Grain-Free Vegan: An Oxymoron?

grainfree vs. grains for vegan diet on rickiheller.com

[Grain-based and grain-free coexisting in harmony. Clockwise from top: pumpkin seeds, whole millet grain, millet flour, oat flour, almond flour, whole almonds, walnuts, and rolled oats in the center. Sprinkled with goji berries and pumpkin seeds on the burlap.]

Unless you’ve been living in a cave somewhere, you’ve likely heard of the Paleo diet. (See what I did there? Heh heh.).  In its “pure” form, Paleo is the very antithesis of a vegan diet, eschewing many vegan staples such as grains, legumes, and soy products (really just another legume). Similarly, other popular diets that limit or remove grains (and often legumes as well) include GAPS, AIP, SCD and others.

These diets are decidedly not vegan by nature. Remove grains, and you ostensibly remove a huge component of any common vegan diet. Ginny Messina, RD and JL Fields, in their wonderful book Vegan For Her, recommend 4+ servings of grains per day, for instance.

I’m here neither to defend nor diss any of these approaches. Instead, I’d like to address both the pros and cons of eating grains, whether grain-free is a viable option for vegans, and whether grain-free can fit comfortably into a vegan anti-candida diet.

The first time I was diagnosed with candida back in 1999, the diet hadn’t yet evolved to the point that it forbade all grains. In fact, many people still ate whole wheat bread, thinking it was  a healthier option to refined white bread. By the time I’d begun my second round of the diet in 2009, my naturopath prescribed a period without most grains for the first two to four months.  As a baker and dessert lover, I knew immediately that it would be a difficult transition for me (to say the least!).

Continue reading Grain-Free Vegan: An Oxymoron?. . .

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Raw Key Lime Pie from the Choosing Raw Cookbook

[Don't miss the video interview with Gena, featured halfway down this page!]

choosingrawcover

Most blog readers have their favorite blogs for different subjects: you might seek out one blog for the best desserts; another for quick and easy, allergy-friendly recipes; one for thoughtful, in-depth commentary or pithy observations; or another because you are drawn to the personality of the blogger. In the case of Gena Hamshaw from Choosing Raw, however, many of us find all of those–and more–in Gena’s blog.

Because so many people already know and admire Gena, there’s been quite a bit of excitement surrounding her new book, Choosing Raw: Making Raw Foods Part of the Way You Eat.  Gena’s writing is not only engaging,  down-to-earth and inclusive; the woman herself is also whip-smart, warm and welcoming toward readers and colleagues, with an incisive sense of humor that punctuates her observations. I first met Gena a few years ago during a visit to her home town, New York, and as our friendship has continued and I’ve gotten to know her better, I can tell you that she is indeed just as forthright, funny, and compassionate as she seems. I have no doubt her book will open up a new world of healthful, mostly raw eating to a whole different audience that might never have otherwise considered it.

Continue reading Raw Key Lime Pie from the Choosing Raw Cookbook. . .

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Grain-Free Hazelnut Biscotti with Cinnamon Glaze

Vegan, sugar-free, grain-free Hazelnut Biscotti on rickiheller.com

[Hazelnut Biscotti with Cinnamon Glaze are vegan, sugar-free, gluten-free, grain-free, dairy-free, egg free, soy-free,  yeast-free, and low glycemic. Suitable for Stage 2 and beyond on an anti-candida diet.] Okay, a mini-survey. Please answer the following: Q. When was the last time you were able to sit and relax with nothing to do except daydream and […]

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Watermelon Gazpacho & The Blender Girl Cookbook Review!

The Blender Girl's watermelon gazpacho on rickiheller.com

[Watermelon Gazpacho from The Blender Girl cookbook is vegan, sugar-free, gluten-free, grain-free, dairy-free, egg free, soy-free, nut-free, yeast-free and suitable for Stage 3 and beyond on an anti-candida diet.] There’s a new cookbook out that’s been causing all kinds of buzz. If you listen closely, you might hear it. . . it sounds like a […]

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Anti-Inflammatory Latte

recipe for vegan, candida diet, gluten-free, sugar-free anti-candida latte

[Anti-inflammatory latte is a rich-tasting, comforting hot or cold beverage that's vegan, sugar-free, gluten-free, grain-free, dairy-free, egg free, soy-free,  yeast-free, low glycemic and suitable for all stages on an anti-candida diet.] Those of you who’ve been reading this blog for a while know that the HH and I live with two dogs, Elsie and Chaser […]

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9 Common Herbs & Spices that Reduce Inflammation

natural treatments for inflammation on rickiheller.com

[You can fight inflammation with common ingredients from your own kitchen. Here's a list of the top nine anti-inflammatory herbs and spices, plus some of my favorite recipes using them.] You may think that “inflammation” only occurs after a bee sting, when you scald your hand on a hot pot, or when you unwittingly walk […]

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100 Healthy Vegan, Gluten-Free, Whole Foods Summer Salads!

Healthy Vegan Salads on rickiheller.com

[Clockwise from large photo: Kale, Fennel and Radicchio Salad with "Buttermilk" Dressing; Easy Asian Broccoli Slaw: Edamame, Corn Avocado Salad; and Green and Yellow Split Pea Salad.] Salads really are the ideal summer food, aren’t they? They’re bright and rainbow-colored, just like all the blooming vegetation surrounding us right now. They’re light and crisp and […]

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Herbed Chickpea Oven “Fries” with Avocado-Garlic Aioli

Anti candida, vegan herbed chickpea oven fries on rickiheller.com

[Chickpea Oven Fries are vegan, gluten-free, grain-free, sugar-free, soy-free, nut-free, dairy-free, egg-free, yeast-free and perfect for any stage of the anti-candida diet.] Have you ever heard of “spoonbread“? When I was a kid, it was one of my dad’s favorite weekend breakfasts, and my mother made it often. Basically (in our house, at least), spoonbread […]

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Spotlight on Spuds: Should You Eat Potatoes?

Are potatoes okay on an anti-candida diet?

[Should white potatoes be included in an anti-candida--or any healthy--diet? Here are the pros and cons of eating potatoes, their effect on blood sugar balance, and other considerations before you take a bite.] [The humble potato: dietary friend or foe?] It’s finally summer (hallelujah!) and people’s minds are turning to BBQs, picnics and other outdoor […]

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Kale Salad with Fennel and Radicchio in a Creamy “Buttermilk” Dressing

See Ricki's dog Chaser on rickiheller.com

Kale Salad with Fennel and Radicchio in a Creamy “Buttermilk” Dressing is vegan, sugar-free, gluten-free, grain-free, dairy-free, egg free, soy-free,  yeast-free, low glycemic and suitable for all stages on an anti-candida diet (use cranberry variation for Stage one). If you follow me on Instagram, you have may noticed that in recent weeks (since I returned […]

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