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Eeyorific

Is It Really That Easy For Some?

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Before I get started, I need to say, I am not trying to be judgemental or hurtful in ANY way!!! This is an honest question I have... maybe we're doing something within our household that's making it harder than need be. So if your thoughts and opinions can help us see our error and lighten our load... this will be worth asking.

Many, many times (on this board and others as well) I have often seen people suggest that the entire household goes gluten-free. And while I agree with this in theory.... at least in our case (and don't get me wrong, 3 out of 4 of us are gluten-free) this is DANG HARD!!!!! I just do not understand how people can afford this!!!

Just this week, we haven't been able to buy any bread for the kids, daughter is eating fruity pebbles (going on 2nd week, and on the days she doesn't eat eggs) while I'm spending 5,000.00 to fix her teeth with braces. I am NOT happy about the junk cereal at all! We simply can not swing the special cereal this week. :(

I guess I need to point out that our case may be a bit different than most due to the fact my son is also corn and dairy free. But even still... we ended up having sloppy joe tacos (on chips) due to the fact of not having any bread in the house. Monday night we used up the rest of our Tinkyada pasta for spaghetti, so for left overs last night (had TONS of sauce left over) we again had to resort to the chips. :( While, all along, I had to make something different for son who couldn't have the corn which is in the chips and sauces.

I know we can avoid meals which need special items, and 90% of the time we do.. however, I can not tell you just how burnt out on salmon, beef and chicken we are... OMGosh!!... the CHICKEN.. 4-5 days a week, this is what we usually have.. That and eggs :(:(:(:( I've stopped eating in the mornings because I don't dare take the cereal or bread away from the kids... I usually have a salad with some fruit for lunch. (which I'm careful not to deprive ds from because he's not able to eat much more) The good news is, I've lost alot of weight. The bad news is, I'm STARVING!!!!!

I know this is turning into a vent, and I apologize, but it really is a valid question and concern I have. Is anyone else in this position?

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I know it is hard. When my kids were home (3) I had a hard enough time keeping enough food in the house for them and they weren't gluten free. I was hungry many times.

Now, with just my food to buy there are many things I can't afford due to the expense of our gluten-free food. I haven't had bread in over a month because it's so expensive. I don't have any answers but maybe others will. I just wanted you to know I understand how hard it is.


Nostaglia is a file that removes the rough edges from the good old days!!!!

" 15 years of it's stress!"

"blood work show's a disease called celiac,

but it can't be that because it's rare!"

Diagnosed via blood and biopsy 2003

Not a medical professional just a silly celiac

offering support, my

experience and advice

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Before I get started, I need to say, I am not trying to be judgemental or hurtful in ANY way!!! This is an honest question I have... maybe we're doing something within our household that's making it harder than need be. So if your thoughts and opinions can help us see our error and lighten our load... this will be worth asking.

Many, many times (on this board and others as well) I have often seen people suggest that the entire household goes gluten-free. And while I agree with this in theory.... at least in our case (and don't get me wrong, 3 out of 4 of us are gluten-free) this is DANG HARD!!!!! I just do not understand how people can afford this!!!

Just this week, we haven't been able to buy any bread for the kids, daughter is eating fruity pebbles (going on 2nd week, and on the days she doesn't eat eggs) while I'm spending 5,000.00 to fix her teeth with braces. I am NOT happy about the junk cereal at all! We simply can not swing the special cereal this week. :(

I guess I need to point out that our case may be a bit different than most due to the fact my son is also corn and dairy free. But even still... we ended up having sloppy joe tacos (on chips) due to the fact of not having any bread in the house. Monday night we used up the rest of our Tinkyada pasta for spaghetti, so for left overs last night (had TONS of sauce left over) we again had to resort to the chips. :( While, all along, I had to make something different for son who couldn't have the corn which is in the chips and sauces.

I know we can avoid meals which need special items, and 90% of the time we do.. however, I can not tell you just how burnt out on salmon, beef and chicken we are... OMGosh!!... the CHICKEN.. 4-5 days a week, this is what we usually have.. That and eggs :(:(:(:( I've stopped eating in the mornings because I don't dare take the cereal or bread away from the kids... I usually have a salad with some fruit for lunch. (which I'm careful not to deprive ds from because he's not able to eat much more) The good news is, I've lost alot of weight. The bad news is, I'm STARVING!!!!!

