Gluten-Free Givers

celiac5krunThough I imagine most readers of this blog are adults who are diagnosed with Celiac disease or a gluten intolerance, many of whom probably weren’t diagnosed until after childhood (as I was), there are many parents who also look to this blog for advice for running a gluten-free house for their celiac son or daughter. Any medical diagnosis is certainly life altering, but trying to explain to a young child why they can’t eat certain foods that their friends, siblings, and parents eat on a regular basis can be a heart breaking challenge.

A couple of parents from Westfield, New Jersey took that challenge and have changed it into an opportunity to teach their child what it means to be special, not different.  The Kesslers have 4-year old twins, a daughter, Sydney, with celiac disease, and son, Alex, without. In just one year after being diagnosed with celiac disease, Sydney has been feeling much better, thriving with the gluten-free lifestyle. Continue reading “Gluten-Free Givers”

Disney Pulls Gluten-Free Bullying Episode

jessie-tv-seriesThe Disney Channel have pulled an episode of the show “Jessie” off the air after receiving lots of feedback from an unhappy gluten-free community.

The episode, called “Quitting Cold Koala,” featured a boy named Stuart who must follow a gluten-free diet. Why he is on the diet is not mentioned. A variety of jokes are made at this boy about his need for gluten-free food, including the main character of the show pointing out that Stuart has a list of dietary requirements which is five-pages long.

At one point in the episode, another child is shown throwing pancakes at Stuart whilst he screams “gluten!” and wipes them away from his face. Continue reading “Disney Pulls Gluten-Free Bullying Episode”

Fitting in Folate: Did the FDA Forget Fortifying Gluten-Free Goods?

fdachinesefood1In 1996 the FDA mandated that all flour and uncooked cereal-grain products in the U.S. be fortified with folic acid, the synthetic form of the water-soluble B complex vitamin, by January of 1998. The policy was put in place after researchers found how important folic acid was in the development of red blood cells, DNA synthesis, cardiovascular health, and for preventing neural tube defects during fetal development. Unfortunately, B complex vitamins have varying absorption rates, especially as the bioavailability of the vitamin varies from about 50% from diet, to about 100% absorption from supplementation. The FDA determined that preventing the micronutrient deficiency was a benefit that outweighed any risk of toxicity, especially with a water-soluble vitamin. 15 years after this law was passed, it is rare to see the problems associated with folate deficiencies, as most commercial products have folic acid added to them. Continue reading “Fitting in Folate: Did the FDA Forget Fortifying Gluten-Free Goods?”

Changing the Rules of “Gluten-Free”

Gluten-Free-LogoAlthough Celiacs are safe in the United States for now, Australians may need to adjust their eating habits AGAIN. According to the Sydney Morning Herald, Australian food manufacturers are lobbying to increase the permissible amount of gluten in gluten-free processed products.

As most gluten-free eaters are aware, manufacturers in the US are allowed to label products gluten-free as long as they contain less than 10-ppm of gluten protein. This negligible amount cannot be detected by gluten-free eaters, and is therefore safe to consume (for the most part).

Australian companies are currently not allowed to label products as gluten-free if they contain ANY gluten at all. The food companies are hoping to increase the threshold for gluten-free products that contain up to 20 milligrams of gluten per kilogram, which is the current European standard for “gluten-free” goods. Continue reading “Changing the Rules of “Gluten-Free””

Sunshine Burger | Triumph Dining Product Review

Sunshine-Burger-SWSunshine Burger make tasty veggie burgers from sunflower seeds, Lundberg Family Farms brown rice, beans, veggies and spices. Made from these pure and simple ingredients, Sunshine Burgers are gluten-free, soy-free and vegan.

Veggie Burgers come in a variety of flavors include Hemp & Sage, Falafel, Black Bean South West, Original Quarter Pounder, Garden Herb and Barbecue. The burgers are oven baked and browned so all they require is a little reheating before being served.

All Sunshine Burger products are made on dedicated gluten-free lines. Whilst the plant is currently not 100% gluten-free, gluten testing is done to ensure gluten levels of less than 5ppm. Company owners are looking into becoming Gluten-Free Certified in the near future. Continue reading “Sunshine Burger | Triumph Dining Product Review”