In a few days....it's gonna be Maaayyy, and we all know what that means: Celiac Disease Awareness Month will be here! For those who do not know what Celiac Disease is, read below:
What is Celiac Disease?
Celiac Disease is an inherited autoimmune disease that prohibits the body from absorbing nutrients from food. Why does that happen? It happens when certain people ingest wheat, barley, rye, and some oats. When certain people eat these foods, the body sees the food as being "the enemy." During this great battle between food and body, the villi of the small intestine (this is where humans absorb nutrients) is severely damaged. Those with Celiac Disease become malnourished and at risk for serious illnesses. Some have even died from Celiac Disease (re: Joe C, Kid Rock's late friend).
Is there a cure for Celiac Disease?
No. Our only treatment is a life-long adherence to a gluten-free diet.
How many people have Celiac Disease?
It is estimated that over 3 million people have Celiac Disease. About 80% of them are undiagnosed.
Who can get Celiac Disease?
Since Celiac Disease is an inherited disease, you are at risk if you have a family member with it. Future generations of these families are also at risk for Celiac Disease.
So, what happens if you aren't diagnosed and you don't treat it? GF foods are expensive, you know!
I get it. Times are tough, and the pandemic has made everyone's pockets emptier, even with the stimmy checks. Untreated Celiac Disease opens the door for osteoporosis, anemia, infertility, thyroid disease, other autoimmune diseases, various cancers, and even death. With that in mind, it's more than worth it to spend the extra couple of bucks on food that won't kill you. It is important to note that naturally GF foods, such as meats, veggies, fruits, some rice and potatoes, and dairy products aren't that expensive. Shop the outer perimeter of your local supermarket, and I promise you, you won't have to sell a kidney in the back alley in order to pay for said food.
How long does it take to be diagnosed?
Typically, it's 6 to 10 years. It's only been in the last decade or so that we've learned a lot more about Celiac Disease. Back in the 1980s and earlier, nothing was known. It was a rare illness. If you knew someone with Celiac Sprue back then, it was like finding a needle in a haystack.
I've known about Celiac Disease for most of my life. My paternal grandmother was diagnosed with it in the 1980s. She was horribly sick with it, but started to improve when she started eating GF. My grandfather spent his early retirement years traveling 4 hours to a specialty store in Massachusetts for special grains to make her baked goods. He would drive home and spend his time breaking down the grains and baking muffins. I lived with my grandparents from ages 8 to 18, so I experienced everything. I even helped. I remember trying her GF food and spitting it out (it was fucking terrible. It was tasteless cardboard). Even with jam or butter on the muffins, it was repulsive. My grandmother seemed to like it, and it was helping her feel better. Sadly, the specialty store closed in 1992 (later bought out by Whole Foods), and my Celiac grandmother had to go back to regular food. She became very very sick. She lost weight, lost height, developed severe osteoporosis, and was bed bound. Again, not much was known about Celiac Disease back then, so she didn't know about shopping the outer parameter of the supermarket. Our family was flying blindly with the disease. She struggled in the years prior to her death. In 2007, she passed away from dementia.
A few years after her death, I became very sick. I couldn't keep anything down, I was in the bathroom most of the day, every day, for a period of several months. I was dehydrated, weak, and scared. I went in for a blood test, and then I received a call from my doctor's office. She said that I tested "very positive" for Celiac Disease. Even when I was diagnosed, not much was known about Celiac Disease, so I was given a website to research. I was told to go gluten free immediately. I was terrified because of what my grandmother went through, but I was also relieved because I had a diagnosis.
That first shopping trip at the grocery store was painful. I spent 3 hours in there reading labels (there weren't any special GF stores back then, and there weren't GF sections. I literally had to go through each aisle and read every item). It was an emotional trip because I walked by food items that I would never be able to eat again.
A year after my blood test results, I had a biopsy of my small intestine. This confirmed the diagnosis. During this time, I was also diagnosed with both Ulcerative Colitis and Crohn's Disease.
In 2013, I suffered a spinal injury due to Celiac's impact on my spine. I am still dealing with the injury to this day.
The Gluten Free craze, and how it affected Celiacs.
Around 2013/2014, the big gluten free craze was born. While this would appear to be great for those of us with Celiac Disease, it proved to be a pain in the ass. We weren't taken seriously in restaurants, and we were scoffed at in the grocery store. To add insult to injury, we had celebrities pervert the GF diet, and TV shows depicting us as Karens.
It was a welcome relief when Hollywood's "GF fad diet" went away several years later. We still have to deal with the usual suspects, however: accidental glutenings, mental health effects, being a burden on others, and doing damage control at restaurants.
We know a lot more about Celiac Disease now than ever before. However, we still have a lot more to learn. While experts continue to study Celiac Disease and the effects, they are also working on a cure. Experts are hoping that there will be a cure by 2030.
Are there celebs who have Celiac Disease?
Yes. Joe C., Meg Cabot, Adrianne Palicki, Emmy Rossum, and Deborah Ann Woll, to name a few.
