Product Review: Zema’s Madhouse Foods

A few weeks ago (OK, maybe more than a few, I was moving slow there for a while!), I got a box in the mail from Zema’s Madhouse Foods. Inside, a box of Gluten-Free Cinnamon-Oatmeal Apple Muffin Mix, which is of course what I want to talk to you about today.

The general premise of Zema’s mixes is that they are gluten-free, ancient grain, high fiber and protein, low glycemic index. In addition to the muffin mix, they offer two different pancake and waffle mixes (a cocoa teff variety, and a seeded multigrain) and a pizza/focaccia mix made with rosemary and millet (you can see them all here). Continue reading “Product Review: Zema’s Madhouse Foods”

Is There Gluten in Your Morning Cup?

By Bridget

As with most people diagnosed with a gluten sensitivity, my doctor ordered a much larger test to see what other foods my body didn’t process so easily. Turned out that coffee was another sensitive food. After doing a little research, I found that I may not be the only person sensitive to coffee or tea.

It turns out that coffee and tea can contain trace amounts of gluten. While the beans or tealeaves themselves do not contain any gluten, some products are subject to cross contamination, particularly with barley. Additionally, many flavored coffees contain additives made with wheat flour and other grains, particularly in instant coffees and creamers. The manufacturers use gluten as a filler additive to their product. For the most part, coffees that do contain fillers list them on their labels, so as long as “gelatinized starch,”  “modified food starch,” and “vegetable starch” are not ingredients listed on your coffee, you should be good to drink. But if you’re concerned and have experienced some issues in the past, buy your own beans and grind them yourself to ensure no cross-contamination.

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Staying Social in a Gluten-Filled World

By Bridget

When I was first diagnosed with a gluten intolerance, I was so relieved to find a solution to my digestive problems and exhaustion that the exchange for a radical diet upheaval seemed okay. I didn’t really miss gluten if all the forgetfulness, irritability, and fatigue went away. The new diet I was on seemed like a fun challenge, and not an insurmountable obstacle. While the relief certainly remains, this “honeymoon” period of my gluten-intolerance has certainly subsided. There are times I just want to pack a sandwich for lunch or grab a bagel on the way to work. Sometimes I just don’t want to preface my restaurant order with “I have a couple of dietary restrictions…”

A 2011 psychological study examined just these issues associated with Celiac’s Disease. The study surveyed 146 people suffering from Celiac’s Disease in England, analyzing the impact of the disease on both the dietary habits and quality of life for the participants. Interestingly, while those surveyed reported feeling in very good physical and emotional health, many reported anxiety, frustration, and mild depression about their disease. These feelings were reactions to social and leisure activity exclusion, as well as having difficulty finding gluten-free foods. These feelings were further impacted by a reported embarrassment about order gluten-free food, or a need to inquire after the kitchen conditions of a restaurant.

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Six Gluten-Free Grains to Check Out

By Zach

Contrary to popular assumption, gluten-free doesn’t have to mean grain-free. Granted, there are many grains out there such as spelt that are harsh to celiacs’ digestive track and for people with gluten sensitivity in general. Be that as it may, celiacs and gluten-sensitive people can still enjoy the hearty textures of grains and quench their carb-cravings with these six basic grains (although some are technically seeds) that are gluten-free. Hopefully you can learn something new about them and implement some of them into your culinary circle!

Quinoa (goes great with tilapia, sweet potatoes and greens)

Quinoa has been around for centuries as the Incas regarded it as sacred. It’s one of my favorite grains, although I recently just learned that it is technically an herb-derived seed. Nonetheless, it is unique among other grains as it serves as a complete protein with all nine amino acids and a good source of fiber, iron, minerals (such as magnesium) and B-complex vitamins. The health benefits of quinoa contain lessening the risk of heart disease and helping secure your cells against destructive free radicals via the building block superoxide dismutase.

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Israel may Approve Subsidized GF Food for Celiac Patients

Israel can be a great place to eat gluten-free food, but it’s (maybe) about to get even better for the  country’s 30,000+ celiacs.

Last week, reports, the Knesset approved a bill that would support celiac patients in a number of ways: the patients would be provided with some form of financial support each month, and the cost of gluten-free foods would also be reduced so that gluten-free bread would not cost more than its gluten-full alternative.
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