Wouldn’t it be great if a wheat-killing fungus turned the whole world gluten-free?

Wheat_harvestActually it wouldn’t be great at all. However, did you know that nine out of ten wheat crops around the globe are susceptible to a killer fungus that attacks wheat? It’s called the Puccinia rust fungus.

The fungus causes wheat, barley and rye stems, leaves and grains, causing them to rot and die just a few weeks after infection. Infections can lead up to 20% yield loss. The fungus regularly affects North America, Mexico and South America, and is a widespread seasonal disease in India.

Previous solutions to the problem relied on simple crossbreeding. Beginning in the 1940s, breeders began combining rust-sensitive commercial wheat with hardier rust-resistant strains. However, those solutions were only temporary as the rust always managed to find a way
around rust-resistant genes.

Scientists now use what they think is more effective method of thwarting rust. It’s wheat breeding, called pyramiding, in which multiple rust resistant genes are loaded onto a single wheat strain.

Not all of the wheat strains susceptible to rust will be affected in any given year. The possibility that large percentages of the world’s wheat crops could be destroyed by rust are very real, hence the intensity of the efforts to develop rust-resistant strains. However, if these efforts fail, or lose traction, look for non-wheat crops to fill the gap. That will mean large numbers of people going gluten-free for reasons having nothing to do with celiac disease or dietary fads.

Top 10 Colleges for the Gluten-Free Part 1| Triumph Dining

uconnLiving a gluten-free life is not an easy task. Celiac disease can be diagnosed at a younger age than ever before and while that may mean less symptoms over a lifetime, it also means more planning.

When children live in a mother and/or father’s household, they can be looked after and proper food can be bought for them. But when they go off to college, parents have to trust that their children are making smart food choices. Living on campus can mean limited options and extra chances of being “glutened” by a dining hall staff who may or may not be trained in how to handle gluten allergies. Continue reading “Top 10 Colleges for the Gluten-Free Part 1| Triumph Dining”

Jennifer’s Way | Triumph Dining

Screen Shot 2014-07-15 at 4.24.51 PM.jpegToo many times when gluten-free is mentioned on television it’s made fun of and called a fad. Last month, in a slightly more serious interview than he is known for, Jon Stewart of The Daily Show interviewed actress and gluten-free baker Jennifer Espositio about her new book and bakery “Jennifer’s Way”. In addition to hosting the show, Jon contributed to the conversation as a father of a child with celiac disease.

In the segment, Jennifer speaks about how hard it was to get a proper diagnosis, or even to get people to believe she had a disease. Both also discussed the symptoms, both physical and emotional, associated with celiac disease and how it is very different than gluten sensitivity or fad dieting. Continue reading “Jennifer’s Way | Triumph Dining”

Is Your Child Likely to Develop Celiac Disease? | Triumph Dining

mother daughter photoResearch relating to what may cause children to develop celiac disease are of more interest to me these days. I have a 7-month-old daughter and I’m celiac myself. Will my daughter inherit my disease and which factors make it more likely?

A new study, funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), finds that more than one quarter of children with two copies of a high-risk gene variant develop celiac disease autoimmunity (CDA) by the age of 5. CDA is a precursor to celiac disease. Nearly 90 percent of people celiac disease will have at least one copy of this high-risk gene.

The study looked at 6,403 newborns with either of two high-risk gene groups, HLA-DR3-DQ2 or HLA-DR4-DQ8. These are vital for immune system function and processing gluten. Over five years, 291 of the children wound up with celiac disease, and 786 developed CDA. About 90 percent of celiac disease patients have the HLA-DR3-DQ2 variant.

The researchers found that children with two copies of HLA-DR3-DQ2 had the greatest chance of developing the disease. Of them, 26 percent developed CDA and 12 percent developed celiac disease by age 5. In those with one copy of HLA-DR3-DQ2, the risks of CDA and celiac disease by age 5 were 11 percent and 3 percent, respectively. Continue reading “Is Your Child Likely to Develop Celiac Disease? | Triumph Dining”

Celiac Family Opens Gluten Free Bakery | Triumph Dining

We’re always happy to hear about the opening of a new gluten-free bakery, but we’re even more excited to share when there’s a personal story behind it.

Lisa and Tim Jermyn are a couple living in Lockport, NY. Seven years ago they found out that all three of their children had celiac disease. When they weren’t impressed with the taste or cost of gluten-free options in their area, they began experimenting with gluten-free baking themselves. When Lisa discovered she was pretty good at this gluten-free baking malarkey, she decided to quit her job as a teacher and open a 100% gluten-free bakery!

A Better Way opened in December, 2012. Jermyn says that the store’s sweet products are priced similarly to those in a traditional bakery whilst the breads and pizza crusts are a little more expensive.

As well as at the store, A Better Way products are also available in Niagara County Produce’s Lockport location; at the Bakehouse Market in Father Sam’s in Cheektowaga; and at Wilson’s Pizza Shop in Newfane, which uses their gluten-free crust. They also plan to open a café at some point.

“When I first started, I didn’t think we’d have so many retail customers,” she said. She thought she’d be selling wholesale, but she laughed, “I couldn’t keep the people out.”

A Better Way location and hours:

6429 Dysinger Rd, Lockport, NY 14094

Tuesday-Friday 10am-6pm

Saturday 10am-3pm