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Saw The Nutritionist

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I saw Melinda Dennis in her celiac clinic this week. She's a hard core nutritionist who has had celiac for 18 years. Just full of knowledge, very up to date, advises the FDA, etc.

I found I was in good shape as far as avoiding gluten, maybe be more careful about eating a lot of stuff made in factories that also handle wheat. Okay, fine. Gave me a bunch of gluten-free samples to try. She's got manufacturers throwing cases of samples at her. That was cool. Especially something called Shella snack mix - corn nuts, pumpkin and sunflower seeds, ground chickpeas formed into crunchy noodles. I would pay real money for more of that stuff.

But but but but but...

Her big thing is the need to eat healthy grains. 5 times the protein, low fat, vitamins etc.

Sorry, I've made the effort to be gluten-free, but I am not cooking and eating quinoa, millet, buckwheat and flaxseed. I've tried bitefuls of them through the years, and I'm didn't like them. Besides, DH is on the Autistic Spectrum. He won't try new foods. Period.

Thoughts, advice???

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I make a pot of quinoa for breakfast a few times a week and my kids love it--

1c quinoa (rinsed if needed)

2c water (or 1c water + 1c milk)

2 tsp vanilla

2tsp cinnamon

Cook for recommended time for your pkg of quinoa

Sweeten with pure maple syrup or agave nectar, I also like chopped pecans and fresh berries on top

It is soooo good! My girlfriends request it when it's my turn to host our weekly brunch!!

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"I've tried a bite of something once, and it's clearly an awful food." Yeah, yeah... I'm paraphrasing and exaggerating, but I'm hoping you'll get a hint of the ... close-mindedness we might read into that sort of thing. Don't get me wrong, there are times when we've all been close-minded about trying a food (I got sick after eating split pea soup as a kid... can't bring myself to eat it now) or extraordinarily reluctant to try a food (raw fish? I used to think the idea of sushi was awful! oh the texture. now, I love sushi!) or are completely convinced of our generalizations (I had sweet potatoes cooked with marshmallows on top as a kid, hated it, and wouldn't eat sweet potatoes for the longest time because I thought they were nasty, turns out, I love them!). So I don't mean to say "that's close-minded, how wrong of you" but rather "are you aware of the limitations of your experiences and the background involved in your close-mindedness?" (And if the answer is great, and it's totally fully informed, well, then I'd say you had a good reason. :) )

The thing with: "I've tried bitefuls of them through the years, and I'm didn't like them" is that you haven't taken into account how your tastes have changed, how the foods were stored/cooked, and whether or not they were made into a way YOU liked them. I'm quite certain you haven't tried *every* variation on millet. (Made into a porridge? Formed into sweet cakes or savory cakes? Cooked nice and fluffy? Toasted first and then cooked in broth? Made as a pilaf with all your favorite vegetables? Made into a cold salad like tabbouleh? etc...) Was the quinoa you tried rinsed well first, and then was it cooked plainly, or given a complimentary flavor? I've also never been a huge fan of buckwheat, but find that kasha (the roasted form) tastes just fine (and has an interesting texture) when served with a rich (homemade) tomato pasta sauce. And amaranth makes a great dish with tomatoes and sausage. And flax... well, I certainly hope you've never just had a spoonful of cooked flax; that sounds disgusting. But ground flax in muffins, whole flax on granola, flax crackers (I like homemade better than the store bought ones) - tasty, though it's a pretty mild taste.

Point is, there are a lot of different ways you can make food - some of them taste awful, some of them taste good.

And if my picky-eater of a husband is any lesson, there's no need to try incorporating all these new foods, figuring out how to cook them, right away. He (not gluten intolerant, but very picky) has taken YEARS to incorporate new foods into his diet. He'll generally try something I offer about 1 in 10 times I offer if he's feeling adventurous (increases his chances he won't hate the food just because he feels compelled to eat it), and will try things again after a year or two, and see if there's anything good about the food now.

And, finally, you don't *have* to eat grains to get plenty of nutrition. But if you're just going to use plain white rice instead of anything else... then you lose significant nutrient potential.

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Hey, I know you ;)

Nice to "see" you here!

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Your primary mission is to keep yourself gluten free and happy and healthy.

Not eat what somebody else wants.

Really, some people get on these "the rest of the world must go vegetarian kicks and eat more grain ! and just won't let go of it. Or they process carbs differently than the rest of us.

And I say this as a fan of some of the alternate grains. I don't use much rice flour unless I am making something for somebody else. But I'm certainly not going to eat something that does not agree with me. I already have had suspicious reactions to some of that list, whether or not it was to cross contamination, I'm in no hurry to try them again, altho I wouldn't rule it out. I liked quinoa but I reacted to the flour I used. Millet is not for everybody because it can supposedly affect thyroid, and again, I have an opened bag of it now that I may just pitch because I think it's cross contaminated. I need a new bag, different brand. Flax oil does not sit right with me, have been hesitant to try flaxmeal as I like almond better. Haven't gotten around to buckwheat yet, once I reacted to a supplement with buckwheat.

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