I know this is turning into a vent, and I apologize, but it really is a valid question and concern I have. Is anyone else in this position?

ok, im going out on a limb here and im sorry if i affend anyone by my thoughts. i myself find it very expensive with my diet requirements, im the only one in the house ( at the moment) and altho i know it would be more healthy for my kids to eat gluten free ( and a load of my mind) it simply isnt practical for us, at the moment we are stuglling severly with the cash so haveing to buy specailist food for all 3 kids and a hubby that doesnt need it would be very hard. half the time i go hungry iether from lack of wanting to bother to cook from scratch or lack of supplys in the house caused by the cash flow prob or the fact that there isnt any decent shops here to buy any food( we live miles from anywhere).everyone needs to vent and ive done my fair share of it here and there has allways been someone here willing to listen to me so you carry on. at the end of the day you do what you can. dont know if thuis can help but whay about soya for the dairy intolerant, maybe adding pulses to stews instead of meat and they are really cheap. i know you said you are sick of salmon but what about rainbow trout spicy fish cakes. apologize if i misunderstood anything. its really hard and have struggled a lot with this thing but you are not alone. lol taz.


married with 3 boys, maclain, dylan and finlay. symptoms for more than 10 years but only diagnosed may 06. lactose and casien intolerant may 06.

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I know it's very expensive. I think I have a little experience in dealing with this kind of situation here because of my background, although we had only one child to feed at home (now grown up), but we also fed her boyfriend and sometimes other friends, just about every day.

We were not gluten free at that time, but we were vegan, which can also be terribly expensive. What I found was that trying to make more Asian style dinners was cheaper back then, especially if I could get to an Asian store to shop. I made many stews and soups (with veggies, lentils, split peas--if you add dried shiitake mushrooms to stew they seem like meat) or chili in the crockpot and then we enjoyed them over rice, which I bought in huge sacks pretty cheap from Asain stores.

Now that we are eating gluten free, it's just my husband and myself in the home these days. I think gluten free packaged foods are often really good as a treat, but just too expensive even for just the two of us, so I can imagine how difficult it would be for your situation. I'm back to the stews and soups, rice, etc. I have even begun buying all sorts of noodles from the Asian sections of a international market. They're really cheap, and are either just rice flour and water or tapioca flour and water. I use some types of Asian noodles for spaghetti type dishes, I use one macaroni style rice noodle that's really tasty as a dairy-free/gluten-free macaroni & cheese (making cheese substitute from nutritional yeast--there are recipes all over the web for this kind of cheese sub) or throw those noodles into a pan with some sort of chili (we do meatless because we choose to, but really it's also a lot cheaper...throw in some pinto beans and black beans and shiitake mushrooms and forget the meat) to make chili-mac, I use rice or tapioca wrappers to make spring rolls or I layer them in a casserole dish as you would lasagna noodles and they make a great lasagna that everybody loves...very cheap too! Cheaper than even regular glutiny pasta would be.

I order sorghum flour by the bucket from twinvalleymills.com...it's much cheaper that way than buying small bags of gluten-free flours or mixes in the health food section. I combine that with rice flour I get really cheap in the international store, Indian section, and I use coconut milk (which is also expensive at regular stores and cheap at international or Asian stores) for the liquid to go into brownies, cakes, cobblers or whatever I'm baking. I haven't used eggs in years, but just bind it together by adding starch...potato starch dissolved in water or tapioca starch, again, both cheap if you go to Asian or Indian stores.

I buy a type of flour known in India as gram flour (different than graham flour), made with chickpeas. Again, it's cheap and I make a flat bread in the oven from it called socca bread, and then put pizza sauce and pizza veggies on that to make pizza. It's not like anything from Pizza Hut, but we enjoy eating that along with the rice wrapper-layered lasagna.

I enjoy the tapioca bread from Ener-G, but that stuff is so expensive we don't get it very much. I know I'm probably not that much help, here, but just trying to think of ideas that either you could use, or maybe help get you to thinking along the lines of some sort of gluten-free frugality that would end up making it all a lot cheapier and easier for you and your family. Hope you find practical solutions that would work for you, very soon! I can imagine the frustration you must be having.

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I don't buy many specialty foods at all. For us, going completely gluten free in the house has actually saved us money. We don't buy a lot of junk food anymore, no more tv dinners, no expensive processed canned foods... We buy fresh meat, fruit, and vegetables for dinner, for lunch I make something special like homemade pizza or lunchmeat pinwheels, for breakfast we either do cereal or eggs and bacon. For snacks we do veggie strips dipped in ranch or bbq, fruit wedges with peanut butter, or the occasional cheetoh or corn chip and salsa. We have pasta every once in a while, but not very often. Our grocery bills were almost cut in half by going gluten free. And, we all feel much healthier now.


