Thursday, October 30, 2008

GF cough relief with Cold-EEZE

My husband doesn't normally get ill, as a matter of fact it is odd how little he gets sick, even in the cold and flu season. Well, right now he is dealing with the common cold and the symptoms that come along with it and because we rarely have to deal with him being sick, we hadn't spent too much time on locating a GF cough suppressant. Well, after searching for about 45 minutes yesterday and speaking with various companies, I had a 'ah ha' moment. First, let me say that I wasn't even aware of all of the many cough drop and sore throat lozenge brands - I'm a Halls girl and never once thought to check the ingredients since I don't have CD. Well, I was amazed at all of the different brands that popped up once I googled 'cough drops'.
I went through the usual frustrating phone calls with companies - "sorry mam, we just don't know if our product is gluten free" - "mam, I can read you the ingredients, well...actually I can spell them for you because I'm not sure how to pronounce them". I was so angry!! But, I realized that I had to calm down and keep a positive outlook, people with CD get colds and it would be impossible in today's world that not one company made a GF product. So, I counted to 10 and kept searching. It was when I came across Cold-EEZE brand that my luck changed. I didn't even have to call the company because in big bold print, under the FAQs section, they stated that all of their products are gluten-free and safe for those who have CD. Woo hoo!!! And, I was able to print off a $1.00 off coupon - even better!
So last night, Tommie and I went to CVS and he purchased a pack of sore throat lozenges. I have already spoke with him this morning and he is doing much better. He told me that the back of the package also says Gluten-Free so I guess I would have had a better chance searching for a GF product in the store then online, but hey - you live you learn.
The Cold-EEZE website is:
Don't forget to download your coupon!

Monday, October 27, 2008

Product Review: Trader Joe's GF Pancake & Waffle Mix

Tommie and I love Trader Joe's for many reasons but in particular, they offer great products for a great price. On our last visit we found this mix and decided to try it after we were pleasantly surprised with their brownie mix. The pancake mix is around $3.00 - making it one of the cheapest on the market - and it simple and quick to prepare. The mix makes a large amount of pancakes and they are delicious!!! Just follow the instructions and you'll have no problem - there are no tricks to this mix. Ther is a recipe for coffee cake on the side and we'll definitely have to try that next - we'll let you knowI give this product 5 out of 5 stars and highly recommend it. Trader Joe's hasn't let us down yet. In the case you do buy the mix and don't like it - Trader Joe's will give you your money back - just make sure you keep the receipt.

Monday, October 20, 2008

GF Fiber

No wheat, rye, barley, or even oats? There are still plenty of ways to get the roughage you need on a gluten-free diet.

We've been told repeatedly that whole grains are good sources of fiber and that fiber has many health benefits: It keeps our bowels working regularly, prevents constipation, helps us feel full, reduces cholesterol levels, and helps control blood sugar levels.

But if you follow a gluten-free diet and cut wheat, rye, barley and even oats out of your diet, can you get enough of the fiber you need to keep yourself healthy? The answer is unequivocally yes - and you can do so in lots of tasty ways. Try these tips:

- Eat like a caveman. It may seem hard to believe, but you can get more than enough fiber eating vegetables, fruits, nuts and seeds. The problem is most Americans are not in the habit of eating many fruits and vegetables, so they don'[t get enough when they switch to a gluten-free diet. If you follow a gluten-free or grain-free diet the right way -by replacing grain products with plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables- it's easy to get sufficient fiber. A 2002 analysis found that a grain0free, meat-containing Stone Age or Paleolithic sample diet can provide 42.5g of dietary fiber per day, considerably higher than the 15g found in the standard U.S. diet and the recommended daily fiber amount of 25-30g. So, load up on salads, raw vegetables - and eat fresh fruit instead of drinking fruit juice. Strive for a total of five to nine servings of vegetables and fruits each day. Especially good vegetable and fruit fiver sources are artichokes and artichoke hearts, broccoli, carrots, raspberries, blackberries, and pears and apples with their skins on.

- Go nuts. Nuts are rich in both fiber and flavor, so use them in lots of different ways. Snack on various kinds, use them in baking, and add them to salads and cooked vegetables. Also try coconut, another high-fiber source: Sprinkle dried shredded coconut on fresh fruit or gluten-free cereal, and use coconut flour to make muffins and quick breads.

- Try dried fruit. If you have a tendency toward constipation, include more dried fruit in your diet. Dried figs, dried plums (prunes), dates, and date-based fruit bars, such as LaraBar, are all good choices, supplying 3-5g of fiber per serving.

- Slowly add other high-fiber foods. Experiment with legumes (e.g., split peas, chickpeas, lentils, pinto beans, black beans, and red kidney beans) and gluten-free whole grains (e.g., brown rice, wild rice, quiona, buckwheat groats, amaranth, and teff). Other fiber-rich foods include butternut or acorn squash, sweet potatoes and yams, flaxseed and flaxseed crackers, and easy-to-fix Perky's Nutty Flax or Ruth's Chia Goodness cereal. As health enhancing as fiber is, it's important to gradually add fiber to your diet and to drink a lot of water. A rapid increase in fiber can cause stomach and intestinal distress, including gas, bloating, and diarrhea - condition that mimic common reactions to gluten.

