Gluten Free For Good


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I love that phrase, but I can’t take credit for it. Darn!

Eat food, not too much, mostly plants is a brilliantly simple, health-enhancing proposal by Michael Pollan, author of In Defense of Food: An Eater’s Manifesto. Although, as a nutrition therapist, I tend to over-analyze food to the point of neurotically detailing out everything from macronutrients (carbs, protein, fat) to dietary trace minerals (iron, zinc, selenium, copper), I first and foremost believe in the simplicity of eating fresh, whole foods. Preferably organic.

This back-to-basics approach also makes living gluten-free much easier. You won’t find a complicated and hard-to-decipher ingredient label stuck to an apple or tied around a bunch of carrots. By eating real food, you pretty much eat gluten-free by default. Plus, you end up consuming foods that are nutrient-rich and full of health-promoting properties. We all need more of that, especially those of us with celiac and other autoimmune diseases.

So, what is real food? That may seem obvious, but there’s stuff on grocery store shelves that I can’t identify and I’m a food person. Plus, there are those mysterious food-like-substances. Seriously, there are things in food called food-like-substances. Cheese-like-substances. Meat-like-substances.

Sounds a bit creepy to me. I suppose that’s where the term Franken-foods came from. Well, steer clear of fake food. Stick with the real thing.

Which brings up my next point – I recently joined a local CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) farm and am anxiously awaiting my first box of locally grown, organic fruits, veggies, and farm fresh eggs. Twenty-six weeks worth starting next month. Real food – picked one day, delivered the next. That’s about as fresh as you can get it without growing the food yourself. And get this, a few days after I completed my online sign-up and bought my share, I got a thank you note from the farmer! Hand written. How cool is that?!

If you live in Colorado, check out Grant Family Farms in Wellington, just north of Denver. If not, consider joining a CSA in your area. Not only will you be purchasing food directly from the farm, you’ll be supporting the local economy, the farmers in your area, and your health.

Now on to my last point – Naomi at milkforthemorningcake tagged me for a 6 word meme. Six words that characterize who I am. Six words, that’s all. Hmmm? Easy for her to say, she’s never at a loss for engaging word choices. Go read her posts – they are wonderfully written accounts of life, love, food, and deranged bowels (hey, she’s a Brit, with a dry sense of humor).

Cheers, Naomi – here are the words that “communicate my essence.”




Now I tag –

If you girls are too busy (moving, getting married, finishing PhDs – stuff like that), you’re excused from doing this.

In good health,

13 Responses to “eat food, not too much, mostly plants”

  1. Cindy says:


    I’ve been reading your posts, I swear. Just too busy to write- I know, how ungrateful. I saw the title of this post and had to comment- I had no idea I’d been tagged for a 6 line meme. Ergh, now I have to pretend I’m something other than a giddy, grouchy, impatient almost bride, lol. We have our wedding in a few weeks, Ron Paul is coming to UNC on Jon’s bday – May 2- horrah, and I just can’t focus on physics. Something about simulating cosmic rays muon flux in our lab versus my mother’s calls “Do you want the Celtic harpist to play for the whole reception… dada”

    Ah, enough cindy fuss. Your post and the book- fantastic! Our friends from Texas told us about this book last year and it sounded cool then. I think you just motivated me to go read it, though 🙂 I agree, real food is key. I don’t see much real food in the store or in grocery ads anymore. the whole middle of the store is processed junk. It makes shopping quicker to just do the peripheral anyways. Simplicity is elegance- fresh or frozen veggies, some fruits, and especially fish (I’m a fish addict now) are our staples. NPR had a cool interview with the founder of a eco-friendly seafood website which was interesting. I’m glad people are showing more interest in that stuff.

    How are you otherwise? One of these days I’ll get back to a post and in the blogging market. Until then, many blessings!
    Cindy lou

  2. naomi says:

    Lovely words. You sound like a nice person to have around. Plus I’d like to squeeze all that nutritional knowledge out of you!

    Would you be open to advising me on occasion? I’m finding that diet is coming into my practice more and more and while I know a lot, homeopathy is my discipline, not diet. I’m still just a well informed lay person in that respect.