What are the symptoms of Celiac Disease?
There are over 300 symptoms of Celiac Disease (really). The classic symptoms include massive amounts of diarrhea, weight loss, extreme fatigue, bloating, stomach pain, anemia, headaches, serious joint pain, and more.
Contrary to what you may have heard on South Park, gluten does NOT make your dick fly off...or explode.
If I suspect that I might have Celiac Disease, should I go GF before seeing a doctor?
NOOOOO!! If you go GF before you see a doctor, any testing that is done will be inaccurate. It's best to talk to your doctor first, get tested, and then wait for further instruction. In the meantime, treat your symptoms as if you have the flu: rest, drink plenty of fluids (drink twice as much fluids if you have diarrhea), and keep your diet bland.
What can I do to raise awareness?
Educate yourself on Celiac Disease. Beyond Celiac has A TON of information, as well as Celiac Disease Foundation.
#CDAM #CeliacDiseaseAwarenessMonth #CeliacDisease #Coeliac #CeliacSprue #GlutenFree #GF #RaiseYourVoice
This is a recipe that I saw on the back of an Annie Chun's Maifun Rice Noodle box.
This recipe is filling, delicious, and GLUTEN FREE!!! It is super easy to make and is a perfect summertime lunch or dinner meal.
Here is what you will need:
The lettuce does have a hard time staying in a 'wrap' position, you might need to use a toothpick to hold it in place if you're making this for family or guests. Using peanut butter instead of the Thai Peanut Sauce gave it more of a hearty texture and made me full after eating just a little bit of it.
I do recommend that you pick up gluten free Thai peanut sauce. Annie Chun doesn't make a GF Thai peanut sauce, but San-J does! Thai peanut sauce will definitely add some spice and flavor to the dish. While the dish already has some flavor, I highly recommend using the Thai peanut sauce.
[photo credit: www.luxebc.com]
If you have Celiac Disease, and you have kids, you may be wondering if you've passed the disease onto your child. After all, we all know that Celiac Disease is an inherited autoimmune disease (I inherited Celiac Disease from my grandmother).
Now that I have a child of my own, one of the first things I worried about is that I passed the Celiac gene to him. I told my son's pediatrician that Celiac does run in the family and that I have it. I expressed general concern that my son might have the gene. My son's pediatrician told me that they usually do those types of tests when a child turns 3 (my son turns 3 in May 2021).
Anyways, I did some research on genetic risks and found out that the general incidence of Celiac Disease is around 1%. If there is a family history of Celiac (and if a first degree relative has been officially diagnosed with it), the likelihood of your child developing it ranges from 4-16%.
If you have Celiac and you're a new parent, it's advised that you continue your regular appointments and screenings.
It is also advised that you do not remove gluten from your child's diet before testing. As you all know, removing gluten from your diet before being tested will give you an inaccurate result. With CD, you don't want your kids to have an inaccurate test result.
What tests will they do on your child?
What about genetic testing?
Mamas, whatever the case may be, hang in there. Be strong for your child. You got this.
Repost from Celiac Warrior Gal (one of my sites)
#CeliacDisease #Celiac #GlutenFree #GF #GlutenFreeDiet #Genetics #Health #kids #celiackids
As promised, Oreo released their gluten free line this month. Many have been scrambling to get their hands on these cookies, with preorders selling out within 24 hours.
This week, the GF cookies have been showing up in more stores. On Saturday, I bought 2 packages.
As yummy as these cookies are, please follow the serving suggestions so you don't end up like me.
Again, do NOT buy these cookies on Amazon. Those are NOT the right prices!
Walmart still has some in stock here, and here.
Oreo, thank you so much for making gluten free cookies. You have brought so many happy tears to those of us who have missed your cookies so much! Please keep making them!
If you have Canyon Bakehouse Mountain White Bread and/or Canyon Bakehouse Everything Bagels, you might want to check the UPC numbers.
Products with the following UPC and Lot Number codes are being recalled due to a "potential presence of gluten."
Canyon Bakehouse Mtn White Bread
Lot Number: 20323 323
Canyon Bakehouse Everything Bagels
Lot Number: 20316 316
The states impacted by this recall include:
Canyon Bakehouse made a statement about this recall, saying that they apologize, and they are going to conduct a "full scale audit of their shipping and inventory management practices" so it does not happen again.
You can read their statement here.
#glutenfree #gf #celiacdisease #celiac #glutenallergy #wheatallergy #coeliac #canyonbakehouse #gffood #foodrecalls
Attention fellow Celiacs! Oreo to release Gluten Free Oreo cookies in 2021! Spread the news to other Celiacs!
âThis is probably the best news to come out of this hellish year! Oreo will be unveiling a gluten free version of their cookies in January 2021. There will be the original Oreo cookie, and....Double Stuf cookie! GLUTEN FREE!
Price should be able the same as the regular cookies, and the cookies will be made with real cocoa.
