Gluten Free: The Celiac Site

Gluten Free: The Celiac Site Gluten Free: the Celiac Site serves America's Gluten Free Community by:
1. Compiling lists of information useful to people who live, eat, shop, entertain, and cook gluten free.
2. summarizing and presenting information that is useful to the gluten free community.
3. helping celiacs and others living gluten free sift through the vast amount of constantly-changing information that is available to them on the internet.

PLEASE NOTE: I've lived with celiac disease for ten years and written about gluten free topics for eight years. However, I have no academic or medical credentials. Therefore, I relay information and express personal opinions, but I do not give advice. All decisions are the responsibility of the individual. This disclaimer is particularly important since errors and obsolete information occasionally creep into material posted on the internet.

30 October 2014 ~ 0 Comments

A Gluten Free Holiday Season

The annual Thanksgiving,  Hanukkah,  Christmas and New Years Eve celebrations involve family reunions and festive meals. During the year since the last family gathering, some people may have been diagnosed with celiac disease or ‘gone gluten free’ for some other reason. Continue Reading

25 October 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Survey Results: the New Gluten Free Labeling Requirements

Our recent survey indicated a positive feeling about the new rules and a hope (or is it an intention) that the program will be expanded. Continue Reading

16 October 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Too Much Halloween Candy

In the days after Halloween, most families must decide what to do with an over-supply of candy. This candy may-or-may-not be gluten free — the problem is that there is simply too much of it. It makes sense to have a solution in mind before the crisis erupts. Here are some suggestions:  Continue Reading

15 October 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Gluten Free Ideas for Halloween

◊ Our gluten free Halloween celebration feels like  the Zombie apocalypse and at other times a fun celebration for people of all ages who live gluten free as well as for wheat-eaters. Continue Reading

14 October 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Safest Treats for Trick-or-Treaters

The safest possible treat for a young ghost or goblin is a goodie that is not designed to be eaten and is therefore appropriate for any child . Continue Reading

13 October 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Halloween for Adults Who Live Gluten Free

Halloween isn’t just for kids, of course. To me, sushi and/or fondue are my favorite food choice for an adults-only Halloween. Continue Reading

11 October 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Halloween Cupcakes for Children Who Live Gluten Free

Cupcakes are a big part of almost any Halloween celebration! In order to provide them for a gluten free child’s Halloween celebration, you will need
~~~> a gluten free cupcake recipe, preferably one that your child has already tried..
~~~> decorations for the cupcakes. Most decorations are naturally gluten free but this is obviously an issue. Continue Reading

10 October 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Trick-or-Treat for the Gluten Free

Here are four schemes for re-inventing Trick-or-Treat to include children who live gluten free. It is unreasonable to expect young goblins to ‘read every label every time’, most individually wrapped pieces of candy lack ingredients labels, and we can’t assume that the individual-sized candy bars are made with the same ingredients.  Continue Reading

09 October 2014 ~ 0 Comments

The Gluten Free Child Celebrates Halloween with his Classmates

The traditional classroom’s Halloween party is the school year’s first major challenge for gluten free children and their parents. There are two pieces of good news: Continue Reading

08 October 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Omission Beer and the Dilemma it has Created

Although Omission Beer tests out at less than 5 ppm gluten, it may-or-may-not be safe for people who live gluten free. Continue Reading

07 October 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Gluten Free Food Recalls

The government’s Food and Drug Administration routinely ‘recalls’ foods for a variety of reasons. This service is particularly important to people who live gluten free because failure to list wheat on food labels is a common violation. Continue Reading

06 October 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Breyers Ice Cream Now Labelled Gluten Free

Breyers Ice Cream recently announced that it is relabeling 36 flavor of ice cream to identify them as gluten free. Click here to read the complete list. The article stresses that these are not new products, they are simply new labels. Continue Reading

02 October 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Gluten Free Labeling — What Happens Now?

Hopefully, gluten free America made a step forward by implementing a standard definition for the term ‘gluten free’. Or did it? What difference has it made? To address these issues, please complete the three-question survey below. Continue Reading

29 September 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Gluten Free at Papa Murphy

I recently enjoyed a gluten free pizza from Papa Murphy’s. Since Papa’ Murphy’s  does not guarantee that the entire kitchen is gluten free, I ordered ‘sauce only’ and (of course) baked it in my own gluten free kitchen. Continue Reading

