Gluten Free Baking…With Bananas!

Hello Y’all! I hope you are doing well in your part of the world. We’re at the tail end of the weekend and it has been the most restful one in a long time. Oh, and by the way the temperature in North Texas dropped about 30-degrees yesterday all of a sudden so for a minute I was contemplating bringing out some of my layers back out…. but according to the weatherman, it’s going to heat back up over the next couple of days.

Pollen and rag weed were pretty intense this week and although I got to rest and enjoy my days off, I could feel it being out and about. I love weekends! They’re my best days to bake because I have the time to take stock of what I have and what I’m craving. Since going gluten free, I have been trying to find healthy alternatives with lower carbs to add to my go-to list of recipes and I have to say that I’m still working on it. So far, I’ve found a brownie mix that kinda works – with some additives, and a pancake mix that’s so good you couldn’t tell it was GF. If you’re like me, I shop bananas by the bunch and freeze them for smoothies, Yonanas or pancakes when I have the time. This recipe was a way to literally get rid of some of the bags I had laying around in the freezer.

Baking a Gluten Free Banana Loaf/Cake!

I got some inspiration for this recipe watching a short recipe on YouTube but switched up the ingredients and added a couple of my favorites to the mix. Ingredients include: 4 Frozen Banana’s, 2 Eggs, 2 Tbsp Butter, 2 Tbsp Vanilla Extract, 1 Tbsp Chia Seeds, 2 Tbsp Psyllium Husk, A good dash of Cinnamon, 1/2 Cup Unsweetened Shredded (dried) Coconut, 1/2 Cup Gluten Free Flour, about a 1/2 Cup Milk (I prefer powdered milk because its gentler on my digestion), Erythritol Monk Fruit Sweetener to taste, Baking Powder.

P.S.: I’ve recently started adding psyllium husk in small quantities to a lot of meals, cereal and baking. Its tasteless, odorless but a great source of fiber which is good for the gut, burns fat and aids digestion. I’d recommend you try it; you just might like it.

Now Let’s Go!

Place the frozen bananas in a bowl and let it thaw for a couple minutes. Using a fork, smash the bananas. Add the chia seeds, butter, shredded coconut and mix. Add both eggs and keep mixing. Add the vanilla extract, psyllium husk, Cinnamon, and milk. Keep mixing. Add Erythritol sweetener to taste. Add the Gluten Free Flour and using a whisk, keep stirring. Turn up your oven to 325F. Spray or oil your baking pan – I used my bread tin this time. Pour in the mix and then gently tap the pan on the counter a couple of times to settle the mix evenly before placing at the top rack of your oven. Bake for about 30-35 minutes with constant checks. Turn down the heat and let it sit in the oven for another 15 minutes until its done and it passes the knife or toothpick test. Reason: Ripe bananas tend to cook pretty fast without cooking evenly through. Lowering the heat will ensure the top does not burn while the rest of the loaf is still uncooked.

After removing the pan from the oven, I let it sit on the counter for a couple minutes to cool.

Folks, this turned out pretty good and for those on a diet, this recipe works great, has minimal carbs, a great source of protein, Omega 3’s and fiber. Until I come your way again, stay fit, active and have healthy recipes for when you crave something sweet. I remain,

Periwinkle Starr

Getting Back on the Wagon!

Hello Y’all! I hope you are doing great in your corner of the world! Its Mother’s Day in the States so I am wishing a happy celebration to all the Mums out there …most especially mine. The good Lord knows that many of us would not be alive today without our mums and it’s something we ought to be grateful for. It’s been a busy time but I’m glad to be back and writing again. We are in the month of May and it’s time to check in on my weight management plan.

Drum Roll!!! Drum Roll!!! Drum Roll!!!!

Let me just say that the scale was not very friendly to me when I stepped on it. I fell off the wagon with my diet even though I remained gluten free…. like that helps any. It started off slowly, skipping workouts, snacking a little later each night, not tracking my meals, not moving, not swimming…NOTHING! All I could do was scream…..NOOOOO!!!

