Friday, September 24, 2010
My daughter is turning 2 the beginning of next month and I need to make a gluten free, sugar free, artificial sweetener free, dairy free, soy free, guar gum free, cream cheese free birthday cake. It's actually, believe it or not, harder than it sounds. My normal sugar free cake requires 2 sticks of butter; I can't use margarine because that contains soy. My normal icing recipe again requires either margarine or butter, I was thinking about using just cool whip but that contains guar gum and artificial sweeteners. I think I'm going to wind up making 2 cakes, one that is sugar free and gluten free but has dairy, guar gum, and soy; and the other will be gluten free, soy free, guar gum free with plenty of sugar. Making the cakes however won't be the problem, it's decorating them that I'm still trying to figure out. I enjoy doing elaborate cake decorating but unfortunately with my frosting limitations I'm still trying to figure out how to make them special. I'm sure I'll come up with something before then.
It would be great if I could just throw my hands up in the air and make a normal out of the box Betty Crocker cake, but that is truly not an option. My sister grew up with a lot of "stomach issues" she was always getting sick but no one, including doctors knew why. Things finally got bad enough her senior year in high school that she would stop eating breakfast and lunch because she knew if she ate she would get sick. She'd wait until she was out of school to eat and then spend the rest of the night suffering the consequences. It was by the providence of God I read a magazine article that talked about celiac disease. As soon as she eliminated gluten from her diet she felt 100 times better and was no longer getting sick every day. Unfortunately because of years of GI distress she's also developed allergies to guar gum and soy.
My daughter also has allergy issues; hers seems to be from mold. If she eats any fruit or vegetable that is more than a week in my refrigerator or any type of cheese she breaks out in a rash around her mouth.
I have to be dairy and gluten free at the moment because I'm nursing. If I so much as look at a glass of milk my baby gets colicky, but when I avoid it she's the happiest most content baby you'll ever meet.
My father can't have sugar, he isn't diabetic but given family history could easily become diabetic. He's chosen to give up sugar so he can live a healthier longer life. My father also can't eat red meat, shell fish, pork, or fatty fish because of gout. If he decides to cheat he limps for 2 days.
Great lengths have to be taken at family gatherings so everyone can eat, but we're willing to do this for our health.
I once read a devotional that compared allergies to sin. As Christian we should be allergic to sin and avoid it in every form. My sister recently made a regular pizza for our youth group at church and almost immediately broke out in a rash, she hadn't even touched the dough just moved it from the box to a cookie sheet. Hopefully we react the same way to sin and try everything in our power to avoid it. I'm working on this right now and praying for my discernment, particularly about the television I watch. Yesterday I was about to watch a new cop drama that came out this season, but something in the first 30 seconds made me turn it off because I knew it wouldn't be edifying, it would only affect me in a negative way. My conviction is if I'm willing to go through so much trouble just to make a birthday cake, shouldn't I have the same attitude toward eliminating the areas where sin enters my life. Something to think about.