Wheat-free and gluten-free are commonly used words today, but many people have no idea of what it means or how it might relate to them. Your doctor can do a blood test or a stool test to determine if you are gluten intolerant, but the diagnosis should be done before going on a gluten-free diet.

What are the Symptoms?

The most common symptoms indicating gluten intolerance include:

– frequent indigestion, heartburn and gas

– bloating and abdominal distension (belly is often hard)

– chronic diarrhea or constipation

– irritability, moodiness and/or depression

– chronic fatigue and muscle weakness

– joint pain

– skin rashes or dermatitis

– balance issues or uncoordinated walking

– weight changes (sudden gain or loss of weight)

What is Gluten?

Gluten is a protein contained in the grains wheat, barley, rye and oats. Over the years, gluten-containing grains we eat today have been domesticated (genetically altered) and are no longer in their original state. Research varies as to whether 12% up to 35% of the American public is gluten intolerant.

If you are diagnosed with gluten intolerance and/or choose to eliminate gluten from your diet, there are many options available to help you. In our Lifestyle for Health clinic I often had people eliminate wheat along with sugar. Many people had great results with those dietary changes.

What can You do?

Online recipes of the Paleo Diet give great alternatives to grains being used in normal recipes. Pamela’s Baking products (found in grocery stores and health food stores) are a great resource as they taste great and are easy to use.

One of my favorite treats is a Protein Brownie (gluten-free). Make a double recipe, freeze and enjoy whenever you want a healthy, delicious treat!

Protein Brownies (Gluten-Free)

4 TBL. Butter

¼ cup applesauce

2 eggs

2 tsp vanilla

3/4 c. Xylitol or sweetener of choice

1 tsp baking powder (gluten-free)

1/2 c. cocoa* (I like Penzey’s baking cocoa)

1/2 c. Vi-Shake protein powder (best tasting and gluten-free)

Chopped pecans, optional

Coconut, optional

1. Mix butter, applesauce eggs and vanilla

2. Mix in dry ingredients

3. 350 degrees for 20 min. in oiled 9” pan

I tend to make sure the outside edge just pulls away from the pan – DO NOT OVERCOOK!
When doubling, use a 9” x 13” pan.

For more delicious, healthy recipes, visit us at www.lifestylforhealth.com.