Personally, I am not looking to try and implement any 'gluten free' products into my own diet, however I just fancy getting peoples opinions on these types of products. (gluten free oats, nairns products, tesco free from range etc)
These products are everywhere now in the UK, a few years ago it was very hard to find stuff like this in the mainstream supermarkets. People around me think they are the answer to so much.
To me, they are still processed rubbish that are far from paleo, no matter how free from gluten and other nasties they are. Since going paleo a year ago - everything has improved! everything!
Dieters i know swear by them, some even go as far as saying "these are so good for you" in discussion...
I have problems with the word "products" for starters. I try not to eat products, although I am sipping coffee as I sit here. I think of products as manufactured food-like items.
Gluten-free, I think, is a great label for people who have problems with gluten and have not yet chosen to adopt ancestral eating. Products are mostly for that type of person as well. I agree that "dieters" will reach for and cling to any label that seems to allow the foods they crave, and that's why I'm not "dieting."
Congrats to you on your year of ancestral eating. Life is good, isn't it?
You've answered your own question pretty well.
"People around me think they are the answer to so much."
Isn't that great? :) They have to start somewhere. Sooner or later, they might end up here after a search for more answers. I first started seeing sugar as evil. A while later, gluten ended up on the evil-list too. Then fat. Then meat. (Thank conventional wisdom for that. Hooray, almost a vegan). Then a lot of white things. Then.... And eventually I found Paleo/Primal/Ancestral eating. What matters to me is the diet I started with and the lifestyle I ended with.
Anyhow, the only gluten free product I trust is a whole food.
They are better for you than gluten-expensive foods, and whole grains are better for you than refined grains. But they are still a long way from good for you. Gluten may be the biggest hitter but not the only nasty worth avoiding.
More significantly in my experience is that these tend to represent the kind of food that is antithetical to natural eating patterns. I'm not saying we should hunt and kill our own food, but if you don't know what you're eating and it's ground down to the extent that it takes virtually no effort or time to consume large amounts then you are setting yourself up for a dysfunctional relationship with food. Even Paleo foods can be abused this way, but we can forgive people their intermediary steps. And if we can move everyone to be gluten-free then I would take that as a good day's work!
honestly 95% of the specialty gluten free products on the market suck. They are expensive, taste terrible and/or have terrible textures AND are terrible for you on top of it. If I want a gluten-free treat I want it to taste amazing.
these are the few products I've liked:
any desserts from Breakaway Bakery in Los Angeles, CA
any of the bread products and especially the bagels from Rising Hearts Bakery (nee Sensitive Baker) in Culver City, CA
the gluten-free chocolate chip cookies from BabycakesNYC
gluten free pizza from Willow Street in San Jose, CA
Udi's gluten free bread
Sofella gluten free baking mix (makes good pancakes)
Schar gluten free pasta
Glutino gluten free pretzels.
The only 'gluten-free' branded foods I've tried (in the UK) and like, and the closest thing I get to processed these days, are the Nakd bars (http://www.naturalbalancefoods.co.uk/store/nakd-nudie-bars/default.aspx) you can find in supermarkets and health shops - just make sure you're picking up the oat-free varieties. They seem to be cheapest in Sainsburys/Tescos than on their own website for some reason...
Gluten free products...the fda doesn't regulate them really [so i've been told, please correct me if i'm wrong!] so a lot of the way they're processed doesn't necessarily make them healthy. If you're looking for gluten free goodies the best way to go is homemade. check gluten free goddess blog spot and check out some of her food stuff, great meals, interesting recipes.
the gf products in store are usually higher in calories, higher in sugar, some of them are more processed and most use white rice flour, which besides it bein a simple carb also tastes pretty powdery. and since most products have the rice flour as one of the first ingredients, you know that's going to be what the product it mainly made up of! ::gag:: if I see rice flour as one of the first few ingredients I don't even buy it!
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