- Dig into avocado. An easy, fun way to get extra fiber is to add sliced avocado or a scoop of avocado-based guacamole to a salad or entree. It may surprise you, but avocados have the highest fiber content of any fruit.

Reprinted from The Going Against the Grain Group, 2008

written by: Melissa Diane Smith
Melissa Diane Smith has great information and insight into the world of nutrition and you can learn more about the author and her work at her websites:
Better Nutrition

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

A Debilitating Disease that is Often Unknown...

Mimi Winsberg never knew that the energy bars and pasta that sustained her during endurance training were also making her ill. She had completed dozens of triathlons and marathons, but four years ago, when she was in her late 30s, her health and athletic performances rapidly and inexplicably spiraled downward.

Winsberg, a psychiatrist in San Francisco, said she and a string of physicians had attributed her slower times and overwhelming fatigue of aging, new motherhood and overwhelming fatigue to aging, new motherhood and chronic anemia. She began to follow an iron-rich diet, took iron supplements and received iron intravenously. Still, her health continued to deteriorate.

When a physician friend convinced Winsberg that her body was not absorbing the iron, she researched the problem online. She read about the symptoms of celiac disease, a genetic auto-immune disorder caused by eating the gluten protein in wheat and other grains like barley, rye and oats.

Winsberg said her first thought was, "This is what has been happening to me my whole life, and I just never put it all together before."

Ingesting even small quantities of gluten causes the immune system to attack the lining of the small intestine in celiacs, hampering the absorption of vital nutrients like iron, calcium and fat. Untreated, it can lead to a wide range of problems including anemia, infertility, osteoporosis and cancer.

"Celiac is grossly underdiagnosed in this country," said Dr. Peter H.R. Green, a professor at the College of Physicians and Surgeons at Columbia and director of the university's Celiac Disease Center. He said that at least 1 percent of the population had the disease but that only a fraction of the cases were diagnosed.

The only known treatment is a gluten-free diet. Winsberg began reading labels vigilantly and avoiding everything containing gluten, including cereal, bread and beer as well as many seasonings, food additives and nonfood items like some vitamins and toothpastes.

"You can't even take a sip from someone else's water bottle, because they might have been eating a Powerbar and left a trace of it on the spout," she said.

Within days, Winsberg's chronic gastrointestinal problems abated. Gradually her energy, weight, iron stores and oxygen-carrying hemoglobin levels rebounded.

"It was like doping," Winsberg, 42, said. "Suddenly I was running six-minute miles instead of nine-minute miles. Before I Had placed in the bottom third of triathlons. Four weeks gluten free, and I placed second in a triathlon. It was like reverse aging. I went from feeling 38 to 28 to 18."

Winsberg's transformation did not surprise Dr. John Reasoner, a medical director with the United States Olympic Committee.

"In six to eight weeks, if they've followed the diet, it's night and day," he said.

Reasoner said that symptoms of celiac disesase were often subtle but came at a high cost for athletes who expected maximum performance. Dave Hahn, who has reached the Mount Everest summit 10 times, said he found he had the disease after he became 'inexplicably weak' on his second trip to the peak in 1999.

Hahn was the climbing leader on a search expedition for the remains of the Everest pioneer George Mallory, who had disappeared on the mountain in 1924. The search was successful, but Hahn struggled. Then 37, he had become anemic. Perilously weak and short of breath on summit day, he had to depend on his climbing partner to make it off the summit alive.

"It was a huge source of shame which made me feel like I had to get to the bottom of the health problems that I'd been ignoring for so long," Hahn said.

He returned to the doctor he had seen eight years before for chronic gastrointestinal problems, common in celiacs, and this time she diagnosed the disease.

Hahn said he had difficulty adjusting to the gluten-free diet.

"I got stronger again without question, and you don't really expect that in your late 30s," he said. "I had gotten to the point up high an din the cold where I completely ran out of gas."

Hahn, now 46, continues to guide high-altitude expeditions all over the world.

"I could have lived out my life without knowing I have celiac," Hahn said. "But I wouldn't have lived the best party of my life."

Green said that most doctors had a limited understanding of celiac and often believed it was a childhood disease that people outgrew. "I get calls from gastrointerologist, specialist in the field, and they don't have know how to diagnose the disease," he said. Celiac disease is diagnosed through an inexpensive panel of blood tests. Green said the current "lack of pharmaceutical backing for the disease" - the fact that it is controlled by diet, not drugs - was behind the scan research, medical education and public awareness. Doctors frequently miss the pattern within telltale symptoms of celiac, as happened to Winsberg and Hahn, Green said.

