Image Slider

What you Should Know About Going Gluten-free and Grain-free

(Please note that this is a blog re-post that I have carried over from my original blog, back in 2013. The information is very important and still pertinent for those of you going gluten-free)

                               Image result for gluten free cross reactivity
  Today is groceries day, we ran around to about 4 different stores but something is always missing. It seems buckwheat is considered "exotic" as a food staple in my neck of the woods. Ugh! It's alright though because I will be making a stop in the next few days to grab my missing ingredients at the health food store. So, I have been in an allergy cycle for the last week that has been making me feel physically miserable even though I have been in a positive frame of mind. I had finally calmed my reactions to the final day or two of bloat and itchies and was in a great mood about it. 
Then I went to my Vietnamese joint I adore because I can actually eat gluten-free there, well, maybe not so good for me after all as I reacted to the rice noodles which is the same dish I have been having for a long time but the last few times I have been reacting to it and nothing has changed in the recipe. I am on friendly terms with the staff & Chef so it's easy to ask. Now it seems that I will be making more changes to my already complicated eating regimen. I am reacting to all manner of grains, gluten free grains!!! I had gluten-free rice crackers and my body flipped out, same with my quinoa bread and various other foods. Not cool. It seems this may be an autoimmune response which may be linked to my thyroid. More tests yippee!!!!!! NOT! 
Actually, it deserves a good giggle. It's become de rigueur to have complications somewhere along the line for most gluten-free eaters. I read a whole bunch of info on a great blog at:

This is what she had to say and I think it's going to help save my life and bring balance back to my days.
                      Image result for gluten free cross reactivity
Why You're not Losing Weight on a GF Diet.

You Could Be Reacting To The Gluten Free Grains You’re Now Eating
A sensitivity to gluten increases the chances that you’re also sensitive to many of the foods you’ll turn to on a gluten free lifestyle including sorghum, millet, tapioca, amaranth, quinoa, rice, hemp, corn, and potato. These foods do not contain gluten but may still be a problem for you, this is called “gluten cross reactivity”. And if you’ve got a gluten issue, I’ve got some really bad news: coffee and chocolate are among the most common cross reactors. Tragic, I know.

Consider a grain free diet and utilize non-grain based starches such as sweet potato, pumpkin, squash, and legumes (note: autoimmune patents are also at high risk for reacting to the lectins in legumes, sorry! Best for you folks to leave them out as well.) Cyrex Labs offers a gluten cross reactivity panel if you’ve committed to gluten free and wondering which grains, etc might be good alternatives for you. Visit and look at Array 4.

You May Have Increased Intestinal Permeability (AKA Leaky Gut)
This means larger proteins are getting through a leaky intestinal barrier causing inflammation and winding up you immune system. A “leaky gut” is due to inflammation in the gut that has caused a bit of swelling in the cells of your intestines, damaging the junctions between the cells allowing larger proteins to get through. Normally only small things pass through such as a single amino acid or a molecule of glucose. When these larger proteins end up in our blood stream where our immune system sees them and attacks, causing inflammation, bloating, puffiness and trouble shedding fat.

This creates inflammation in and of itself, which makes it hard to lose weight, but it also increase the chance that you’re have any of those cross re-activities I just mentioned.

We can get a leaky gut from years of a bad diet, eating foods that we are sensitive to, taking antibiotics or doing anything that disrupts the delicate balance of probiotics in our gut, various medications, having hypothyroidism or being under high stress.

Gluteomorphins May Be At Play
You may be reacting to gluteomorphins, a byproduct of our own digestion of gluten which act in the brain on opiod receptors causing a “high”. When we take that away, you obviously feel worse for a period of time as you go through a withdrawal period. Crazy huh? Our food is literally medicine!

