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June 2010

Note from Alice

Shrimp: A Summer Menu Must for Celiacs
By Jennifer McGuire, MS, RD

Healthy by Gini
The Pizza Problem

Tid Bits with Tina
A Gluten-Free Summer for the Kids

All Things GREAT
GREAT Program Updates

Celiac Highlights at Digestive Disease Week 2010
By Daniel Leffler, MD, MS

Coming Attractions
Save these Dates!

Celiac Awareness All Stars
Outstanding Volunteers Supporting NFCA

Athletes for Awareness May Challenge
Cookbook Giveaway Winners Announced

Gluten-Free & Loving It: Entertaining by the Grill
By Amy Rota-Poulin

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The best gluten-free products

Celiac in the News
Recent news about celiac disease

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Note from Alice

NFCA Founder & President

 

Bikini Ready: Inside and Out!


The NFCA team spent the week of May 21st through May 25th at the 2010 National Restaurant Association (NRA) Show making, in the words of Celiac Chick Kelly Courson, “GLUTEN-FREE HISTORY!” But even with the hustle and bustle surrounding the NFCA Gluten-Free Showcase Pavilion, we did not lose sight of the fact that we need to make a daily effort to take care of our bodies.

Here is an update on my personal progress.

My triathlon preparation is in full swing and it is not a task I take lightly.  While in Chicago, every morning, I rose early to take a run or ride a stationary bike in the hotel gym.  In other words, I dragged my tired self out of bed and forced myself to exercise!  Make no mistake; it wasn’t exactly my idea of fun. The first few minutes on the treadmill are usually the most difficult.  However, by the end of the run or “bike ride,” I was feeling great. Setting aside just a few minutes for myself really helped me set a positive tone for the rest of our very long days.

Why am I stressing the importance of exercise?  Because I know how critically important exercise is in regaining and maintaining good health. I know that my health has improved thorough employing a good diet and exercise program. And, in my role at the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness, I see first-hand the positive impact that this program can have for all of those who are newly diagnosed and those who are dedicated to improving their quality of life. I hope to empower each of you to do and be your very best, which means feeling and looking healthy on the inside and out.

The benefits of exercise are enormous.  Not only can exercise promote weight maintenance, increase bone density, and help your cardiovascular and respiratory systems, but is also improves your immune system.

For people with celiac disease, having an impaired immune system means you need to take extra special care of yourself. This includes…oh yes, exercising! 

Moderate exercise can:

  • Reduce Anxiety and Stress: preventing the release of stress related hormones that can suppress the immune system.
  • Improve Blood Flow: promoting lymph flow to improve immunity, as well as removing toxins from the body through sweat and urine. 
  • Prevent Infection: increasing the number of anti-inflammatory response cells in the body.

No wonder I always feel better after I hit the gym!

I am not asking you to run a marathon or participate in a triathlon, but I am advocating that each and every one of you talk to your doctor about beginning an exercise regimen.

Get moving and have your body (and immune system) beach-ready this summer!


Cheers,

Alice Bast


 

Shrimp: A Summer Menu Must for Celiacs

By Jennifer McGuire, MS, RD
The National Fisheries Institute

Americans are used to being told what not to eat, and those with celiac disease are even more used to it.  However, a recent survey found that nearly 60 percent of people are more interested in hearing about what to eat.  So, I’m going to focus on one of the few types of food that those with and without celiac disease should eat more of seafood.

Over a dozen health and nutrition organizations recommend eating seafood at least twice a week, which would be about 39 pounds per person a year.  However, the average American eats just 16 pounds of fish and shellfish annually.  Meanwhile, each of us typically eats over 70 pounds of poultry and 110 pounds of red meat.

As a dietitian, I advocate eating seafood because it’s loaded with healthy nutrients like protein, B vitamins, iron, and omega 3's, but not loaded with calories and fat.  As a lover of food, I suggest fish and shellfish because they’re delicious. And, when it comes to why people choose the foods they do, taste tops the list.    

A mild, slightly sweet tasting type of seafood that’s perfect for the warming weather is shrimp.  The following tips will help you enjoy succulent shrimp all summer long:

Buying shrimp

  • Buy peeled and deveined shrimp for speedy recipes like shrimp cocktail and shrimp salad.
  • Buy shrimp in the shell for grilled shrimp to help lock in the moisture.

Thawing frozen shrimp

  • Thaw in the refrigerator if you have a full day before you plan to cook the shrimp.  Place it in a clean container in the refrigerator. If it’s not already wrapped in plastic, cover the top lightly with plastic wrap. Place the container on a low shelf. Let them defrost slowly for about 24 hours then remove any liquid that has collected in the packaging or the container. Use within a day.
  • Thaw in cool water if you have less time, but can closely watch the shrimp.  Place it in a leak-proof plastic bag, if it is not in one already.  Submerge the seafood in cold tap water and change the water every thirty minutes until the food has defrosted.  Do not try to speed things up with warm water because the shrimp can start to cook. Cook immediately after thawing.

Cooking shrimp

  • Shrimp are properly cooked when their texture changes from mushy to firm, their color turns from brownish-gray to a warm orangey-pink, and their meat becomes opaque. Shrimp are overcooked when they curl tightly inwards and their flesh becomes rubbery.

Shrimp & Avocado Salad
Recipe Courtesy of: The Shrimp Council

Number of Servings:  4

Ingredients:
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro
Juice of one lime (about 2 tablespoons)
1 pound medium or large cooked shrimp
1 cup grape or cherry tomatoes, halved
1 avocado, cut into ½-inch cubes
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
Freshly ground pepper

Instructions:
Whisk the olive oil, cilantro, and lime juice in a large bowl. Add the shrimp, tomato halves, avocado, and salt and toss gently. Season with additional salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately or chill overnight.

 

Lemony Garlic Shrimp Cocktail
Recipe Courtesy Of: The Shrimp Council and Janice Newell Bissex, MS, RD & Liz Weiss, MS, RD Cofounders, MealMakeoverMoms.com

Number of Servings:  4

Ingredients:
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons minced elephant garlic
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
3 tablespoons minced fresh parsley                               

1 pound large cooked shrimp, fresh or frozen, thawed
Freshly ground black pepper

Instructions:
Heat the oil in a nonstick skillet over medium-low heat. Add the garlic and cook, stirring constantly, until barely golden, about 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the lemon juice, parsley, and shrimp. Season with pepper to taste. Refrigerate until ready to serve, either plain (no cocktail sauce needed!), or on top of a salad.

 images © Marco Mayer – Fotolia.com

 

About Jennifer McGuire, MS, RD

I am a registered dietitian with the National Fisheries Institute, so fish is my nutrition forte. I earned my BA in Communication from Southwestern University, just outside of Austin, TX. During college, one of my very favorite evening outings was a leisurely trip to the grocery market. My passion for food was undeniable, so I combined both of my interests by earning my MS in Nutrition Communication from Tufts University in Boston, MA, as well as my Registered Dietitian (RD) credentials through the University of Delaware.