Winsberg reached a peak in her athletic career this summer. She qualified for the Ironman World Championship Triathlon to be contested on Saturday in Hawaii. She will complete the 2.4-mile ocean swim, the 112-mile bike ride across volcanic dseert and the 26.2-mile coastal run - a prestigious event she could not have dreamed of racing before her self-diagnosis.

Printed in the New York Times by Anna Seaton Huntington on October 9, 2008.

Monday, October 13, 2008

The Measuring Cup Menu - Oct. 13th - 18th

Available after Thursday @ 6 p.m.
-CHEWY CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIES-Toll House style, chewy cookies.
-CRANBERRY WHITE CHOCOLATE COOKIES- White chocolate and dried cranberries together in one exceptional, chewy cookie. Made with Cream Hill Estates certified Gluten Free Oats.
-MONSTER COOKIES-Peanut butter, M & M’s and Oats, this cookie is a cross between a chewey peanut butter cookie and a rainbow cookie. Made with Cream Hill Estates certified Gluten Free Oats.
-CHOCOLATE CHOCOLATE CHIP MINI MUFFINS- EGG FREE-So good you can’t tell they are they are low in fat, egg free, and gluten free. Made with Cream Hill Estates certified Gluten20Free Oats.
-ORANGE SCONES-EGG FREE-These scones taste like a regular gluten-filled scone. They have a nice tender interior with a crusty exterior. Topped with a slightly sweet orange glaze.
-HAMBURGER BUNS-These hold up to a burger without falling apart or crumbling in your hand.
-CHALLAH- A soft crust on the outside, fluffy, soft, sweet and chewy on the inside.
-BANANA CHOCOLATE CHIP CUPCAKES-Rich and flavorful banana cupcakes dotted with bits of chocolate.

Available Saturday before noon:
-PUMPKIN SPICE BISCOTTI-Not your average cookie, this treat is not soft or overly sweet. Biscotti are crisp, crunchy, and wonderfully dunkable. With fall just around the corner these rustic pumpkin biscotti with hints of warm fall spices just seem so appropriate.
-OATMEAL RAISIN COOKIES-DAIRY & EGG FREE-An allergy free version of an American classic. Made with Cream Hill Estates certified Gluten Free Oats.
-LEMON POPPY SEED MUFFINS-Lemo ny muffins accented with crunchy little poppy seeds topped with a light lemon glaze.
-PEACHES AND CREAM MUFFINS-Like a peach cobbler in a muffin.
-BUTTERMILK BISCUITS-REALLY! Fluffy and tender. You could have a sausage biscuit sandwich for breakfast, one with butter and jelly with lunch, and one dripping with apple butter with dinner.
-HEARTY WHOLE GRAIN BREAD-If your idea of a great slice of bread is one loaded with healthy whole grains like millet, oats, brown rice, and flax and is sweetened with molasses, this bread is for you.
-S’MORES BROWNIES-Rich fudgy brownie topped with marshmallow and graham cracker bits.
-CHOCOLATE DONUT HOLES-If you thought doughnuts were one of those things you would never be able to eat again, these little bits of heaven are for you.

-FROZEN PIE SHELL- Just because you have discovered you cannot eat gluten does not mean you have to give up everything you have enjoyed for your whole life up to now—and pie is no exception.
-GRAHAM CRACKERS-EGG FREE-With s’mores season right arou nd the corner you will want to stock up. Also great with a glass of milk for a not-too-sweet after school snack.
-EGG NOODLES- DAIRY FREE-Homemade noodles have a fresh taste not found in any store-bought varieties.
-BUCKWHEAT PANCAKE MIX-Just add eggs, milk (cow, rice, soy, almond, or coconut), and canola oil and you have a quick, healthy breakfast everyone will love. Add blueberries for a good-for-you special breakfast.
-CORN BREAD MIX- Just add eggs, milk (cow, rice, soy, almond, or coconut),=2 0and canola oil. Serve with a bowl of chili for the perfect game-day dinner!

*** We are in the process of developing a complete pricing list.
Bread: $8/2-pound loaf-10-12 huge slices per loaf
Brownies: $1.50 each
Muffins: $1.50 each
Hamburger Buns $1 each
Scones: $2 each
Noodles: $5/3 servings
Cookies: $10/dozen
Cupcakes: $10/ half dozen
Doughnut Holes: $5/dozen
Pancake Mix: $3.00

We are in Fishers near 126th Street and Allisonville Rd.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Barack Obama's Healthcare policy

On health care reform, the American people are too often offered two extremes - government-run health care with higher taxes or letting the insurance companies operate without rules. Barack Obama and Joe Biden believe both of these extremes are wrong, and that’s why they’ve proposed a plan that strengthens employer coverage, makes insurance companies accountable and ensures patient choice of doctor and care without government interference.

The Obama-Biden plan provides affordable, accessible health care for all Americans, builds on the existing health care system, and uses existing providers, doctors and plans to implement the plan. Under the Obama-Biden plan, patients will be able to make health care decisions with their doctors, instead of being blocked by insurance company bureaucrats.

Under the plan, if you like your current health insurance, nothing changes, except your costs will go down by as much as $2,500 per year.

