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Best Gluten Free Items for a Healthy New Year January 23, 2012

If you read my blog the other day, I decided that I was going to try something new in 2012. I decided to skip the typical new years resolutions, and used the famous quote,”It’s not what you say, it’s what you DO that really matters,” to create my very own “DONE” journal. I only write down things that I’ve actually done that day in it and that’s it. And I have to tell you, I’ve been writing in my “DONE” journal every single night. To write down what I’m actually doing every day, instead of big “to-do” lists or far-fetched goals that never seem to get crossed off the list, has been a brand-new approach to becoming productive ; one that I have responded to really well to.

That said, I’m still a huge fan of self-improvement, and I always support anyone out there dreaming big dreams, and making big goals for themselves! A common goal for most people is to get healthy in the new year. I always strive to be a healthier person, and 2012 is just the year to get serious and get started.

So, what about those of you trying to get healthier AND go gluten free this year? No prob! I’ve got you covered with a few favorite healthy gluten-free items so you can lose a few pounds, get in shape, or just be healthy, happy, AND gluten free:

Wheat-Free, Worry-Free: The Art of Happy, Healthy Gluten-Free Living by Dana Korn 

First things first. If you are new to the gluten-free diet, do not even attempt to go gluten free without some help. I tell people all the time, gluten-free isn’t just eating low-carb or avoiding the bread basket. It’s more complicated and takes some serious commitment in order to do it right. Gluten can be hidden in all kinds of unobvious foods, sauces, dressings, etc, so it’s good to be educated about the diet before trying it. And with most things, the little effort it takes to learn about this diet, like what to eat, what to question, and what to avoid, definitely gets easier over time. Not to mention, the benefits of a gluten free diet can be amazing! A gluten free diet can be a wonderful thing, it is definitely worth looking into and giving it a shot.

Whenever anyone tells me they think that they want to try a gluten-free diet, I tell them to get Wheat-Free, Worry Free: The Art of a Happy Healthy Gluten-Free Living by Dana Korn. I LOVE this book and I just can’t stress it enough. It’s become my gluten-free bible. Besides being incredibly informative (on every gluten free subject imaginable), it’s happy and optimistic about going GF, and there are also a few quick-references pages that you can peek at every time you need a fast reminder of what foods may or may not have gluten. After reading this book, I felt like I was really educated about the diet and that I could go gluten-free confidently.

Lara Bars

There are a lot of health food bars out there, but read the ingredient list and you’ll soon find out that most are not GF. So, thank goodness for Lara Bars!Lara Bars are yummy, all-natural nut and fruit-based health bars that are not only gluten free, but the only gluten free health bar I’ve ever found that’s soy-free too (big deal to me)!! Those two points would seal the deal for me, but if you need more convincing, check this out: Lara Bar uses no more than nine, simple, unsweetened, ingredients- real ingredients that you can actually pronounce! No weird, fake sweeteners or artificial ingredients in these good-for-you gluten-free bars. Some flavors have less than five ingredients, and I’m always amazed they aren’t sweetened with cane sugar.  Lara Bars are super-yummy, and I’ve never met anyone who doesn’t love them (gluten free or not). If you haven’t tried them yet, you need to. Toss them in your purse, in your gym bag, and I even keep my diaper bag filled with a few bars, since my 18 month old son loves to snack on them too! With incredibly delicious and satisfying flavors like Chocolate Chip Cookie (Yes! I said chocolate chip cookie. And remember, all flavors are gluten free!!), Carrot Cake (uh huh), Gingersnap (yep), Key Lime Pie (oh yeah), Blueberry Muffin (wow), you may never feel the need to eat junk food again. Lara Bar is a must-have gluten free item to get you gluten free and healthy this new year!