~Angie~

Gluten free since May 2004

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No its not that easy for us. There are three of us, a dog and a bird. Costs us around $150 a week for food, but I would rather spend the money there, instead of TV, movies, etc, then risk my son get gluten.


- Vincent -

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A very important thing I should have mentioned in my 1st post... while it's hard and frustrating, and at times feeling nearly impossible... I know and trust that God WILL provide our needs!!! Things may not always be the way I would like them... but I fully trust in HIS plan and protection in our life!!!

Kristie

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Going gluten free can be very expensive. I started out buying lots of specialty foods, but now I have learned how to make most foods gluten free without spending tons of money. I stopped buying gluten free bread. I just wasn't crazy about it and bread is one thing you can learn to live without. I still buy gluten free pasta, but we just don't use it all the time.

I know going gluten free is really hard on the whole family. I have been gluten free for about 7 months now, but I just recently found out my son is also gluten intolerant (and DD may be also). I think that having them be gluten free is going to be much harder. I know it is hard enough for me to remember to make sure things are gluten free before I eat them. Hopefully it will be easier for them in the future if they grow up gluten free.

btw, learning how to convert your recipes to be gluten free makes things a lot easier or you could buy a gluten free cookbook.

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I think that this is a very valid point. Going completely gluten-free can be expensive when the whole family is on the diet. But over time as you learn to cook with whole, fresh foods....it can be turned around to be less expensive.

I do most of our grocery shopping at Marc's where their meats and organic produce is much less expensive than at our regular grocer. When the sales flyers come in on Tuesday, I take 10 minutes to shop the sales and make out my grocery list. Then I pitch the fliers in the recycle bin so they don't overtake my house. I've found deals on chicken for $ .99 per lb. and stock up in the freezer. There are nights when dinner for the whole family is under $5 and we have plenty of leftovers. I always cook extras for lunches and snacks. So one roaster chicken can be converted into a chicken salad (with mayo, grapes, celery and red onion), rice quesadillas with black beans and salsa, hot chicken with fries and gravy and a side of peas, chili, etc.. We also will make things like tuna salad (this time with celery and diced apple), and sliced tomato, cucumber and chips for sides. I think that the key for us is shopping the sales, making extra portions and sticking with whole foods as opposed to pre-packaged items.

I've found tons of awesome recipe ideas in Living Without magazine and it's been an absolute life-saver for us because it cuts out the need to buy the pre-made breads and cookies. I pick two days a week to spend time with my dd and bake up some treats for the week. This week it was graham crackers from scratch. Once you have the flours in stock in your pantry, it's not nearly that expensive to put the family on a gluten-free diet. And I put all of my treats into single-serve baggies and then into a freezer-safe plastic container so that I can pull things out as I need them. It helps to go with mini-treats sometimes too. For instance, instead of making regular-size cupcakes, I use my mini-cupcake pan and put 3 cupcakes to a bag. This cuts down portion size....and let's face it....the kids don't always NEED a full-size cupcake in order to satisfy the treat craving.

I agree with the pp that you can find a lot of gluten-free items for much less at other types of groceries. And in some instances, it works out better to shop online. Or in the least, shop out any sales at your health food store on line prior to going if at all possible. These days, the only real specialty items we buy are Vegenaise, agave nectar (on sale for cheap on amazon .com right now), a few gluten-free cereals, Enjoy Life chocolate chips, organic canned tuna, gluten-free flours and an occasional cookie or cake mix. We've found a recipe for chocolate brownies made with almond flour and chocolate chips that is absolutely awesome and tastes better than conventional ones. And I just buy the almonds whole and grind them in my coffee mill. So it's not so expensive.

Another thing which may be helpful (if you have a bit of yard) is to grow some herbs, fruits and veggies of your own. The seeds go on sale in the fall and you can start them yourself. Or just buy the plants in the spring. I have thyme, sweet basil and sage right now. Plus, for $2.50, I bought a raspberry plant which has already yielded berries for us daily to go with breakfast or lunch. Blueberry bushes were the same cost and I also spent $5 to get 25 strawberry plants. Each year, you get more and more out of them. But this being our first year with the plants, I can say that we've only broke even on the strawberries, the blueberry bush won't fruit until next year but the raspberry bush....if you pay $2.50 a quart at the store....I've saved over $10 already. And next year, I won't have to buy any more as I'll have plenty. They spread like mad! I'd plant more but currently we live in condo (so herbs in pots on the patio). We're moving in a few months and so help me....I WILL have a larger garden to offset costs even more. lol!

