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Going Vegetarian With Food Allergies

Sisters Deathly Allergic to Nuts & Gluten - Can They Go Veg?

I've decided to go vegetarian, but I do have a few questions that I can not seem to find answers to. Most info on a vegetarian diet refers to eating nuts and seeds. I am deathly allergic to them and eating them is not up for debate.

Where can I find information on a example diet of what I should be aiming to eat. (ie so many dairy etc). Also is it possible to be a vegetarian while on a gluten free diet? (My sister can not eat gluten and is interested in becomming a vegetarian) - R.H.

Savvy Vegetarian Advice:

Dear R.H.,

I'm sorry you're allergic to nuts and seeds. That must be a challenge! It shouldn't seriously affect you on a vegetarian diet, although being vegan could be more diffucult than usual.

You can eat beans, tofu, cheese and eggs for protein, as well as protein rich grains like Quinoa and Amaranth. Use soy oil, olive oil or ghee (clarified butter) to cook with. Sprouting beans and grains boosts their nutrition tremendously.

Go for a high percentage of whole grains in your diet, to give you nutrients you might get from nuts and seeds. Study nutrient tables (USDA website has extensive info) to find non nut/seed sources of essential nutrients.

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I recommend (always) going vegetarian gradually, to give yourself a chance to explore and become accustomed to different foods. I hope the attached nutrition report will help.

I know several vegetarians who can't eat gluten, and they do just fine (much better since they stopped eating gluten) There are lots of grains to eat besides wheat - it's just that wheat is so prevalent and we're so used to it, we can't think of anything else.

Get a good vegetarian cook book and explore. I just searched on Amazon for "vegetarian gluten-free", and came up with 63 books. I'm sorry I can't recommend which one you should buy. I always find it better to browse the selection in a good bookstore - then you can see what you're getting.

Judith Kingsbury, Savvy Vegetarian

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