Monday, May 18, 2015

Quinoa Jam Cakes!

For quite a while now, I suspected that Teagan might have a mild intolerance to one or more foods that she eats regularly. Occasionally, she would get a rash around her mouth (classic food intolerance/allergy sign). Her poop was also not always as formed as it should be (sorry, TMI). She also seemed to be congested quite often, without having a cold. While these reactions might not seem like a big deal now, when food sensitivities aren't dealt with, they can have bigger implications later in life.

If the body is sensitive to a particular food that is eaten on a regular basis, it causes inflammation. Eczema, sinus issues, chronic colds, asthma, digestive disorders and autoimmune diseases are all linked to inflammation and food intolerances/allergies. It's interesting because most people probably wouldn't link their consumption of eggs with their asthma symptoms, for example. I think that many people become so used to living with certain symptoms (ie. headaches, stuffy noses, joint aches, fatigue) that they simply become part of life. I know that I did! In recent years, I've become much more aware of how certain foods make me feel after I've eaten them. Eliminating or reducing those foods has definitely helped me reduce congestion and increase energy levels.

Surprisingly, Teagan's top intolerances were egg yolks, oats and beans (including black and kidney beans). Not surprisingly, wheat and cow's dairy were in the top ten too. I had already noticed a direct correlation between Teagan's dairy and wheat consumption and the mouth rash/poop issues. Since cutting out eggs though, the rash has completely disappeared, her congestion has drastically reduced and her pooping habits are perfect. She has embraced her "new diet" and frequently asks people if they know what a food intolerance is.

Receiving a report stating your sensitivity level to over 200 different foods can feel incredibly overwhelming (typically 3/4 of the foods come back with minimal to no sensitivity). Once it has been interpreted by a nutritionist or naturopath, it can be easier to manage. With Teagan's top food list, I am doing my best to avoid those foods for a couple of months. She does eat them on occasion, usually when we are out. I'm not going to go totally nuts or deprive the kid when all of her friends are eating ice cream cones on a summer day.

Breakfasts have been a little more challenging because we loooove eggs in this house. Poached, scrambled, omelettes, frittatas, french toast… eggs were frequently a part of our breakfast. The nutritionist in me has embraced the challenge of creating protein-rich, yummy, egg-free breakfasts for the girls.

Since we started getting more creative with breakfast, the girls have taken a more active role in helping me in the kitchen. Quinn's breakfast creation, this week was particularly delicious and blog-worthy. We made up a batch of quinoa pancakes (egg free using chia eggs) and created sandwiches with strawberry jam and goat cheese.

Here they are…delicious Quinoa Jam Cakes!

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