Gluten-Free and Healthy?
Many Times the Answer is No

by Melissa Diane Smith

This article is based on a presentation I gave to the Southern Arizona Celiac Support group entitled “It’s Gluten Free, but Is It Healthy?” in January.

The gluten-free diet is one of the most talked-about and followed diets these days for good reason: It’s the nutritional answer for the growing number of people who realize they are gluten sensitive. It’s the best example we have of food as our best medicine. The vast majority of people who are gluten sensitive have experienced the amazing feeling of having longstanding bothersome or even debilitating symptoms dramatically improve or completely go away when they eliminate gluten from their diet.

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Local, Sustainable, Gluten-Free Still
at Top of 2012 Restaurant Trends

by Melissa Diane Smith

Photo Credits: National Restaurant AssociationGood news for those of us who eat against the grain of the Standard American Diet: Trends we saw last year – locally sourced meat and seafood, locally grown produce, sustainable foods, healthful kids’ meals, and gluten-free cuisine – continue to be on the top ten list of restaurant trends for 2012. According to the National Restaurant Association’s “What’s Hot in 2012” survey of more than 1,800 professional chefs, the top ten menu trends this year include:

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Want to Lose Weight? This Year Set Yourself Up for Success

by Melissa Diane Smith

(Opinion) – If your New Year’s resolution is to lose excess weight in 2012, don’t make the mistake that virtually everybody makes and follow a weight-loss strategy that’s destined to fail. Most people believe that exercise is the key to losing weight. Unfortunately, that’s dead wrong. It’s nice to believe we can eat anything we want and burn off the calories to lose weight, but that just doesn’t work in practice. As I wrote about before in “Think You Need to Exercise Harder to Lose Weight? Think Again,” research shows that what we eat is the most important factor in whether we lose weight or not.

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Your Most Pressing Questions about Gluten & the Gluten-Free Diet

Reprinted from the “Just the Facts” Q&A with me in the January 2012 issue of Better Nutrition magazine.

We’re a few years into the “gluten-free” diet revolution in this country, yet many people still don’t understand the basics about celiac disease, gluten sensitivity, and the ins and outs of going gluten free. To give us the answers, we posed commonly asked gluten-related questions to Melissa Diane Smith, our Go Gluten Free columnist – a leading nutritionist and author of Going Against the Grain and Gluten Free Throughout the Year – who has been counseling people on the gluten-free diet for more than ten years.

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Learn about Nutrition for Improved Weight & Health at a Tucson Festival

I am happy to announce that Tucson Meet Yourself Folklife Festival, which has a special Health and Wellness focus this year, has selected me to speak on two different but related topics. My first presentation will be about “Going Against the Grain to Combat Obesity and Diabetes” on Saturday, Oct. 15, 2011, at 3 p.m. The second one, “It’s Gluten Free, but Is It Healthy?” will be the next day, on Sunday, October 16, 2011, at 3 p.m. Both presentations will take place in the lower level of the Joel D. Valdez Main Library at 101 N. Stone Ave. in downtown Tucson and will be followed by book signings of both my books, Going Against the Grain and Gluten Free Throughout the Year, at the Southern Arizona Celiac Support (SACS) booth in the Jacome Plaza that is virtually next door to the library.

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LA Times Confirms What I Wrote: Carbs, not Fats, Need to Be Curbed

by Melissa Diane Smith

(Opinion) – Refined carbs, not fats, are what is making us fat and sick. It isn’t really news, but I guess it is when a mainstream newspaper like the Los Angeles Times runs a big feature on the topic right before the holidays.

“Fat is not the problem,” Dr. Walter Willett, chairman of the department of nutrition at the Harvard School of Public Health, told the Times. “If Americans could eliminate sugary beverages, potatoes, white bread, pasta, white rice and sugary snacks, we would wipe out almost all the problems we have with weight and diabetes and other metabolic diseases (such as metabolic syndrome or Syndrome X).”

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Restaurants Will Serve More Local, Sustainable, Gluten-Free Food, Chefs Say

If the National Restaurant Association’s “What’s Hot in 2011” survey of more than 1,500 professional chefs is any indication, 2011 will be a very good year for people who eat against the grain. Local food, sustainable meat and seafood, healthier children’s meals, and gluten-free cuisine will be among the hottest trends on restaurant menus in 2011.

Photo Credit: National Restaurant Association

The top ten menu trends this year are predicted to be:

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