Not today…..!

It’s funny that I didn’t notice the symptoms of weight gain…. Well, I take that back. I thought I could cheat, and my body would do what it has always done and bounce back from all those calories and bad habits, but this was not the case. This makes me think of all those people who get on those extreme diets and loose the weight but somehow the old habits slowly creep in and before you realize, it’s a downward spiral all the way down to the bottom and they are in some cases heavier than when they started off. Well, I felt exactly the same way. I knowingly did it to myself. These were some of my habits:

  • Excessive snacking – buying salty and sweet ‘gluten free’ snacks when busy, working or traveling. Come to think of it, gluten free snacks actually have more calories than a lot of regular snacks. I think this happens because manufacturers have to add ingredients that hold the condiment together which ends up with more calories in what appears to be the same quantity of food.
  • Heading to the couch and grabbing the remote after getting home – instead of heading out to the gym – even if for just an hour of cardio, Zumba or a couple of laps in the pool.
  • Late night meals, snacks, sweet treats. Guilty as charged.
  • Not being active…. ENOUGH!
  • Not getting enough sleep.
  • Poor stress management.

Getting Back on the Wagon Again!

Not a real wagon..lol!

Just like everything in life, when you get into a funk, its ok to be down, feel down and to just soak in it for a bit. The end goal is to not stay there forever. Get back up and get back into the fight to be and stay (in my case) healthy and at a healthy weight. Life happens folks and every now and again it’s easy to get out of sync when we are balancing so many spinning plates. But checking in on myself every now and again was very helpful. I find that there will always be something going on somewhere and our control as human beings is very limited. So, I had to re-strategize. Here’s what I came up with.

  • Take stock of where I’m at. How I arrived here. What I did right or didn’t do enough of; and how I prioritized my time on a daily basis.
  • Admitted failure especially in areas that need improvement. Admitting wrong is the first step of growth. Denial keeps us stuck.
  • Came up with a healthy plan – a positive and sustainable way forward.
  • Sticking to it – No more excuses.

I know this looks easier than it actually is but less is more. I’m off to the gym to do a couple of laps in the pool and get my body back in shape again. Until I come your way again, no matter where you’re at in your life or how long you’ve fallen or neglected vital components of your life, you can always make a determination to get back on the wagon again. Rome wasn’t built in a day and anything that is rushed is very rarely sustainable. Be happy, stay safe and healthy. I’ll be back before you know it. Please like, follow and comment.

Periwinkle Starr

Spring Cleaning…To Do or Not?

Hello Yall! Happy New Month. I hope you are doing well in your corner of the world. We’re already ziplining through 2022; can you believe we are in the fourth month already? My heart and prayers go out to the Starr readers in Ukraine and Russia. I pray the madness ends and the citizens are allowed to thrive freely and in peace. I’m writing this post with my TV on in the background and wondering why on a hot Texas Sunday they are showing Krampus on TV but who knows these things.

It’s time to spring clean and I have to admit that I’m a little behind this year, but I have a plan on how to get started which I’m going to share with you so stay with me. The beauty of doing this every year or multiple times a year is to make sure that whatever items we have or own at home are things that we need, are put to use or will be put to use at some point. The goal is to have stuff but not let stuff have us…but often times, this is easier said than done. So, grab a drink, smoothie or a snack and get comfy. This post is for me and everyone else who believes they can at least do better.

Kitchen & Pantry

Culled from the internet.

If you’re like some of us, chipped dishes, broken mugs, cracked glasses and a mis match of utensils mixed with to-go plastic containers line our cabinets and counters. It’s time to get organized on a budget or better still, invest in decent cookware and utensils. Trust me, this is not about anything over the top expensive but knowing you are worth it and deserve to eat or cook with decent cookware for yourself and your family. Isn’t it ironic how we spend top dollar on expensive dinners at fancy restaurants, yet we don’t even have matching cutlery, good silver ware or presentable dishes at home?