If you don’t have health insurance, you will have a choice of new, affordable health insurance options.

Make Health Insurance Work for People and Businesses - Not Just Insurance and Drug Companies.
-Require insurance companies to cover pre-existing conditions so all Americans regardless of their health status or history can get comprehensive benefits at fair and stable premiums.
-Create a new Small Business Health Tax Credit to help small businesses provide affordable health insurance to their employees.
-Lower costs for businesses by covering a portion of the catastrophic health costs they pay in return for lower premiums for employees.
-Prevent insurers from overcharging doctors for their malpractice insurance and invest in proven strategies to reduce preventable medical errors.
-Make employer contributions more fair by requiring large employers that do not offer coverage or make a meaningful contribution to the cost of quality health coverage for their employees to contribute a percentage of payroll toward the costs of their employees health care.
-Establish a National Health Insurance Exchange with a range of private insurance options as well as a new public plan based on benefits available to members of Congress that will allow individuals and small businesses to buy affordable health coverage.
-Ensure everyone who needs it will receive a tax credit for their premiums.

Reduce Costs and Save a Typical American Family up to $2,500 as reforms phase in:
-Lower drug costs by allowing the importation of safe medicines from other developed countries, increasing the use of generic drugs in public programs and taking on drug companies that block cheaper generic medicines from the market
-Require hospitals to collect and report health care cost and quality data
-Reduce the costs of catastrophic illnesses for employers and their employees.
-Reform the insurance market to increase competition by taking on anticompetitive activity that drives up prices without improving quality of care.

The Obama-Biden plan will promote public health. It will require coverage of preventive services, including cancer screenings, and increase state and local preparedness for terrorist attacks and natural disasters.

A Commitment to Fiscal Responsibility: Barack Obama will pay for his $50 - $65 billion health care reform effort by rolling back the Bush tax cuts for Americans earning more than $250,000 per year and retaining the estate tax at its 2009 level.

Barack also has a separate statement on the fight for HIV/AIDS and Cancer:

McCain's healthcare policy

John McCain Believes The Key To Health Care Reform Is To Restore Control To The Patients Themselves. We want a system of health care in which everyone can afford and acquire the treatment and preventative care they need. Health care should be available to all and not limited by where you work or how much you make. Families should be in charge of their health care dollars and have more control over care.

Making Health Insurance Innovative, Portable and Affordable
-John McCain Will Reform Health Care Making It Easier For Individuals And Families To Obtain Insurance. An important part of his plan is to use competition to improve the quality of health insurance with greater variety to match people's needs, lower prices, and portability. Families should be able to purchase health insurance nationwide, across state lines.
-John McCain Will Reform The Tax Code To Offer More Choices Beyond Employer-Based Health Insurance Coverage. While still having the option of employer-based coverage, every family will receive a direct refundable tax credit - effectively cash - of $2,500 for individuals and $5,000 for families to offset the cost of insurance. Families will be able to choose the insurance provider that suits them best and the money would be sent directly to the insurance provider. *(This sentence was referred to in a recent untruthful attack ad by Barack Obama.) Those obtaining innovative insurance that costs less than the credit can deposit the remainder in expanded Health Savings Accounts.
-John McCain Proposes Making Insurance More Portable. Americans need insurance that follows them from job to job. They want insurance that is still there if they retire early and does not change if they take a few years off to raise the kids.
-John McCain Will Encourage And Expand The Benefits Of Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) For Families. When families are informed about medical choices, they are more capable of making their own decisions and often decide against unnecessary options. Health Savings Accounts take an important step in the direction of putting families in charge of what they pay for.

A Specific Plan of Action: Ensuring Care for Higher Risk Patients
-John McCain's Plan Cares For The Traditionally Uninsurable. John McCain understands that those without prior group coverage and those with pre-existing conditions have the most difficulty on the individual market, and we need to make sure they get the high-quality coverage they need.
-John McCain Will Work With States To Establish A Guaranteed Access Plan. As President, John McCain will work with governors to develop a best practice model that states can follow - a Guaranteed Access Plan or GAP - that would reflect the best experience of the states to ensure these patients have access to health coverage. One approach would establish a nonprofit corporation that would contract with insurers to cover patients who have been denied insurance and could join with other state plans to enlarge pools and lower overhead costs. There would be reasonable limits on premiums, and assistance would be available for Americans below a certain income level.
-John McCain Will Promote Proper Incentives. John McCain will work with Congress, the governors, and industry to make sure this approach is funded adequately and has the right incentives to reduce costs such as disease management, individual case management, and health and wellness programs.