When people have this reaction, they not only feel pretty lousy when they first come off gluten but their cravings for it sky rocket. If they manage to stick to their gluten free guns, they will usually end up eating a lot of other carbs to satisfy the cravings causing weight loss to stall….or worse, causing a weight gain.
Hidden Exposure
Despite your best efforts – you may still be eating gluten. Here’s a lengthy list of at least some of the more common places you’ll see it:

Gluten Containing Grains:
Most processed cereal
Oats (unless specifically labeled gluten free and note: oats are common cross reactors as well)
Bulgar wheat

Short List of Commonly Used Gluten Derivatives:

Alcohol made from grains: beer, whisky, vodka (unless purely potato), Scotch, most liquors and cheaper wines.
Artificial coloring additives
Chewing Gum
Battered Foods (i.e. fish sticks, fried appetizers, occasionally sweet potato or regular fries) and foods fried in same oil as battered foods (French fries).
Biscotti, pastries and any baked good made from flour, not specified as gluten free
Many juices and fruit drinks
Sauces in general, horseradish sauce and most pre-made salad dressings (unless gluten free)
Canned meat containing preservatives, canned vegetables (unless in water only)
Items containing hydrolyzed vegetable protein (often made with wheat)
Caramel (other than from US and Canada)
Imitation seafood (usually made with a starch, common in sushi)
Instant hot drinks (coffee, tea, hot chocolate, etc)
Ketchup and most condiments (anything made with modified food starch has corn and/or wheat)
Rice syrup (may contain barley malt)
Soups (most commercially made canned or frozen soup)
Spices including white pepper, curry powder, bouillon cubes or powder
Soy sauce (except Tamari wheat free soy sauce) and most Chinese sauces
Veined cheeses (may be made from molds that may be of bread origin)
Mustards (unless specifically gluten free, read label for modified food starch)
Flavor enhancers including MSG (monosodium glutamate), glutamic acid, monopotassium glutamate, ammonium glutamate

Note: gluten free grains include rice, millet, quinoa, buckwheat, amaranth and teff.

And one final thing: gluten may simply not be as inflammatory for you as it is your friend who had the skies part and the heavens sing when they cut it out. In this case, there may be another reason why your weight loss has plateaued and some gluten containing foods on occasion will probably not make or break your health.

So, if going gluten free was less dramatic than you’d hoped, consider these things and take another pass accounting for the reasons above.

Thank you Dr. Brooke, so I am now going to clean & cleaner eating and praying for positive results. I will be incorporating digestive enzymes, good probiotics, Aloe Vera whole leaf juice, liquid iron, and protein that is allergen friendly. My beloved who is also a weight trainer specializing in sports nutrition recommends Iso Pure. I will get back to you on all of this. 
In the meantime, I am happy to post a snapshot of my fridge which I feel very blessed about being filled with a powerhouse of healthy foods. Thank you God for making such things available to those of us in need, I know how lucky we are.
Here is what a clean eating fridge looks like:

Making Our Way Through January & What's Up...

                   Related image

Helloodles Lovelies!

As January continues to bombard us with its freezing cold weather, that leads to mild ups & bitter downs, then loads of snow, which makes way for rain that freezes over, I have become the blanket burrito woman!
We are hitting that time of year when day dreams are warm and tropical, filled with sandy beaches and colourful drinks with umbrellas.
                                    Related image
There's also that lack of sun and warmth sadness going around...

                                   Image result for winter blahs

I am still on medical sick leave from work, injury healing process is slow but steady. I long to be able to workout. jump around on my bed, and be back at work.
                                     Image result for jumping on bed
My doctor keeps reminding me, patience, patience, patience. As this has never been my strong suit, antsiness and a bit or boredom melancholy visits from time to time.
                           Image result for get me out of here meme
Still, I am finally having some good days, for which I am truly grateful to God and my PB. Both have been my rocks.
Poppa Bear has been very supportive, giving, and lovingly patient. It seems pain with sleep deprivation, thanks to pain, can make one have a rather short fuse, extremely irritable, and not always pleasant to be around. Hmmm, go figure.
                                 Image result for pain meme
It seems I am to have one good day then 3-4 rough one's, followed by  2-3 take it real slow gurl days. Acupuncture, massage, and chiropractic adjustments are great but get really expensive. $60-90 a pop, which I am supposed to be having each every week-yikes! Don't get me started on physio.
                                 Image result for injuries are expensive meme
For now, I am being gentle with myself, doing what I can, and waiting for the CNESST bureaucrats to figure their ish out.
Frustrations aside, I have been able to cook or bake, here and there. Definitely no where near what I could do before, however, I am elated that I can do a bit vs nothing. I am working on doing a few blog posts for February, that will be lovely, gluten-free, share it with your love, moments & recipes.
                         Related image

As my shoulder, neck, and back have a tough time with more than short spurts of typing, please bear with the fewer posts and spaces between them. Today is a good day, I am taking advantage of it but at less than an hour in, I can already feel the warning pinches and twinges. so, this is going to stop here. Do keep checking back, there are yummy nom's, recipes, beat the winter blah's, and other fun things coming.

