Monthly Archives: February 2012

McDonald’s Spain Gluten-Free Burger Taste Test

Note: Due to an overwhelming response to our blog post on McDonald’s and its gluten-free buns debut in Spain, we asked our Madrid correspondent Maricarmen Escamilla to do a taste test for us. Spanish speakers can find their celiac blog here.

McDonald’s in Spain has some history offering gluten-free products. In January 2011 it announced there would be gluten-free “Deluxe Fries”. Then in May 2011 it announced that gluten-free buns would be available with its hamburgers in all their restaurants. This announcement caused a huge BRAVO! amongst gluten-free Spanish diners.

Triumph Dining Foreign Correspondent Mari at McDonald's in Madrid

We were honored that Triumph Dining reached out to us and thrilled that they offered us the opportunity to do this taste test for their loyal readers.
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Michelle Wie Adopts Gluten-Free Diet for Golf

When Novak Djokovic attributed much of his crazy-awesome tennis success to his new, gluten-free diet, he may have started quite the trend.

Not only did Djokovic bring increased attention to the benefits of the gluten-free diet, but he also focused that attention on athletic performance. Now, golf star Michelle Wie has announced her own gluten-free diet. Will it bring her the same runaway success?
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Product Review: Gluten-free Sandwich Petals

Things I like include: free food, good food, food that teaches me something.

Unsurprisingly, I am writing today to tell you that Sandwich Petals are amongst the foods I like.

Sandwich Petals are, at the base of it, a gluten-free sandwich wrap made by Raquelita’s Tortillas, a Denver-based outfit. However, they’re also admirably easy to store and admirably high in good ingredients / low in bad ones: each 100-calorie petal has 3 grams of fiber, 2 grams of protein, 2-3 grams of sugar, 1 gram of fat and no cholesterol.

The petals come in three flavors: Spinach Garlic Pesto, Chimayo Red Chile and Agave Grain. The company sent me plenty of each flavor to try out.
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Genius Bread Expands to Spanish Carrefour

Spain has been on our gluten-free minds a lot lately, most recently because of the gluten-free buns available at McDonald’s and before that simply as a great gluten-free destination.

Now, according to International Supermarket News, Spain is about to get easy access to Genius gluten-free bread. Wahoo!

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Are Gluten-Free People at Higher Risk of Arsenic Issues?

To me, arsenic has always been something little old Victorian ladies used to get rid of pesky tenants in their otherwise-reputable boarding houses.

Of course, it’s more than just this: arsenic is a naturally-occurring substance and a citizen of the periodic table. It’s had various other uses throughout the centuries, as a wood-preservative, a common ingredient in copper or lead alloys, insecticide, military-grade chemical weapon, etc.
Arsenic is a known carcinogen in the same class as asbestos and formaldehyde, and in high enough levels it’s quite toxic.  Why care? Well, if your gluten-free diet includes a lot of rice-based items, you might be inadvertently overexposing yourself to this cancer-causing element.

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Shout-Out Your Favorite Local Gluten-Free Bakery!

Yum! If you know where to find them...

The other day I was standing in a recessed doorway, chowing down on a gluten-free, vegan pizza pocket from Gluuteny, a Pittsburgh-based gluten-free bakery. It was delicious.

Not too long before, I was melting butter to pan-fry some pumpkin bread from Delectable Edibles, based in the Orlando area. It, too, was delicious — reminded me of childhood mornings, when my mom used to fry up blueberry muffins.

And then my brother brought home some goodies from the Curtis Street Bakers, which can only be gotten if you’re in the Boston area. Guess what? Delicious. Blondies. YUM.

All of which is to say: there are a LOT of smaller bakeries out there, making a LOT of tasty food. How is a girl to find them all?
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Ukraine Drafts Gluten-Free Regulations

How much of this can we eat?

A little tidbit found its way to my inbox the other day. It’s fairly poorly documented, so it could be a fluke: but in case it isn’t, I wanted to share.

According to the website of the Packaging Business Review, legislators in Ukraine have introduced a draft that proposes labeling of gluten-free food. The revision was suggested by Ukrainian Parliament member Viacheslav Perederiy (who is of the BYT-Batkivschyna faction). According to the article, “food products free from gluten can be marked as ‘gluten-free’ on labels, if it does not exceed 20mg per 100gm of the product weight.”

So, first of all: awareness! Labeling! Yay!

Second of all: what does 20mg per 100gm mean? Is this actually a good bill?

Turns out, 20 milligrams per 100 grams is actually 200 ppm. So, if and when the bill passes — buyer beware of Ukranian gluten-free items.
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ImmusanT begins limited production of celiac vaccine in Massachusetts

Almost a year ago, we wrote about a promising new vaccine against celiac disease Nexvax2®, in development in Massachusetts. Now, the company behind the vaccine, ImmusanT, has even more exciting news:

They are manufacturing 9,000 doses of vaccine.

According to this article on, the vaccine will be produced by a local firm, Microtest.

I suspect the vaccine-manufacturing facility does not look like this.

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Wall Street Journal Shines Spotlight on Gluten (Again)

Don't worry, the real flow chart isn't this complicated.

There are lots of reasons to like the Wall Street Journal, but one of the biggest has to be columnist Melinda Beck.

In September of 2010, Beck published an article called, “Giving up Gluten to Lose Weight? Not so Fast” (and we wrote about it, of course).

Now, she’s followed up with, “New Guide to Who Really Shouldn’t Eat Gluten,” an overview of  a newly-proposed classification system for all people who are better-off without gluten.

Thanks, Melinda Beck! It’s nice to see the gluten-free world get coverage in such a mainstream publication, year in and year out.

So what’s this article about?
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Yup, It’s that Time Of Year (Again): Gluten-Free Valentine’s Day

Perhaps I should not relate to this image as much as I do...but hey: a fuzzy creature is clearly gluten-free.

If you’ve been reading this blog for at least the past year, you a) deserve a gold star and b) know that I am not a big fan of the ol’ Valentine’s Day.

In fact, the thing I like best about the day is that it’s helpful for remembering some fairly unimportant math factoids: The square root of two is 1.4, so if you squint you’ll see 2/14 there. Fun extra-math fact: the square root of 3 is 1.7 — hello, St. Pat’s Day!

Um, did I mention that I used to tutor SATs? Yup. Cool-kid blogger, right here.

If you’re more Valentine’s-inclined than I am, you might be in the throes of menu-planning or candy-shopping right now. For you, then, I offer the following resources, helpfully poached from more loving bloggers than I.
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