Beyond reading scientific studies about docosahexaenoic acid and selenium, I love to entertain, travel, watch reality TV, grill outdoors, and go to spin class. I live in Kaneohe, HI on the island of Oahu where my husband serves as a US Marine Corps JAG.

People in Hawaii eat more fish and shellfish than average, but over 80 percent of typical Americans don't eat seafood at least twice per week. Doctors and dietitians like me say that's the goal, so BlogAboutSeafood is here to show you just what plenty of seafood looks like in an RD's real-life diet.

The National Fisheries Institute
www.aboutseafood.com

The Shrimp Council
www.eatshrimp.com

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Tid Bits with Tina

Danny the Dragon and Author Tina Turbin Share "Yummy Gluten-Free Tid Bits"

A Gluten-Free Summer for the Kids

It’s that time of year again. The weather is warm and welcoming, the days are longer, and school is out. Not surprisingly, summer is usually a child’s favorite time of year, and chances are good that your own celiac child has been looking forward to it for months. Now that your child has been diagnosed with celiac disease, you can still help him make the most of the season. As with other aspects of the gluten-free lifestyle, a few adjustments will be necessary, but with some planning and practice, you’ll help your child make the transition to a gluten-free summer with ease.

One of the activities you’ll learn to manage is summer traveling with your celiac child, which is just a matter of planning ahead. You can call the airline ahead if you’ll be flying, as well as health food stores where you’ll be staying. Make sure to bring extra gluten-free foods in a cooler for your celiac child wherever you go. You can find some gluten-free snack foods that your child will love for road trips, such as gluten-free jerky and potato puffs. You can always bring along your own supply of gluten-free foods, such as gluten-free flour and pasta for instance, to your travel destination, or you can order online from your favorite gluten-free sites and have the gluten-free goodies delivered straight to where you’ll be staying. If you won’t be staying with friends or family, I suggest you rent a condo or get a hotel room with a full kitchen for your gluten-free cooking.

Take advantage of the summer by cooking gluten-free meals and goodies at home and get your celiac child to help. Not only will this give him something to do, he’ll also get the hang of cooking gluten-free for himself, a valuable skill he’ll need to learn for the rest of his life as a member of the celiac community. Keep the house full of fresh fruits and veggies and other gluten-free foods, as your child will be looking to munch on goodies throughout the day.

Summer camp is a cherished summertime tradition for children. Just because your child eats gluten-free doesn’t mean he has to suffer without summer camp this year. There are actually some camps that specialize in the gluten-free diet, which you can find through a little online research. Other camps specialize in other restricted diets, such as for diabetic children. You don’t have to choose a special camp for your child, though, as he may want to go to the same summer camps as his friends.
   
Just as you had to meet with your child’s teachers and school administrators regarding his diet, talk with counselors and cooks in advance regarding your child’s gluten-free diet. Find out who’s in charge of meals and talk to them, in person if possible, about the details he’ll need to know. I recommend giving them a copy of a gluten-free cookbook and some articles about celiac disease and the gluten-free lifestyle, so that they’ll be able to refer to these resources when they need it. Make sure to allow plenty of time before camp starts to let the camp staff prepare for the diet specifications. Don’t forget to discuss food preparation and serving techniques so they can avoid cross-contamination.

Additionally, I recommend sending food along, if the camp’s regulations allow it, so your child has his favorite gluten-free snacks and also some gluten-free flour mixes, for example, which the whole camp can enjoy in gluten-free brownies, cookies, and cakes.
    
It’s essential, as much as the camp’s personnel have been enlightened about gluten-free living, that your child understands his own dietary needs as much as possible. This will give him ultimate control of his gluten-free diet. Tell him the questions to ask about food preparation to prevent cross-contamination, make sure he knows how to read food labels, and teach him the synonyms for gluten.
    
Learning how to meet the gluten-free dietary needs of your celiac child has required some planning and some adjustments, but in the end it isn’t very tough to successfully adopt a gluten-free lifestyle. Similarly, keeping your celiac child well fed on gluten-free foods during travel and other summertime activities requires some work and planning ahead, but you’ll find that you’ll get the hang of it in no time.

Tina Turbin
http://GlutenFreeHelp.info
http://DannyTheDragon.com

More about Tina and the "Danny the Dragon" children's book series:

Tina Turbin (http://TinaTurbin.com) became extremely interested and involved in the subjects of celiac disease, gluten sensitivity and gluten issues a number of years ago, after being diagnosed as celiac after many years of unresolved troubles. Since then, she has engaged in diligent research and writing about these topics, weekly radio shows, developing gluten-free recipes and reviewing companies for celiac consumer safety (http://GlutenFreeHelp.info)

Tina is an award-winning children's book author 
(http://DannyTheDragon.com) and donates her current children's audio book profits to Dr. Peter Green’s Celiac Disease Center at Columbia University Medical Center. To stay updated on her projects please sign up for her newsletter, visit www.TinaTurbin.com. Tina resides in both her East and West Coast studios and kitchens continuing her writing, promoting and working within the celiac and gluten-free arena- and always writing more children's books to entertain the world.

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Healthy by Gini: The Pizza Problem

By Gini Warner, Clinical Nutritionist

When beginning a gluten-free diet, it’s important to focus on what you can eat rather than what you are missing. Find ways to gratify the urge to splurge without destroying the lining of your intestine!

Pizza is one of the foods most desired and missed by my clients. The adults crave it and talk about just eating the cheese off of the crust. The children are often faced with the temptation at birthday parties and school events. If your child is attending an event where pizza is being served, you can give them a gluten-free pizza to bring so they have something to eat.

Many of my clients enjoy this recipe for white clam pizza. White clam pizza is gluten-free and lactose free. It provides a good source of protein and tastes great! Susan, age 7, was diagnosed with celiac disease last year. She has been on a gluten-free diet and is feeling great! She often brings gluten-free pizza to birthday parties and shares it with her friends. This is one of her favorites!

White Clam Pizza

Pizza Crust Directions:
Preheat oven to 425 degrees

1 package Gluten Free Pizza Crust Mix (Bob’s Red Mill recommended)
1-3/4 cups warm water
2 dozen littleneck clams cooked and shells removed
2 cloves of garlic, chopped fine
1 cup sweet basil chiffonade (thinly sliced)
2 eggs*
4 tablespoons olive oil
Yeast packet (enclosed in Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Pizza Crust Mix)

In a large bowl, combine water and yeast. Let stand a few minutes. Add eggs and oil to mixture and blend briefly. Add gluten-free pizza crust mix and blend about a minute on medium speed, until combined. Leave dough in bowl, split in half, cover with plastic wrap and allow to rise 20 minutes.