When it comes to the pantry, some pantries can hide a whole human being in there due to the clutter, disorganization and lack of routine cleaning. I know, I know…..we may still have that promised apocalypse at some point, but you should at least be able to know what you do have and what you need to stock up on. And for the love of plastic bags, buying clear containers that you can store food items in instead of grocery store plastic bags helps a lot. You can get affordable storage containers if you have some time and the patience to look and find brands that work for you.

Living Area (s)

Culled from the internet.

We can opt for a real bookshelf, a second bookshelf or an area to stockpile our books instead of the coffee table that hasn’t seen itself bare in the last couple of years or your dining table. Eating in front of the TV because your ‘dining table’ has been converted to a holding place for abandoned items is definitely a no no. I like the term ‘A place for everything and everything for a designated space’…or something along those lines.

Taking off the covers from sofas and washing them or getting professional cleaners to clean your furniture is great…because we sit, lay down, sleep, eat all year round on it. There’s ALL kinds of shed skin, dust mites and only God knows what are on there. Cleaning and sunning rugs or just any hard to reach or barely cleaned areas is a great idea.

The Closet

Culled from the internet.

I opt for open shelving in a closet, no drawers. Out of sight is out of mind and if I can’t see it, then I’m probably not going to wear it. You don’t necessarily have to have a built-out closet to be organized especially when looking at it from a temporary versus permanent standpoint. But having clothes separated by seasons, work, casual, special occasions, sleep wear, undergarments etc. will get you started. Having a shoe rack, shelving or shoe storage is great. No one likes stabbing their toes on some spiky heels when they’re in a hurry. But overall, you’ll know what you have and what you need more of when you are more organized. Now, this post may make some people chuckle because they already do this but there are people whose homes I have been in and there’s clothes in laundry baskets and about a foot high all over; I couldn’t even see the floor. If you were raised better than most, be kind. People are a work in progress especially when they make an effort to do and be better.

Folks I’m out of time but I hope you had a good read and this helps someone out there. Until I come your way again, do like, comment and share. And always remember that we’re all in this together!

Periwinkle Starr

Frozen Desserts That Don’t Expand Your Waistline!

Hello Y’all! I hope you are doing well in your part of the world. My heart goes out to the readers in the Ukraine. I hope you and your family members are safe and you make it out in good shape. Folks, it appears as if the world is going to hell in a hand basket. But we cannot lose hope because evil never triumphs over good…long term. Let’s stay positive, keep our hope up and pray for an end to the chaos; the pandemic was bad enough.

The temperature is warming up one Fahrenheit at a time and it’s been a huge relief. We’ve had more sunshine over the last couple of days so it’s time to get the plants out of the house, repotted with healthy soil and unto the deck. As the weather warms up, cold desserts are definitely a necessity. Being a sweet tooth, it’s so hard to not indulge especially when you have options…lots of them. Being conscious about fueling my body instead of just filling it with dead calories, my goal is to consciously invest in items that enhance my diet and overall health while sharing my findings with y’all. So, it had been a couple months and I had been scouring the internet for a healthy, homemade and affordable alternative to soft serve ice cream which has been a lifetime favorite of mine. A couple months back, I found a device that matched my criteria of being affordable, easy to use and with great results. I was skeptical at first and decided to research a bit more into it.

Its A Yonana!!!

It sounds like ‘Yo Mama’ only with an ‘n’ but that’s the name of the device. I looked up the reviews and they were all good. Besides, if it didn’t perform as expected, I could always send it back. There was nothing to lose. I was pleasantly surprised because it delivered the same day of my order. It was also very easy to assembly and safe. There weren’t any visible sharp edges especially for child safety; and it is compact and would fit nicely on any counter. It also came with a dessert book…with lots of options including recipes for cookies and cream, splits, cannoli fillings, sorbets, mojitos, liqueur etc.

Ingredients: Frozen Fruits Ex. Bananas, Berries, Pineapple, Mango etc. Natural or Sugar Free Sweeteners (if you’d like). Toppings (nuts, chocolate, crumble, cake). A serving bowl or waffle cones will do. And an ice cream spoon. Thats all she wrote! It’s ready to serve.