Take care, be well, love freely...Chef Kiki

First Post of 2018!

                             Related image           

Yes, I am finally doing a blog post and it is just in time to wish everyone a lovely and prosperous start to the New Year!
                                  Image result for hello 2018 cute
I know that I have been rather quiet on the blog front, I wanted to update, now that I can type a bit. All the silence is owing to some very nasty injuries I sustained at work, and I have been on medical sick leave since early October.
                                      Image result for sick kawaii
I was in horrible pain, unable to move much, had to be on meds to relax my muscles, ice packs, sharp shooting pain in my sleep, repeated rib dislocations. I was forced to admit that bundled in bed was and has been the best place to be. Things like writing, holding a phone, typing, holding stuff in my hands or arms, were too debilitating. I had to make a decision for my health, and that meant blog/ business silence and total shut down. So, none of the plans I had for Bien Confit, happened this year but I have been staying positive.   
I spent the holidays with my family here in Qu├ębec, we had a very quiet and early brunch. I am slowly starting to get better but have come to realize that I begin fading and having exhausting pain once 4pm hits. We asked if an early brunch with family and friends would be okay.
Everyone was very accommodating, we gathered, laughed, exchanged gifts, and there was plenty of leftovers, so no cooking for a full week! I got some lovely gifts, including a spanking new tablet-whoo hoo thanks PB! (Mine had died a sad, old age, outdated tech death) Some desperately needed pants with a sparkly blouse, book store gift card-yes! A planner with stickers, some warm Bench gear, and  a set of very comfy, cozy, warm, tartan pajamas! 
          I really like the jammies, they are perfect for my rest and recoup mode, plus they are uber soft!                                     

I got a really sparklicious  planner for 2018. I am on a major sparkle kick at the moment and I do not know if this will ever stop, however, my inner unicorn panda is quite happy.
                                        Image result for kawaii panda unicorn
Planners are all the rage right now, for me it is kind of old hat, as it has always been something I have gotten every year. Planners are extravagant journals/agendas, that we ladies, who love list-making, organizational tools, stickers, crafting, getting creative, and not having important info weirdly self-delete on tech, just cannot get enough. They are all over the place, Michael's is having a special on their Happy Planner's and the planner accoutrements, and everywhere you look, they are being featured as THE organizational, must-have tool. 
By the way, it is being used by people of ALL ages, so get out there and have some fun!
                         Image result for erin condren planners

                   Image result for erin condren planners
There are even videos on youtube, to help you get started and learn more:

This planner below, was my gift to myself, I got a really great price at Winner's for $12.99! I must admit, I am not a splash stuff all over my planner kind-of-girl. I prefer a few stickies that are perfect visual reminders, stuff for bills to pay & important appointments, along with grocery and meal plan fun. Usually I rely on post-its and good old writing to get me through but if you prefer fancy, I say, Go for it!
My planner is smaller, more of an agenda style because I like to be able to carry it with me and having less bulk is a plus. I was happy with this as other planner's are in the $40 and up range. A little pricey when one is unable to work at the moment. The company is if you want to check out their product line. I will put a link below and also to some other planner/journal sites, should you be interested in having some planner fun of your own.

Here is the link to the site for the Lady Jayne planner:

Here is the link for Erin Condren planners, they have for every life thingy you could ever need!:     

This is the link to the Happy Planner site:

I also got some stickers that are helping me keep track of the different therapy appointments, those one's you see are from Dook Plook Designs on Etsy:
Here is Bethany Rose's site with all her planner shops, which includes Dook Plook Designs:

I ordered some others but they have not all yet come in.
Will share pics and how I use them on upcoming blog posts. So far I am using my happy planner menu and grocery stickies, that fit perfectly in my Lady Jayne planner. I starting prepping about 3 months back, for a major cleanse that is upcoming. My body has been going through a lot, as such some extra TLC needs focusing upon.
So, I am going to sign off here, as this is a lot for my booboo's, however, I leave you with my mantra-of-the-moment:
                              Image result for kawaii panda unicorn
Be well & God bless!