If a garden is out of the question...consider going to the U-Pick fruit farms. It's often much cheaper, you pick as much as you can use and it's very easy to make your own preserves and freezer jam. Gluten and corn-free. The only investment is either some disposable gladware (for jams) and perhaps a dozen Mason jars. I also froze extra berries for use in recipes during the winter months when things are off-season and outrageously priced. It may sound like a lot of work, but in all honesty, it's about 3 hours worth of work per each batch you get (including picking time). The kids often enjoy the outings as well as learning how to do for themselves. My dd is only 3 and she LOVES doing these activities. Not only is her food safe....but she is learning the ingredients and how to create her own favorites.

The point ultimately being....if you can step back and look into things a bit, you may find a way to re-work your meals and grocery shopping to work out more to your advantage. Cooking from scratch for 3 meals per day is not attainable by everyone (myself included). So making double batches or stocking up on sale items can help. I don't know how old your children are....but if they're 3 or over, you can enlist their aid in baking special treats. The least they can do is lick the spoon and clean out the bowl! lol! But be forewarned....they will eventually start baking projects for you at times. My dd takes out the bowls, mixer and some of the main ingredients and will start putting them together if I'm not careful. I've been impressed on how quickly she's learning.

Try not to let this get you down. And if you have time, go check out some sites that have recipes on the Paleo diet. All of them are grain-free and few of them are expensive or difficult to make. And the ones I've tried so far have been really good. This can be managable once you find some good recipe sources and let go of the old lifestyle which revolved around sandwiches and pasta. You can do wraps with lettuce leaves, sandwich meat or make your own flatbreads with not too much extra effort. Soups and chili are also relatively inexpensive and easy to make at home compared to buying pre-made stuff. It's all a matter of perspective and learning to think outside of the box....a feat which is always hardest in the beginning of a major life change. If you'd like some links to recipe sites, let me know. I'll be glad to post them.

You don't need to live on chicken alone. ;) There's turkey, pork, ostrich, pheasant, bison, fish and shellfish, beef. And there's also a large range of vegetarian meals which could work too. Maybe a few new recipes which change things up a bit as far as presentation and taste would help?


Vicky

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We have not gone gluten free yet but we have been putting lots of thought into all of this as we have researched all that is involved in cc and what not. We have decided that the whole house will be gluten free except the frozen and canned things that my husband will bring to work. One thing that I don't know if it is an option for you or not would be to plant a garden as this can provide allot of enexpensive produce....this year we have hit up the farmers market and allot of there prices seem to be allot lower than our local grocery store. Another thing is WIC wich I believe families even making quit a bit can qualify for but it is only for kids under 5.....it will buy them milk, juice, peanut butter, eggs, and cereal.....it's not allot but it helps leave money for other things. I donno if you would qulitfy for state assistance for food but even if you only get $20 of help it would help when you have nothing to feed your kids. Also check out the local food pantries as they still may be able to give you things that are gluten free. As far as the bread your best bet besides not eating it would be to make it homemade. If time is a factor try making bigger meals and freezing them for later. Of course as mentioned cut out coupons....you can find some online as well....check for sales and stock up. I donno what kind of a income tax return you get but we tend to stock up on allot of food then to ease up on bills later in the year. We plan to bye very few specialty items and stick with things that are naturally gluten free like potatoes and rice. Rice makes a nice base for allot of meals. A current winner with our daughter is corn tortias with cheese and chicken or cheese ham and eggs....it's not very expensive.


Myself-Age 25....I have had symptoms since at least 1998 if not since infancy (was diagnosed with malnutrition as a small child)...Positive results with gluten free diet!

Hannah-Age 5.....Has symptoms....Inconclusive blood tests....Positive diet response to both gluten free and lactose free!

Grace-Age 1.....Born at 29 weeks due to me having celiac....Has reflux and a feeding tube.

Husband-Not Celiac......has found that he does feel better when not eating allot of gluten.....is gluten free at home.

