchasing products from bins creates a high risk of cross contamination. Frequently scoops are used in multiple products, hence contamination is likely to occur.




Other useful info:


Distilled Vinegars can be from wheat, corn, potatoes, beets, wood, apples and many other things.  

Acceptable Vinegar
corn vinegar 
rice vinegar
potato vinegar
beet vinegar
apple/cider vinegar
Red Wine Vinegar  
White Wine Vinegar 
Balsamic Vinegar 
distilled wood vinegar  (wood-based vinegar is often the vinegar 
used in processed foods - verify with manufacturer) 
distilled vinegar

Unacceptable Vinegar
NO malted vinegar 
Verify ingredients of all flavored vinegar 



Nitrates                                                                                                                                       


Some parents express concern about nitrates/nitrites added to meat. They are preservatives that are specially added to meats like lunchmeats, bacon, ham, sausage, etc.  In particular they help prevent the growth of botulism bacteria.  They also help keep the meat red, instead of gray, which it would soon become without nitrites. Sodium Nitrate is additive number E250. Nitrates can easily be converted to nitrites by bacteria in the stomach. They have been shown in an animal study to cause distractibility, and they can also cause headaches. Some parents report their children become hyperactive after eating foods which contain these additives. Decision to eliminate these from your child's diet is a personal decision based on how your child reacts after eating food which contain nitrates/nitrites.

Phenols/Salicylate 


Many parents using dietary intervention and especially "advanced GFCF Dieters" begin to notice other emerging food intolerances. One such group of foods that many of our children show adverse reactions to are called  phenols.    They are impossible to avoid in ones diet because they are found everywhere.  However, phenolic foods which are high in salicylates are the ones most likely  needed to be avoided.   Not all children react the same after digesting particular foods in this category. Just like in any intervention, it is addressing the specific individual child's needs which will vary from one child to the next.  Some salicylates may be tolerated while others show an obvious adverse reaction. 


Natural salicylates are found in wholesome foods, some individuals have difficulty tolerating even small amounts of them. The reaction to a natural salicylate can be severe  if a person is highly sensitive. Some people are troubled by only one or two, while others are sensitive to all of them.
Addressing the need to eliminate foods high in Phenols / salicylates is usually reserved for advanced stages of GFCF dietary intervention.  A minimum of 2 months providing GFCF Foods should be addressed, making sure the diet is clean of gluten and casein offending ingredients before proceeding.  

Listed below are some of the symptoms that may be the result of  eating  highly phenolic foods. (Note: Not all of these symptoms need to be present and it is also important to note that these symptoms can also be due to autism, or other medical issues.) 
  • dark circles under the eyes
  • red face/ears
  • diarrhea
  • hyperactivity
  • aggression
  • headache
  • head banging or other self-injury
  • laughing at in appropriate time (at night or when something is not funny.)
  • strange rashes that appear on the body
  • erratic behaviors and moods
  • self stimulatory behaviors
  • night walking for several hours
  • have a difficult time with their stools (with constipation, diarrhea or undigested foods.)
By eliminating or greatly reducing phenols and salicylates many children on the spectrum became much happier and had fewer issues.

Low Fruits
Apple (yellow)
Banana
Paw Paw
Pear
Pomegranate
Low Vegetables
Bamboo Shoot
Bean sprouts
Black-eyed peas
Brown beans
Brussel sprouts
Cabbage
Celery
Garbanzo beans
Leeks
Lentils
Lettuce
Lima beans
Mung beans
Peas
Potato
Shallots
Soybeans
Summer squash
Swede
Sweet potato
Low Grains
Arrowroot
Buckwheat
Cornmeal
Maize
Millet
Rice
Soy
Grits
Low Nuts/Seeds
Cashews
Poppy seeds
Low Animal Products
Beef
Egg
Fish
Lamb
Liver
Pork
Poultry
Shellfish
Low Other
Carob powder
Chives
Cocoa powder
Maple syrup
Milo
Parsley
Saffron
Shallots
Sugar
Chamomile tea
vodka
Moderate Fruits
Apples (red)
Casaba melon
Cantaloupe
Cherries (sweet)
Figs
Grapes light/seedless
Kiwi (golden)
Lemon
Loquat
Lychee
Mango
Nectarine
Passion Fruit
Persimmon
Pineapple
Tamarillo
Watermelon
Moderate Vegetables
Asparagus
Beet
Carrot
Cauliflower
Corn
Cauliflower
Cucumber (no skin)
Eggplant
Green beans
Olives (black)
Onion
Parsnip
Pumpkin
Rhubarb
Spinach
Squash (marrow)
Turnip
Moderate Nuts & Seeds
Brazil nuts
Coconut (dried)
Hazelnuts
Macadamia nuts
Pecans
Sesame seeds
Sunflower seeds
Walnuts
Moderate Other
Coriander leaves
Corn syrup
Garlic
Molasses
Tea (herbal/decaf)
Wine (rose,white)