As the weather warms up, my Yonana will come in handy with keeping up with my health goals and not feeling like it’s a chore to get those nutrients in. If you’d like to look it up. You can find it on Amazon (https://www.amazon.com/Yonanas-902-Original-Delicious-Alternatives/dp/B005083ECS/ref=sr_1_1_sspa?keywords=yonana&qid=1646160681&sr=8-1-spons&psc=1&spLa=ZW5jcnlwdGVkUXVhbGlmaWVyPUEyM1FXQlpGQ0NDN05KJmVuY3J5cHRlZElkPUEwNzcxMTQ2OE9MT1c1UjFDNzY3JmVuY3J5cHRlZEFkSWQ9QTAwOTkyNzgyNDFETVM5WTkyWkYxJndpZGdldE5hbWU9c3BfYXRmJmFjdGlvbj1jbGlja1JlZGlyZWN0JmRvTm90TG9nQ2xpY2s9dHJ1ZQ==). Until I come your way again, stay healthy, upbeat and positive. The best is yet to come! I remain

Periwinkle Starrđź’•

Anxiety and the Gluten Connection.

Hello Y’all! Its Super Bowl Sunday!! I hope you are doing well in your corner of the world. As promised, I’m back at you as I said I would. The year 2022 is going to be a year of ‘doing’ not just saying with each post being unique in its own right. My posts could be happy-go-lucky and running through a field of flowers and another be down to business and about life’s moments and experiences. It’s pretty much any way the wind blows or where my spirit soars. At the end of the day, I write to share my experience with others. Besides, what good is living if you can’t share and learn from each other’s experiences. Disclaimer* Today’s blog is to share my experience and is in no way a cure for any mental health ailment. So, stay with me.

The Gut, Our Second Brain

Medical scientists have called the human gut our second brain. I learned about this phenomenon recently and it made perfect sense. Our gut is a combination of our small and large intestine that contains microbiota and bacteria that aid digestion but are also a pretty good indicator of the condition of our health…whether good or bad. Awareness about this connection became available only very recently with many suffering with various gut related issues for decades. I remember growing up, if I felt nervous or suddenly frightened by something, I would get the feeling of instant diarrhea. The situation was obviously processed by my brain but for some weird reason, my bowels were connected. Or having mood swings after certain high carb meals or being susceptible to certain skin conditions.

If you are a millennial, you know that a good number of us grew up in households where as long as you weren’t in pain or bleeding you were alright. Well…a lot of gut problems were flying under the radar as a result; with symptoms that would start out mild but over the years would develop into bigger issues as they slowly eroded our digestive system and eventually affecting our overall health.

Let’s Look at The Science.

According to Wikipedia, ‘In industrial production, a slurry of wheat flour is kneaded vigorously by machinery until the gluten agglomerates into a mass. This mass is collected by centrifugation, then transported through several stages integrated in a continuous process. About 65% of the water in the wet gluten is removed by means of a screw press; the remainder is sprayed through an atomizer nozzle into a drying chamber, where it remains at an elevated temperature for a short time to allow the water to evaporate without denaturing the gluten. The process yields a flour-like powder with a 7% moisture content, which is air cooled and pneumatically transported to a receiving vessel. In the final step, the processed gluten is sifted and milled to produce a uniform product. This flour-like powder, when added to ordinary flour dough, may help improve the dough’s ability to increase in volume. The resulting mixture also increases the bread’s structural stability and chewiness. Gluten-added dough must be worked vigorously to induce it to rise to its full capacity; an automatic bread machine or food processor may be required for high-gluten kneading. Generally, higher gluten levels are associated with higher overall protein content’. End of Quote

It’s a known fact that the industrial revolution changed the world for ever. Food became plentiful. Mass production ensured that there was enough to go around but it also has led to new diseases and ailments that weren’t as prevalent back then. Gluten is a protein found in grain including wheat, barley and rye and comprises about 85% of the protein found in bread wheat. Everyone is unique and our bodies have varying reactions to different things. For some people, gluten can trigger adverse inflammatory, immunological and autoimmune reactions. Some of the ailments that people intolerant to gluten range from celiac disease, non-celiac gluten sensitivity, dermatitis herpetiformis, gluten ataxia.