28 September 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Are You Thinking About Going Gluten Free?

“Unless people are very careful, a gluten free diet can lack vitamins, minerals, and fiber.” Continue Reading

20 September 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Computer Tips For People Who Live Gluten Free

The internet is a powerful tool for people who gluten free IF these realities are kept in mind: Continue Reading

11 September 2014 ~ 0 Comments

The High Cost of Gluten Free Food

In January of this year, 2.5% of grocery customers surveyed indicated that they were willing to pay extra for food labeled ‘gluten free’. Continue Reading

06 September 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Next Steps in Gluten Free Labeling

America finally has an official definition of “gluten free”, as it applies to items sold in stores. It’s time to expand the definition to include restaurant meals. Continue Reading

02 September 2014 ~ 0 Comments

New Options for People Who Live Gluten Free

The pain caused by “non-celiac gluten sensitivity” is certainly real, but many experts contend that is incorrectly named and mis-diagnosed. Continue Reading

29 August 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Why Get Tested for Celiac Disease?

Some people live gluten free as the result of a physician’s diagnose. For others, it is a personal choice. I belong to the first group, the people who have been formally diagnosed with celiac disease or gluten intolerance. I’ll call my group the traditionalists.
Continue Reading

27 August 2014 ~ 0 Comments

The Gluten Free School Year Begins

Every  gluten free in your home will need approximately 175 ‘safe’ lunches during the next year that starts next week. View these five websites as a family.  Continue Reading

25 August 2014 ~ 0 Comments

A Short History of Gluten Free

The human race was on a de-facto gluten free diet for 99.6% of its 2.5 million years on Earth. Food processing began about 10,000 years ago, and grains are pretty-much useless unless they are processed in some way. Click here and/or here to study the facts-and-figures supporting this statement, but I am more interested in the implication of these facts.  Continue Reading

25 August 2014 ~ 0 Comments

A Celiac Goes to High School

Let’s think about John, a hypothetical eighth grader, who was diagnosed with celiac disease this summer. He’s found things that he can eat, agrees that the diet is “not that bad”. But soon he will be entering high school, meeting literally hundreds of kids and — hopefully — making new friends and succeeding in high school. How can we support him? What does he need? Continue Reading

21 August 2014 ~ 0 Comments

New Challenges for a Child Who Lives Gluten Free

Jerry is an imaginary third grader with an altogether-too-real problem. He was diagnosed with celiac disease this spring. He’s enthusiastic about his new diet and feels better than at any time in his life. The problem is that his dad received a promotion this summer and the family moved across the country and now need to explain his situation to a new teacher and a new school and new set of potential friends. Continue Reading

19 August 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Vitamins and Mineral Supplements to Your Gluten Free Diet

I was diagnosed with celiac disease in 1999. “Going gluten free” produced spectacular  life-changing results — I was ecstatically happy — it never occurred to me that things could be even better if I used gluten free vitamin and mineral supplements to improve my diet.  Continue Reading

18 August 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Gluten Free Food Testing Using Stricter Standards

I’ve heard only one major objection to the new regulations adopted (after a seven year battle) by our Food and Drug Administration: some people would prefer to be held to a stricter standard. These three organizations test foods and will affix their symbol to products that meet these standards: Continue Reading

16 August 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Gluten Free Shopping in Supermarkets

When shopping for gluten free products in your local supermarket, keep these points in mind: Continue Reading

14 August 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Whole Grains vs. Whole Wheat

Here’s a description of the ideal diet for all Americans, as determined by the Department of Agriculture (USDA)and Health and Human Service (HHS) and updated every five years. Continue Reading

12 August 2014 ~ 0 Comments

What’s New About the New Gluten Free Labeling Requirements?

On August 5, a week ago today, new rules governing the use of the term ‘gluten free’ on food packaging became the law of the land. What has changed? What will or will not be changing? The <20 parts-per-million figure was being used by an estimated 95% of food manufacturers in 2013, the year this debate began in earnest in Washington. That number has not changed and almost certainly will not change.

Manufacturers who can demonstrate that their products contain significantly less than 20 ppm are welcome to advertise this fact, although there may be some limits on the exact terms they use.

Manufacturers are not required to test their products to demonstrate that they contain any specific amount of gluten. Of course, they may be challenged in court to do so.

Two things have changed:

~~~> There is now an official definition of ‘gluten free’. Without specific definitions, legal action is difficult and often impossible. Compare this to the situation involving ‘natural food . The Food and Drug deals with this problem regularly, but admits that its work  has not been specific enough to be called definitions. Adequate definitions are necessary for legal actions.

