Is Gluten Killing Your Brain?

The other day I had the opportunity to listen to a teleseminar with neurologist David Perlmutter talk about how gluten and other carbs affect your brain, from his upcoming book Grain Brain: The Surprising Truth About Wheat, Carbs, and Sugar – Your Brain’s Silent Killers. Anyone who has had brain fog from ingesting gluten, whether they have celiac disease or a gluten sensitivity or intolerance, can attest to this. He also talks about how good fat is vital for your brain’s health and how a simple change in diet can create a difference for good, especially in children, instead of using drugs to regulate or alter behaviour.

In addition to the topics highlighted on the teleseminar page, here are some notes of interest he explains in his talk, in no particular order:

  • Why eating less carbs and more good fat is good for your brain’s health and overall health.
  • How good fat is super-fuel for your brain.
  • The importance of cholesterol (and its interesting, surprising role in getting your vitamin D!)
  • How memory and behaviour are affected by diet and, conversely, the alarming effects of some prescription drugs on memory.
  • How diseases such as diabetes are a choice, not genetics (although genes do play a part, it is triggered by diet – not by being genetically predisposed).

It’s just about an hour in length, so listen to it when you have some free time to spare. It’s worth it! I’m keen to read Grain Brain after listening to Dr. Perlmutter to learn more about this subject to share with you.

You can listen to the teleseminar here and pre-order the book Grain Brain here.

Update: You can also enter to win an advanced copy on Goodreads! Click here to enter. US residents only.

Celiac Awareness Month: Going Gluten-Free, Part 2

This is Part 2 of Celiac Awareness Month: Going Gluten-Free. Click here to read Part 1.

In the first installment of this article about gluten-free living, I talked about myself and my eating habits and how and why my family and I changed to a gluten-free diet to help my brother recovering from autism.

In this second – and final – installment, I am going to write about my experience with gluten-free cooking and eating, in particular regards to the Specific Carbohydrate Diet.

It’s only been fairly recently, this year, that I’ve been having more practice and experience with traditional gluten-free baking – using a mix of flours and, even more recently, within this month, use xanthum and guar gum: two agents in helping gluten-free baked goods hold together and creating a process similar to the stickiness of gluten. Most of my gluten-free baking experience is based on following the Specific Carbohydrate Diet, which also means that I was making not only gluten-free baked goods but also grain-free, starch-free, and sugar-free.

When we started the GFCF diet, I did a little bit of baking but by and large I made nothing particularly spectacular. We didn’t know about using xanthum or guar gum in baking. I remember I made these rice flour cookies and they were good, but as they cooled off, they became rock hard. We couldn’t eat them. I remember I once threw one of them on the table, just to see if I could break it that way, and it remained fully intact. Not even a crumb came loose. It was incredible. If anyone needed a recipe for Hagrid’s rock cakes, that was it.

Continue reading “Celiac Awareness Month: Going Gluten-Free, Part 2”

Celiac Awareness Month: Going Gluten-Free, Part 1

This article is linked to Slightly Indulgent Tuesdays.

I was inspired to do something towards Celiac Awareness Month after reading Shirley’s blog, gfe – gluten-free easily, and she made some suggestions on how I could do that. (I voiced interest but since I already make gluten-free foods on a regular basis, so what could I do?)

If there was a way I could do it over the Internet, I would teach cooking classes. There probably is a way, but my only issue with it is that I need a webcam of some sort. All my YouTube videos thus far have been filmed on a compact/point-and-shoot camera with the movie setting. What I’m saying is, would I have a series of video cooking classes, I’d want the videos to be better quality than they are now.

An idea to put aside for next year, perhaps?

In the meantime, I’ve decided to write a little bit about me and my eating habits, including a bit of background about the Specific Carbohydrate Diet. In part two, I’ll be writing about my start in gluten-free cooking/baking and my experience with it.

While I cook, bake, and blog gluten-free and dairy-free foods, I do not have a completely, 100% gluten-free or dairy-free diet. I can eat wheat and dairy without major adverse effects, although I only eat those kinds of things if I’m at someone else’s house or if I’m out and about. (Even then, I try to do so in moderation because I’ve noticed that when I eat wheat, sometimes I feel down shortly after eating it. Sort of like a low after a sugar rush, but feeling depressed instead of tired or sleepy.) At home, I eat gluten-free foods, most of which I’ve made. (I am the foodie of the family, right?)

Continue reading “Celiac Awareness Month: Going Gluten-Free, Part 1”