The Problem with Big Pharma

It is a known fact that the big pharmaceutical companies don’t necessarily want you well. Instead of advising on a change of diet, removal of excess sugars, weight loss and a healthier diet, a lot of people are placed on medication to deal with issues that stem from food sensitivities. Their goal in many circumstances is to place people on an assembly line where you keep coming back without getting a permanent cure for the ailment. In this case, these conditions can only be resolved by eating a gluten-free diet. Hippocrates said, ‘Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food‘ and that is so true. And until we get back to eating healthy, nutrient rich food, we will continue on this assembly line of medication that corrects one thing and destroys ten other things in your body. If you don’t believe me, just listen to one of those drug commercials on TV.

Getting a majority of gluten out of my diet did wonders for my skin, my digestion, my emotions, my energy levels, clarity and alertness of mind and overall health. But in today’s world, it’s very difficult to be 100 percent gluten free (I must say) but getting most of it out of your diet will do wonders for your health. The game is still on, and I hope the Cinci Bengals win the game, they haven’t in the last 31 years, and being a proud Ohioan living in Texas, my money is on them. Please like, follow, and comment. And until I come your merry way again, I remain

Periwinkle Starr

An Amazing New Year!…Pandemic or Not.

Hello Y’all! Happy belated New Year to you from North Texas. I’m so glad to blog today and I hope you are doing well in your part of the world. It’s been cold here lately but thankfully it hasn’t snowed, and we haven’t lost power…at least not where we’re at. The year 2022 took off like a horse at the races so I’m not surprised that we’re at the end of January. The pandemic is still on with worldwide chaos on mandates, rules and the division that comes with trying to control a large group of people. Friends of ours in other parts of the country are experiencing shortages and scarcity on certain items and services but still, we have to keep on living life the best way we can.

I was hoping that by this time, we would be skipping along with the pandemic somewhat behind us but NO NO NO….we now have Omicron. which is more contagious than Delta and even has a shorter incubation period. Some clown posted a statement saying ‘I’m going to sleep. Wake me up when Omegatron hits’. I literally fell out of my chair because it hit me that we may never get back to life as we knew it….and this may be a weird kind of normal from now on. Heaven forbid! But we still have to weather this 2+ year storm somehow. Here are some of my strategies that I’d like to share with you so stay with me.

See the source image
Culled from the internet.

Talk about it. Getting with friends and family and just talking about everything that’s going on has been a tremendous stress reliver because you know that you’re not alone.

Stay healthy. whether it’s eating better, exercising, keeping fit, staying connected with friends and family.

Wear a mask when needed. Folks, this pandemic is real. Many have lost their lives because of it. There’s no shame in this game. You owe it to yourself to protect your body and health. This may be contrary to some people’s belief system but it’s better to prepare for a catastrophic event that never happens than to be caught unawares.

Take your vitamin supplements. This boosts your immune system and fortifies you against any nasties.

Keep on living! We humans are resilient. We have always been, and we will always be. We are still here….so let’s enjoy the gift of another day that we have been given.

Friends, I plan on getting better at posting on a regular. As soon as the dust settles, I’ll be back. Please like, follow or comment if you found this post helpful. Until I come your way again, I remain

Periwinkle Starr

Its Christmas!!!… Don’t Fall Off The Wagon.

Merry Christmas Y’all! I hope you are doing well in your part of the world. Texas is having the warmest winter on record this year and it hasn’t frozen over as we expected. Not sure if I like it or not but that’s okay. I have wanted to write this post for a while now but just wasn’t settled enough to do it. I have been resting and recovering from the year we just had. Christmas is the most wonderful time of the year and has aways been for me, but this year is a little different but I’m so thankful. My neighborhood has an annual Christmas decor competition, and the winner is usually the most decked out house. As much as I love admiring decor, if it needs a ladder, drills or nails, I’d rather not be the one doing any of that. After donating my old tree to a family that I felt would better appreciate it, I went a non-traditional route and got a spiral Christmas tree, and I absolutely love it.