Femme Fitale Fitness Weight Lifting Gloves

Make your resolution to increase your muscle tone (and boost your metabolism!) this year with weight lifting! And forget using boring weight lifting gloves… Protect your hand from calluses and look adorable at the gym with Femme Fitale Fitness weight lifting gloves! I started lifting weights recently and  was SO excited to discover Femme Fitale Fitness. They have GORGEOUS, colorful women’s gloves… even decorated with pretty Swarovski crystals!!! I love pretty, sparkly things, and this was such a great way to get me excited, and put a beautiful, feminine-spin on pumping iron! I am a huge believer that in order to get motivated to try something new, you need to make it seem exciting. You don’t have to necessarily spend a lot of money to do this, but getting a new workout accessory that makes you look good AND is functional, is a great way to motivate you to put on your gym clothes and start working out. Check out the fierce animal print weight lifting gloves, or the bright pink gloves with pretty pink crystals (the pair I bought) for only $20. I have to tell you, my hot, new gloves (which I always get compliments on) have got me going to the gym a lot more often and thinking of the “mans-side of the gym” in a whole new way.

Virgil’s Cream Soda Zero

If you haven’t stopped drinking soda, maybe this is the year you decide to. With no nutritional value, empty calories, and loaded with sugar, it’s a good habit to break. I used to drink diet sodas like they were water. I was definitely addicted to my diet cokes. But when I got pregnant, I decided to give them up, avoid caffeine and artificial sweeteners, to give my growing baby the healthiest start that I could. But along the way of my pregnancy journey, I discovered Virgil’s All-Natural Diet Sodas. Made with REAL, all-natural and gourmet ingredients and sweetened with a NATURAL plant sweetener, Stevia, I felt comfortable indulging in a drink that wasn’t harmful to my body (or my baby’s). Virgil’s Cream Soda Zero is fantastic! It’s really hard to believe that this rich, tasty drink has zero calories, sugar, and scary artificial ingredients. This is my go-to drink when I want  a tasty-treat but want to stick to a healthy diet or want to avoid alcohol. With no sugar, calories, or caffeine, drink day or night, and whenever you have a craving for something naughty!

Happy New Year!

-Glamour & Green Gluten Free

 

Glamour and Green EXCLUSIVE: Jane Iredale Gluten-Free Lip Fixation Giveaway! June 8, 2010

Jane Iredale_ Lip Fixation I’ve been a huge fan of Jane Iredale cosmetics for a while now. I even used their foundation and lipstick on my wedding day.

Jane Iredale is the epitome of good-for-you cosmetic luxury. Dipped in beautiful gold-colored packaging and available in gorgeous shades, this line is based on minerals and all-natural ingredients. Most of the Jane Iredale products are gluten-free and they are all pretty much fabulous.

I discovered Jane Iredale products a few years ago at a high-end salon & spa and have been hooked ever since. I’m a slave to their Liquid Minerals Foundation. It’s become one of my cosmetic-staple items. All I need is my foundation (and some mascara & gloss) and I’m ready for anything.

I love browsing the Jane Iredale website for all the latest & greatest makeup treats. It seems like they are always adding new and exciting gluten-free makeup goodies to their line.

So what’s new with Jane now? Two words, my fabulous friends: Lip Fixation. Lip Fixation is the brand-new lip stain & gloss duo that leaves your lips gorgeous for hours! I would know. I tried it.

“Do double-beauty duty with two products in one. Each Lip Fixation boasts a lip stain and lip gloss in complimentary colors handpicked for the season. Choose between Desire, Fascination and Craving, or better yet, succumb to all three.

  

Fortified with the natural plumping properties of ginger root extract and the moisturizing power of avocado oil, these ultra-hydrating, long lasting shades can go from the boardroom to the beach boardwalk without losing their intensity.”

I’m a big-time lipstick girl, and there’s nothing worse than having to constantly re-apply lipstick, so I was super-excited about this all-new lipstick stain. I like to talk and eat a lot (duh! hehe), so I’m always having to bust out my regular glosses and re-apply. And that’s annoying. I hate having to re-apply lipstick at a restaurant in front of friends, waiters, and staff. It’s such a bother to “freshen up” your shade when your out and about and it’s not professional to re-apply in front of your co-workers at work. So, having a lip stain that lasts through long hours in meetings, gluten-free munching, or much-needed socializing? Brilliant, Jane!