    I too love the title phrase, seems simple doesn’t it? Why don’t we do it?

    x x x

  3. Melissa says:

    Cindy — so good to hear from you! Even with everything going on in your life, your sense of humor is still intact. After reading your comments, I added an “alternate” (evil twin) 6 words to my meme. And don’t worry about doing the meme. It’s not like you have nothing better to do! Save it for later.

    Hang in there and Merry Wedding. Can’t wait to see the pictures!

    Warm wishes to you and Jon!

  4. Kim says:

    Great post, and of course I count on you Melissa to keep me in balance with my fat, fried, sugary Southern food sabbatical I am on. Oh, and just to fatten it up a little I made cheese cake pops courtesy of the DB challenge. Don’t look you might die, or shudder or never talk to me again.
    Btw, we are joining our farm coop thing also, and can’t wait. Only wish I had the land to garden myself. Country girl at heart I am.

  5. Melissa says:

    Naomi – I love your writing! Seriously, I really enjoy your posts. If you saw my 6 word meme before Cindy prompted me to add “part 2” — you’ll have to reread it. 🙂

    And yes, let’s talk about the advising part.

    As for homeopathy, there’s a local woman who is presenting a 6-part series on homeopathy at the yoga community I belong to. I’d love to go to it, but I have some time conflicts, so I didn’t sign up. I think she went to school in London. Our Colorado legislature is considering a bill to prevent homeopaths from dispensing remedies so she’s trying to get the word out and educate people on how it all works. It’s a great alternative to the typical “disease care system” we now have in place.

    Kim – wow, that’s a mouthful of adjectives! Fat, fried, and sugary! Southern food is definitely the heart and soul of comfort food. I remember having fried apple pie with vanilla ice cream at a diner in Mobile, AL once. OMG, that about did me in. But I loved every bite!

    We’ll have to compare what we get from our local CSA farms. Wonder how different our produce will be? Let me know what you get and let’s share recipes for odd and unusual veggies. Fun, fun!

    Take care…

  6. Tiffany says:

    I assume the mysterious food substance includes ‘processed cheese food’ 🙂 Yuck! I’m really excited to check out that CSA…thanks for the tip!

  7. veron says:

    I joined the Farmer’s Market recently and am excited to have an interaction with the local farmers over here. I made a comment to the hubby that the eggs I got from the local farm had a much yellower almost orange yolk than the ones you get at the Supermarket.

  8. Melissa says:

    Tiffany — yes, not only do we have processed-cheese-like-food-substances, it comes to us via a spray can. Ugh! And yes, check out the Grant Family Farm CSA. I can’t wait to get my first box of goodies!

    Veronica — “over where” are you? Aren’t fresh, local, free range (really free range, not the caged free range) eggs amazing? The yolks are totally different from the supermarket version. And so much healthier!

  9. michelle says:

    Oh! I just see that you’ve tagged me! Thanks!! I’ll do a post on this soon! Thanks for thinking of me!! (and I sooo have to get this book, I’ve been looking at it and reading about it since it came out now and it sounds right up my alley!). Can’t wait to see what you’ll be getting in your CSA boxes – we’re actually waiting on the first of ours too!

  10. Melissa says:

    Michelle – so nice to hear from you! How is Hawaii? Wonderful, beautiful, balmy, lovely? It’s supposed to snow here tomorrow. Ugh…

    I know you’re busy with all these new things going on in your life, so don’t worry about the meme until you have plenty of time on your hands (like that will ever happen). Yes, the book is good. Have you read his other book (The Omnivore’s Dilemma)? We’ll have to compare tropical vs Rocky Mountain CSA produce. 🙂

  11. Jo says:

    Okay, Melissa, here’s what I think your 6 words should be: compassionate, intelligent, driven, connected, balanced and AMAZING!

  12. Melissa says:

    Jo — you’re a sweet-heart. Are brilliant engineer types sweet? Maybe not sugary sweet, but sweet nonetheless. Anyway, your comment made my day and I appreciate it, but you also know the other side of me. Scattered, goofy, fog-brained — well, I suppose we all have our mix of weird personality traits. But thanks!

  13. Lynn says:

    yay to living in colorado gluten free! I live in Fort Collins. Grant Family is at the farmer’s market!

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