Hey y’all! Welcome to Sweet Sorghum Living–a place to sit a spell with a good cup of coffee and enjoy good conversation about everything from handmade goodness to gluten-free goodies. Today on the blog, I am chatting about the gluten-free top pick of the week–Ian’s Cheesy French Bread Pizza + the “lactose-free” food label.
Let’s kick this post off with my favorite food group–PIZZA *wink* If y’all have been following my gluten-free top picks, y’all know that I have a serious love for all things pizza. Honestly, I am a 40-something woman with the daily menu of a preschooler. I wish I could reveal fancy GF top picks that involved my baking from scratch or a homemade quinoa salad (which I love quinoa salad–and would gladly eat one, if it were prepared for me–because cooking is just not something I enjoy doing–mainly, because I do not have the patience to cook…I digress.) Where was I? Oh, yes! Pizza *smile*
What I love about Ian’s Cheesy French Bread pizza is not only is it free of gluten and wheat, but it is also free of milk, casein, eggs, nuts, and soy + no preservatives, artificial flavors or artificial colors. So, even though it is pizza–it is not filled with junk and fillers…so I deem it a healthy lunch choice, especially when paired with a small side salad (I get the side salad from Chick-fil-A, but I use my own certified GF salad dressing–no, I don’t even prepare my own side salad. Why? Because I have discovered that if I buy all the fixings for salads I usually end up tossing out half because I don’t eat it all before it expires + Chick-fil-A is only a few minutes from my house, and Mattie enjoys riding in the car with the windows down and 80s music blaring…I digress…again.) *smile*
What is so great about having Ian’s Cheesy French Bread Pizza + a Chick-fil-A side salad with certified GF dressing is I can have a filling lunch for about 350 calories–not too shabby.
Speaking of pizza–while I was standing in line at The Fresh Market, I spied a gluten-free magazine with a delicious-looking pizza on the cover. Debating on whether or not I would actually make a pizza from scratch, I decided to buy the magazine even though I had not reached a conclusion on whether or not I would cook one; however, I knew I wanted to take a closer look at all the recipes and gluten-free products featured in it, so I tossed it in my basket without the hubby seeing *wink*. Most likely, I won’t bake a pizza from scratch…I am saying there is a 98.7% chance that I won’t–with a slim possibility that I might wake up one day ready to bake.
Just one of the many things that I love about the September-October 2015 Simply Gluten Free Magazine is the article on “How to Decode Food Labels–Beyond Gluten-free”–which covered everything from all natural to enriched. Inspired by that article, I decided to do a little more research on each of the terms and to begin including food-label terms in the “SSL Gluten-free Top Pick” posts. Now, I am not a nutritionist (or a food photographer), but I do try with everything in me to understand the foods that I eat–not only because I have Celiac and Type 1 diabetes, but also because I am not getting any younger, and I believe that as consumers we should know what is in our food and what those labels really mean.
According to Simply Gluten Free Magazine, “lactose-free is not the same as dairy-free, as lactose is only one component of dairy. A lactose-free product could still contain casein, so if you need to avoid casein as well, opt for products labeled dairy-free.”
Bless! I had no idea that lactose-free and dairy-free were not the same thing. Luckily, I do not have a dairy or lactose allergy; however, my daughter is sensitive to dairy (casein), and we try to avoid it because she is.
If a product is labeled lactose-free, that does not mean it is necessarily dairy-free. People who seek dairy-free products may be vegan or have an allergy to dairy. Vegans avoid all animal products, including eggs and dairy, for a variety of reasons, including health, religious or ethical views. Individuals with a dairy allergy are allergic to either one or both of the milk proteins, casein and whey. Milk allergies are more common in children and some people grow out of them. Symptoms may include hives, wheezing and vomiting, and in some severe cases, anaphylaxis. The only sure way to avoid an allergic reaction is to avoid all products containing dairy. Vegans and people who have or are caring for someone who has a dairy allergy should become comfortable with reading food labels because whey and casein are often present in unexpected places, including some canned tuna, certain protein powders and some non-dairy cheese products. Read more at: http://blog.foodnetwork.com/healthyeats/2013/05/19/lactose-free-vs-dairy-free/?oc=linkback
Dairy is a broad term that includes milk from cows and other mammals, as well as any food product (cheese, butter, cream) made from this milk. Dairy-free products should contain no dairy whatsoever, including lactose and casein. They’re safe for people with both lactose intolerance and milk allergies, as well as those on a vegan diet. Be advised, however, that “non-dairy” is not the same thing as dairy free. Non-dairy creamers and other products labeled non-dairy are allowed by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to contain milk proteins (casein and whey) and other milk derivatives. Click here to read more from Dairy Free Vs. Lactose Free by Elizabeth Brown.
What I learned from researching is how important it is to understand the meanings behind the labels. It is not enough just to read labels and assume–we need to know what we are putting in our bodies! I encourage each of you to do your own research on food labels, so you can be better informed the next time you go grocery shopping.
Thanks so much for sitting a spell with me today as we chatted about the gluten-free top pick of the week + what does lactose-free really mean. Now, Mattie and I are about to head to Chick-fil-A for a side salad *wink*