Hello tweakfit.com followers. For those of you who read my previous article, you know that I have begun a thirty day personal challenge to go gluten and dairy free. I am well into week two, but wanted to recap for you all how my journey went throughout my first seven days of changing my diet.
I jumped into this challenge head-first I knew it would be difficult at times, but darn….at times it was really difficult! The first day of my new diet actually fell on my boyfriend’s birthday. We usually celebrate special occasions with a meal out, and for birthdays with a cake. Hmm…this could be hard! My boyfriend’s favorite foods are pizza and Mexican…but with most pizza crusts, cheese, flour tortillas and sour cream out of the mix, I was a bit hesitant to hit up some of his favorite restaurants. Then it hit me! Sushi! Rice is gluten-free and there should be a lot of options for me on the menu. I was delighted to get to Doraku, a trendy Japanese restaurant in Waikiki, and find that we could order edamame, salads, seaweed salad, and two rolls with no gluten or dairy. I felt so proud of my decision, until half way through our sushi I realized one of them contained cream cheese….strike one!! However, overall I thought the meal was a success. Knowing that I wasn’t prepared to become a full-on vegan baker on my first day of going gluten & dairy-free, I stopped by Dairy Queen earlier in the day and picked up a special treat for my man in lieu of a birthday cake. Of course I wanted a soft serve cone with sprinkles, but on day one, it was pretty easy to pass up.
My other slip-up came on Day 4. Relaxing and watching a movie after a healthy gluten & dairy-free dinner, we decided to end our meal with some dark chocolate. I didn’t even think about the milk in the dark chocolate…opps. Two slip-ups in four days isn’t bad in my book…but hoping I can get through week two without any more.
What was hard?
I never really gave too much thought about how much I actually really do consume gluten on a regular basis. I typically eat a lot of vegetables, and try to steer clear of white bread/products for the most part. I knew work would be hard, since I am currently at a restaurant/bar that has killer thin-crust pizza on the menu. It wasn’t hard for me to pass up cereal for breakfast or cheese on my scrambled eggs….but after not eating for hours at work and seeing everyone literally make “MMmMmmmM” noises about the hot roast pork sandwich with melted cheese on fresh baked French bread made me feel sadder then my piece of plain pork on a plate looked. At the end of the day it did feel good to have a reason to pass up on a piece of pizza here, or a handful of pita chips there…and made me realize I probably was eating way more than I thought I was by being around all that food.
What was easy??
Like i previously said, making healthy choices most of the time has never been tremendously difficult for me. Being able to eat gluten-free starches like sweet potatoes, rice, and oats made eating dinner more “normal” for me and not feel too deprived. I suggest stocking up on those items if you decide to go gluten-free. Leaving out bread also made me eat even more vegetables then I usually do, which left me ultimately feeling full and with less cravings.
Getting Creative in the Kitchen…
After a day or two of plain carrots and celery, I decided to whip up some homemade hummus with whatever ingredients I had in my fridge/pantry. The result was a black bean and kalamata olive hummus made with natural peanut butter in lieu of tahini. I think it turned out awesome, so try it yourself if you want a gluten & dairy-free way to make your veggies more interesting:
- 1 can black beans, rinsed and drained
- 2 gloves minced garlic
- 1 tsp cumin
- 2 tbsp natural peanut butter
- juice from 1/2 lemon
- 5 kalamata olives
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- Place all ingredients in a food processor or blender and mix until smooth.2 tbsp= 1 serving
Before this challenge, I used to make protein shakes for breakfast or post-workout snack. Since I haven’t gone out and bought a non-dairy powder yet, I decided to throw a bunch of fruits and veggies in a blender and see what I could come up with for a meal replacement. The result was a semi-thick green shake, which actually tasted pretty good & gave me a ton of energy. Try it out for yourself!
- 3 C raw spinach
- 1 C raw kale
- 1 small apple, with skin
- 1 frozen banana
- 4 frozen strawberries
- 1/2 lemon juice
- 1 1/2 C water
- 5 ice cubes
- Steve/Truvia 1-2 packets