 
High Moderate Fruits
Apples (green)
Cherries (sour)
Grapes (red)
Grapefruit (red)
Kiwi (green)
Mandarin orange
Mulberries
Peach
Tangelo
High Moderate Vegetables
Alfalfa
Broad beans
Broccoli
Chili peppers
Cucumber (with skin)
Mushrooms
Okra
Watercress
High Moderate Nuts
Pine nuts
Pistachios
High Moderate Other
Coffee
Fennel powder
Wine (Cabernet/Riestling/Savignon
High Fruits
Apricots
Blackberries
Blueberries
Boysenberries
Cranberries
Cranberry sauce
Currants
Dates
Guava
Loganberries
Orange
Plum
Youngberries
High Vegetables
Chicory
Endive
Peppers (red/yellow)
Mushrooms
Radishes
Tomatoes
Zucchini
High Nuts
Almonds
Peanuts
Water chestnuts
High Other
Bay leaves
Basil
Caraway
Champagne
Chili powder
Ginger root
Mint
Nutmeg
Pepper (white)
Peppermints
Pimentos
Rum
Tea (green,black)
Vanilla flavoring
Vinegar
 
Very High Fruits
Raisins
Prunes
Strawberries
Raspberries
Very High Vegetables
Pepper (green)
Tomato paste
Tomato sauce
Very High Other
Allspice
Cardamom
Cloves
Dill
Licorice
Paprika(sweet)

Pepper
Pickles
Aniseed
Canella powder
Cayenne
Celery powder
Cinnamon
Cumin
Curry
Dill powder
Honey
Horseradish
Mace
Mustard powder
Oregano
Paprika (hot)
Rosemary/
Sage
Tarragon
Turmeric
Thyme
Worcestershire sauce

Support Groups
E-mail Community Support of GFCF Diet
GFCF Kids
The email community  is a large group of families using the GFCF diet. (over 12,000 families!) The list is provided for parents to support each other with questions that are directly related to gluten and casein free foods. Membership (no fee) is necessary and is very easy. Click onto the address below and follow the prompts to join.
 http://groups.yahoo.com/group/GFCFKids

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

A little metal with your veggies?


Proper cookware is really important if you want to retain the full nutrients and integrity of your meats, veggies and cooked fruits. You really have to be careful to avoid leaching and toxins of heated metals. We use Titanium 316 ti and it was worth the full investment. We were able to cut out our supplemental vitamins just because we are getting the full nutrients of our food. If you can't afford titanium, stainless steel is the next best choice.  I found a cool blog by Rebecca Wood (Julia Childs cookbook author) that explained the differences of the types of cookware. 