I tried Lip Fixation in the Desire shade ($29) at my baby shower the other day. Desire is a gorgeous natural brown shade with a slight hint of pink. It’s a beautiful color that compliments my skin and makes my lips stand out without being obvious (like a bright red lipstick or coral shade). It went on smooth & matte and even smells slightly like Life Savers in the Butter Rum Flavor (random, I know, but that’s a good thing. Yummm….).

I let it dry for one minute. Then I simply flipped it over and used the gloss (that had beautiful, very subtle sparkles!) for a pretty, complete lip-look. With all the eating, drinking, and baby/labor/birth-talk that went on for three hours at my baby shower, my lips still looked great! I definitely could have re-applied the gloss, but my lips were still stained! It was awesome and it was so nice to not worry about re-doing my lipstick in front of everyone at the shower, so I could just enjoy it, smile for the cameras, and have fun!

Lip Fixation is like the Batman & Robin duo- the perfect team of stain and gloss to keep your lips looking colored & fantastic for the office, out with friends, or anytime you want pretty lip-color without the annoyance of it wiping away soon after using. It’s awesome stuff, worth the price, and may even become one of your cosmetic-staple items too!

Talk, eat, and pout those lips as much as you want, girls… Lip Fixation will let you do it!! 🙂

ATTENTION GLAMOUR & GREEN GLUTEN-FREE READERS:

Subscribe to the Glamour & Green Gluten-Free Blog between June 8th, 2010- June 15th, 2010 and automatically be entered to win a FREE set of Jane Iredale Lip Fixation in all three colors (Desire, Fascination, & Craving… all three shades are gluten-free, of course and an $87 VALUE!!!). All Glamour & Green Gluten-Free blog subscribers’ names will go into raffle on June 16th and the winner will be announced that day!

Subscribe & win FREE (FABULOUS) STUFF!

-Glamour & Green Gluten-Free

 

Gluten-Free Pretzels- that Don’t Taste GF (in a Good Way) March 9, 2010

Glutino Gluten-Free Pretzels I was shopping at the mall the other day when I looked over and saw two toddlers at the check out right in front of me. One of them was sitting in his stroller, the other was out and about, hanging on the stroller handles and trying to stand on it’s wheels. Both of them were munching-away on pretzels filled in the stroller’s dashboard. Pretty standard.

Then the toddler that was out of the stroller busted out the entire bag of pretzels and decided to eat from his own stash. And that’s when I saw it: GLUTEN-FREE PRETZELS in large print on the pretzel bag.

Now, if kids are eating it, it must be good. Young kids don’t have “emotional attachments” to food like we adult foodies do, so if the food doesn’t taste good, they’re not gonna eat it. It’s as simple as that.

So, the next time I went to the grocery store, I was excited when I saw the same brand of gluten-free pretzels on the shelf: Glutino Gluten-Free Pretzels. I bought a pack and decided to give it a try- and they’re great! Honestly, they taste JUST like regular, gluten-FILLED pretzels… which is rare! Any time that you can’t tell if a food product is GF, that’s pretty much always a good thing.

If you want some yummy pretzels to snack on in between meals or along with lunch, try Glutino’s brand! They would also make a great snack-choice to bring along to BBQ’s or neighborhood get-together’s… that way you have something GF (that tastes good) to munch on while you socialize!

I like the 8 oz. pretzel sticks and pretzel twists. They cost about $5.00 and if you can’t find them at your local grocery store, you can buy them directly from Glutenfree.com or Amazon.com (which you can buy 12 packs at a time from Amazon! Obviously more expensive than buying just one bag, but if you like them as much as I do, and have kids/husbands/friends that will want to share- then you may want to get some spare bags).

I haven’t tried any other products from Glutino (though I probably will try some more of their stuff since their pretzels are so good!), so I’m not sure if any of their other snacks/baking products/etc are quite as yummy, but just know that you’ll definitely be happy with their pretzels!

Happy Snacking!

-Glamour & Green Gluten-Free