Place dough on greased pizza pans. Using wet hands, spread out dough to cover the full pizza pan. Bake without toppings for 7-9 minutes.

Remove from oven, cover with clams, garlic, basil and olive oil. Bake for 15-18 minutes.

Makes two 12-inch or one 16-inch pizza crust.

Dough can be stored in the refrigerator for a few days. Wrap dough in plastic wrap and store in plastic bag. When ready to bake, take dough out of refrigerator and allow to rest 30 minutes. Spread dough onto greased pizza pan and bake as directed.

*Eggless option: Combine 2 tablespoons flaxseed meal + 6 tablespoons water.  Let stand one minute. Add to recipe as you would the eggs.

About Gini Warner, Clinical Nutritionist

Gini Warner completed her master’s degree in Health Education and Nutritional Science at New York University in 1988 and has been working with families, individuals and corporations in the fields of celiac disease, immune dysfunction, diabetes, osteoporosis, weight loss and overall wellness. She has been a practicing nutritional counselor for more than twenty years.

Gini develops nutritional programs for people with food allergies, for safe weight control, diabetes, eating for energy, disease prevention, and overall nutritional balance. She believes that the key to achieving proper nutrition and overall health is in making positive lifestyle changes.

Gini has developed wellness programs for corporations nationwide including AT&T, Citibank and Revlon. These programs have dramatically improved the health and quality of life for their employees.

Gini also writes articles for the Celiac Sprue News and www.glutenfreeclub.com

As a clinical nutritionist, Gini works in most areas of nutritional wellness for adults and children and welcomes referrals from medical doctors, chiropractors, and other healthcare professionals. She offers nutritional counseling in person or online.

www.healthbygini.com
healthbygini@yahoo.com

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All Things GREAT: Gluten-Free Resource Education and Awareness Training (G.R.E.A.T) Program Update

 

NRA Show 2010: Gluten-Free History Made at NFCA’s Showcase Pavilion

At the 2010 National Restaurant Association Show, held from May 22nd-25th in Chicago, NFCA and members of its GREAT food industry initiatives made gluten-free history!

Hosting the first ever Gluten-Free Showcase Pavilion on the food industry’s most prestigious stage, NFCA united over 30 vendors in an effort to generate awareness and support for increased availability of safe and tasty gluten-free food products and menus.

The 2010 NRA Show marked the debut of NFCA’s GREAT Business Association, which serves to create a positive brand for gluten-free businesses and products and allow our partners to effectively sell their products and services.

“As a first time exhibitor to the NRA Show, the overwhelming positive response was more than we ever expected,” said Amy Phillips, CEO of Three Senses Gourmet, who exhibited gluten-free chocolate soufflé and brownie bites.

NFCA also hosted an educational panel at the 2010 NRA Show entitled, Gluten-Free: Easy as ABCDE, which provided insight into the gluten-free movement and how restaurants and food service can safely enter the market.

According to the NRA, the 2010 Show attracted more than 58,000 registrants, a six percent increase over 2009, from 120 countries, up from 107 countries in 2009. Approximately 1,700 exhibitors covering more than 480,000-square-feet showcased the most innovative new products and services on the market today.

This incredible endeavor was a remarkable success thanks to the generosity and support of the many companies, vendors, sponsors, volunteers and friends who participated in the 2010 Gluten-Free Showcase Pavilion. Visit the 2010 NRA Show event page to see them all.

Raising Awareness and Making Headlines

The 2010 Gluten-Free Showcase Pavilion received an unprecedented amount of news and press coverage, helping NFCA and members of the GREAT Business Association raise awareness of the gluten-free diet, illuminate this permanent and growing food industry development, and educate both professionals and the public at large about the many medical conditions (and millions of Americans!) that can be treated through safe and tasty gluten-free food!

Highlights include:

  • The Philadelphia Inquirer
  • Food Service Daily News
  • Floored! (official blog of the 2010 NRA Show)
  • Nation’s Restaurant News
  • Medhill Reports
  • The Chicago Tribune
  • Colman Brohan Davis Marketing
  • The Foodie Forkful
  • Xinhua News Agency
  • Pizza Magazine Quarterly

…and many more!

Kelly Courson of CeliacChicks.com was on hand to represent the celiac disease community and cover this landmark event. For complete Gluten-Free Show coverage, including links to Kelly’s posts and the titles listed above, visit the Gluten-Free Showcase Pavilion news page.
Click Here.

 

 

Action from the Show Floor
NFCA used Twitter to capture and share exciting developments from the floor, including photos of the delicious gluten-free products and dishes on display, along with market insights presented during the Gluten-Free: Easy as ABCDE educational session.

To check out some of the gluten-free action that took place during the 2010 NRA Show, visit the @CeliacAwareness Twitter page and follow NFCA on Twitter to receive future updates!

NFCA’s official Gluten-Free Showcase Pavilion photo gallery is currently up on the NFCA website, CeliacCentral.org, and being frequently updated! Check it out below:

You can also see videos from the floor, like the one below taken by WBEZ 91.5 Chicago, on our 2010 NRA Show video page. Click here to watch them all!

Gluten-Free Showcase Pavilion Featured Recipes

Thanks to the wonderful chefs who provided gluten-free demonstrations during the 2010 NRA Show, you can make some of the fantastic dishes featured during the Gluten-Free Showcase Pavilion right at home!

GF Spinach & Cheese Ravioli with Cherry Tomatoes
By Chef James Harris, Harrah’s Resort, Atlantic City, NJ

Serves 4

Ingredients:

  • 1 Lb. cherry tomatoes, cut in half
  • 1/2 small red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup white wine vinegar
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme, chopped
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 16 oz. bag of gluten-free Conte’s Spinach & Cheese Ravioli, cooked according to package instructions, rinsed and drained


Instructions:

1. In a large bowl, combine tomatoes, onion, vinegar, oil, thyme, parsley, pepper and salt.
2. Add cooked raviolis, toss to combine and serve immediately.
3. Enjoy!

