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I previously shared a recipe I learned in Costa Rica for making Grain-Free Yucca Buns. Also on that trip to Costa Rica I came accross sweet potato flour. This is a grain-free (gluten-free) alternative to traditional pancakes. And the sweetness of the flour makes what I think is a far superior pancake to the old-school flapjacks. Try this recipe at home, you won't be disappointed!
Our brain houses our memories, our language and communication skills, our ability to move our bodies, as well as controlling our autonomic functions like heartbeat, breathing, temperature. We need to protect our brain. Your brain is your most protected organ in your body. Not only is it housed in the thick bones of the skull, it is floating in cerebrospinal fluid to protect it from damage in a head injury. We have built-in shock absorbing ability in our head!
On my last trip to Costa Rica early this year I discovered that they make many non-grain flours there. I was suprised to learn that a traditional cheese bread eaten in many Latin American countries is actually grain-free! Pan de Yuca (yucca buns) are a delicious grain-free cheesey bread that can be eaten on a grain-free diet. It may not be for the strict Paleo Dieter because it is somewhat processed and does have cheese. But I've made adjustments to the recipe to make it healthier and less allergy provoking.
Quinoa is actually the seed of an herbaceous plant related to spinach and Swiss chard. The most popular seeds are a tan or yellow color. But several varieties and colors exist from black, to red, orange purple and pink. It has a rich nutty flavor with a tasty crunch.
Though the mapping of the human genome (all of our genes put together equal our genome) hasn't solved all of our medical mysteries, it has provided some amazing insite into chronic disease and our inherited susceptibility. In 2007, scientist were able to link seven gene regions with the presence and likelihood of Celiac Disease. There are some particular patterns that are strongly believed to predict a strong likelihood that an individual will develop Celiac Disease.
Celiac Disease has always been associated with digestive distress and damage to the small intestines. The classic patient is one who was gaunt, malnourished and reacting violently when consuming gluten containing foods. When a patient exhibits these symptoms, a biopsy of the small intestines is usually taken to identify enteropathy (damage) to the villi in the digestive tract. Blood tests too are typically administered that test for the alpha-gliadin antibody as well as transglutanimase (antibody to ones own tissue). This works great if the patient has the classic symptoms.
Studies show that about 50% of gluten sensitive patients also have a problem with a protein called casein found in bovine (cow) dairy. This may be part of the reason that so many gluten sensitive patients do not improve by just eliminating gluten. But the problem does not stop there.
Not only are refined and factory produced foods in danger of becoming cross-contaminated with gluten, but homemade foods and restaurant prepared foods as well. It is important to remember that although small and seemingly insignificant amounts of gluten may seem harmless to most, these minute amounts may add up enough to cause an immune reaction in a gluten sensitive person. And this immune reaction is known to last up to six months after contact with gluten.
One of the most important lessons to learn when starting a gluten-free diet is that there are many hidden sources of gluten. There are many ingredients that may be derived from gluten containing sources. If you do not know what to look for you may miss some gluten containing foods and trigger a response by your body. For a gluten sensitive person it is important to eliminate ALL possible sources of gluten in order to improve the health and to restore the gut.
Celiac Disease (CD) is one possible complication of being gluten intolerant or gluten sensitive. Celiac Disease is characterized by enteropathy (damage) to the intestinal villi. These are the small hairlike projections of the intestinal tract that help us to absorb nutrients from our foods. Those who develop CD appear to show genetic risk factor as well. The DQ2 and DQ8 gene have both been identified as being a high risk factor for developing CD. Those who carry either of these genes are at much greater risk of developing CD. It is believed that about 1 out of 133 people in the US have Celiac Disease.
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