Isabella Hener can’t eat what she wants. Food intolerances mean that she always has to keep an eye on the lists of ingredients. In her cookbook, she shows how an enjoyable life is possible despite intolerances.
She was not well. Always tired, always headaches, always colds. She had to get away, out of everyday life, switch off. Isabella Hener went to New Zealand for two months. But she couldn’t run away from her problem with milk sugar, the lactose intolerance traveled with her. On the go, Isabella Hener quickly noticed that the special conditions of one’s own body are of little interest to others. Just eat in the cafe? Hardly possible. And so an idea settled in her stomach and head, which she brought home as a souvenir. An idea that changed her life.
Why, Hener asked himself, aren’t there any bars that specialize in people who suffer from intolerances? In other words, places where everyone can eat carefree without having to annoy the chef with tiresome extra orders. Back in Germany, she cleared her desk in the advertising agency and got started. First crowdfunding, then food truck, catering and cooking classes. That was in 2014. She continued her education and became a nutrition expert. In her cookbook “Eating your way” she has now summarized the knowledge she has accumulated over the past few years.
Patience with intolerance
A food intolerance is not a food allergy. An allergy is a reaction of the body to individual components of food. The immune system works against this “enemy”. In the worst case, life-threatening anaphylactic shock occurs. In the case of a food intolerance, on the other hand, the body is not able to process certain food components such as lactose, fructose, histamine and gluten. The undigested food is only decomposed by bacteria in the large intestine – but not without unpleasant side effects. Primarily it concerns complaints in the gastro-intestinal tract.
The easy way to come to terms with an intolerance: replace the troublemakers with substitute products. But really good, says Hener, are actually not. Many of them are stuffed with white flour, sugar and additives. The alternatives that are supposed to relieve the body also become a burden, for example they are pro-inflammatory. Hener uses 60 recipes to show how it can still be enjoyed. All are low in histamine, low in fructose and gluten-free, most of them do without sugar or are vegan. These include basics such as pizza dough without yeast, carrot lax buns and vegan kebabs, snacks and sweets.
Hener’s book is not, as she writes, a “complete encyclopedia of intolerance”. The subject is far too complex to be packed into just one book. In addition, there is not one perfect solution for everyone, everyone tolerates and metabolizes food differently. But people who have an intolerance at the table are not only served an introduction to the most common intolerances and explanations of how they develop, but also first-aid tips from Hener. But you can’t do it without patience. Because, according to Hener, it will take time for the symptoms and general condition to improve.
“Eating your way” by Isabella Hener was published by Südwest Verlag, 192 pages, 22 euros.
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