GF Florentine Dessert Pizza
By Chef Richard J. Coppedge, Jr., CMB, The Culinary Institute of America

Serves 16

Ingredients:

  • 5 oz. granulated sugar        
  • 5 oz. unsalted butter        
  • 5 oz. honey or corn syrup       
  • 1 oz. heavy cream           
  • 14 oz. almonds, sliced, blanched   
  • 1.5 oz. cranberries, dried       
  • 2 of DeIorio’s 12” gluten-free pre-baked shells

Instructions:

Pre-heat oven to 375-400’F.
1.  Using a 3-4 quart sauce pot, bring the sugar, butter, honey/corn syrup, almonds and cream to a boil.
2.  Reduce heat to a low simmer, stirring occasionally, to apply a light caramelized-browning to the almonds.
3.  Place crusts onto a parchment lined sheet pan.
4. Using a heat tolerant spoon, or spatula, carefully pour the sugar-almond mixture onto the center of each crust.
5. Carefully spread the almond-sugar mixture outward, from the center towards the edges of the crust. Leave a ½” space from the edge of the crust.
6. Bake for approximately 12 minutes or until the nut mixture is golden brown, and bubbling along the extreme edges of the mixture.
7. Remove pizzas from oven, allowing to ‘rest’ for five minutes.
8. Using a sharp chef’s knife or, disc-wheel cutter; cut into eight, equal servings.
9. Finished baked slices can be topped with melted, drizzled chocolate or, garnished with whipped cream. Enjoy!

Great in the News: even MORE headlines from around the nation

Food Management Magazine highlights GREAT College and University Food Service Training:
http://food-management.com/food_feature/thinking-outside-bread-box-0510/

BeWellPhilly.com adores Virago Bakery’s Gluten-free Vegan Cupcakes: http://blogs.phillymag.com/bewellphilly/2010/05/21/be-well-bites-viragos-vegan-gluten-free-cupcakes/

Z Pizza Hosts Gluten-Free Casein-Free Fundraiser for Autism Speaks: http://blog.autismspeaks.org/2010/05/20/zpizza/

Sweet Freedom Bakery Makes Gluten-Free Baking Delicious and Nutritious: http://aroundmainline.com/living/phillys-sweet-freedom-bakery.html

GREAT Healthcare Update: NFCA Partners with National Council on Patient Information and Education (NCPIE) on Gluten in Medications Efforts

The National Foundation for Celiac Awareness (NFCA) has been growing our relationships within the pharmaceutical industry and other key stakeholders to better understand their operations, and also to communicate the needs of the celiac and gluten sensitive population on the topic of gluten in medication. One new relationship has been with the National Council on Patient Information and Education (NCPIE), www.talkaboutrx.org.  NFCA became a member of the non-profit organization in December, 2009.

NCPIE, formed in 1982, is a coalition of member organizations representing consumer and patient groups, healthcare professionals, the pharmaceutical industry, and government agencies, including the Food and Drug Administration. Its mission is to stimulate and improve communication of information on the appropriate use of medicines to consumers and health care professionals.

NFCA’s goal to have gluten labeled in medication. Educating pharmacists and other healthcare providers about celiac disease is consistent with the values of NCPIE. In addition, NCPIE also works to have consumers educated about their medication so they can participate in decision-making about its use. 

NFCA is thrilled to have NCPIE’s support and input to help us navigate through the issue of gluten in medications. NCPIE communicates regularly with pharmaceutical manufacturers and their trade associations (both brand and generic) on medication ‘safe use’ issues. Their recognition that the dilemma that people with celiac and gluten sensitivity face when taking oral medication is a consumer and health safety issue is significant. We are excited to work together to resolve the problems experienced due to gluten in medication.

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Celiac Highlights at Digestive Disease Week 2010

By Daniel Leffler, MD, MS

From May 1st to 5th, Digestive Disease Week was held in New Orleans. Digestive Disease Week or DDW as it is known in the medical community, is hosted by the American Gastroenterological Association and is the largest annual meeting for Gastroenterology. This year, over 13,000 registrants attended in New Orleans. 

Over the past years, it has been encouraging to see celiac disease receive increasing attention and this year was no different. Over the course of the conference, there were more than half a dozen talks devoted to celiac disease, including the lead presentation in the Presidential Plenary Session which is considered the most prestigious spot in the entire conference, given by Dr. Ciaran Kelly of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. In this lead presentation, Dr. Kelly spoke of how the primary care community will be called on to test for celiac disease given the rising prevalence of the autoimmune disease. In addition, the results of 37 novel studies were presented, ranging from novel treatments for celiac disease to the effects of celiac disease on pregnancy.

In the next section, I will summarize some of the more exciting new research presented. You will have to forgive me for the jargon. Consider this your science lesson for the day!   

1. Can Prolyl Endoprotease Enzyme Treatment Mitigate the Toxic Effect of Gluten in Celiac Pa-tients?

Authors: G. J. Tack*1, J. M. W. Van De Water1, E. M. C. Kooy-Winkelaar2, J. Van Bergen2, G. A. Mei-jer3, B. M. E. Von Blomberg3, M. W. J. Schreurs3, M. J. Bruins4, L. Edens4, C. J. Mulder1, F. Koning2

Affiliations: 1Gastroenterology and Hepatology, VU University Medical Center, Amsterdam, 2Immunohematology and Blood Transfusion, LU Medical Center, Leiden, 3Pathology, VU University Medical Center, Amsterdam, 4DSM, Biotechnology Center, Delft, Netherlands

Topic of the study:
The aim of this study is to assess the safety and efficacy of Aspergillus Niger-derived prolyl endopeptidases (AN-PEP), an enzyme derived from a fungus that can digest gluten, in preventing celiac disease activation during a gluten challenge. 

What is known about this topic?
It has become abundantly clear in the last few years that a medical therapy to augment the gluten-free diet is greatly needed. While we know even now that the majority of patients do not normalize their duodenal mucosa and long term adherence rates are poor, it is likely that both of these issues will become even worse in the future as we continue to explore the celiac iceberg and diagnose people with fewer resources than the often self-referred population diagnosed today.

What we don’t know about this topic:
There are 3 leading contending modalities for celiac disease therapies at this time:

1.  Immunotherapy/induction of tolerance by Bob Anderson/Nexpep.
2.  Tight junction modulation with Larazotide by Alba Therapeutics.
3.  Gluten peptidase of which there are two: ALV-003 by Alvine Pharmaceuticals, Inc. and AN-PEP by a collaborative group in the Netherlands.

However, it is unclear at this time which of these agents will be safe and effective.

What this study adds: 
This study of AN-PEP is the first Phase 2-like study of a gluten peptidase. Sixteen patients with celiac disease had two weeks of a breakfast containing seven grams of gluten (equivalent to approximately four slices of bread) for two weeks. These same patients then followed by a two week period back on a regular gluten-free diet (GFD), and afterwards were then randomized to gluten + placebo or gluten + AN-PEP.

