There are more and more books being addressed to those of us who eat Gluten Free. Also, books about other health topics are including chapters about the damage that gluten causes. This increased awareness has also moved into magazines. Not only are there articles about living GF in major magazines, but several are dedicated to us. Gluten Free City’s Library will offer reviews of these books and periodicals.

Current Reading List

Besides seeming to be on twitter all day (@glutenfreecity), I have been trying to read about gluten, celiac disease and various diets. As you have probably experienced in your research, there are several “in progress” books on my desk and Kindle. Here is my current reading list:

  • Wheat Belly by Dr. William Davis — About a quarter of the way through. The story of how modern wheat (last 30 years or so) has so much more gluten than previous wheat is scary.
  • Celiac Disease and Living Gluten-Free by Jules E. Dowler Shepard — Just started this today. Going well, nothing too scary, yet.
  • Against the Grain by Jax Peters Lowell — Just got this today, haven’t started it. “The slightly eccentric guide to living well without gluten or wheat” is the subtitle. In the grand scheme of Gluten Free books, it is one of the older ones, but I have read good things about it.
  • Optimal Digestive Health (A Complete Guide) by Nichols/Faass — My leaky gut is not gonna fix itself, so when I saw this huge reference book, I had to buy it. Even if it only has one good article, it is worth it.
  • The Paleo Solution by Robb Wolf — I have been reading chapters at random. I need to just do a complete read of this. We have been eating Paleo (Well, Kim has, I am on my way, though) so the more info I get the better.
  • I was POISONED by my body by Gloria Gilbere — This has a chapter on leaky gut, so it is on the list of things to read.
  • Why We Get Fat by Gary Taubes — I know he is a polarizing figure in the fructose/glucose scientific world, but I think his exposing of mid-century food studies that demonized fat makes this a worthy read. I tried to read his previous book, Good Calories, Bad Calories, but couldn’t get through it. Kim has read both and says this one is way more accessible.
  • And, finally, Under the Dome by Stephen King — Man cannot live by science alone. Sometimes you need a creepy little town in Maine…

What are you reading? Do you have a book you’d like to recommend?

Currently, there are no affiliate links above. They are all links to the authors site or a neutral Google Books site. If this changes, I will update this statement.


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Forbidden Food

Forbidden Foods from "Eat and Grow Thin (1914)"

I love old books and have many more than I am able to display. One of my favorite topics is Self Improvement. This covers everything from diet to behavior. The late 1800′s and early 1900′s had a lot of books about this, seemingly more than are even published today.

The book “Eat and Grow Thin — The Mahdah menus” was written in 1914 by Vance Thompson and, as you can see from my scan above, espoused a gluten free diet. I mean, a lot of other things are on the list as well, but given the time period, it was interesting to see someone say wheat was not healthy. Dr. Kellogg would not have approved! I also have an original copy of Kellogg’s “Colon Health” book and will be mining that for a future post.

I am talking about this book for a couple of reasons:

  • It is an interesting historical document that shows people have been trying to figure out the optimal human diet for a lot longer than you might have thought.
  • There are some things we can learn from reading these old books. Many modern researchers have cited findings from work done and forgotten decades ago. Sure, some of it is nuts, but so are a lot of the diet books out now!

Since this book is long out of copyright, you don’t have to scour estate sales to find it. Here is a link to the Open Library scan of “Eat and Grow Thin” for your enjoyment. You can even get a free copy for your Kindle.

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Essential Root Vegetable Cookbook

Essential Root Vegetable Cookbook (front)

Essential Root Vegetable Cookbook (back)

For some, eating gluten free can mean eating a lot more root vegetables than you could have ever imagined. Many of our home cooked meals come with a side of sweet potatoes/potatoes/carrots/parsnips/etc. I found this in a used bookstore last week and it looks like Kim may give some of these recipes a try. They aren’t designed as GF recipes, so if you find a copy of this book, read the ingredients carefully. We will keep you posted if we end up making anything from here.

Have you had any great used cookbook finds?

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Book Review – Easy Paleo (Jennie Harrell)

Easy Paleo: 21 Practical Ways to Simplify Your Paleo Life by Jennie Harrell is a nice introduction to changing your eating habits. While there are great Paleo specific tips, a lot of the book can be used regardless of the diet you are thinking about trying.

Using the details of her and her husband’s personal journey through their dietary transformation, Jennie allows you to experience the highs and lows of making such a radical change. She shares their reasons for their decision and the 30 day plan to see if Paleo would work for them. This very personal look into their lives allowed me to relate the 21 ways to my own dietary transition. I recognized some of the same pitfalls, like having nothing in the house to eat and some of the same joy, such as feeling a whole lot better.

For $4.99, you really can’t go wrong here. Several of the heavy hitters in the gluten free/paleo world (Chris Kresser, Robb Wolf and William Davis) have praised the book. Even if you don’t think “Bacon is rad,” the tips can be effortlessly adapted to whatever change you are contemplating, with the exception of the grass-fed beef tips!

If there is one thing that I would change about this book, it is tip #3, “Remove ALL Temptation From Your House,” where it says (emphasis mine):

The easiest way to go about this is to decide on a date (tomorrow?), throw out all, and I mean all, the off-limits foods in the house (do not be stingy and worry about wasting food – it is junk that no one should be eating anyway!), and make sure you have other alternatives ready.

I can understand that a lot of us know that the stuff being thrown out is poison to us, but there are a lot of hungry people out there. I do not feel comfortable with the notion that the garbage is a better place than a food bank for this kind of thing.

I do agree that getting the bad things out of the house is great, but maybe in the next edition, the author could modify her stance to suggest donating the items that would be accepted by a food bank. Check out the AARP’s Hungry in America site for more details on how you can use your transition to a better diet to help those less fortunate. While you are at it, please consider donating Gluten Free food.

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Living Without Gluten Free Holiday Guide (Magazine)

2011 Living Without Gluten Free Holiday GuideLiving Without magazine recently released their 2011 Living Without Gluten Free Holiday Guide. I found mine at my local Barnes and Noble (in the New-age magazine section, not Food/Cooking) and you can also order the e-book from their site for $6.95.

Most of the recipes are Gluten Free and Dairy Free. There are even suggestions for egg substitutes, if you can’t eat eggs. There is good advice on having a holiday meal that doesn’t sacrifice too much of what you expect while still maintaining your diet.

We are still deciding what the menu will be for Thanksgiving and we are using this guide to help us make up our minds.

If you have this guide, please share your thoughts!

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