For over 20 years I've been a pioneer in the world of gluten free living. I'm an expert in gluten free foods, an author of a recipe book, and a specialist in gluten and toxin-free skin and beauty care. As an international health coach, I guide my clients through the steps to living gluten free (and gas free) in a luxurious and beautiful way!
Certified Holistic Health Coach
Grandma Ethel, me, and Grannie
Edie's portrait, 1970 something
I learned many of my cooking skills by hanging out in the kitchen with my Grandmothers. My Grannie Edie studied at the Cordon Bleu School of Cooking and was a fabulous, intuitive cook. She and Julia Child had a similar zest for life. Everything Grannie prepared was fresh (and usually had a French flair). She cooked with a lot of “buttah”! I seldom saw her use a recipe, but she sure knew how to “whip up dinnah”!
My Grandma Ethel taught me all about reading recipes and baking. Together, we made chowders and baked all kinds of cakes and cookies. She even had a “magic drawer” with a divider down the middle. The left side held sugar, and the right side held flour. Right in the drawer…no bags! I used to love filling the measuring cups from the drawers. I felt like I was playing in an edible sandbox.
Fast forward to 1999. I was having yet another bad hay fever attack. A health care practitioner suggested that I give up gluten to stop the sneezing and stuffy nose. At the time, that was pretty much the dumbest suggestion I had ever heard. My brain was yelling, "The problem is in my nose, not my stomach!" *major internal eye roll* Since I was miserable and desperate, I decided to try it...for a while.
I began by cutting out all of the obvious gluteny foods like bread and pasta. This was a big deal because "wheat" was my favorite food group. It didn't seem so hard at first, and I could still "cheat" every now and then, and not feel bad. After a few months, though, I started to really notice the after effects of a gluten indulgence.
The worst was on December 21, 1999. I remember going to my boyfriend’s corporate Christmas party. It was a fancy holiday party on the 35th floor of the oldest sky scraper in Seattle. I was wearing a sparkly little black cocktail dress I’d bought for the occasion. I looked like million bucks, if I do say so myself. The room was a holiday wonderland, and my handsome man was in the mood to take me dancing. It was such a romantic event. Anyway, I remember sitting down over this gorgeous piece of rich chocolate cake - the kind with the chocolate mousse in the middle. It tasted sooooo gooooood! It was everything you’d want in a decadent piece of cake, especially after abstaining from cake for a while in a half-hearted attempt to be gluten-free.
Well, I’m embarrassed to admit it. It only took about 15 minutes before I realized I’d just made a huuuge mistake. That gurgling feeling is undeniable. And although I sprinted as gracefully as I could in my little black heels, I regret to inform you that I couldn’t quite find the bathroom fast enough. Literally.
After that eye opening and dramatic episode, I had to wake up to the fact that this gluten-free thing was not just an experiment. It wasn’t going away. And if I didn’t become a gluten-free expert, it was going to be really ugly. I freaked out! It was an earth shaking realization that became a chant of, “I can’t eat anything.” I was really scared! Food that contained gluten now gave me horrible cramps (and worse), and put me directly to sleep. I suffered with rashes and eczema. Back then, there were very few GF alternatives. All of my go-to favorites were suddenly off limits.
I’m a smart girl, but learning to go completely Gluten Free in a way I could live with was a whole different kind of school. I read books, I studied, I poured over labels, and eventually I got smart and hired a coach. My coach wasn’t even a gluten free specialist, like I am now, but she gave me the guidance, the mentoring, the emotional support, and the hope that I could re-create my food loving self in this new gluten-free way.
When I finally cut out all foods that contained gluten, I gradually began to feel better. I could finish a meal, and didn't feel like I HAD to take a nap. My body started to change. I wasn’t dieting, but I began to lose inches. Even my Hay Fever diminished. “Allergy Season” basically disappeared. With new life-skills and food knowledge, going out to restaurants or friends’ houses was no longer a source of anxiety or worry.
Now that my body isn't on "histamine high alert" all the time, I can curl up with a good book and our cat Abby, Kleenex free! I can spend hours in my garden growing all kinds of veggies and berries without taking drugs! My husband and I can take long walks in the evenings and I can actually stop and smell the flowers and beautiful blooming trees.
Edie! I'm so thankful for you.
I've always wanted to know how
to make delicious, nutritious
meals, I just didn't have the
creativity or tools.
Another fun fact: woke up today
with no lower back pain. That
hasn't happened in years.
I just want you to know that I
appreciate everything you’ve
done for me this year and I give
you a lot of credit for helping me
make some very important
permanent changes to the way I
eat to live.
You’re amazing! And for what it’s
worth I’m 13 pounds lighter than
when I started with you.