The primary endpoint was deterioration of intestinal histology. Biopsies were taken at the beginning of the study after the first gluten challenge and at the end of the study. AN-PEP was safe and well tolerated. However, over the first two weeks, two patients had deteriorating biopsies, while in the second gluten challenge one patient in the AN-PEP group and two in the placebo group had worsened histology. Little data is provided on symptoms but suggests some worsening of histology in both groups in the sec-ond gluten challenge.
 
Take home points:
Sequential biopsies are a reasonable and tolerated study design for celiac disease. AN-PEP appears well tolerated but the fact that two patients developed worsening enteropathy in the first gluten challenge is concerning.

We have some ways to go before we know exactly how to test celiac therapeutics, and it is hard to imagine a proven medication for celiac disease coming in less than five years. However, I think this certainly gives reason to pause when considering use of unproven or over the counter treatments
targeting gluten and/or celiac disease. 


2. Gliadin Elicits a Th1 Response in Decidua in Celiac Pregnant Women

Authors: Marco Silano, Nicoletta Di Simone, Roberta Castellani, Chiara
Tersigni, Silvia D'Ippolito, Maria C. D'Alessio, Carlo Agostoni,
Stefano Guandalini1

Affiliations: 1Department of Pediatrics Section of Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition, Univer-sity of Chicago

Topic of the study:
The aim of this study was to evaluate the immunologic mechanisms that underlie the association between celiac disease and adverse pregnancy outcomes.

What is known about this topic?
There is substantial evidence that in untreated celiac disease adverse pregnancy outcomes are significantly increased, including miscarriage rate, intrauterine growth retardation, low birth weight, and preterm birth. In the diagnosed celiac disease population, pregnancy outcomes are good, while fertility appears to be delayed and is likely due to the time spent ill prior to diagnosis and treatment of the gluten-free diet. However, the overall rate of adverse pregnancy outcomes in the diagnosed celiac disease population is normal compared to the population without celiac disease. This suggests some reversible effect of active celiac disease, and inflammatory and nutritional factors have been suggested as the causes of adverse pregnancy outcomes.

What we don’t know about this topic:
There is very little data on the cause of adverse pregnancy outcomes in celiac disease aside from a single study published last year by Anjum et al., which showed that anti-tTG antibodies bind to the placenta and reduce local tTG activity. Although it is not clear what effect this has, compromises of nutrient transfer or placental growth are both possible.  

What this study adds:
This study evaluated the response of gliadin peptides on placentally derived T-cells and found a signifi-cant increase in certain inflammatory chemicals (cytokines). Overall, the changes would be expected to significantly impair the normal development of the placenta.  

Take home points:
The association between celiac disease and adverse pregnancy outcomes is under appreciated. Much of the focus in this area has been on nutritional issues, but newer data suggest a direct immunologic effect of active celiac disease on pregnancy. Further, this data would suggest that even intermittent exposure to gluten could change important immunologic factors in the placenta.  If supported, this would argue for close monitoring and reinforcing of gluten-free diet education in women before and during pregnancy. 

About Daniel Leffler, MD, MS

Daniel Leffler, MD, MS is Director of Clinical Research at the Celiac Center at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center (BIDMC) and an Assistant Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School.

Dan and fellow BIDMC colleague Melinda Dennis, MS, RD, LDN recently authored Real Life with Celiac Disease: Troubleshooting and Living Gluten-Free, published by the American Gastroenterological Association press. The comprehensive book boasts more than 50 patient case-based chapters authored by celiac experts from around the world. Patients and physicians alike will benefit from reading this book. Published in May 2010, Real Life with Celiac Disease: Troubleshooting and Living Gluten-Free is available at http://www.gastro.org/patient-center or at your local bookstore.

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Coming Attractions

CELIAC AWARENESS DINNER
PHILDELPHIA
Monday, June 7, 2010
at
SUSANNA FOO GOURMET KITCHEN
Radnor, PA

Bring your friends and family for a fabulous night out with the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness (NFCA) on Monday, June 7th as Susanna Foo Gourmet Kitchen goes gluten-free! This Celiac Awareness Dinner in the very chic Radnor dining room offers the elegance of fine dining in a relaxed, friendly atmosphere.

The award winning Chef Susanna Foo is widely recognized as one of America’s top Chinese chefs specializing in Pan Asian cuisine that blends traditional Chinese foods with classical French techniques. Add gluten-free ingredients and you have the perfect dinner for this special evening! 

Visit the Events section of the NFCA website to view the appetizing Celiac Awareness Dinner offerings. There will be added menu items that will have special appeal to tweens and teens. The three-course fixed price dinner menu is $40 plus beverages, tax and tips. Note: A portion of the proceeds will be donated to the NFCA to support raising awareness of celiac disease.

Please make your reservation directly with the restaurant for any time between 5:30 PM and 8:00 PM.

Susanna Foo
555 East Lancaster Avenue
Radnor, PA 19087
RESERVATIONS:  610-688-8808      end_of_the_skype_highlighting  610-688-8808      end_of_the_skype_highlighting

Guests will have the opportunity to win a raffle prize of a dinner for two at Susanna Foo. And, everyone will take home a gift bag of treats to remind them of their memorable experience.

If you have questions about the menu or reservations, ask for Shona at Susanna Foo. If you have other questions, please call the NFCA’s Nancy Ginter at  215-325-1306      end_of_the_skype_highlighting  215-325-1306      end_of_the_skype_highlighting , ext. 101.

See you at Susanna Foo!

PLAY BALL!

All of Philadelphia is excited about the home team as the Phillies kicked off the 2010 season in grand style.  Now, we all have a chance to watch the Phightin’ Phils in action while we raise awareness of celiac disease. The NFCA invites all celiac and gluten intolerant sports fans to join us for Celiac Awareness Night at Citizens Bank Park. Gluten-free stadium treats will be available at specified concession stands and at a special gluten-free concession stand at Citizens Bank Park for this special evening.

PHILADELPHIA PHILLIES
Wednesday, July 7, 2010

The National League Champion Philadelphia Phillies will host their third Celiac Awareness Night on Wednesday, July 7th at Citizens Bank Park when the Phillies meet the Atlanta Braves.

Game time is 7:05 PM.

To order tickets, go to www.Phillies.com/CELIAC

Seats are available in Sections 206-207 at $33 each and in Sections 307-310 at $26 per ticket plus a $6.00 per order handling fee. To get the special Celiac Awareness Night discount, be certain to enter the code CELIAC. This code also will ensure that proceeds from ticket sales go to support raising celiac awareness.

