Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Transformation Tuesday and Some Tips for Your New Gluten Free Diet

The first step of transformation is realization. Sometimes the changes you need to make seem far too big or scary to ever tackle, but don't let that stop you. It's stopped me hundreds of times over, but as that famous quote goes- All it takes is one step in the right direction! 

For me, all it took was that first day, my first gluten free meal plan and a box of gluten free cookies (of course!) I purchased the cookies for the moments I knew I would feel like giving up or when the temptation was too strong. Luckily after 8 days, only 4 cookies are missing. Winning!

The most helpful things that I have done to successfully start my gluten free diet:

- plan, plan, plan!! Having a game plan for breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks is a life saver! It helps with grocery shopping and it makes sure that you always have something prepared to keep yourself on track!

- DON'T go gluten free just for weight loss. I am ALL about a healthy lifestyle, but from my own trial and error- almost anything done strictly for weight loss will end in failure.

- DO it for health! Try gluten free for 30 days just to see how your body feels. 

- DON'T head straight to the grocery store and buy all of the products labeled gluten free. A couple snacks? A-okay! The problem is that many gluten free products can still be highly processed foods full of various chemical cocktails.

- DO read your labels. Be selective, check all of your ingredients and nutritional information. 

- DO incorporate as many fresh fruits and veggies as possible. 

- DON'T GIVE UP!! You've got this!

Lots of love!


Monday, January 4, 2016

Sweet and Spicy Chicken Stir Fry

My first recipe, y'all! This one is a WINNER. 

After searching Pinterest and Google on and off all day looking for what to cook for supper tonight I came up empty handed. I knew it had to be a gluten free chicken dish, since that's what I had thawed out. All of the recipes I found contained ingredients that I definitely did not have on hand. Oyster sauce and rice vinegar were among the many. 

I decided to do a stir fry because it's quick and easy, plus I can incorporate whatever veggies I have on hand. The problem was the sauce. I recently purchased a few pantry staples for starting out my gluten free journey and one of those was soy sauce. Specifically San-J Tamari Gluten Free Soy Sauce, for anyone interested. 

This recipe contains ingredients that you find in almost any pantry. The veggies can be substituted with whatever you have on hand. Although I did really enjoy the carrots and broccoli with this sauce!

Gluten Free Sweet and Spicy Chicken Stir Fry:

Serves 4

For the sauce:
5 tbs. soy sauce
3 tbs. honey
2 tbs. red wine vinegar
1 1/2 tbs. gluten free flour (I used all purpose)
1/2 tsp. ground ginger
1 tbs. red pepper flakes (or to taste, we like it a bit spicy)
3 tbs. olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste

For the stir fry:
5-6 chicken tenderloins or 2-3 chicken breast- cut into chunks
2 heads of broccoli
2 large carrots
1/2 white onion- diced
3 cloves of garlic- minced
2 tbs. olive oil

Start with your sauce. Add all ingredients to a small mixing bowl and whisk until combined.

Next, cut the broccoli in to bite size florets and slice the carrots. We like our veggies a bit soft in a stir fry, so I steam them in the microwave for 4 minutes. If you prefer yours with a bit of crunch, skip this step and simply combine with the chicken when cooking.

Now you should chop your onion and mince your garlic. Set those aside and cut chicken into bite size pieces.

Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a 2 quart skillet, once heated add your garlic and onions and saute for one minute.

After the garlic and onions have turned a bit translucent, add in your chicken and sauce mixture. 

Saute until chicken is cooked and add in your steamed vegetables, cook for 2-3 more minutes. 

Supper is ready! I serve this dish over long grain brown jasmine rice.

Enjoy :) 

And So it Begins...

It has officially been one week since gluten last entered my body. I am absolutely in awe of how much has already changed. This blog is here to archive my journey, recipes and adventures along the way.

I've tried it all. Fad diets, unhealthy diets, complete lack of trying diets... I always ended up failing and still feeling like dirt. I've struggled with my weight along with many other things- anxiety, depression, tummy troubles, migraines, joint pain- the list goes on and on. Not like I am complaining or anything. (Really I'm not.) 

After a few years of pondering the possibility of gluten being my problem, I never had the will power to actual try it out. That and the fact that I was in denial. 

Finally, here it is, 2016 and I am 7 days clean. Of gluten that is. 

I have energy. I feel alive and excited. I don't dread daily tasks. I enjoy cooking again. I have been cleaning like a mad woman.

I mean, I know it's only been a week. That's why I am here though, to keep track of the journey ahead. For better or worse.