~~~> Anyone who has followed this seven year battle for a definition of ‘gluten free’ will notice that the sole focus has been on controlling celiac disease. People who see the gluten free diet as a way to lose weight or win basketball games have not even been mentioned. I hope that some of them get the message!

09 August 2014 ~ 0 Comments

New Gluten Free Labeling Rules Implemented

Americans who live gluten free now have an official definition of ‘gluten free’. After seven years discussion, the Food and Drug Administration has finally implemented its decision last Tuesday, August 5. Here are the highlights: Continue Reading

02 August 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Shopping for Gluten Free Food

People who live gluten free shop successfully on-line as well in conventional supermarkets and grocery stores. I recently wrote about shopping on-line and today I will talk about patronizing local stores. The costs are roughly equal, and many people who live gluten free use both systems. Continue Reading

30 July 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Understanding Gluten Free Flour Terminology

People who live gluten free must understand the terms whole grain, whole wheat, and multigrain as well as phrases like “made with whole grain flour”.  Continue Reading

28 July 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Is Testing for Celiac Important?

Yes !!! Yes!!! Yes !!!. There are at least six reasons for my emphatic answer to that question:  Continue Reading

25 July 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Gluten Free Food Shopping On-line is Easy and Inexpensive

Shopping for gluten free food on-line in easy, inexpensive, makes thousands of safe products available, can be done anywhere in the country, and welcomes anyone with the computer skills needed to use this website.  Continue Reading

23 July 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Portion Size vs. Serving Size

One key to healthy eating is to fully understand the difference between  serving size  and portion size. Continue Reading

21 July 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Is Beer from Barley Safe for Us?

Omission Beer, and similar products, must be labeled “Product fermented from grains containing gluten and crafted to remove gluten. The content of this product cannot be verified, and this product may contain gluten.” The Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau is not committing itself. It is merely saying “we don’t know. Use your own judgment.” Continue Reading

18 July 2014 ~ 0 Comments

The New Gluten Free Food Labels

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has decided that food containing less that 20 parts-per-million gluten may be labelled gluten free. This is a legal definition not a medical determination, of course, but the experts seem to agree that 20 parts-per-million is appropriate. We might call it “gluten free enough”: 20 ppm is equal to 20 inches in 16 miles or ten minutes in one year.

It’s possible to reduce your gluten consumption by concentrating on foods that are “naturally gluten free” or “inherently gluten free”. All unprocessed food falls into this category. Here are some examples:

  • potatoes are naturally gluten free, but potato chips may be questionable because they have been fried in contaminated oil
  • fresh fruit is naturally gluten free, but fruit drinks may contain other items.
  • fish and all other meats are naturally gluten free, but there is possible danger if the meat is breaded , seasoned, or fried in oil that has been previously used ton prepare food that is not gluten free.

Another way to reduce gluten consumption is to look for labels indicating that a product certified to contain less than 20 ppm gluten. Obviously, these stricter requirements reduce the number of foods that can be certified and limit their availability. I suggest that you read my recently-updated article on these certification organizations, learn to recognize their certification symbols, and jump at the opportunity to purchase food items certified to contain less than 10 ppm or even 5 ppm.

Today we have talked about the front of the package. Next Friday, I will talk about the ingredients list which useful information about whether a product belongs in your kitchen. Unfortunately, I can’t link you to that article until it is actually published.

 

 

 

16 July 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Fiber in the Gluten Free Diet

The average American, both wheat-eaters and people who live gluten free, doesn’t have enough fiber in their diet. This issue is especially important to people who live gluten free because the five grains with the most fiber are unacceptable for people on the gluten free diet.  Continue Reading

14 July 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Are Oats Safe for People Who Live Gluten Free ?

Oats are generally considered gluten free. However, there are a few things that need to be considered: Continue Reading

11 July 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Gluten Free Sourdough Bread, Pancakes, and Waffles

People who live gluten free are able to enjoy gluten free bread, toast, pancakes, and waffles. Products are available on-line and in at least one bakery chain, and there are recipes for cooking at home. Continue Reading

03 July 2014 ~ 0 Comments

More Thoughts on the Gluten Free Craze

Is the ‘gluten free diet’ a highly effective treatment for a serious disease or is it simply the newest fad diet and a way for food industry gurus to make a fortune?  YES! This term means different things to different people. The computer search engines can’t tell the difference. The difference might not be obvious in a casual conversation. A food server might be honestly confused about how a customer was using those words. Continue Reading

27 June 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Thinking About the Gluten Free Craze

In 2008, I wrote a series of articles suggesting that it was probably OK to start a gluten free diet without the “blood test and biopsy process” that led to a diagnosis of celiac disease. Was it worth the trouble, expense,  and effort? Few people had heard the term celiac disease. Gluten free food was terribly expensive,and tasted like cardboard.  People who adopted the gluten free lifestyle did so for very compelling reasons!