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we are feeding a family of 9 gluten free meals and the expense can be overwhelming. i know we could save so much money if i were to make many more homemade products----but i am not well physically or mentally right now and i just can't do it. (i do not have celiac and a gluten free diet did not improve my symptoms)

i think starting this thread was a great idea on your part------people are adding some great tips for saving money.

spunky---could you elaborate a little more on using the tapioca wrappers? i have some of these but am not sure how to use them.


Christine

15 year old twins with celiac, diagnosed dec. 2005

11 year old daughter with celiac diagnosed dec 2005

17 year old son with celiac gene

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Hi

I'm going gluten-free for our 2 children and buy most of our foods ar WF or TJ....we were spending $700per mnth and last mnth was $900!

Ouch...I am going to look into recipes etc to see if I could start making cookies/breads to save some $

Kim

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There are some really good suggestions posted here. The problem I'm having is that I live in a very rural area in NE PA. Our town has one grocery store and a Dollar General (which doesn't carry any fresh produce). The closest towns with larger and more stores is 30 minutes away.

This may not sound like a long distance but I live and work (Mon - Fri) in my hometown, I have two teenage kids active in sports, and I have difficulty finding time to drive an hour (there and back) to pick up a few groceries. I don't even think there is an asian store within an hour from my home. In our local grocery store produce is very high priced because they're the only one in town and usually it spoils within a few days.

Sorry to rant :( I'm just so new at this and I guess I need to be more organized and make time to shop for healthy foods. I'm just so tired of not having things that I can eat in the house. :wacko:


Jackie

hypothyroid 1991

back surgery for herniated disk 1997

gallbladder removed 2004

knee & back pain, depression and headaches for too many years to count

Negative labwork for IGG & IGA 8/3/06

Decided not to have anymore tests. Started gluten-free on 8/7/06.

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Hi

I'm going gluten-free for our 2 children and buy most of our foods ar WF or TJ....we were spending $700per mnth and last mnth was $900!

Kim

:o Oh My! Right now we are able to spend about 75.00 a week (total bill including misc, and there are 4 in our family) but with many thanks to the Lord, my childcare is growing... so starting next week, things should get a bit easier.

There are some really good suggestions posted here. The problem I'm having is that I live in a very rural area in NE PA. Our town has one grocery store and a Dollar General (which doesn't carry any fresh produce). The closest towns with larger and more stores is 30 minutes away.

This may not sound like a long distance but I live and work (Mon - Fri) in my hometown, I have two teenage kids active in sports, and I have difficulty finding time to drive an hour (there and back) to pick up a few groceries. I don't even think there is an asian store within an hour from my home. In our local grocery store produce is very high priced because they're the only one in town and usually it spoils within a few days.

Sorry to rant :( I'm just so new at this and I guess I need to be more organized and make time to shop for healthy foods. I'm just so tired of not having things that I can eat in the house. :wacko:

Jackie,

My heart goes out to you and my prayers are with you. I grew up in a town much like you are describing and while where we live now has more to offer.. I simply cringe at the thought of going through *this* living in such a rural area. (((hugs)))

wanna hear something funny.. today, I had the best lunch I've had in ages, and all I did differently was change my salad dressing, yesterday I had a salad with my all time favorite dressing, but was greatly disappointed. Today, I decided to mix things up a bit and use a gluten-free dressing I had in the fridge but have never used for salads before (usually used it on my Ruben sandwhiches) anyway... OMGosh!! It was so good! I think my taste buds have changed enough that things I didn't like prior to going gluten-free are now hitting the spot! (may not work with all cases but I was pleasently surprised!)

Kristie

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The problem I'm having is that I live in a very rural area in NE PA. Our town has one grocery store and a Dollar General (which doesn't carry any fresh produce). The closest towns with larger and more stores is 30 minutes away.

Hi,

I am with you on the rural thing. I found a food buying group through United Buying Clubs (I'm not making any money off this by the way). Here's a link: http://www.unitedbuyingclubs.com/RESOURCES...C/FABC_Home.htm

You buy in bulk and save over retail prices. There my already be a club in your area. They carry 1,000's of gluten-free items as well as natural cleaning supplies, supplements, health and beauty aids just about eveything. The best part is there is NO MEMBERSHIP FEE AND NO SHIPPING FEE!


Richard

"Not all who wander are lost" - J.R.R. Tolkien

Diagnosed 3/8/05

Sister also Celiac

Risus remedium optimum est

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I am tired of what I eat, too. Right now doc has me on restricted carbs because of other than celiac issues (adrenal fatigue), so all I eat is meat, veggies, and eggs.

