Between coeliac disease and all my various food intolerances, I often get asked what I actually eat! I do mostly follow a whole foods diet with very little refined or processed foods, and I cook for myself usually. I tend to go through phases.
I recently found out that I am intolerant to eggs, and I have been trying to get them back into the diet but am still reacting at this stage unfortunately. At first, this was devastating news! But it really does teach you to listen to your body and give it what it needs. It also shows you new ways of cooking and eating, and has given me lots of ideas to help my lovely clients!
I am certainly not perfect, and although I never eat gluten, I do still eat things I know I am intolerant to - I just try not to do it too often. Particularly when eating out, it is pretty much impossible to avoid them all.
I also eat meat every day. The reason for this is that I just got sick when I cut back on meat. Being coeliac means that I have issues with absorption, and it is much harder to get nutrients like iron, zinc, B vitamins and even complete proteins from vegetable sources. You have to eat a lot more of them, and they also contain other compounds which block absorption of these nutrients. So you really need to have good digestion, and I will cover this in another post.
Below is what I will eat in a typical day. In addition to this, I eat out once or twice per week - usually Vietnamese, Grill'd or another cafe/restaurant meal.
For breakfast at the moment I am loving chia puddings or almond meal porridge - I'll post recipes for these in the near future. I also like to use buckwheat or millet for porridge, and smoothies in summer. For smoothies I make sure to use a mix of fruit, protein powder, vegetables and nuts to balance them. Another favourite is avocado or nut butter on gluten free toast. Omelettes filled with lots of vegetables like tomato, mushroom and spinach also make a fantastic breakfast, but I haven't been able to have them of late unfortunately.
I usually do make my own lunch, as it is cheaper and easier. At the moment, cauliflower fried rice topped with avocado is one of my favourites! Before I discovered the egg intolerance, I would add egg to this as well. Other lunches I like are quinoa with chickpeas and vegetables, chicken and roast vegetables and leftover dinners. I am not in the habit of having fish for lunch, due to stinking out offices in the past! Smoked salmon with brown rice and steamed vegetables seems to be ok.
Time for me to get honest here - I need to work on my dinner portions. Breakfast and lunch seem to be fine, and I have the best intentions of putting aside dinner for leftovers but I tend to just eat it all instead. I justify it by telling myself that it is healthy food, so it is all good, right??
Anyway, I like to make easy dinners because it is pretty busy at night - as is the case for most people! I have a multicooker which cost me $200 but it has more than made up for it in time saving (this is not a plug for multicookers by the way - I just really love it). They are great because you can brown, slow cook, stew, simmer, reheat and steam, and you can just set the timer and it will switch off and keep warm until you are ready to eat. I make most things in it, but in my recipes I have given instructions for stovetop cooking so that everyone can make them.
Lately I am enjoying turkey mince and vegetables with mashed sweet potato, slow cooked goat or lamb shanks with potatoes and steamed greens, and chicken or beef stew. I also have fish once per week, and this might be white or salmon. I'll have this with roast pumpkin and beetroot with steamed greens, because you can cook both the fish and roast veges in the oven. I tend not to have too many grains being coeliac, so sometimes I will switch up the potatoes for buckwheat or quinoa (which technically aren't grains).
I have dessert every night. I find that by having something nice every day, it stops me from binging on unhealthy things. I guess I just enjoy what I eat and I look forward to eating food which makes me feel good. This shift doesn't happen overnight, but I think that once you make the decision that you want to look after yourself, healthy food really becomes enjoyable, rather than feeling like you are missing out.
Anyway, for dessert I tend to have some coconut yogurt and sometimes I'll mix in 1/4 frozen banana or a few blueberries and 1 teaspoon of almond butter. You could also top it with cacao nibs, but I don't as I am too sensitive to caffeine and it would keep me awake! I sometimes mix in a bit of protein powder as well.
I do snack as well. I think snacking is important to balance blood sugar and keep you focused, it also stops you from becoming so hungry you end up overeating later. The snacks must contain protein and healthy fats however, otherwise you can easily overeat snacks and miss out on healthy meals! I often have bliss balls, without dates - I have a couple of recipes on the website for these. I also have hummus or vegan cashew cream cheese with vege sticks, cups of bone broth or mixed nuts. It doesn't sounds like a lot, but snacks shouldn't be the main part of your diet, and it is enough to tie me over.