Things have changed. People use talk about “going gluten free” and do not regard it as a  diet — certainly not as a strict diet that requires a lifelong commitment.

The thoughts I expressed in 2008 were not complete. People need professional help support when they make any major changes in their diet or lifestyle. It is impossible to diagnose celiac disease in people who are already living gluten free. The symptoms that might lead a person to the gluten free diet have many possible explanations.

Food manufacturers and restaurateurs  have made fortunes from the so-called “Gluten Free Craze”. We are right to question their motives. However, they have improved the quality of gluten free food, decreased its cost, and made it available nation-wide. They are successful entrepreneurs.

I suggest that you read my article “Is Gluten Free the New Black? Yes it is! But it is also a valid and appropriate lifestyle. We can have the best of both!

I’ll write more about this. I first heard the term ‘gluten free’ in 1999 when I first was diagnosed with celiac disease, so I don’t feel concerned about being the victim of any sort of a  ‘craze’. However, the craze obviously exists, and bloggers are have a responsibility to help people understand the situation. Please link here to go to the second part of the article.

23 June 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Independence Day Gluten Free

Add sparkle to your Fourth of July barbecue. There are unique choices and Hopefully, the meal is unique and colorful enough that one menu will satisfy everyone. Continue Reading

17 June 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Visiting a Gluten Free Restaurant

Finding the ideal restaurant is never an easy task, especially for celiacs and others who live gluten free. Like everyone else, we are looking for a great meal and a wonderful experience, but  we are searching for a great meal prepared very specific way. My last article dealt with the judging a restaurant chain — now we must make the most important decision — are the individuals who will be preparing and serving our gluten free meal willing and able to their task? This varies from one location and from one group of restaurant employees to another. Continue Reading

17 June 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Using a Gluten Free Menu

People who live gluten free use menus for two purposes — deciding what items to order and — perhaps more importantly — what to AVOID  ordering. Continue Reading

10 June 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Gluten Free Food Recalls

Glutino Foods has recalled their “Rosemary and Olive Oil Snack Crackers” with a use by date of October 26, 2014 because they tested positive for Salmonella.

I have added a “widget” to our sidebar provided by the Food and Drug Administration. It gives constantly-updated information about food recalls. I was surprised to notice how often foods are recalled because food manufacturers fail to list wheat in their ingredients list. I plan to read this list regularly!

09 June 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Gluten Free Recipes

Gluten free recipes are available on the internet and in bookstores. You’re only concern will be too many choices. Continue Reading

05 June 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Going Gluten Free … Facts and Fantasies

“If you are following the fad [by going gluten free]… you are a marketers dream come true…”. The gluten free food industry grew by  44% between 2011 and 2013 and is certainly  profitable, but that is not proof that the people who have gone gluten free during that time were duped. Continue Reading

05 June 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Gluten Free and Beyond

If a celiac’s only problem was avoiding gluten, our lives would be relatively simple. Like everyone else, we must consider calories, fiber, GMO’s, sodium,  sugar, as well as whole-grains. I’ve posted information about all these subjects as they apply to people who live gluten free.  Continue Reading

02 June 2014 ~ 0 Comments

Gluten Free and Low in Calories

Gluten free cooks face the same issues as their wheat-using brothers and sisters. Every cook who respects his “clients’ waist-lines faces the same three issues:

~~~> Definition. Foods with 40 calories per serving or less are defined as low in calories.

~~~> Portion Control. The statement above assumes that you are consuming only one portion (also referred to as one serving). To assure that you are not eating more than you realize, use these charts.

~~~> Gluten Free low calorie recipes. The google search engine indexes more that five million recipes and recipe books as both “gluten free” and “low calorie”. Where should we start????

I have included Amazon’s list of cookbooks and products designated low calorie and gluten free. It is a useful shopping list for shopping at Amazon and/or for finding appropriate product locally.