Tuesday, June 15, 2010

The Great Food Dilemma

This is a rather odd post to be posting, but why not?

I've been a gluten-free vegetarian for the past month and a half, and at times it's gone great and at others I've felt like screaming, "what's the point?" The truth is, when I eat meat, I feel sort of heavy and weighed down, and after a schlep to a local farm, I decided to respect the food and my body and go vegetarian. The gluten free adventure started after someone suggested that I consider the diet in order to aid in the healing of a discombobulated stomach that perpetually gives me aches and pains.

So here I am, a month and a half later, and I'm not sure whether to continue forth. The first few weeks of the gluten free diet, I was feeling better and my stomach wasn't as grumpy with me. Then the wedding came, and stress destroyed any progress made. Now, I'm just unsure if it's doing anything. The vegetarianism is something that's a lot easier to carry on with, except for the fact that my husband is a meatatarian and I grow weary of making two main courses for every meal so I have something to eat.

The worst part about being both Gluten Free and Vegetarian, however, is Shabbat. At my own house, I can manage a delicious meal that gives me something to eat with both constraints in mind, but it's the eating out that gets me. At one recent Shabbat meal, I was able to eat the gefilte, the typical salad with some dressing, green beans, and potato kugel. There was a delicious-looking oreo dessert cake, chicken, a kugel with some corn flake topping, and more, but there I was, unable to explore any of them.

The upside to being Gluten Free and Vegetarian is that I probably eat a lot healthier, considering I can't eat a lot of the processed foods out there that contain boatloads of junk that people shouldn't be eating. I just can't figure out whether it's worth it for me to tell people who invite me over that I'm BOTH GF and Veg. Wouldn't it be easier on my future hosts to just throw one restriction at them? I mean, I can offer to bake and bring something that's me-friendly, but some people just aren't comfortable with that, especially when you're new in a neighborhood and people don't know what your kashrut standards are like.

Sigh. Food. I've always had a horrible, incompatible relationship with food. It just seems to get worse as I get older. It would be easier if I were cooking for one, but that's not my life now! So I suppose it's time to buck up and deal with it.

On another note: For those of you interested in Gluten Free food, I'm hosting a giveaway over on my Gluten-Free Kosher Critic blog of Cheddar Cheese Fries (just go look!).