The arrival of autumn inevitably brings with it thoughts of new beginnings. Cue Sprout Wellness Clinic’s 2nd Annual Fall Food Challenge! For two weeks this September, we will be posting recipes, suggestions, and our personal experiences with this year’s challenge. It will begin September 17th because—let’s be real—back to school is enough of a trial.
While last year we (and you!) met loads of success getting more veggies and colour into our meals, this year we’re switching gears. So just what are we taking on this year? WHEAT! What is the problem with wheat, you ask? Good question! Aside from it being massively addicting, most busy people tend to reach for wheat-based foods in place of more micronutrient-rich foods like fruits and vegetables. These are especially important as we move into fall and cold season as our bodies need micronutrients in order to keep our immune systems strong. The benefits of a wheat-free diet could take time but eventually you may experience a decrease in headaches and muscle aches, and improvements in your energy levels, digestion, breathing, skin, and many other aspects of your health. Perhaps most importantly, however, wheat has a tendency to set many people up for leaky gut and inflammatory problems.
I have personally selected this Freedom from Wheat Challenge because, since my pregnancy I have become a carb/wheat addict. I justified it by saying “I’m breastfeeding and need more calories” and “I’m just too busy to prepare something more nutritious.” But as a person who has struggled most of my life with auto-immunity (Arthritis and Crohn’s, specifically), I am fearful of slipping backwards from my current balanced state of health into an inflammatory nightmare.
The documentary currently on Netflix titled What’s With Wheat? re-affirmed all that I know to be true, as well as taught me new comprehensive factoids about why wheat can pose so many challenges to our health. This documentary is great motivation for those who would like to join our challenge. If you’d like further support, please call the clinic to book in with one of our practitioners. We can even check the state of your blood before and after the challenge to see how it impacts you and your overall health!
We hope you will join us for our 2nd Annual Fall Food Challenge come September 17th! We welcome you to share your successes, fails, and experiences with us on our Facebook page using #SproutFallFoodChallenge, where we’ll be posting our own insights and hijinks along the way!
Andrea Hauser, Homeopath + Live Blood Microscopist
- Avoid wheat and all foods that contain wheat for two weeks.
- Challenge begins Sunday, September 17th and ends Sunday, October 1st.
- If you want an extra challenge, aim to avoid all grains that contain gluten.
- Make sure to share your experience with us on Facebook using #SproutFallFoodChallenge!
Foods To Avoid That Often Contain Wheat
Wheat is found in many different foods that you wouldn’t suspect (like soy sauce, for example). The best way to be sure of the ingredients is to READ LABELS!
- Bread, crackers, and rolls (including breading on fried foods)
- Gravies, sauces, and salad dressing (those thickened with flour)
- Meats that have wheat as a filler/thickener (e.g. lunch meat, meatloaves, stews)
- Soups (bouillon cubes and commercially canned soups that contain wheat)
- Beverages (beer, eggnog, coffee substitutes, instant coffee [unless 100% coffee], malted milk, whiskey)
Words to Watch for on Food Labels
Wheat, flour, wheat germ, bran, graham flour, farina, semolina, food starch, wheat starch, gluten, modified food starch, vegetable starch, vegetable gum, durum flour.
Rye, oats, barley, spelt, and kamut, as well as other non-wheat flours can be included in the diet if there is no suspected allergen to gluten. Some gluten-free grains are amaranth, quinoa, and rice.
- Try to eat meals that are rice- or quinoa-based instead of wheat-based
- Stir-fry, curry, and risotto are good options while eating out
- Instead of having bread with a meal, try to have a different form of starch such as rice, baked potato, baked sweet potato, or roasted vegetables
- Instead of having a starchy side dish, try to have vegetables or soup with your main course
- If you are eating in a restaurant, try to pick one where it will be easy to order a wheat-free meal
- Good choices are Asian and Indian restaurants
- In other restaurants, look for meals that are served with a baked potato, salad, or rice as opposed to bread or pasta
- Some restaurants have special dishes that are gluten- or wheat-free (i.e. gluten-free pasta or pizza)