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A Dietitian's Favorite Dish: Gluten-Free Pizza with Pesto

So many people are allergic to gluten - a protein found in wheat so most have to avoid pizza altogether.  Today, there are gluten-free pizza crusts ready-to-bake at home or you can make this one from scratch using gluten-free flour mix by Bisquick.  Healthy toppings make it delicious and filling.  Add a leafy green salad and you are in for a treat.

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Pizza Crust - this is a great way to enjoy pizza without the bloated feeling a regular wheat-flour crust can give you - add ground flaxseed to the flour mixture for added fiber and essential fats. 

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Lignans are found in ground flaxseeds and they attach themselves to excess estrogen receptor sites and help eliminate them - excess estrogen happens as women approach menopause making them estrogen-dominant.  The side effects of estrogen dominance are:
•    Unexplained weight gain
•    Losing hair where you want it
•    Growing hair where you don't want it
•    Moodiness and irritability
•    Just want to crawl out of your own skin
•    Fatigue
•    Lack of energy and well-being
   
    Pesto - is made up of ground pine nuts, olive oil and basil giving you some            good fats that help reduce inflammation throughout the body

Tomatoes and sun-dried tomatoes - are loaded with Vitamin C and Lycopene which is a powerful antioxidant.  The sun-dried tomatoes add great flavor.

Roasted Chicken - is always good to have on hand for a quick meal any time of day and to make sure you get enough good-quality protein to support muscle. 

For gluten-free crust:

1 1/3 cups Bisquick® Gluten Free mix
1 teaspoon dried basil
¼ cup ground flaxseed
1/2 cup water
1/3 cup olive oil
2 eggs, beaten

    Toppings:
   
1 jar of Pesto (6 oz.)
2 Roma tomatoes - sliced
¼ julienned sun-dried tomatoes
1 cup shredded skim-mozzarella cheese (6 oz)
½ cup shredded Parmesan
2 cups shredded cooked chicken (use Rotisserie Roasted Chicken from grocery store)
Fresh Ground Pepper to taste
1 tsp. Italian herbs
1.   Heat oven to 425°F. Grease 12-inch pizza pan. Stir Bisquick mix, basil, ground flaxseeds, water, oil and eggs until well combined; spread in pan.
2.   Bake 15 minutes (crust will appear cracked).
3.   Spread pesto over crust; top with sliced tomatoes, chicken, mozzarella and parmesan cheese.   Sprinkle with Italian seasoning fresh ground pepper.
4.   Bake 10 to15 minutes longer or until cheese is melted.

Sherry L. Granader is a Sports Nutritionist, National Speaker and Spokesperson, Author of 2 healthy cookbooks, Writer, Ghost Writer, Nationally Certified Fitness Instructor and Personal Trainer. She has shared the stage with such celebrities as Whoopi Goldberg, Suze Orman and the late Governor Ann Richards and served as the On-Air Nutritionist for QVC television in the United States and the UK. She has cooked for her favorite bodybuilder, Lou Ferrigno (The Incredible Hulk) and his family, shared her nutrition expertise with Chuck Norris on the set of his movie "Sidekicks" and appeared on 8-time Mr. Olympia, Lee Haney's Championship Workouts on ESPN. Sherry hosted her own "Healthy Living" show on PBS for several years. For more information on Sherry, visit www.sgfit.com or write to Sherry at sgfit12@aol.com.


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