Wednesday, September 9, 2009

In Search of Gluten-Free Weight Loss Shakes

Over the past year, I have been struggling with not only eating gluten-free, but trying to drop quite a few extra pounds. I've tried to start on Weight Watchers again, which I have had success with in the past, but have found it more difficult this time. I've tried eating healthier, which is great, but still haven't lost weight. I have given up all snacking after 7pm. I still find myself snacking way too much during the day! Even too many healthy snacks can pack on the pounds. I suppose my chocolate addiction isn't helping either! I got to thinking about my BCD (Before Celiac Disease) days and how I used to keep my weight down. It dawned on me. Slim-Fast Shakes used to be my go-to diet food. Quick, easy, no preparation or thinking involved, GRAB AND GO! I knew that the regular Slim-Fast Shakes are not gluten-free. I wondered if by chance Slim-Fast may have a gluten-free version out there. The Slim-Fast website shows "New Easier to Digest" Lactose-Free, Gluten-Free Shakes. Eureka! Since I hadn't heard any buzz about these shakes, I wondered if I was the only one who didn't know that these LF GF shakes existed? So, of course, I had to get my hands on some of those shakes! First, I tried They have EVERYTHING, right? Three shakes were shown, Chocolate, Coffee, Vanilla. All "Out of Stock". Hmmm. Next, I poked around my local drug stores. Nada. I finally emailed Slim-Fast. Here is the response I received. Hello Lisa, Thank you for contacting us recently. Our company no longer markets this product, since consumer demand does not warrant its continued production, and there are no plans to reintroduce this product into the market. We are sorry if it was one of your favorites. We hope you will be able to find another one of our products that meets your needs. If you are lactose intolerant, we suggest trying our Slim Fast Optima Powder Shake mixes blended with lactose-free milk or low-fat soy milk to make a 99% lactose-free shake. In addition, the Slim Fast Meal On-The-Go Bars are lower in lactose with 2 grams of lactose or less per serving. Thank you for your interest in Slim-Fast. Please contact us at 1-800-SLIMFAST (754-6327) if you have additional questions, or visit us online at Sincerely, The Slim-Fast Support Team Seriously? Consumer demand does not warrant its continued production? Huh? Where have they been lately? Ok, so, I sent them an email thanking them for their quick response and telling them I have Celiac and that I am disappointed that the shakes are no longer available. Then I shrugged my shoulders and decided that I needed to find another way to shed the fat. Until.... The other day when I was at Walmart, I decided to take a look at their EQUATE version of the shakes. There, right on the box, next to the Allergy Info, clear as day, it said, "Does Not Contain Gluten!" Wahoooo! I was so excited I bought two boxes of them! The bonus is that they are cheaper and have more fiber, less sugar and fewer calories than the Slim-Fast version. HA! You guys probably already knew all of this stuff, didn't you? Oh, well, just in case there's someone else out there who was also alone in the dark, I thought I should share! Have a great gluten-free day! :)

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Gluten-Free Product Review: Schar White Dinner Rolls

Whoa! It's been a while again, hasn't it? As usual, I have several excuses as to why I haven't blogged. The most important one is that I've been dealing with Ulnar Nerve problems. Basically, it means that the nerve that runs through my elbow (my funny bone) is wreaking havoc with my computer time! I've been told I need to cut down, use my left hand to move the mouse around (yeah, right!) or, if necessary, cut out using the computer all together! So usually by the time I check Facebook and Twitter and my email for the day, my elbow, arm and hand are really hurting and I have to put my elbow pad on and rest.
Well, elbow issues or not, I just had to blog tonight about my latest gluten-free find.
When I saw Schar Gluten-Free Classic White Rolls at Price Chopper this afternoon, I nearly did a back flip. All of the Schar products I have tried, with the exception of one, I have just loved. They really seem to have a handle on making great gluten-free foods!
I brought my package of rolls home and decided I couldn't wait another day to open them. The directions say to heat the oven to 400 degrees and bake the rolls for 4-5 minutes. After I heated the roll, I sliced it in half with my bread knife and saw lots of airy, white bread. Instead of buttering the roll, I dipped it in a plate of olive oil, Parmesan cheese and black pepper. These rolls are amazingly good! No funny aftertaste and they aren't heavy like some other gluten-free breads I have tried. It was a nice complement to the Quinoa Pagoda Pasta "goulash" I had for dinner.
The drawbacks are:
1. The price. Four rolls for $5.99.
2. It is not recommended that you freeze the rolls, once they are open. You have to eat them within 4-5 days of opening. That means I have to eat one every day for 4 days.
I am anxious to try them toasted, maybe with some garlic butter on them. Since they are also about the size of a hamburger bun, I want to try them that way too!
Ok, now that I've told you how good these rolls are, I have to go put ice on my elbow and try to drink my green tea with my left hand....