For group seating or questions about the game, call Stephanie Nieland at  215-463-9878      end_of_the_skype_highlighting  or email her at snieland@phillies.com.  For other questions, please call NFCA’s Nancy Ginter at  215-325-1306      end_of_the_skype_highlighting , ext. 101.

Citizens Bank Park will have a special gluten-free concession stand at the “Break“ area on the 200 level, in addition to the gluten-free items available at concession stands located throughout the stadium: South Philly Market behind sections 128, behind section 204, behind section 323, in the Brewerytown stand in Ashburn Alley and Redbridge beer behind section 139. 

NFCA has a rich tradition of partnering with local celiac support groups to host awareness nights filled with food, fun, and all the excitement surrounding professional sporting events. We hope you will purchase your tickets today and join us for what is sure to be a fabulous evening of Philadelphia sports—all for a great cause!

NFCA’s participation in these events is underwritten by Conte’s Pasta.

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Celiac Awareness All-Stars

Stories of Outstanding NFCA Volunteers!

Michael Savett Creates Online Resource for Delaware Valley Area Celiacs

Michael Savett struggled through years of frustration in the gluten-free industry.  Savett’s son was diagnosed with celiac in 2003, and at that time, delicious gluten-free food was hard to come by.  Knowing where you could get your toddler a cupcake or some decent pizza used to be a well-kept secret.

Last year, Michael decided that enough was enough it was time to start his own blog, Gluten-Free Philly, to provide relevant information to those in his community.

“I wanted to create a resource for people living in and visiting the Delaware Valley,” he explains, “and share my knowledge about gluten-free friendly restaurants and products in the area.”

Each week, Gluten-Free Philly features a different celiac-friendly locale or product.  Last week, Tesori’s Gluten-Free Treats was mentioned.  Michael also posts news for the celiac community, as well as ways to save on gluten-free products.  Readers often submit their gluten-free findings, which Savett graciously adds to his site.  Along with the news and product updates, Michael shares an extensive list of restaurants and bakeries that welcome gluten-free diners. This list, sorted by cuisine, includes maps and often menus. According to Savett, this is one of the more popular pages of his blog.

Thanks to Michael, Gluten-Free Philly is a hit!  Fortunately for Savett’s son and the rest of the celiacs in the Delaware Valley, safe, delicious gluten-free foods and menus are no longer a mystery!

You can check out Michael’s blog by visiting, http://glutenfreephilly.blogspot.com/

Shannon Alig Combines Personal Passions and Professional Talents to Raise Funds for NFCA.

Shannon Alig, a wife, celiac and mother-of-two from Illinois recently took on the challenge of becoming a Celiac Awareness All Star. A talented painter to boot, Alig held an art show earlier this May and donated 30% of her proceeds to the NFCA! 

This was her first solo show and she used it to express her thoughts and emotions during the time of her diagnosis.  Shannon’s show was catered with all gluten-free food too!  Not only did Alig get to talk with viewers about her art one-on-one, but she was able to educate her community in central Illinois about celiac disease as well. 

As an Interior Design student, Shannon studied at the University of Central Arkansas and spent a year in the UK and in France.  Shannon is also a professional lighting designer, which is visible in her paintings with her emphasis on lighting, textures, and colors.

Big thanks to Shannon for her beautiful and kind work! To see additional photos from Shannon’s show, click here:
http://scalig.blogspot.com/2010/05/update-from-april-show.html.

To learn more about Shannon or to check out her work, visit her website: www.scalig.com

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Athletes for Awareness May Challenge and Cookbook Giveaway Winners Announced!

To celebrate Celiac Disease Awareness Month, NFCA and Athlete for Awareness spokesperson Peter Bronski challenged the gluten-free community to a fun and informative Athletes for Awareness quiz and cookbook giveaway!

NFCA selected 3 winners to receive their very own copy of Artisanal Gluten-Free Cooking, authored by Peter Bronski and his wife Kelli!

Were YOU up to the challenge? Check out the Athletes for Awareness quiz below, along with the answers that could be found throughout the Athlete for Awareness blog!

2010 Athletes for Awareness May Challenge and Cookbook Giveaway:

Peter Bronski raced in the 2009 U.S. National Championship of what sport?
Answer: Xterra off-road triathlon.

Golfer Sarah Jane Smith, of the LPGA and ALPG, has how many Top 10 finishes in the Australian Ladies Professional Golf league? 
Answer: 4.

Pennsylvania native A.J. Clemens attends the Waterville Valley Academy in New Hampshire for part of each year to train in what sport? 
Answer(s): skiing, alpine ski-ing, downhill skiing, giant slalom.

Texan Michael Danke competes at what triathlon distance?
Answer: Ironman.

Kendra Nielsam was officially diagnosed with Celiac Disease how many days before the start of her race, Ironman Florida 2009? 
Answer: 31.

And Congratulations to our Athletes for Awareness Challenge winners, who will receive a copy of Artisanal Gluten-Free Cooking!

Rachel Constant
Lori-Ann Kuhn
Mary Abrahamson

About Artisanal Gluten-Free Cooking, by Kelli and Peter Bronski:

Featuring more than 250 great tasting, from-scratch recipes from around the world, perfect for every meal and for anyone on a gluten-free diet...and even those who aren't! (The Experiment, 2009)

Here at last is the delectable and doable gluten-free cooking so many people with celiac disease, gluten intolerance or wheat allergy have been looking for.  Artisanal Gluten-Free Cooking by Kelli Bronski and her husband, NFCA Athlete for Awareness Peter Bronski is based on their cooking philosophy that follows four simple rules: the food should be fresh, the recipes should be simple, the meals should be made from scratch, and the food should be delicious. The recipes span the globe, from Italian to Indian, Belgian to Mexican, and Asian to American.

Belgian Waffles, Cinnamon Rolls, Chicken Pad Thai, Curry-glazed Pork Tenderloin, Lasagna, thin crust and deep dish pizzas, Blueberry Pie, and Zucchini Cake will delight anyone following a gluten-free diet...and even those who aren't! More than 70 recipes, including breads, pastas, pizzas, and more than 20 desserts, from Chocolate Chip Cookies to Carrot Cake, showcase their intensively developed gluten-free flour blend. This is food so flavorful and enjoyable to eat that no one will know it's gluten-free. (Unless, of course, you tell them!)

To read what others are saying about the cookbook, check out these reviews: http://artisanglutenfree.com/thebook_praiseandreviews.html

Want to participate in our next Athletes for Awareness Challenge?

Stay tuned for future contest updates, and follow all the Athletes for Awareness on the official NFCA Athletes for Awareness Blog sponsored by Blue Diamond.

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Gluten Free & Loving It: Entertaining By the Grill!

