Monday, February 15, 2010

Elimination Diet Phase One Recipe: Lentil Quinoa Burgers

My phase one recipes have finally come to an end. If you're new to my blog, you can read more about the elimination diet I'm doing here. If not, you know that this is a "28" day elimination diet. I'm currently on day 31. I've learned that lemons, almonds, and maple syrup seem to be a problem for me. I tried maple syrup again two days ago, and ended up with a ridiculous headache that still hasn't gone away. Of course after being sugar free for a few weeks, I'm sure it was quite a shock to my body. I miss cheese like it's my long lost best friend, and I bought my boyfriend Valentine's Day cheesecake, partly just so I could stare longingly at it. I'm a bit pitiful these days. While being gluten-free always seemed like a fun challenge to me, right now I'm just feeling challenged.

The good thing is that I've become very in tune with my body and what it likes and doesn't like. The bad news is there seems to be very little my body actually likes. I'm waiting to hear back from my doctor after taking a food allergy test, and I'll be meeting with a gastroenterologist next week to see if he can shine any light on what's going on. My own online research points to candida and/or leaky gut. Leaky gut? Who wants something called Leaky Gut?! I've tried a few crazy things to calm my stomach down. Things I probably shouldn't tell you about, like pureeing my food so it's easier on my digestion. Yes, I ate baby food for a day. And it actually did help. But it tasted gross, so I'm not doing that again. Do you know how gross pureed chicken is? I don't even know what I was thinking that day. Do you think I'm crazy yet? My boyfriend says it's cute. I'm not so sure.

I've also started taking probiotics (Thanks for the advice, Jessica!), enzymes, a vitamin B complex, and vitamin D. Originally, I was trying not to take any supplements so that I would know exactly what was going into my body. Eventually my headaches forced me to the grocery store where I spent more money that I ever wanted to on supplements. I have noticed the enzymes making a difference though, and I'm taking it on faith that the other supplements can only help as well. For anyone looking for vitamins that are allergen-free, Blue Bonnet is pretty much everything free.

As for my mental health, I'm a bit of a perfectionist. I was always that student who did exactly what the teacher told her to. I follow rules a bit too religiously for my own good sometimes. So when I started this diet, I wanted to do it perfectly. Unfortunately I've realized that extremely restricting diets aren't the best match for a former binge eater. I had a little "ah ha" moment the other day after crying to my mom on the phone about how I couldn't eat anything. I realized that I would never be as strict with any of my weight loss clients or as unforgiving as I have been with myself. I'm very compassionate with my clients. Not so much with myself. So I've decided to practice a little of that compassion, and give myself a break. I'm going to continue to add in foods one at a time, but I may add in some challenge phase foods, like eggs, before I finish up adding everything from phase three. I've got enough on my plate working full-time and going to school part-time. Stressing myself out over food is the last thing I need to be doing right now.

Oh yes, and the lentil burger recipe. I've made these twice while on the elimination diet, and it was a revelation the first time I had it. Of course I was dying to put ketchup on it, but avocado worked just fine. If you can eat eggs, I definitely recommend adding one to the mixture so it holds together better. If not, you can avoid having them crumble (like they did a bit in the picture below) by making sure you don't overprocess them. You want the mixture to be lumpy, not completely smooth after you've processed them.

Lentil Quinoa Burgers
Print-Friendly Option

2 cups cooked lentils (save the liquid)
1 carrot, chopped
1 cup fresh parsley
1/2 tsp dried cilantro
1/2 tsp sea salt
4 Tbsps. lentil cooking liquid (or water)
1/2 cup raw sunflower seeds
1 1/2 - 2 cups cooked quinoa

  1. Add all ingredients except the sunflower seeds and quinoa to the food processor. Process just until mixed and lumpy. Add in sunflower seeds and process another 30 seconds. Put mixture into a large mixing bowl.
  2. Stir quinoa into the mixture until evenly mixed. Form into patties.
  3. In a pan, saute 1 tsp. olive oil and cook burgers until browned, a few minutes per side.
Makes approx. 6-8 burgers
This post is linked to Slightly Indulgent Tuesdays.


Juanita said...

What a lovely recipe idea - will defo try that!

From one A-type personality to another:
Give yourself a break, Iris! You're doing the best you can :-)

Grace said...

The blog looks wonderful! Love it (:

Im glad you are being a little easier on yourself - you are working really hard in all aspects of you life.


Farty Girl said...

I've seen lots of lentil burger recipes, but this one looks the easiest, with the simplest ingredients. Thanks!

Congrats on your elimination diet. You are doing awesome. I love what you said on my blog, and here, about stressing over food. Stress only makes digestion worse. If you are stressed enough, a bowl of rice will make you sick. And we just so happen to live in a world that makes it impossible to live stress free. Perhaps that's a good enough goal in itself? Living stress free?

