Gluten vs. Gluten Free and the Benefits

To gluten or not to gluten? That is the question.

Is it gluten-free?” is one of the most asked questions today not only because it’s a fad, but also because so many people have discovered they cannot tolerate today’s commercial gluten products. Why? Not many of us can tolerate processed foods filled with GMOs (genetically modified organisms). Immune systems are breaking down everywhere with the constant consumption of these GMO foods. But that’s not what I want to concentrate on today, since I really have crackers and sausages on the brain.

Plant based crackers and sausages, that is.

Dang, there are some creative crackers out on the market today. When I was younger there were very few truly natural cracker choices, and those that did exist weren’t very tasty. Today most commercial brands use GMO ingredients and other unpleasant additives that only undermine your health.

The problem with natural crackers today is the heftier price because they usually contain organic ingredients – flour, salt, oil and lots of seeds. $6 or more for 7 ounces of crackers – do I want them? Yes, I do. At my price. Which probably comes out to something like $1 – $2 for 7 oz. That’s 7 ounces of homemade crackers, of course. Here’s a fantastic recipe for great homemade crackers, at about a third the price of commercial..

I use organic, non-hybridized Einkorn flour as a base for my crackers to make sure I’m not using any hybridized wheat. Using one cup of flour, add approximately add 1 tsp. each of the following:

real salt
black pepper
smoked paprika
granulated garlic
onion powder
poppy seeds

To this dry mix I add 1 tbsp. each of the following:

nutritional yeast
uncooked quinoa
flax seeds
poppy seeds
sunflower seeds
pumpkin seeds……… and any other seeds you might have on hand that you want in your crackers.

Wet mix:

Mix 1 tbsp. chia seeds with ¼ cup water and allow to gel for a few minutes.
Mash up 1 cup cooked pumpkin…….. or
1 cup beans (of choice)…… and add to the dry mix, mixing it all together immediately. I use my hands, smooshing it all together (it feels more organic that way), but you can use a mixer if you find that easier. Once it is all mixed, lay it out approximately ¼ inch thick in a flat oiled (I use unflavored coconut oil) pan. Keep your hands moistened with water while flattening it out so it won’t stick to your hands. Bake for 20 minutes at 350°. Pop it out of the pan, turn it over and bake for another 20 minutes on the other side. Remove from oven, cool and cut into crackers, and enjoy.

Back to the Gluten Issue

We’re not looking at gluten as the bad guy here, and when I make breads or sausages, I often use vital wheat gluten in the mix. Now, if you’re gluten-free, there are always substitutes for wheat flour, so you can still enjoy your own creations. You can use potato starch and/or tapioca flour in lieu of whole wheat flour with a teaspoon of xanthan gum.

By the way, if you find that you are sensitive to gluten, it could be the fact that glyphosates are often used on commercially grown crops so they will all cure at the same time. Glyphosates will certainly help create weakened immune systems leading to gluten sensitivity. Or it could be the fact that, although supposedly wheat is not genetically modified in the USA, it most definitely has been hybridized. In fact, according to cardiologist Dr. William Davis,

“By definition, hybridization, backcrossing, and mutation-inducing techniques are difficult to control, unpredictable, and generate plenty of unexpected results. In short, they are worse than genetic-modification. Imagine we were to apply similar techniques of hybridization and mutagenesis to mammals–we’d have all manner of bizarre creatures and genetic freaks on our hands. I am no defender of genetic-modification, but it is pure craziness that Agribusiness apologists defend modern wheat because it is not yet the recipient of “genetic modification.

Just as Agribusiness is lobbying to prevent truth in labeling that proposes to require food manufacturers to include a “genetically-modified” declaration on foods since they feel it is none of your business, they are likewise muddying the water by defending modern high-yield, semi-dwarf strains of wheat, created through extensive genetics manipulations, as not the product of “genetic modification.”

I say “tomato,” you say “tomahto.”’

Often I find that my clients who can’t touch anything with gluten in it are able to consume something like Einkorn flour, which is the world’s most ancient wheat that’s never been hybridized. It is nothing like today’s modern, mass market wheat and can be an excellent solution for those with gluten sensitivity. When I use regular wheat flour, this is the only flour I use. When doing blind strength testing on my clients with the non-hybridized Einkorn flour, not one has tested negatively to the flour, but when we test on commercial brands of flour everyone, including those who claim they are not gluten sensitive, tests poorly. This is enough proof for me that wheat hybridization, glyphosates, and/or GMOs simply are bad for us and will weaken our immune systems. I purchase my flour from but have also purchased directly from

Sausages vs. Compassion

I know I am considered ‘controversial’ by many, but I hope you also know I’m not here to judge you in any way, even though I’ve been pretty heavily judged by those who disagree with me. It’s true that I won’t eat meat for many reasons – and I’ve felt a compassion for animals since I was crawling that has contributed to my refusal to consume meat. But there are times when the smell of something like sausage or bacon cooking is very tantalizing, and it brings back early childhood memories. At times like that I run to my kitchen and put together my vegan sausages that taste so delectable all my meat-eating friends are fooled by them. My vegan friends don’t believe they’re vegan and are afraid to eat them because they remind them too much of meat. So, if you’re looking to include more plant-based foods into your diet that can pass for meat, you’ve got to try my favorite ‘potato/carrot/sage sausages. They also include vital wheat gluten, so they’re not gluten-free. But if you’re feeling compassionate, you’ll feel good knowing no animal was hurt in the process.

Vegan Potato/Carrot/Sage Sausages

Dry Mix:
1 ½ cups vital wheat gluten
1 tsp. cumin powder
1 tsp. paprika
1 tsp. red pepper flakes
½ tsp. black pepper
½ tsp. white sage
¼ cup nutritional yeast

Wet Mix:
1 small potato shredded
1 small carrot shredded
2 cloves garlic
1 tbsp. tomato paste
1 tsp. chia seeds mixed into ¼ cup warm water
1 tbsp. vegan Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp. natural liquid smoke
water as needed to mix all ingredients together

Mix the dry and wet ingredients together with your hands very quickly. The vital wheat gluten will become stretchy and must be mixed well with the wet ingredients so you can form sausages, but still have a dry texture to it. Once mixed, roll into 1” round sausages approximately 4” long. Place each sausage in a piece of foil and steam them for approximately 20-30 minutes. Enjoy. These can be frozen, so make enough at a time so you have some for later.

It’s the Holiday Season (Whether We’re Ready Or Not)

Yes, I know it’s October. But the Christmas Tree lots are already starting to spring up, so there’s no better time to talk about this. Sure, you can go crazy buying presents at the malls or online. Or you can give the gift of yourself. For me, this is the season to make all the foods my friends and family enjoy and share them in health. If you make the crackers mentioned above and like them enough, make more and give them as gifts. The more we share of our food wealth and knowledge, the better we can feel about ourselves and our small part in giving back to our planet.

If you use any of our recipes, and decide to share them on social media, please tag @DrBeraTLC123 on Twitter, or DrBeraTLC on Facebook. I’d love to see how your creations come out!

A very blessed holiday season to all our wonderful readers and a healthy new year is wished to all of you from us here at the Transitional Learning Center.