By, Amy Rota-Poulin
www.glutenfreewithamy.com

Summer is on its way! It is in the smell of the fresh cut grass, the fragrant flowers in bloom, and, ah yes, that irresistible, unmistakable aroma of a fired up grill. It is a time when people are busy planting their gardens, and planning their menus. Summer is where good friends and loving families get together to enjoy each other’s company over a soul filling, light, yet hearty delicious gluten-free BBQ. Yes, you read it correctly, “delicious, gluten free, BBQ.”

Entertaining gluten-free is just as fun and easy as any other summer BBQ. It is all about friends and family coming together over a hot meal cooked over an open flame served with plenty of cold salads, grilled corn on the cob, fresh ice cold watermelon, and, of course, a refreshing beverage to bring it all together. This tradition has been evolving over the generations and now it is time to bring the gluten- free BBQ into its rightful place.

Here are a few quick tips for an easy and fun summer BBQ, gluten-free, of course!

Make the menu fun and simple. Check to make sure your grill is clean and that you have enough propane or charcoal for your grill to make it through the party. (Take it from someone who has had to run out in the middle of the party. That’s when I had my husband put out more snacks, and ask, “Who wants a refill?”). Do the shopping a day in advance, if possible. Remember to read all of your ingredient labels to make sure they are gluten-free. When in doubt, go on the company’s website or call their consumer hotline.  A great gluten-free BBQ Sauce is made by Dinosaur BBQ, Roasted Garlic & Honey. Buy items that are on sale. For instance, if strawberries are on sale, you can make a fruit salad, chocolate dipped strawberries, or even gluten-free strawberry shortcake. If making kabobs, prepare them before your guests arrive, so all you have to do is throw them on the grill whenever the moment is right. Have a fun theme to your BBQ. The last one I threw was a Mediterranean BBQ. I find it’s always fun to include a themed beverage like cucumber limeade served in cups made out of cucumbers…easy, affordable, and impressive.

If anyone asks if they can bring anything, ask them to bring dishes or beverages that you know are gluten-free such as wine, gluten-free rolls, a fruit salad, an undressed crouton-free tossed salad, or as unusual as it may sound, an ingredient you might need such as a bag of lemons. If a guest insists on brining their famous dish, simply yet politely say, “Oh, Ann, that is so incredibly sweet, but I would just love it if you could bring ________ .”  This way, feelings are kept intact and so is your digestive tract.

Summer is in the bright blue skies with white puffy clouds gently floating overhead, the happy sounds of friends and family echoing through your neighborhood. It is in the irresistible unmistakable smell of a fired up BBQ, and it is all just waiting for you! People that we share our lives with can turn any meal into a memorable feast! Think Healthy. Think Fresh. Think Simple. Enjoy a summer of delicious meals that all just so happen to be pleasantly gluten free.

Happy Gluten-Free Grilling & Warmest Regards!

Mediterranean Grilled Chicken Kabobs
from Cooking Gluten Free With Amy

Marinade & Savory Sauce:

1 cup plain low fat yogurt
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon gluten-free brown mustard (I like Central Market)
2 large sprigs of fresh rosemary roughly chopped
4 cloves of fresh garlic, finely chopped
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice, about the juice of one large lemon
1/4 teaspoon fresh ground sea salt
1/4 teaspoon fresh ground pepper

Kabob Fixings:

2 chicken breasts, cut into 1 inch chunks
18 cherry tomatoes
1 red onion, cut into 1 inch slices
Bamboo kabob sticks, soaked in watermaking the final

For the marinade and savory sauce, simply mix together the yogurt, olive oil, mustard, fresh rosemary, garlic, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Place half of the mixture in a gallon size bag, and reserve the other half in your refrigerator to enjoy later.

Cut the chicken breasts into one inch chunks and place in the plastic bag that has the marinade in it.  Place the bag in the fridge. *Always thoroughly wash your hands with warm water and soap after handling raw chicken.* Let the chicken marinate for at least thirty minutes. However you can leave it in your fridge overnight. Meanwhile, place your bamboo skewers in water and set aside. This process helps the skewers not to burn. Get your grill started on medium/low heat.

To assemble your skewers, place a slice of red onion followed by a chunk of marinated chicken, another slice of red onion, a cherry tomato, a slice of red onion, a chunk of marinated chicken…and so on until each skewer has three pieces of chicken and two tomatoes on it. Of course, you may make them any way you like. This is way is just what I have found to be the most flavorful.

Grill the kabobs on medium low heat until the chicken is fully cooked, approximately 4-5 minutes each side. Make sure to turn your kabobs!  Serve your kabobs piping hot with a dollop of sauce. With this easy and summery dish the Mediterranean comes right to your backyard. Great recipe for entertaining!

Cucumber Cups
from Cooking Gluten Free With Amy

Here is a fun and simple way to turn any BBQ into a party! First, squeeze a half of lemon or lime and place the juice on a plate. Cut a cucumber in half. Dip the cut side of the cucumber in the lemon juice. This process keeps the cucumber’s beautiful green color fresh and bold. Next, make a thin slice off the end of each cucumber half to create the bottom of your glass. Gently spoon out the center of the cucumber leaving at least a ¼” wall of cucumber intact on the sides. Stop scooping 1” from the sliced end of the cucumber. Stand your cucumber cup on the sliced end. For added beauty, run a veggie peeler several times up and down the skin making stripes. Repeat as necessary. Fill with your favorite ice cold beverage and let the party begin!

Cucumber Limeade
1 cup of freshly squeezed lime juice (8 – 10 limes)
¼ cup of cucumber flesh
8 fresh mint leaves, chopped
4 cups of water
¼ cup – ½ cup agave nectar or honey
1 cup of ice

Toss all ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth. You may add more or less honey depending on how sweet you prefer your limeade Pour into a pitcher with more ice and serve. Garnish with a slice of lime and a sprig of mint. This is a great chance to show off your cucumber cups.

Quick Tip: To turn this refreshing beverage into a crisp cocktail is easy. Just add rum. 

About Amy Rota-Poulin

After her husband’s celiac disease diagnosis, Amy Rota-Poulin set out to make everyday gluten and wheat free cooking easy, delicious, and taste exactly the same or better than my "good old standbys." As the author of Cooking Gluten Free with Amy, her mission is to teach others, “How to turn Culinary Challenges into Delicious Opportunities!”