We have six kids and we all eat gluten-free at home. Fortunately, after years of struggling at the family business, my husband can afford to feed us in our new gluten-free lifestyle. I don't know what we would have done several years ago when things were really tight. We save a lot, however, in that we NEVER eat out anymore. Most of what I make is naturally gluten-free anyway ... meat, eggs, fish, veggies, fruit, potatoes, rice. I overdid the Asian stuff and got quite tired of it, but find you can give rice and meat any flavor you want. Think outside the box!! Maybe take some rice, add chicken, black beans, tomatoes, cilantro, peppers, and top with salsa for a Mexican flavor ... that was just off the top of my head, but you get the idea ... make the same boring stuff interesting just by the combinations of it.

I make lots of potatoes and sweet potatoes, too. Ocassionally I'll buy something that's a gluten-free specialty item, like tonight we're having penne.

I'm not even going to mention what I spend a month on groceries .... :ph34r:


gluten-free 12/05

diagnosed with Lyme Disease 12/06

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Hi,

I am with you on the rural thing. I found a food buying group through United Buying Clubs (I'm not making any money off this by the way). Here's a link: http://www.unitedbuyingclubs.com/RESOURCES...C/FABC_Home.htm

You buy in bulk and save over retail prices. There my already be a club in your area. They carry 1,000's of gluten-free items as well as natural cleaning supplies, supplements, health and beauty aids just about eveything. The best part is there is NO MEMBERSHIP FEE AND NO SHIPPING FEE!

Thanks Richard ;) ,

I will definitely check that out. One of the main reasons I have avoided ordering online is the shipping.


Jackie

hypothyroid 1991

back surgery for herniated disk 1997

gallbladder removed 2004

knee & back pain, depression and headaches for too many years to count

Negative labwork for IGG & IGA 8/3/06

Decided not to have anymore tests. Started gluten-free on 8/7/06.

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I've also got a very restrictive diet, basically just meats, fruits, veggies. No dairy, no grains, I also avoid starches and most sugars.

Fortunately my cooking skills are good. I enjoy investigating new spices and techniques. For instance, I'm not a huge fan of eggs, but I like "sweet omelets". Basically omelets with spices like nutmeg, a bit of sweetener, maybe a filling like lemon curd. Or I might make egg crepes (no flour, just egg thinned with water) and roll up some berry filling in that.

I think the real challenge is just thinking outside the box. You don't *have* to eat cereal at breakfast. You could have left-over curry, or a piece of pork roast. We get indoctrinated into the "American diet" (which is pretty crappy actually) and never question it for the next 80 years of life. :P

I went off on a Thai cooking kick and learned some wonderful new recipes. Now I'm on a Mexican kick. Maybe next will be vietnamese! With the Internet, the resources for recipes are unlimited.

I've got a entire wall of my pantry that is filled with spice racks.

I'm never bored with my food. I hope you can figure this out!

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A very important thing I should have mentioned in my 1st post... while it's hard and frustrating, and at times feeling nearly impossible... I know and trust that God WILL provide our needs!!! Things may not always be the way I would like them... but I fully trust in HIS plan and protection in our life!!!

Kristie

AMEN!!!!!

I'm a bargain shopper, always have been. I think we spend about the same because we no longer eat out hardly at all. I've found that buying the mixes in bulk is the way to go. Last month Amazon had a $10 coupon for every $50 spent. I went ahead and did 2 separate orders at a little over 50 each of gluten-free bread and cookie mixes and saved the $20. It was free shipping a no taxes. Yea! Amazon is the cheapest place I've found yet. It's more money on the front end, but MUCH cheaper in the long run. I've also found rice flour and sweet rice flour really cheap at Asian markets. I only bake a loaf of bread about every other week, that way it's always a treat. Sometimes I'll make rolls out of Pamela's mixes and freeze them to get out for a quick treat. I try to keep something sweet made all the time so we're not so tempted to get more prepackaged stuff (I also cut it into small pieces or make small cookies). Peanut butter is a big hit around here too. I also buy meat in bulk and freeze it into smaller packs to save $$ I usually get it at Sam's and look for the Reduced meat that has to be sold that day (except with seafood). MUCH cheaper this way. Avoiding Corn is really hard and I'm not as practiced at that. Rice is cheap too and a lot can be done with it.

Hope some of these ideas help!