It’s the holidays! I know but nevertheless, I’m still doing my best to keep my routine going and not just letting it ALL go…because it may be too hard to kickstart it in the new year. LOL! Here are some of the things I’ve been doing to maintain and improve on during the holiday period.

Culled from the internet.

Staying Hydrated. Being home and not on the go coupled with having so many drink options, it’s easy to forget to hydrate my body because I don’t feel or get thirsty. But making a mental note to drink a minimum of 8 glasses of water every day has been my goal.

Rejuvenate your skin. Waking up and dashing to work or getting home and barely making it through my exercise class doesn’t give any room to really cleanse and pamper my skin as I should. But now that we’re home, dry brushing, Epsom salt soaks, sugar scrubs and pampering my skin is necessary for it to retain its youth and elasticity.

Apply detox foot pads while you sleep. A lot of people have said that detox foot pads are a hoax or that they’re fake. Well, I have used detox foot pads for almost a decade, and they WORK! My sleep is better, I feel refreshed, and my energy levels are up. I feel like people should try good brand names for great results…Try it and thank me later.

Get unlimited at-home facials. It doesn’t matter if you’re a guy or a gal. Now is the time to slow down and really take care of your face. Everyone has a routine or regimen that they follow and now is the time to slow down and follow it instead of just barely wiping your makeup off before jumping into bed. Cleanse, exfoliate, scrub, hydrate, moisturize and spot treat. Remember, your face tells a lot about you before you open your mouth.

Rest. This is when you have earned the right to be a couch potato…and a happy one at best. Rest, relax and give your brain some timeout to just do nothing. Watching garbage TV aka Real housewives are my go-to because I need only two braincells to be entertained when I watch reality TV.

Cut back on excessive stimulants. Your liver will thank you for it. I sat with a doctor friend of mine who intimated me on the rise of health issues because of stimulants; be it drinks or medication. Moderation is the key but if you have to binge during the festivities, have your cleanse or detox lined up afterwards. In Hollywood, people have parties and then have detox sessions afterwards where they get IVs with vitamin supplements to cleanse or repair whatever damage they may have caused internally. I know this sounds extreme but that should tell you something about stimulants and toxins and what they do to our internal organs.

Folks, it’s so good to write again. I hope you get to rest, reflect and enjoy your families this season. From my family to yours, I wish you a very Merry Christmas and an amazing new year ahead. Until I come your way again, I remain

Periwinkle Starr

Gobble Gobble….Here Comes Trouble!

Hello Y’all! I hope you are fine and doing well in your part of the world? Well, it’s beginning to feel a lot like Fall at last. The leaves are falling. It getting windy-er and Thanksgiving is here. A lot of my friends have bought their birds and are working through their shopping lists at the moment. A few of us have been liberated from that nightmare and have decided on ordering an already made thanksgiving dinner….All you have to do is show up and eat. There is a level of stress in food prepping that is so tiring that when you do sit down at the table, you can’t even eat the food anymore. Trust me, I’ve been there. I would RATHER catch up on conversating and just enjoying the atmosphere than slaving away at the stove. I’ve done that so many times over the years that I feel like I don’t have to prove any thing to anyone at this point.

Don’t get me wrong, a home cooked meal is the next best thing but not having to spend the last 48 hours on your feet getting everything prepped and ready is even better. I will be enjoying a home cooked thanksgiving feast, I just wont be the one preparing it this year. Just the thought of that makes me dance without any music.

But on a serious note, things are a more expensive this year especially with the rise in inflation and per record, the most expensive Thanksgiving so far in the country. With that being said, I have been through far too much over the past year to not have a wonderful Thanksgiving meal. All diets are off….I don’t think I would be 100 percent gluten free…LOL. I have been craving cheesecake for a while now and the opportunity to indulge has presented itself. I will have my slice of cheesecake and pay for it later.