Ultimately, we eat better than 99% of the people on the planet. Think about all the celiacs out there who are eating McD's every day?! That's something to remember whenever you feel down about your tummy. You are doing your body good. Eventually you will figure it out. :)

Pure2raw twins said...

Oh we have done the elimination diet too. Now we eat a high raw vegan diet plus gluten-free, corn-free, soy-free, peanut-free, and sugar-free. We do not look at is a bad, we actually enjoy eating this way now. We feel better, not healed yet but getting better. There is nothing wrong with pureeing your foods, especially when you are trying to heal.

Aubree Cherie said...

I know it must be hard, but you're doing great!

Plus, you're an inspiration. I've actually been getting close to trying the elimination diet but I've been pretty afraid of it. (Still am actually). But every new experience and recipe you post about puts me one small step closer to trying it. (I'm also a 'former' binge eater-although I don't think i've completely shaken that addiction yet. And the symptoms you listed that you had even after going gluten free sounds very much like what I'm going through. So I'm always really curious to see what you've discovered.)

Also, it sounds like a 'break' in your case is well deserved! Thanks for always being so honest on your blog.

~Aubree Cherie

Barbara Bakes said...

Good luck finding what works for you! My daughter has frequent headaches and I've wondered it they were food related.

comfycook said...

Please stop by my blog and pick up an award.

I hope I get to make this.

Just Call Me Zippy said...

I think I read somewhere that leaky gut was almost always present with a food intolerance. At this point I think I need to bypass the medical community and call a plumber.

I had a reaction to gluten-free bread that I made using a mix. I wondered if it was the yeast that got me. I couldn't really see any other ingredient that could be it..but who knows? It is so frustrating when you know that something you are eating is making you sick, but not be able to identify it. For a week after I ate the bread my stomach was so bloated that I longed for maternity clothes!

Please let us know what your doctor says. I'll be interested in plugging my leaky gut, too.

Tasty Eats At Home said...

I can imagine how frustrating this must be for you! I'd miss cheese too, most of all. I hope that it really starts to make sense for you more and more as you go along. I already take enzymes, probiotics, Vitamin B supplements, and I'm still having issues. I did a short detox/elimination diet but I didn't seem to notice anything improving when I eliminated I'm not sure where I stand either! Good luck and give yourself a break - you've got a lot going on!

gfe--gluten free easily said...

Leaky gut is Dr. Fasano's area of expertise and what his Alba Therapeutics drug is mostly about per my understanding. Also, it's the whole leaky gut concept that makes many say that blood allergy testing gives false readings because you'll basically show allergies to anything that you are eating at the time due to leaky gut. It's not easy figuring it all out, that's for sure. I can't remember how long you've been gluten free, Iris, but it takes a lot of time to heal. I do think that supplements and probiotics have value, but it helps if someone is guiding you on those. Even then, I've had my functional medicine doctor recommend supplements that I did not do well with. Okay, I'm probably depressing you more than helping you ... yikes. Sorry.

Do be easier on yourself for sure. Last, love the burgers ... especially with the avocado slices. I like those far more than ketchup.


Iris said...

Thanks everyone! Shirley, you're not depressing me at all. The more I learn, the better.

glutenfreewelshy said...

These look awesome! I love your blog btw. I'm also gluten-free and suffer with IBS but I think I've almost got it under control. Good luck with your health journey x

withoutadornment said...

Wow! That looks surprisingly good. I think it would be neat to do an elimination diet but I don't think it would be the best idea right now with finishing school and all that...

I'm hosting February's Go Ahead Honey, It's Gluten Free and I wanted to invite you to participate. The theme is "Tropical Vacation" - I know that I could us one right now! I hope to see your entry! :)

Erika said...

Iris - I just found your blog and am so glad I did! I'm on day 10 of the elimination diet and while I've been pretty good at adhering to it, I'll admit I'm speeding it up a bit. The main reason I'm doing it is do diagnose the reason for my chronic congestion. Have you figured out what was causing your post-nasal drip? My congestion is totally gone now! I'm thinking it was dairy, but won't know for sure until I reintroduce it ...

Iris said...

Hi Erika,

I'm glad you're doing so well on the diet! My post-nasal drip never went away, so I didn't figure out what it was. However, I went to a GI yesterday who thinks it's acid reflux. If yours went away though, that's great! That should help you figure out the cause.

Selene said...

oh my! this looks delicious!! lentils and quinoa - two of my fave things!

I read about the elimination diet and thought about it when I was having what seemed to be candida flare ups, but I just could never do it! I have no discipline.

And I could never eat pureed food. I remember in university all my roommates were obsessed with eating baby food. I never understood it.

Ian said...

Wish I had your discipline and creativity. Just diagnosed with IBS so I'm learning more and more about the elimination diet. Going to try the Lentil burgers this weekend.

Iris said...

Good luck, Ian! I hope you like them!

Kate said...

I just discovered the elimination diet, will try it really soon. Your blog is very motivating !

Iris said...

Thanks Kate! I hope you enjoy these recipes when you're doing the elimination diet.


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