If you're looking for info on how to get started on the gluten-free diet, check out this List for Newly Diagnosed.

Self - Pain free since going gluten-free 9/05 (suffered from unexplained joint pain entire life), asthma improving, allergies improving, mysterious rash disappeared (probably DH)

Husband - Type 1 diabetic, Negative bloodwork

Son - Elevated IgA, Very high IgG, 2 negative biopsies - HLA DQ2 and DQ8 positive, Amazing dietary response since 1/06

Daughter - Congenital Heart Defect (2 surgeries), Reflux, choking issues, eczema, egg allergy - HLA DQ2 positive, Good dietary response (via me because of nursing) since 9/05

"All things happen for good for those who love God..." Romans 8:28

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I've substituted a lot of the food I couldn't eat with alternatives types rather than switching to the gluten free specialty products, I eat a lot of rice as opposed to pasta or bread, I make my own gluten free sauces from recipies I downloaded off the internet (they take the same time to make as the packaged ones take to mix or heat up, just swap the normal flour for a gluten free kind), I eat baked and mashed vegies or mix them into stews, the frozen vegies are just as good if you can't always get fresh.

I miss the flat breads though and refuse to pay 3-4 times the price for them so they are a special treat if I am eating out at a cafe. I bake my own cookies and slices, I haven't tried making bread yet.

It was daunting at first but after I got the hang of reading labels and knew what brands I could have it got easier, it was only really the first few weeks till I got my bearings, once you get your shopping routine sorted out you will be fine.

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Guest AutumnE

We are basically on a meat, veggies, fruit diet. We eat alot of chicken and hamburger because its cheap. I have had to change our places to grocery shop. I now buy alot of things at save-a-lot. Frozen veggies and meat come from there. Our fruit comes from sams club and sometimes frozen veggies when cheap enough.

In summer I buy fresh from the local farmer which is pretty cheap. I spend about $50-$60 a week on our food for a family of 3, sometimes less. We also dont eat many breakfast products except mush and a few eggs for my daughter. My daughter also has milk along with my husband, none of us like breakfast food alot.

Once in a while I get extras such as bread mix from our health food store. It makes about four loafs for $7, my dad is a senior so I go on his discount days. I buy up alot then so it last for awhile and store it in the freezer. Potatoes are really cheap at save a lot also. We make potato soup quite often. We also get lunch meat for dh's lunch at walmart great value brand is good and cheap, I separate the big package and freeze it.

I buy off brands unless necessary to be gluten free. Our chest freezer has helped us a ton. I really bulk up on meat when its on sale. Corn tortilla wraps at 30 for $1.65 at save a lot also are really nice for a wrap sandwich and are cheaper than bread.

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I'm reading this primarily because I'm wanting to make my house a gluten-free home. And, right now... I'm just stumped.

There are 5 of us. Myself and the two little ones are gluten & dairy free. We just found out that my baby is also allergic to soy.... so that adds another issue into the mix.

I would love to make my whole house gluten-free, but until I'm more comfortable with the diet, and can start cooking like I know what I'm doing, I'm finding it very difficult.

And, I'm enjoying the tips!!


Jayhawkmom -

Mom of three....

Jay - 11

Bean - 8

Ian - 3

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My daughter was just diagnosed with Celiac but neither my husband nor I have it. We all did go gluten free though because we decided that it was the easiest way to learn how do this :) But we have only been mostly gluten free for a month and completely gluten free for a few weeks now.

I have had several *shocking* experiences at the grocery store to say the least. Like you I am not happy with the cereal choices but have decided that its not the end of the world. (I grew up in a family where it was a SPECIAL treat to get honey nut cheerios)

Before the celiac diagnosis my husband and I were trying to cut down our grocery budget and now that has gone out the window.. but I have managed to keep our monthly grocery spending the same. Here is how I did it:

I made a list of all the dinners my husband, daughter, and I like. I came up with 26 meals. I basically made a dinner calendar like the kids get for school menu’s. 6 different meals each week with Thursdays slotted for "left overs" I have one day slotted as a "special meal" so that we can pick something different each month... that isnt in our regular rotation. And last I added a "date night" in for my husband and I.