A Specific Plan of Action: Lowering Health Care Costs
-John McCain Proposes A Number Of Initiatives That Can Lower Health Care Costs. If we act today, we can lower health care costs for families through common-sense initiatives. Within a decade, health spending will comprise twenty percent of our economy. This is taking an increasing toll on America's families and small businesses. Even Senators Clinton and Obama recognize the pressure skyrocketing health costs place on small business when they exempt small businesses from their employer mandate plans.
CHEAPER DRUGS: Lowering Drug Prices. John McCain will look to bring greater competition to our drug markets through safe re-importation of drugs and faster introduction of generic drugs.
CHRONIC DISEASE: Providing Quality, Cheaper Care For Chronic Disease. Chronic conditions account for three-quarters of the nation's annual health care bill. By emphasizing prevention, early intervention, healthy habits, new treatment models, new public health infrastructure and the use of information technology, we can reduce health care costs. We should dedicate more federal research to caring and curing chronic disease.
COORDINATED CARE: Promoting Coordinated Care. Coordinated care - with providers collaborating to produce the best health care - offers better outcomes at lower cost. We should pay a single bill for high-quality disease care which will make every single provider accountable and responsive to the patients' needs.
GREATER ACCESS AND CONVENIENCE: Expanding Access To Health Care. Families place a high value on quickly getting simple care. Government should promote greater access through walk-in clinics in retail outlets.
INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY: Greater Use Of Information Technology To Reduce Costs. We should promote the rapid deployment of 21st century information systems and technology that allows doctors to practice across state lines.
MEDICAID AND MEDICARE: Reforming The Payment System To Cut Costs. We must reform the payment systems in Medicaid and Medicare to compensate providers for diagnosis, prevention and care coordination. Medicaid and Medicare should not pay for preventable medical errors or mismanagement.
SMOKING: Promoting The Availability Of Smoking Cessation Programs. Most smokers would love to quit but find it hard to do so. Working with business and insurance companies to promote availability, we can improve lives and reduce chronic disease through smoking cessation programs.
STATE FLEXIBILITY: Encouraging States To Lower Costs. States should have the flexibility to experiment with alternative forms of access, coordinated payments per episode covered under Medicaid, use of private insurance in Medicaid, alternative insurance policies and different licensing schemes for providers.
TORT REFORM: Passing Medical Liability Reform. We must pass medical liability reform that eliminates lawsuits directed at doctors who follow clinical guidelines and adhere to safety protocols. Every patient should have access to legal remedies in cases of bad medical practice but that should not be an invitation to endless, frivolous lawsuits.
TRANSPARENCY: Bringing Transparency To Health Care Costs. We must make public more information on treatment options and doctor records, and require transparency regarding medical outcomes, quality of care, costs and prices. We must also facilitate the development of national standards for measuring and recording treatments and outcomes.

Confronting the Long-Term Challenge
-John McCain Will Develop A Strategy For Meeting The Challenge Of A Population Needing Greater Long-Term Care. There have been a variety of state-based experiments such as Cash and Counseling or The Program of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE) that are pioneering approaches for delivering care to people in a home setting. Seniors are given a monthly stipend which they can use to hire workers and purchase care-related services and goods. They can get help managing their care by designating representatives, such as relatives or friends, to help make decisions. It also offers counseling and bookkeeping services to assist consumers in handling their programmatic responsibilities.

Setting the Record Straight: Covering Those With Pre-Existing Conditions
MYTH: Some Claim That Under John McCain's Plan, Those With Pre-Existing Conditions Would Be Denied Insurance.
FACT: John McCain Supported The Health Insurance Portability And Accountability Act In 1996 That Took The Important Step Of Providing Some Protection Against Exclusion Of Pre-Existing Conditions.
FACT: Nothing In John McCain's Plan Changes The Fact That If You Are Employed And Insured You Will Build Protection Against The Cost Of Any Pre-Existing Condition.
FACT: As President, John McCain Would Work With Governors To Find The Solutions Necessary To Ensure Those With Pre-Existing Conditions Are Able To Easily Access Care.

Combating Autism in America
-John McCain is very concerned about the rising incidence of autism among America's children and has continually supported research into its causes and treatment.

Healthcare and the new presidency

Healthcare is extremely important, and therefore good and affordable healthcare is even more important. My husband has had problems purchasing private health insurance due to the fact that he has celiac disease. That's right - even though my husband requires no medicine or other medical treatment because of his diagnosis - the insurance companies will not cover him due to his pre-existing condition. Therefore, healthcare ranks at the top of our list of important factors when deciding which presidential candidate we will be voting for. I will be posting both Barack Obama's and John McCain's health care strategies on this site and in an effort to stay neutral I will not be posting any personal opinions and will be pulling this information directly from their websites.

A gluten sufferer rises to occasion with education

September 24, 2008 Chicago Sun Times Rachel Finn

Sunshine Best is an enthusiastic young woman on a mission: to provide access to the simple pleasure of food to all and educate the masses about healthy, flavorful, gluten-free cooking.

Beginning her quest in 2003 after graduating from culinary school and being diagnosed with Celiac disease, Best embarked upon the journey of teaching and educating herself about the world of gluten-free cooking.

Curiosity, passion and exposure to many different types of food during childhood and Caribbean family roots helped open her eyes to the possibilities of cooking with ingredients as varied as sorghum, teff and coconut flours, banana vinegar, palm oil and shortening.