You can learn more about Amy on her website, www.glutenfreewithamy.com
 

HOT PRODUCTS

Gillian's Foods Gluten-Free Hamburger & Sandwich Buns
With the passing of Memorial Day weekend, it feels like summer is finally here.  With summer comes all types of picnic and cookout fun that we dream about during the cold winter months.  I have my first barbeque planned just a few weeks from now.  My menu includes chilled herb potato salad, a medley of fresh fruits, and of course, hamburgers and hot dogs. I’ve done my fair share of eating my hot dogs right off of my plate and wrapping my burger patties in a wedge of lettuce.  Sometimes, I honestly don’t mind but, more often than not, I find myself craving a bun. That’s why the star of my barbeque this year will be Gillian’s Foods Gluten-Free Hamburger and Sandwich Buns.  A few issues ago, I praised their frozen pizza dough and I found myself searching out other products from this company. I was not surprised that their hamburger buns are just as pleasing as their pizza dough. They have a light, airy consistency and are not dense like some other gluten-free rolls on the market. I keep mine individually frozen and use them as I need them.  I just pop them in the microwave until they are defrosted and then toast them in the toaster oven.  They are wonderful for hamburgers, but also perfect for sandwiches, as plain toast and as a makeshift hotdog roll. I just love them and will keep them on hand for all of my future bun needs. The Gillian’s Food website has a store locator feature that can help you find this product near you.  You can also order these buns online.
www.gilliansfoods.com
http://www.glutenfreemall.com/catalog/gillians-foods-glutenfree-plain-french-rollshamburger-sandwich-buns-p-528.html

Plocky’s Hummus Chips
As you probably know by now, I’m always on the lookout for healthy gluten-free snacks.  I recently came across a type of chip that I’ve never seen before.  It’s called a hummus chip and it’s actually made out of real hummus. I love hummus because it’s nutritional and versatile.  I eat it with corn tortilla chips, spread it on gluten-free wraps for lunch and use it as a dip for vegetables, but to find it transformed into the form of a chip was truly unique. The company that makes these interesting hummus chips is called Plocky’s and, to my delight, they are completely gluten-free, contain no trans fat and are certified Kosher. They are available in Original with Olive Oil, Roasted Garlic and Roasted Red Pepper and are crunchy and flavorful.  I discovered these chips in a local specialty market, but their website has a page dedicated to listing stores where you can find their products near you.
http://www.plockys.com/index.php

1-2-3 Gluten-Free Buckwheat Pancakes
On Memorial Day weekend, I took a trip to my hometown to visit my parents. As always, when I come for a visit, they had stocked the pantry full of gluten-free products. On Saturday morning, my dad proudly pulled out a box of gluten-free pancake mix.  Naturally, I was ecstatic, but even more so because it was a brand I had not tried before. In his hand, he held a baby-pink box of 1-2-3 Gluten-Free Buckwheat Pancake Mix. The box said that the bag of mix would make 20 large pancakes, but I’ve read that on other boxes of pancake mix in the past and the end product is often not what I would consider “large.” Running with our disbelief, we decided to make the entire package. They are incredibly easy to make as the mix only calls for eggs, milk and oil. I will mention that we had to use a bit more milk than the recipe called for because the batter was a bit thick. Just use your judgment; it’s pretty easy to tell when you have a good batter consistency. Let me tell you, we were wrong about the pancake size. The mix did in fact make 20 diner-sized, large, fluffy, incredible pancakes. I love the texture of buckwheat pancakes. They are heartier with a bit of an earthier flavor and hold up to syrup wonderfully. However, make sure you have lots of syrup on hand because they really absorb it right up! 1-2-3 Gluten-Free manufactures their products in a dedicated gluten-free (and peanut-free, nut-free and allergen-free) kosher facility utilizing only gluten-free ingredients. Their website has a store locator feature that can help you find this product near you.  You can also order online directly from their website or from the Gluten-Free Mall.
http://www.123glutenfree.com/

Aleia’s Gluten-Free Plain Stuffing
Every once in a while, those of us on a gluten-free diet need to get creative. Finding seamless substitutes for products you love is not always easy and can often take a bit of imagination. I have an example to share with you, as well as a wonderful new product.  Last week, I was craving a salad full of vegetables, olives and mostly, croutons. I scoured the shelves of Hannaford searching for gluten-free croutons with no luck. I was thinking I could just buy a loaf of gluten-free bread and roast some up myself, when I came across Aleia’s Gluten-Free Plain Stuffing. In a somewhat plain looking brown bag were what I’ll describe as miniature croutons. Without any flavor, these little cubes of hardened bread are intended to be incorporated into traditional stuffing recipes for chicken, turkey and the like. However, to me, they were just what I needed for my salad. When I got home I put a handful in a zip-lock bag with a drizzle of olive oil, a dash of garlic powder, and a handful of other seasonings.  I gave them a good shake and lo and behold, had just what I was looking for. They stayed crunchy despite my generous helping of salad dressing and, with the few seasonings I had added, took on a flavor of their own. I’m also going to keep them in mind when November rolls around and it’s once again time for Thanksgiving dinner. The Aleia’s website has a feature that can help you find this product near you.
http://aleias.com/

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Celiac in the News

Possible Link Between C-sections and Celiac Disease
Researchers in Germany believe they may have found a link between celiac disease and Cesarean sections. Studying children and teenagers with varying types of digestive health issues, it was found that 28 percent of subjects with celiac disease we born via Cesarean section compared with no more that 19 percent in all other groups examined. One theory behind this finding is that the mothers of these children may have had undiagnosed celiac disease, which can increase the risk of Cesarean section.  As the connection between celiac disease and infertility is widely known, I think this is a very interesting finding. I will certainly be interested to learn more about this when further information becomes available.
http://abclocal.go.com/wls/story?section=news/health&id=7447994

Starbucks’ New Frappuccino Light Syrups Contain Gluten
Starbucks recently launched  “However You Want It” frappuccino drinks in their stores nationwide.  One option you now have is to make your frappuccino “light.” Unfortunately, the light syrup they will use to make your drink now contains gluten. According to this article on Glutenfreeville.com, it was difficult to obtain confirmation of this with Starbucks directly, but that the labels on the bottles of light syrup in the Starbucks stores themselves read “contains gluten” in bold letters under the ingredients list. Be sure to avoid this specific drink choice during you next stop at Starbucks.
www.glutenfreeville.com/research/starbucks-new-frappuccino-light-syrups-contain-gluten

Gut Bacteria May Offer New Hope for People with Celiac Disease
The results of a recent study published in the Journal of Leukocyte Biology suggests that probiotics may help alleviate the severity of celiac disease. According to this research, intestinal bacteria may have an effect on inflammation. This means that probiotics could offer significant benefits for those with celiac disease as well as several other inflammatory diseases. To learn more, be sure to follow the link to the full research article at the bottom of the story on the Food Consumer webpage.
http://www.foodconsumer.org/newsite/Non-food/Disease/celiac_disease_gut_bacteria_2705100608.html

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