We've been snowed in for a long time in Northern Minnesota, but I didn't realize how far behind the curve I was when it came to the newest food fad. I was shocked at the number of "gluten free" foods I saw advertised. One menu read "gluten free items available for those that choose, or require a gluten free diet." The breakfast buffet at the hotel had a long list of the gluten free items available for guests. The pie shop/tourist trap stuck gluten free stickers on everything they could, including a long list of items I don't feel needed a gluten free sticker such as popcorn, pure maple syrup and cheese.
For those with celiac disease, I am so happy your life is becoming easier because restaurants are understanding your food needs. I've seen my aunt almost brought to tears when a restaurant assured her they have a separate fryer for french fries, so the fries don't get gluten contamination from breaded cheese sticks or chicken nuggets. She was diagnosed with celiac disease several years ago, and I am so happy she is finding more restaurants that cater to her health needs.
But for consumers who are choosing to go gluten free, I'd like to offer a little history lesson and offer you the reassurance that no matter how crazy your food fads become, farmers will still be here for you, producing safe and healthy foods.
Even without fat, they still have calories. I blame snackwells, and every other "fat free" label for my freshman 15. I may have lived on snackwells and twizzlers (also fat free) in my dorm room. You can still find Snackwells on the shelves, but this time around they don't advertise fat free. They are usually individual servings of crackers, cookies and snacks. Portion controlled, so you only consume a 100 calorie snack instead of a 500 calorie bag of fat free cookies.
Farmers continue to plug along, growing the safe food you will need. Even if you don't appreciate it today because of your special diet, we keep growing healthy foods for you.
I predict the next round of diet fad will be nightshade vegetables, such as tomatoes, peppers and potatoes. It seems like these are making the internet rounds more often with chronic pain. Once again, I will warn you that a BLT should still contain the T, but there may be some people who have bad reactions to tomatoes. As for me, I'm going to still dip my fat filled, carb and gluten loaded onion rings into the deadly ketchup. Wish me luck!