At her online bakery,, the fruits of her labor are evident: vegan sunflower cookies, cassava coconut loaf, key lime pound cake and whole grain cornbread all attest to her creativity and the quality of her cooking. Her philosophy is simple: "Teach young people about basic nutrition needs, what foods meet those needs and flavorful, inexpensive ways on how to prepare them. People have to know there is a better option that is accessible to them."

Her drive to educate and share her passions led her to establish Your Safe Kitchen, a special diet and culinary instruction consulting service. Through referrals from dieticians and naturopaths, Best helps people create recipes, clear pantries and cupboards of potentially harmful foods, and show them the basics of shopping and cooking in a gluten-free, allergy-free lifestyle. Those interested in booking private cooking classes or other services may reach Best at

Best also teaches regular gluten-free cooking classes at Whole Foods in Palatine.

Gluten-Free Product Listing - 13th Edition

The Celiac Sprue Association Gluten-Free Product Listing - 13th Edition is available for pre-publication ordering. Researched and compiled by CSA with input from manufacturers, vendors, distributors, diet and health professionals, and CSA members, this essential guide is available as a binder or CD. Become a new CSA member when ordering and get a 25% discount.

The link to the site is under the 'helpful links' list on the right side of the blog.

Gluten-free mentioned in October's Cooking Light Magazine

Now serving: The gluten-free menu

IT IS ESTIMATED that one in seven Americans has a genetic sensitivity to gluten (the elastic protein found in wheat, barley, and other grains), and restaurants and professional chefs are taking notice.

Aside from being found in foods like breads and pastas, gluten is used as a thickener for soups, sauces, and salad dressings, a stabilizer for ice cream and puddings, and fermented in condiments like Worcestershire sauce, soy cause, and certain vinegars, which can be brewed from wheat.

Richard Vellante, executive chef and executive vice president of restaurants for the Legal Seafoods chain, was persuaded to create a gluten-free menu when he tallied the number of guests who mentioned gluten in their comment cards or e-mailed him via the company's Webs site. Vellante and his team spent four months devising a gluten-free menu that replaces traditional wheat flour with chickpea four in items such as salad croutons, batter for friend clams, and crumb topping for Boston scrod. Outback Steakhouse introduced its first gluten-free menu after being approached by a gluten-sensitivity support group. Today the menu is offered at all Outback restaurants, and the recipe for its top-selling chocolate dessert is now gluten-free.

Many ethnic restaurants have gluten-free offerings, as well. At all 182 P.F. Chang China Bistros, 15 entrees and starters and one dessert are available wheat-free, and many Italian restaurants can substitute gluten-free pastas.

For a list of restaurants in the United States and abroad with gluten-free menus, visit . - Louise Kasdon
Sad to say, the Legal Seafood chain is located on the east and southcoasts of America, so that means none for us here in Indiana. You can visit their website at:

Gluten-free mentioned on CBS's hit show NCIS

On Tuesday, Ocotber 7th - the words 'gluten-free' were mentioned on NCIS!! I know that may sound like a weird thing to get excited about, but if you live the GF life - you'll understand that any reference on a primetime show is exciting.

The scene: Ziva bought Abby a chocolate cupcake - both DiNozzo and McGee wanted to eat it. As Abby walked away, DiNozzo stated, "Isn't this the week you're going gluten-free?".

I know, I know, small and short, but hey it was there - on my show - on TV!!!! I was super excited and Tommie got a kick out of it too.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Gluten-Free Cooking on Emeril Lagasse's Show Emeril Green

Mark your calendar and set your DVR boxes!!
On Tuesday October 7th at 8:30pm EST, NFCA's Vanessa Maltin
will appear on the Emeril Green cooking show!
Channel: Discovery Green
During this episode Emeril will help a newlywed couple learn to cook delicious gluten-free food. The wife was recently diagnosed with celiac disease and wants to make sure she can cook awesome food for her new husband! Emeril takes the couple on a shopping trip through the new Whole Foods store in Virginia and just happens to bump into Vanessa in the bakery! Vanessa will share tips for gluten-free cooking and baking and offer advice on various gluten-free grains and flours. In the episode you'll learn to make Pizza, Gazpacho, Italian Salad, and a delicious Pasta dish. So be sure to tune in to Emeril Green... Tuesday October 7th at 8:30pm!!
If you have questions, please contact Vanessa directly at
National Foundation for Celiac Awareness
4300 Montgomery Ave, Suite 102
Bethesda, Maryland 20814
If you do not have access to the Discovery Green channel, you can also watch videos and find great information from their site:

How to eat in restaurants when you have food allergies

10:30 AM CDT on Tuesday, September 23, 2008
Cox Newspapers

With one in 25 Americans – or 12 million people – making special menu requests because of food allergies, there's an increased need for updated and practical guidelines for restaurants.

In response, the National Restaurant Association has revised its food-service training guide, "Welcoming Guests With Food Allergies."