One taste of hot tea in a Styrofoam cup and you know you're drinking more than tea. Even though the cup looks stable, it's not. And have you noticed how dried foods stored in plastic bags start to taste like plastic? It’s because food ions react with synthetic or metallic ions.
Avoid adding toxins to your foods. Here are guidelines for choosing—and using—healthy cookware. Quality cookware helps you maintain good health and, in some cases, even enhances flavor. It's also useful to know which foods most quickly react to plastic storage containers and to aluminum and cast-iron cookware.
There’s good reason why glass and ceramic beakers are used in a chemistry lab where it’s critical that containers don’t taint the experiment. Glass and ceramic are inert or non-reactive.
Before making your next kitchen purchase, consider the reactivity of various tools and cookware and, whenever possible, favor inert or non-reactive. Or, as second choice, use moderately reactive pots and utensils. As possible, avoid more reactive cookware.
Inert, Non-Reactive Cookware -- A Superior Choice
Earthenware and ceramic are inert. Additionally, they emit a far-infrared heat, the most effective and beneficial heat for cooking, which enables a full range of subtle flavors to emerge. Excellent for lengthy simmering and baking, these beautiful but breakable items require special handling.
Xtrema has a full line of moderately priced ceramic cookware and bakeware. You may also find casseroles and pie pans from your local potter. Examples of terra cotta earthenware include Spanish cazuelas and Romertopf casseroles.  (Note: antique ceramic or earthenware pots may contain lead; do not use without testing. To test for lead, purchase a lead test kit for $10 at a hardware store.)
Enamel is actually a fused glass surface. Le Creuset and Chantal are two quality enamel brands. With proper care, a fine enamel pot lasts a lifetime, whereas inexpensive enamel cookware from variety stores has such a thin enamel layer that it chips easily and is not worth its purchase price. Once chipped, discard enamel kitchenware or enamel fragments will find their way into your food and the underlying metal will react with food. If it’s affordable, favor enamel pots.
Titanium is nonreactive and lightweight but a poor heat conductor. So typically what is labeled titanium cookware is actually aluminum cookware that has a fused ceramic-titanium, nonstick coating. This cookware is expensive, but durable and a healthful, nonreactive choice.
Glass coffee pots and casserole dishes are inert and affordable. Favor glass containers for storing food.
Bamboo steamers and paddles as well as wooden spoons, chopsticks and crockery are non-reactive and modestly priced.
Paper Goods are, in some applications, effective. Line reactive aluminum cookie sheets or muffin tins with parchment paper or paper muffin cups. And for food storage, as is practical, favor waxed or butcher paper over plastic wrap or bags.
Silicone cookware is inert, FDA approved and safe up to 428 degrees F. If heated above its safe range, silicone melts but doesn’t outgas toxic vapors. Silicone is a synthetic rubber now made into baking pans, baking sheets, muffin tins, spatulas, ice cube trays, molds, rolling pins and more. It is the only non-reactive, non-stick material. The advantages of silicone include heat resistance (below 428 degrees), flexibility, the fact that it can go directly from the oven or microwave into the refrigerator or freezer and that it is generally easy to clean.
Moderately Reactive Cookware -- A Good Choice
Stainless steel is the least reactive metal, and for many people, the most versatile and healthful cookware option. Of the various weights, heavy-gauge stainless or surgical steel is superior. It makes an acceptable set of basic pots, pans and bake ware. Remove food from metal as soon as it is cooked to minimize the food from developing a metallic taste. Once stainless steel has been scratched, through normal scouring, the leaching of metallic ions is more noticeable. Better yet, don't scour stainless cookware. When you've burned something onto the pot, cover the damage with baking soda or a strong detergent and let it rest for a day. The soda will "lift" off the scoarched food.
Carbon steel is inexpensive and is ideal for a wok or sauté pan because it rapidly conveys heat. To prevent rusting, carbon steel must be thoroughly dry when not in use.
Cast iron pots are good for quick breads, pancakes and crêpes and for sautéing vegetables. Do not, however, cook soups, liquids or acid foods in cast iron, as these foods leach harsh-tasting iron from the pot. Although a soup cooked in cast iron becomes iron-enriched, it’s not a bioavailable form of iron, and is therefore undesirable.
Reactive Cookware -- Not Recommended
Nonstick cookware contains plastic polymers (silicon is the one exception). The surface of the original nonstick cookware, Teflon, was coated with the synthetic resin. In newer nonstick pans (such as ScanPan, Caphalon, Swiss Diamond and Circulon) the polymer commingles with the anodized metal surface. If heated to 500 degrees F., the polymers emit noxious fumes that are lethal to parakeets and certainly not healthy for humans.
Even though I never intend to boil a pot dry, I did so just last week. Had that pot been nonstick, its temperatures would have exceeded the safety limit. Nonstick surfaces first appeared in 1944. Prior to that, cooks minimized sticking by using lower temperatures and/or more fat or liquid. It’s doable today. And should something stick, elbow grease removes it. Please avoid all synthetic non-stick pans and utensils.
Aluminum enriches your food with aluminum to the detriment of your health. Cast aluminum is more stable and preferable to thin aluminum pans. Rather than wrapping a baked potato in aluminum foil, consider baking it directly on the oven rack or placing it in a covered casserole dish.
new anodized aluminum pot is non-reactive and fairly durable. However, once the surface chips, peels or is scratched, it becomes reactive. I, therefore, do not recommend anodized cookware.
Plastic it's easy to assess the reactivity of plastic in terms of its structure. The more flexible a plastic, the more it is reactive. Thus plastic wrap more quickly exchanges synthetic ions with food than does a flexible milk jug; and the latter is more reactive than a sturdy plastic container. Do not store foods in plastic containers that once contained chemicals. And, it's not advisable to microwave food in plastic.
Incidentally, the poly-vinyl chloride (PVC) typically found in plastic wrap leaches a hormone-disrupting toxin, DEAH, into the surface layers of food. Additionally, PVC contains phthalates which accumulate in body tissues and damage the liver and lungs. Phthalates damage the reproductive organs of test animals. Note that phthalate migration from plastic wrap is increased by mechanical stress (bending, pressure, chewing), solvents such as fats, oils, saliva, and temperatures over 85° F.

Foods Vary in their Reactivity
Do keep in mind that temperature affects reactivity. When hot, a food reacts more quickly than when it is cold. Thus, refrigeration deters uptake of metal or plastic ions.
Additionally, some foods are more reactive than others. Fat, acidic ingredients and water are more efficient absorbs than are protein and carbohydrates. Thus chicken fat more quickly sops up plastic polymers than does chicken flesh. While raw rice is a slow absorber, when cooked with water, oil, tomatoes and/or vinegar it more speedily uptakes foreign ions. This explains why quality oils, vinegar and wine are sold exclusively in non-reactive glass.
It’s not necessary or expedient to ban all plastic from your kitchen. However, you might explore creative ways to decrease your use of reactive products.  An informed consumer is an empowered consumer. May this information serve you in skillfully upgrading and maintaining a healthy kitchen.