agave nectar has a taste and appearance similar to maple syrup. It has a low glycemic index (GI), which means it doesn’t cause the blood sugar to spike.
almond meal is finely ground almonds that can be used in lieu of flour for gluten-free recipes. You can purchase it or grind your own in a food processor.
arrowroot powder is a starch that is gluten-free and can be used as a corn-free substitute to cornstarch.
celiac disease is an autoimmune disorder in which the intestinal lining is damaged through the consumption of gluten
coconut flour is defatted and dried coconut that is a grain-free baking and cooking alternative. It is very high in fiber.
coconut/palm sugar is made from sap of palm. It has a consistency and flavor similar to brown sugar, but is vastly more nutritious.
erythritol is a sugar alcohol that is low in calories, and does not affect blood sugar or cause tooth decay. Its consistency is similar to sugar and can be used as a direct replacement.
glycemic index (GI) measures the effect carbs have on blood sugar. It is best to choose low GI carbs to avoid spiking blood sugar, which can ultimately increase the risk of heart disease and diabetes
GMO stands for genetically modified organism. It refers to products whose genetic makeup has been altered by genetic engineering. Such foods are best avoided and unfortunately currently not labeled in the US.
high fructose corn syrup is a man-made sweetener in many processed foods that is potentially harmful due to how it is processed by the body
paleo is a diet/lifestyle that eschews grains, dairy and refined sugar.
quinoa is a grain-like cereal that contains protein, amino acids, iron, calcium and phosphorus. It must be rinsed before preparation to remove its bitter coating.
spelt flour is a nutty, slightly sweet flour that contains protein, iron, fiber, potassium, zinc and B vitamins. Though not gluten-free some people with a wheat sensitivity find it easier to digest.
stevia is a non-caloric sweetener made from the leaves of the stevia herb. It can be used in both liquid and powder form.
trans fats are man-made fats in processed food that can lower good cholesterol and raised bad. Look for “partially hydrogenated” oils on labels to spot and avoid them.
vegan recipes use no animal products, including eggs and honey.
xantham gum is a natural gum used for thickening and gelling in gluten-free recipes
xylitol is a white, crystalline natural sweetener with fewer calories than sugar. The body does not require insulin to metabolize it, making xylitol a good choice for diabetics. It also has been shown to reduce tooth decay.