Sheila Weiss, director of nutrition policy for the association, says restaurant employees aren't the only people who can use the revised guide. Customers coping with food allergies can learn a lot about restaurant operations.

"Often, looking at the menu descriptions is not enough," Ms. Weiss says. "We strongly encourage communicating a food allergy to the restaurant staff so it can be addressed right up front. All ingredients should be disclosed. There are no secret sauces or secret thickeners."

Take action and ask
While some food allergies are more serious than others, all food allergies and intolerances demand serious attention when dining out. For instance, if you're allergic to shrimp, don't order jambalaya. But eggs, milk and nuts can sneak into recipes without warning. So it's imperative to step up the detective work when navigating a restaurant menu.

Your first line of defense is the server, who should be able to describe menu items and their ingredients in detail. However, this is no time to guess what's in a dish. If the server doesn't know for sure, ask to talk to the manager or the chef. And if there's a question about a product, such as a sauce or stock or type of frying oil, ask to see the container's ingredient label.

Kitchen staff should be trained to avoid cross-contaminating foods with potential allergens. But ask about specifics. For example, are mixers thoroughly cleaned between preparation of recipes with and without nuts?

Chef responsibilities
•Chefs should be trained to prepare allergen-free versions of dishes upon request. But you should also know what's possible and what's not. If the gumbo is made with oysters, the chef can't just whip one up without oysters.
•Chefs should not add a mystery ingredient just to be creative without listing it on the menu or telling the wait staff. Clearly communicate a list of allergens to heighten concern in the kitchen.
•Chefs should avoid casual product substitutions such as using peanut oil one day and canola oil the next. Even if you've safely eaten a dish for years, check to make sure that ingredients haven't changed.

Restaurant staff should be aware that even a minuscule amount of food can set off a severe allergic reaction. For example, some people are allergic to mollusks but not to fin fish. So make sure to ask what kind of seafood is used to make the seafood sauce served with the fish.
The food allergy guide can be downloaded at no charge from

Celiac Disease in Men Threatens Bone Health

September 19, 2008 01:08 PM ET Adam Voiland

Did John F. Kennedy, a man generally remembered as one of our more youthful and vigorous presidents, actually have
celiac disease, an autoimmune disorder triggered by exposure to gluten proteins found in wheat, barely, and rye? Quite possibly, says Peter Green, the director of the Celiac Disease Center at Columbia University. Though Kennedy managed to hide his symptoms from public view, he suffered from a slew of ailments that hint at celiac disease, including abdominal pain, diarrhea, migraines, and osteoporosis. Throughout Kennedy's life, doctors diagnosed him with ulcers, colitis, irritable bowel syndrome, and food allergies, but their treatments never seemed to help much. He never received the blood testing and intestinal biopsy that might have revealed celiac disease.

While Green's theory about Kennedy remains speculative, the disease often does go undiagnosed, and it seems to hit men particularly hard—especially where bone health is concerned. One of Green's articles, published in the Scandinavian Journal of Gastroenterology, shows that celiac disease appears to progress faster in men, deprive men's bodies of more needed nutrients, and cause particularly acute damage to bones. In fact, says Alessio Fasano, the medical director at the University of Maryland's Center for Celiac Research, celiac disease is one of the leading causes of male osteoporosis, a condition that many men don't realize they can get. (History buffs may enjoy the History News Network's
overview of Green's theory about JFK, and the Atlantic has a thorough description of that president's medical ordeals.)

Increasingly, American doctors have begun to recognize that celiac disease, which causes damage to the surface of the small intestine and hampers its ability to absorb needed nutrients, is a fairly common affliction. It's present in about 1 percent of the population, possibly more. Nevertheless, there's a long way to go in terms of improving awareness of the disease among the American public and physicians. According to Shelley Case, the author of Gluten - Free Diet: A Comprehensive Resource Guide, experts estimate that only about 5 percent of Americans with the condition ever receive a diagnosis, and it typically takes doctors about 11 years to correctly identify a person who has celiac disease, since the problem is often misdiagnosed as irritable bowel syndrome or anemia.

That's troubling because untreated celiac disease significantly increases the risk of severe medical problems, including gastrointestinal cancers and
non-Hodgkin lymphoma, in addition to osteoporosis. And while osteoporosis is most common among postmenopausal women, the disease also poses a significant threat to more than 2 million men, according to the National Institutes of Health. More than 6 percent of men over the age of 50 will experience an osteoporosis-related hip fracture, NIH says.

The connection between the osteoporosis and celiac disease has important practical implications. Experts say that any man with osteoporosis should have himself screened for celiac disease—just as anyone, male or female, who has celiac disease should get screened for osteoporosis. For people who do have both diseases, research has shown that adopting a gluten-free diet halts the progression of osteoporosis and even improves bone density by 10 percent, Green says.

