Eating well in Ecuador

quepasa has a new look and it’s a work in progress…let me know what you think.

After months of stomach illness, including what my natural doctor in the States diagnosed as leaky gut syndrome, vicious headaches that led to more stomach illness and breaking out in a bad case of excema on my right side I finally decided to take the proverbial bull by the horns. Most of the illness to be fair was not Ecuador’s fault. We ate out a lot when we first arrived but were careful to eat at clean, relatively well-known although still inexpensive restaurants.

Back in October after returning from the States I was on a fairly strict regimen prescribed by my doc of a diet free of gluten, dairy, coffee, refined sugar, chocolate, meat, oats and alcohol to name a few! I mostly (read: when I felt like it) followed the regimen, and my stomach, with the addition of L-Glutamine and probiotics did get better. The excema did not. I started thinking I was allergic to the water and would have to move!

So flash forward to February 25. I had had enough! Itching, headaches, bouts of high blood pressure still. I decided to go back to a vegan, plant based eating style and see how that worked. I started subscribing to Happy Herbivores meal plans, substituting as I needed for vegetables that are here. I don’t eat the fruit and grain based breakfasts as I found out lots of fruit can contribute to high blood pressure. I know, I know it’s the opposite of what you’ve heard. Again, it pays to do your research because your health is NOT one size fits all. Disclaimer: this is what works for me. . I stock my fridge and cook on Sunday or Monday for the week. Done. I have added some oil to my diet as Happy Herbivore, ( is mostly oil-free, I just need a bit more oil in my diet. Also, I eat organic rooster fed eggs that are cheap and plentiful here and the occasional fresh fish dinner. Other great plant based bloggers include Yumuniverse, NaturallyElla, Minimalist Bakers and Oh She Glows.

In the 2+ weeks I’ve adhered to the program I have lower blood pressure, no headaches for 3 weeks and my excema has calmed down considerably. Chet and I cook separately and it has made for peace and happiness in our home.
Lessons: Numero Uno: Your health is yours and the decisions about what to do with it can be liberating.

Numero Dos. Street food/fast food can be a killer…so everything in moderation, Chante’!

…”your body is not a garbage disposal”

Numero Tres. Making a decision to eat healthy in a foreign country or wherever you happen to live can be a great adventure. Enjoy!

Homemade Gluten Free Bread
Homemade Gluten Free Bread
Fixins’ for homemade falafel. Tori Avey recipe, turned out soooo good!
Vegan GF pizza
Gluten Free Vegan Pizza. Recipe courtesy of Minimalist Bakers
Goodness gracious!
Goodness Gracious! Yes, that’s the name. A healthy version of a banana split. This was my fruit treat for the week. Fresh pineapple, bananas,fresh made greek yogurt (can’t get vegan yogurt here) and pecans.

6 thoughts on “Eating well in Ecuador

  1. Cesaly says:

    Hey Big Sis. Love the new look of your site! The food looks delicious,too. Hope your health continues to improve and that your efforts in the ministry continue to be blessed. Os!

  2. We are hoping to move next year to Ecuador. I have some health issues and have been gluten free for about 4 years now and I am very interested in the homemade gluten free bread. When visiting Ecuador and passing by the bakeries and smelling the fresh bread, I thought I would die! 🙂 What is your base flour that you use? I thought it would be impossible to find anything to make homemade gluten free bread in Ecuador but you have given me hope!!!! 🙂

    1. I should have included in my post that the bread is a Bob’s Red Mill mix my sister sent me from the States. Factoring in how much she spent on shipping for a few items that was about a $50 loaf of bread!!! It was delicious too! However, there is gluten free bread here. The health food store, Tienda Nectar sells loaves for about $6.50 and there is a business called Gluten Free Cuenca. Also a wonderful restaurant called Popacuchu just started making gluten free sweet breads and crumpets, I haven’t tried them but they look delicious. There are lots of gluten free flours available also. Hope this helps.

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