Basically doing this has allowed me to buy things I need in bulk. I get all my meat and gluten-free canned products at Costco... (cereal and rice too) and each week I go to the store I just get fresh veggies, fruits, and milk and any gluten-free products that I need that week (I built in my rotation only 1 meal a week requiring specialty items to make it seem not so expensive... at least I'm not spending a lot all at once)

anyhow I really only plan out for dinners because my daughter and I love smoothies for breakfast so I make them all the time... and sometimes for lunch. We have made lettuce wraps with lunch meats and cheese and all the other stuff that goes on them... and that was a big hit too. But were we were spending most of our $$ was at dinner so I focused on that.

I've also joined in with a group of our neighbors and we buy gluten-free products by mail order in bulk. Usually it eliminates the shipping costs and then we split up the goods. Maybe you can find someone in your neighborhood who is gluten free and you can do the same?

I hope this helps....

Kibbie

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Hi,

I am with you on the rural thing. I found a food buying group through United Buying Clubs (I'm not making any money off this by the way). Here's a link: http://www.unitedbuyingclubs.com/RESOURCES...C/FABC_Home.htm

You buy in bulk and save over retail prices. There my already be a club in your area. They carry 1,000's of gluten-free items as well as natural cleaning supplies, supplements, health and beauty aids just about eveything. The best part is there is NO MEMBERSHIP FEE AND NO SHIPPING FEE!

Boy can I relate - my 6 year old is allergic to wheat, eggs, milk, and peanuts. After a month of shock, and tears as I walked through our grocery stores, I knew it wasn't working. I gave away most of the food in my cupboards and refrigerator, and started over. I am a single mom, and I work two jobs, and it hasn't been easy. As short as I am on money, time is even harder to find (I am busy trying to make enough money to survive). I have found some very good recipes that young kids like, that are not too expensive, but it has taken hours and hours of reading, and trying new things (and eating my "mistakes"). I am still paying off the food bills from those first couple of months. My teenager moved out, as she couldn't find anything to eat in the house - her main food source had been white bread and macaroni. To add to this, I live in Alaska. Shipping here costs more than the actual products, if the companies will even ship to Alaska. The nearest (only) health food store is about 70 miles from my house, and they are not open on Sunday, which is my only day off. Now that I've vented, this may sound weird - but I am thrilled to find out what was wrong with my son. He has been sick since the day he was born. He has gotten better and better over the last couple of months. His teacher tells me he is a new kid, and rather than being angry and lashing out, he holds his head up high and has learned to get along with others. It is so worth it. But even with me analyzing every food he eats, he still eats something once in a while that makes his very sick for a couple of days (I'm thinking there may be other allergies too). I am just so thankful that I CAN control his "disease." Just think - it could be something much more difficult to fight. Try allergygrocer.com for some really good recipes. I've been using batter for fish (and chicken), from potato flakes and garlic and pepper, with Grapeseed Venenaise to hold it together since he can't have eggs. I batter carrots, zucchini, or whatever other vegetables as well, with the remaining batter - we love this. It does take a while to stock the different oils, flours, etc. but it has been very worth it. I have finally (just yesterday) made biscuits that are great - and I now have a container in my frig that contains something similar to "Bisquick" so that whenever I want biscuits I take out a cup or two and add water and egg replacer, and bake. You somehow need to find a few dollars to try out different things, to see what your family likes. I will buy a freezer with my tax refund so that when foods are on sale (such as meat), I can buy a bunch. It's worth it in the end. This site is great, with so many good tips!!! I think there is a Costco 70 miles away - I had never thought of joining there, but will check it out! Good luck to all.

Nancy

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I just want to say I feel your pain. I am trying to keep a grocery budget less than $100/week as I am a single mom and my kids are here half time. Luckily, my kids can eat normally, so I don't ever have to feel like they are deprived or going without. Basically, when my kids go to thier dad's house (for 4-6 days at a time), I pack leftovers for work when I am on dayshift, and when I am on night shift, I pretty much live on a baked potato and some beans. I was getting really good about eating breakfast before my Dx (after not eating breakfast for most of my younger life), now I only eat breakfast when I have to work dayshift because I just can't make it through a 12h shift without breakfast. So, I only really eat breakfast 2 out of 9 days. I skip lunch most days as well. I'm not here to say it's healthy or a good idea at all, but I really can't afford meat more than about 3 days a week (chicken is true luxury, we eat it about once a month), and I'm beyond sick and tired of yogurt, apples and bananas. We all have to do what works for us, I don't think anyone can say you are whiney or not trying hard enough until they have lived in your shoes.


LORI

Dx celiac disease Aug 25/05, ate KFC that night and gluten-free ever since

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