The Measuring Cup Menu - Oct. 6th - 11th

Available after Thursday @ 6 p.m.
-These cookies taste exotic and yet familiar. The thick fig filling, the molasses and nutmeg cookie will remind you of Fig Newton’s. They are kid friendly and sophisticated at the same time.
-CHOCOLATE CRACKELS-These beautiful cookies are deliciously soft, fudge-like chocolate cookies that are encased in a coating of confectioners sugar.
-BERRY BREAKFAST BARS-These bars are great for breakfast on the go or a quick snack. The slightly sweet oatmeal crunch top is a perfect contrast to the rich berry filling.
-GRANOLA BARS- EGG FREE-A healthy breakfast on the go, or a snack to pack in the kids lunch. Each bar is full of almonds, dried cherries, blueberries, cranberries, raisins, coconut, flax, pure maple syrup, and oats.
-COUNTRY SORGHUM SANDWICH BREAD-A supple white bread great for sandwiches. It does not have to be toasted to taste good!
-SANDWICH WRAPS- DAIRY FREE-Wrap around your favorite deli meat and cheese, top with spicy brown mustard or cipotle mayonnaise, top with red onion and you have an irresistible sandwich.
-"DING DONG” LIKE CREAM-FILLED CHOCOLATE CUPCAKES-Cream-filled and topped with chocolate glaze.
-“LEMON HEAD” CUPCAKES-See above for description.
Available SUNDAY AFTER 6:
-Chocolate, peanut butter, and oats unite in this addictive, fudgy bar cookie.
-BANANA BREAD-DAIRY AND EGG FREE-This bread is moist and delicious with loads of banana flavor.
-RYE-LESS RYE BREAD-Wonderful for a grilled ham and swiss or a Rueben sandwich.
-SORGHUM, OAT, AND FLAX BREAD-For people looking for a great tasting, low-starch, high-fiber, whole grain bread.
-BROWN SUGAR AND SPICE PUMPKIN BARS-DAIRY FREE-Pumpkin, cinnamon, and brown sugar make a moist and tender bar. Whether you eat these for breakfast or for dessert, they will warm your soul.

-With s’mores season right around the corner you will want to stock up. Also great with a glass of milk for a not-too-sweet after school snack.
-EGG NOODLES- DAIRY FREE-Homemade noodles have a fresh taste not found in any store-bought varieties.
-BUCKWHEAT PANCAKE MIX-Just add eggs, milk (cow, rice, soy, almond, or coconut), and canola oil and you have a quick, healthy breakfast everyone will love. Add blueberries for a good-for-you special breakfast.
-CORN BREAD MIX- Just add eggs, milk (cow, rice, soy, almond, or coconut), and canola oil. Serve with a bowl of chili for the perfect game-day dinner!
*** We are in the process of developing a complete pricing list.
Bread: $8/2-pound loaf-10-12 huge slices per loaf
Coffee Cake: $8/loaf
Sandwich Wraps: $2 each
Breakfast Bars: $2.00 each
Noodles: $5/3 servings
Cookies: $10/dozen
Cupcakes: $10/ half dozen
Pancake or Cornbread Mix: $3.00
Granola Bars: $1.50 ea
“Ding-Dongs” cream filled chocolate cupcakes: $2.00ea

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

October Product of the Month

Last night I noticed that the expiration date on our eggs was quickly approaching so I decided to do some baking in hopes of finding a GF product of the month. Well, the winner is......
Whole Foods's GF Chocolate Chip Cookie Mix
The mix was very easy and quick to prepare - this would be a great project to ask children to help with. I started off by making individual cookies, but then realized that I only had one sheet of parchment paper (the instructions requires that you bake the cookies on parchment paper) left and decided to make a giant cookie.
Here's the catch: the mix is very segmented and requires that you form balls out of the dough. When I made the sheet cookie, I just smashed the dough together rather lazily and therefore when it was done baking the cookie crumbled in the places where the dough wasn't packed. So, next time I'm making a sheet cookie, I'll just form the dough into one big ball and make sure everything is good and smashed together, then I'll place it on the cookie shoot and smooth it out. Did I complicate that enough for you? :P
Point is, this is a great gluten-free product and for the price, you might as well give it a try.
Sorry about not having any pictures of the cookies - they went pretty quick.

Product Review: Maggie's Oh So Chocolatey Brownie Mix

At a recent GF community outing, Tommie and I picked up some Maggie's Oh So Chocolately Brownie Mix. The mix was free and we're the adventurous type so we figured 'what the heck'. The mix was very easy to prepare, however we were a little concerned when the brownie mix was more like moon sand that you can buy at toy stores than it was a brownie mix. Definitely read the instructions and make sure your hands are good and wet when you try to spread the mix in your pan our you are going to have a very tough time of washing the mix off your hands.

The taste and texture also left something to be desired. The brownies were dry and gritty and tasted more of bitter cocoa than anything else. When looking at the bag of dry mix, it appears that there is a lot of sugar, however the taste was anything but sweet.

I would not recommend this mix to anyone, especially for the price of $4.99 on their website. Pamela's or the Whole Foods 365 mix is a much better product and doesn't leave you saddened by idea of a gluten-free life.

These pictures were found on the Maggie's website: