One of the reasons I decided to stop eating refined sugar is because I made one too many visits to Zest, my local gluten-free bakery. And although I stopped making weekly visits, I still read their blog, which is how I learned about the Gluten-Free Allergen Free Expo.
The expo was held over the weekend at the Marriott in Burlingame, which is just 10-min away from me. Since it was so conveniently located, I couldn’t not go. My cousin Jeff also practices a gluten-free lifestyle so I bought us expo tickets for Saturday.
A lot of the familiar gluten-free brands were represented…
Like Udi’s – my bread, bagel and frozen pizza crust of choice…
There were also some smaller, lesser-known companies there. Some of my personal favorites were:
Their “copy cat” cheez whiz crackers were SO GOOD. I happen to think that they’re better than the real thing, and plan on ordering more online very soon.
I tried a sample of the Fruits and Nuts instant oatmeal and it was great. Like regular instant oatmeal, all you have to do is add hot water – perfect for days when I need to be in the office.
At first I was hesitant to try their samples because of my “no refined sugar” deal, but then I read the packaging for the choco macaroons that said, NO REFINED SUGAR. Turns out its vegan and a raw food. AND SO GOOD. I bought a bag of them and may need to get more…
A lot of people who practice a gluten-free lifestyle do so because they have an autoimmune disease, so there were some non-food vendors with products that target this community of people:
I’ve heard that a lot of professional athletes have hyperbaric chambers like this one:
My personal favorite product of the entire expo was this infrared sauna.
My cousin has psoriatic arthritis and when he sat in it for just 15-min he felt relief from his chronic joint pain. I sat in it and imagined how great it would feel after a long run. Can you imagine taking an ice bath, then sitting in this sauna? It would be heaven. And all that’s required to power it is to plug it into a regular electrical outlet. It’s not as pricey as you would thing and I came thisclose to handing over my credit card for it. It’s definitely on my wish list; I just need to figure out how I would fit it into my tiny apartment.
Overall we had a great time at the expo. We got to meet Kathy Smart, author of Live the Smart Way and a 20+-year practitioner of gluten-free living. I also saw Annelies from Attune Foods who I have previously met a Bay Area Blogger Meet-Up.
And we also brought home lots of samples and coupons….
But as great as the event was, it was also reminder that so much of the foods were processed. I actually felt a little sick after eating the samples because I haven’t been eating very much processed foods lately.
While it’s great to have these products as options when eating gluten-free, nothing can top real, whole foods.