So Much To Be Thankful For This Year!

I’m thankful for life. So many were lost over the past year, its so surreal. I’m thankful for my health, family, my friends, my work and the country I live in and for all the readers who follow this blog. I’m thankful for all of you. Folks, if this time makes you feel down, discouraged or sad; instead of looking at your glass as half full, why not focus on the things that are going well, things that are positive and anticipate an even better future for yourself. If you are religious, think of the story of the sparrow, if God takes care of a tiny insignificant creature, how much more you and I. From me to you, Happy Thanksgiving!! Until I come your merry way again, probably from the gym working off these self induced calories…haha, I remain,

Periwinkle Starr

Chocolate Brownies…The Other Way!

Hello Y’all! I hope you are doing well in your part of the world? Boy, I’m I glad that this month is over. It was A-L-O-T but here I am in zen mode watching reality TV and getting this post completed. It’s beginning to look more like Fall in North Texas…Thank God! But I still haven’t gotten around to changing out my closet yet…ha ha! I’m a fan of the 90 Day FiancĂ© franchise on TLC and recently, they branched out into 90 Day FiancĂ©e – The Other Way. Its literally the same show but now the partners go over to foreign countries to meet and marry their significant others within 90 days. Well this post is about making brownies but not the way you’ve always known. This post is about making brownies the other way, the gluten free way. Enjoy!

Ever since I began this journey, I have been on this path searching for food substitutes that I can enjoy eating…It has been a challenge! I would find items that were gluten free but had high sugar contents and vice versa. I don’t how people who have adopted this lifestyle have survived for years because ‘difficult’ is an understatement when trying to find foods that are as close to normal everyday items; items that are gluten free with low to no sugars – and still taste like food. Its like searching for a needle in a haystack…..with so much hay (literally lol). But not to whine too much, there are pluses of going gluten free.

These Are Some of Them.

I’m a better planner…when it comes to food. Before now, I just ate whatever was readily available and easy to get my hands on.

Clearer skin. I have a better understanding now that all skin issues aren’t necessarily hormonal although hormones play a huge part in it.

Being able to burn stubborn fatty areas and loose weight without doing anything different from what I have always done prior.

I stumbled on a website!!! My search led me to this brand named Lakanto (www.lakanto.com). They have a variety of sugar free and gluten free items which range from snacks, spreads, baking mixes, powdered drinks…need I say more. I was so excited, I decided to try their brownie mix which is keto friendly, sugar free and gluten free amongst other plus points. I didn’t know what to expect but I was pleasantly surprised… given the fact that I thought I was going to eat bland foods moving forward.

Ingredients: Brownie Mix, 2/3 melted coconut oil and 2 eggs. I added almonds and chopped walnuts to the mix to give it some texture. How to bake: Turn your oven on to 325F. Pour the mix into a bowl, add the melted butter, eggs and mix. Fold in the almonds and walnuts. Grease your pan and pour in the mix. Bake for 20-25 minutes with constant toothpick checks.

It came out really good although being without gluten, it didn’t really rise as it baked. But it was good. I plan on continuing my search for brands that cater to those of us on this path. Until I come your way again, Happy New Month!!! I remain

Periwinkle Starr

Kicking Gluten To The Curb!

Hello Y’all! I hope you are doing well in your part of the world. Its getting cooler but not just yet. I’m waiting for a massive temperature drop to switch out my Summer gear for Fall/Winter wear. So until then, it’s temperamental North Texas weather for the next couple of days. But I just cannot wait to layer on. LOL…I know all my Midwesterners are rolling their eyes at this but hey! You are not a tree. You can move. And you don’t have to let the gusty Ohio River winds invade your soul every year. The choice is yours!! Anyways, todays post is about my journey to being gluten free. And by sharing this journey, I hope this can help someone else.

