Living with Food Sensitivities

Our diet had been evolving for a long time in the direction of “real” and whole foods before I learned that I needed to be gluten, soy, and cane sugar free.  Having gotten a lot of the processed food out of our diet already made it a little easier to make the transition, but when you’re trying to cook this way for 10 people every day (7 boys!), nothing is really “easy” .  In fact, learning how to raise and homeschool a large family with food sensitivities has dominated my life for the past couple of years.  Here on the blog, I share my experience with trying to feed myself and my large family a gluten-free/soy-free diet and still maintain my sanity.

Here are the important facts about our diet:

  • I have to be scrupulously gluten and soy free.  In order to avoid cross-contamination, I also feed my family a gluten-free diet at home.  The kids and my husband do eat gluten outside the home (at Grandma’s house or, on rare occasions, at restaurants), but several of my kids seem to also have gluten sensitivities.  A couple of my kids saw large increases in their growth rates when we removed gluten from our every day diets.
  • I eat a “low-dairy” diet.  I’m not dairy free, but I don’t drink milk or use it in cooking.  My kids, however, do eat and drink dairy.  We can’t afford raw milk and we don’t raise dairy animals ourselves, so we buy conventional, hormone-free milk for the kids… or cream-top, grass-fed milk when we can get it.
  • Two of my boys are mildly allergic to peanuts.
  • We try to eat lots of vegetables, fruits, and fish at least twice a week.  Notice I said try.  Sometimes we don’t get as many vegetables as we ought to.
  • I am constantly battling our grocery budget.