3. About Me

This is my story of how I became the baker I am.

Four years ago I started having major digestive and other health problems.  I was in and out of the hospital several times and seeing multiple doctors.  I underwent every digestive test possible and several other tests too.  Unfortunately, I didn’t receive any conclusive results.  The only answer I received was that I am allergic to pineapple; well, I had already figured that one out on my own.  One thing led to another and I found my way to yet another nutritionist.  He suggested I eliminate wheat, gluten, dairy, soy, sugar, yeast, corn, and peanuts from my diet.  My original thought, was, oh my god, what am I going to eat?  He helped me figure that one out: a lot of protein and vegetables, rice, and quinoa.  My fruit was limited to berries and pears, but very few.  As someone who used to live on fruit, this was a challenge for me, and still is.  He also ordered a simple test that finally gave me some answers.  I found out that my stomach produced no hydrochloric acid, my pancreas produced no digestive enzymes, and I had no bacteria, good or bad, anywhere in my digestive system.  We were both shocked.  He had never seen a case as bad as mine.  He actually called the person who produced the test results and asked them to double check everything very carefully because he couldn’t believe it.  Well, yep, the results were correct.  So I started taking several supplements with every meal.  Eventually I was taking an average of nine pills per meal!  After several months, though, that number began to go down.  I started to feel a little bit better with the new diet and the pills.  However, I was still getting sick.  After examining my food diary, I noticed a pattern of when I was getting sick.  So I decided to eliminate all grains and starches from my diet.  Slowly, but surely, I started to feel a little bit better.  It took about nine months of taking the supplements and strictly following my diet for me to feel better.  Today, I follow a wheat, gluten, grain, dairy, soy, sugar, starch, yeast, corn, and peanut free diet.  Though my diet is strict, I do still have flare ups.  They are so frustrating because sometimes I can’t tell what caused it.

Because of my limited diet, I had very few food options.  I was very disappointed by this, so I started making everything for myself.  I have always loved to bake and spend time in the kitchen.  It’s a good thing, because a lot of my time is now spent in the kitchen preparing meals and snacks for myself.  The more I baked, the more I wanted to bake, and the more recipes I wanted to try.

My health is finally stable enough that I have decided to attend pastry school in the spring.  One day I would love to work in a bakery making and selling special food.  There is a growing population looking for healthy recipes and baked goods, and I think I could do well.

You may be asking how I do it.  Well, it’s not easy.  I’m 21 years old.  I should be going to school and getting a degree; however, my poor health kept me from going to college.  I had a job early on, but eventually quite because of various reasons.  So that has left me with some extra time on my hands to spend playing in the kitchen.  I also read a lot of health info online.  I used to be looking for diagnoses or anything that I thought might help me.  Now I am reading for pleasure, but still for anything that might help me.  Traveling and eating out are the hardest part.  When I go away I have to pack up a huge bag of my allowed foods to take with me.  If I fly, that’s not the easiest thing to do.  When I eat out I have to explain that I need to have very plain food with absolutely nothing added.  Some restaurants are more willing or able to accomodate than others.  Somehow I do it all, day in and day out, ups and downs, to make the best of my life.

So now I’m on a quest to find and create healthy and allergen friendly recipes.  They are all gluten free.  The large majority of them are also dairy free, sugar free, vegen, and/or paleo.  Along the way I’ll share any interesting crumbs of information I find on health or baking.

A few facts about me: I love pigs; especially flying pigs.  I love to curl.  I spent the last five years curling on a team with two great guys in Pittsburgh.  Unfortunately Virginia does not have a curling club and I had to give that up.  But someday I hope to return to curling.  I love to travel and see the world.  I dream of going to Alaska.  And I owe credit for my great site name to my best friend Amy.  She is absolutely wonderful!

Disclaimer: The info in this blog is based on my own experiences and knowledge.  I am not a health professional and am not trying to treat or suggest any thing.  Use at your own discretion.  Enjoy!!

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Responses

  1. Speaking of wonderful, look in the mirror. I can’t wait to see what you do with this site!

  2. You are totally amazing and I am so proud of you.

  3. Way to go Kara! Looking forward to see what’s next. Have fun with this!!!

  4. Hi Kara,
    My cousin Amy let me know about your blog – it looks good! I’m gluten-free, and right now dairy-free as well, and am eating mostly paleo foods. You might enjoy the site ww.everydaypaleo.com. Sarah has some really delicious recipes there, and her book is good as well.
    Best wishes!
    Laura

    • Hi Laura,
      Thanks for sharing the site. I have actually been to that site before. I eat all paleo and am always visiting sites online. Good luck with your journey as well!

  5. I nominated you for the 7x& Link Award. Check out more about it at http://throve.wordpress.com/2012/04/18/7×7-link-award/

  6. I nominated you for the 7x& Link Award. Check out more about it at http://throve.wordpress.com/2012/04/18/7×7-link-award/ (sorry about the typo!) 7×7!!


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