10 years ago I was diagnosed with Celiac Disease. Gluten Free food wasn't as widespread as it is now. You pretty much had to read every single label and skim through the ingredients (there were no GF labels back then). Shopping trips for Celiacs were pretty lengthy. It was only a few years later when the gluten free food explosion happened.
The reason why this news is so emotional for me is because it reminds me of my first shopping trip, following my diagnosis. I remember walking past all the food I used to eat and dying inside. The one food item I walked by that made me sob uncontrollably was the Double Stuf Oreos.
Before my diagnosis, Oreos were my go-to cookie, especially the Double Stuf. It took a little while for me to accept that I wouldn't be able to eat certain foods again. I tried the Glutino sandwich cookies, and they weren't the same. Don't get me wrong, they were yummy, but they weren't Oreo.
I am BEYOND excited for GF Oreos, and I am looking forward to stuffing my face with Double Stuf once again!
â.......Is it January yet?
What is Celiac Disease?
An immune reaction to eating gluten, a protein found in wheat, barley, and rye.
Over time, the immune reaction to eating gluten creates inflammation that damages the small intestine's lining, leading to medical complications. It also prevents absorption of some nutrients (malabsorption).
The classic symptom is diarrhea. Other symptoms include bloating, gas, fatigue, low blood count (anemia), and osteoporosis. Many people have no symptoms.
The mainstay of treatment is a strict gluten-free diet that can help manage symptoms and promote intestinal healing. (source: Mayo Clinic)
In 2012 US Senate Resolution 550 was passed, making September 13 National Celiac Awareness day. The resolution was sponsored by Senator Ben Nelson, a Democrat from Nebraska.
The bill recognizes that citizens of the United States, must be made aware of Celiac Disease, which affects 1 in 100 people in America. The bill asks that people in the United States observe National Celiac Disease Awareness Day (source: http://www.govtrack.us/congress/bills/112/sres550/text).
On September 13, we recognize Dr. Samuel Gee (1839-1911), an English doctor and pediatrician. He was the first person to have given the first modern day description of Celiac Disease. He gave the description in 1887, at the Hospital for Sick Children. He recognized that the disease isn't just a childhood ailment, that it affects people of all ages.
His findings can be found in the St. Bartholomew's Hospital Reports, which were published in 1888.
Celiac disease is important, and serious. Those of us whom are afflicted with the disease, know the dangers of not adhering to a strict, life-long, gluten free diet. We know the risks of not being diagnosed properly. We've lived it. On average, it takes a good 10+ years to be properly diagnosed. Most of the 1% of people afflicted with the disease, don't even know that they have it. The damage done to the small intestine, by continuous consumption of gluten, can become life-threatening.
Awareness of this disease is important, and early testing for the gene must be done.
Educate your family, your friends, your community.
For more information, visit: http://www.csaceliacs.info/index.jsp
I was diagnosed with Celiac Disease 10 years ago. For as long as I can remember, I have always had issues with digesting food. When I ate certain things, I had an adverse reaction.
In the months leading up to my diagnosed via blood test and biopsy, I was very sick. I was so sick, I could not get out of bed. I had diarrhea 20+ times a day, which led to serious dehydration. I was in a lot of joint pain. I couldn't even get out of bed. Finally, I went to the doctor, and got my blood tested. I tested "very positive" for Celiac Disease. I was upset because I witnessed what the disease did to my grandmother.
In the 1980s, my grandmother was diagnosed with Celiac Sprue. Back then, there were no gluten free aisles in the supermarket. There were no gluten free restaurants. There were no gluten free brands. There was nothing. My grandfather did find a place 2-3 hours away that sold safe grains that can be used to make baked goods. Every Friday, my grandfather trekked from central CT to the middle of MA to buy the grains. He brought it home and broke down the grain using a mortle and pestle (he used this until he could afford a Vitamix). He baked EVERYTHING for her from scratch. My grandmother's health improved on this gluten free diet. Unfortunately, the place that sold the safe grains closed down some years later. My grandmother went back to eating regular food. She became bedridden, unable to do anything for herself. She shrunk in height and lost a mass amount of weight (she was 60lbs when she died). She developed a hump on her back, and her bones became extremely brittle. As a kid, it was scary to see her in this situation.
My own diagnosis scared me, because I wasn't even 30 yet. I didn't want to be in the same condition as my grandmother at my young age.
When I was diagnosed, gluten free options were very very slim. It wasn't until a few years later when the gluten free craze exploded. That craze both helped and hurt the Celiac community. It helped because we finally had more options, but it came at a price: No one believed us when we told them we had Celiac Disease. They thought we were following a fad. Sorry folks, this isn't a fad for those of us with Celiac Disease. If even one speck of gluten enters our body, we get sick for weeks. It's painful, miserable, and we wouldn't wish the "glutening effect" on our worst enemy.
With Celiac Disease being an autoimmune disease, it also puts us in the high risk category for Coronavirus. I hope my fellow Celiacs are taking it easy during this crazy time in our history.