Food is life. It doesn’t matter the culture, region or people. Food is the number one common denominator. When it comes to food sensitivity, its very easy for people to expect bad reactions, extreme skin anomalies, swelling, or itching throat. But, there is a more subtle reaction that I believe is more deadly because the symptoms are milder and many of us fall under this category but are not aware.

A huge amount of the general populace (myself included) eat to curb hunger and attain satiety. In order words, we eat to keep our bellies filled or full. This is very different from eating to ‘fuel’ the body. When you eat food without knowing your bodies needs, your body accepts the food because it has no choice (duh) but it looks for places to store it because it doesn’t know what to do with it. That is why we see an increase in belly fat, fat around the thighs, arms because we have adopted a diet that in many many cases is not suitable for our body type. And the long suffering human body has to do the best it can with the trash it receives on a daily and still keep us alive, keep our hearts pumping and fight off the bacteria and illnesses in our environment at the same time.

I Started Paying Attention to My Body.

The signs were there, but they were very mild so its very important to pay attention to our bodies Some people have instant reactions like rolling on the floor or hives that instantly appear. This is not the case for everyone. A lot more people have milder symptoms that are often and very easily overlooked. Nobody just drops dead without any warning…our bodies are too intelligent for that. The problem is we ignore the signs because they’re subtle and fleeting. Here are some signs you may be sensitive to gluten.

*Being bloated on a daily or after eating certain foods. Ex. Rice and certain grains, baked goods, desserts, milk, certain cheeses, sweets, sodas, sweet fruits, alcohol, heavy carbs etc.

*Gut imbalance. Constant yeast infections. When people hear the words ‘yeast infection’, it’s very easy to think it always has to do with the private areas. Well… we have yeast in our gut and on our skin as human beings. The problem comes when the yeast bacteria outgrows the good bacteria and compromises the immune system. Then there’s a problem.

*Constipation and irregularities. If you have to take laxatives on a regular, or all those fiber powders and supplements, this is not normal and is not healthy. The commercials on TV want you to buy more products without really addressing the root cause or underlying issue.

*Acne. Skin issues. Hormonal imbalances. These three things go hand in hand and a lot of times when the diet is fixed, there will be significant and visible improvement in these three areas.

Healing the Body – How to get started.

*Find a naturopath who is well versed in diet and nutrition as well as gastrointestinal health.

*Removing unnecessary metals from the body. Ex. Mercury amalgam dental fillings etc. This is a whole other post on its own. But I encourage you to look up the side effects of having metals in the body. Don’t just take my word for it.

*Some people may need extensive bloodwork to determine their body type and how better to fuel it. We no longer need to expect to be sick just like our family members were due to our genes. We can start now to make changes to mitigate or completely rewrite our own health path.

*We can start by cleaning out our diet. We owe that much to our bodies. Remember, we only have one.

*Colon hydrotherapy. It’s funny how we get massages, spa treatments, and all kinds of pampering to our outer bodies while very few people take the time to do an internal cleanse of their internal organs and system. I believe in balance. Take care of your insides and your outer body will need less work. Scientist say that the gut is the brain and after doing my own research, I believe it. If the gut is healthy and clean, your mind, will and emotions with be better for it.

*Clean out your refrigerator, pantry and all your secret stashes….yes, I said stashes. With advise from a naturopath or nutritionist, draw up a diet plan that works for your body type and do the best you can to stick to it.

*Read the labels when grocery shopping. Up until now, I had no clue that there was such a thing as gluten free aisles or sections. The market is rapidly growing because a lot more people are experiencing food sensitivities and looking for alternatives to relieve the symptoms.

*Cheat responsibly. A gluten free diet is very hard to stick to 100% because almost every food around us has some form of gluten in it. When you do cheat, portions matter.

Folks, If this post helps one person, it makes all the difference in my world. I have been through it myself and if anything I say on here helps someone else, my work is done. Feel free to share your experiences, like, follow and comment. Until I come your way again…and my hope is that when I do, it will be cooler in North Texas, I remain

Periwinkle Starr