Archive for the ‘In the News’ Category

Celiac Disease, Gluten-Free and Food Allergies… In the News!

Saturday, August 28th, 2010

Wow! There’s been a lot of news in the limelight this week when it comes to gluten-free living, celiac disease and food allergies in general.

The article that  “wowed” me the most (along with the video above that goes with it) was featured in the Wall Street Journal on August 24, 2010. After reading this article, I realized that the media is finally “getting” why the gluten-free diet is so important for some, but not such a great ideas for others. This Wall Street Journal article, another article that was written a few years back and published by the BBC, and the rash of articles on celiac disease that came out after the WSJ article this past week (like these excellent ones from the Toronto Star or St. Petersburg Times) all examine and detail the reasons why the gluten-free diet is a must for some, but why the gluten-free diet, or any diet that cuts out key foods, may not be the wisest choice for many. It seems crazy to me, but some folks think that living with food restrictions is the way to go because actresses such as Gwyneth Paltrow, Rachel Weisz and Zooey Deschanel, or celebrities like Madonna and Victoria Beckham are restricting gluten and other foods from their diets.

My thoughts? I think it’s great that these celebrities are bringing recognition and acknowledgment to celiac disease, food allergies and intolerances; but as a consequence there are people that are exposing themselves to a diet that is not nutritionally sound, or is preventing them from getting the correct diagnosis to a legitimate food allergy, intolerance or celiac disease diagnosis. I encourage everyone to eat healthy, visit your health care provider before engaging in any type of restricted diet, and most important do what is right for you, not some celebrity.

Next on the hot newsworthy list this week is an article found in the North Shore News, a division of The article “Don’t Go Nuts Over Food Allergies” is a great article that reviews some basic tips about being “peanut-aware”. Its publication is timely too: Just in time for back-to-school. It’s a perfect article to print and share with teachers, neighbors or bus drivers. This is a must read that can be modified to fit any food allergen. While your at it, also check out an article found in, listing a short summary on what foods to avoid for certain food allergies.

The last tidbit of news was found in Business Week. The article, “Signs You Might Have Celiac Disease” is a good conversation piece and a starting point for those that are thinking of getting tested for the disease. Hooray to Business Week for bringing recognition to celiac disease.

That’s it! Please share and post links to any articles that you have found on gluten-free living, food allergies or celiac disease. After all… it’s all about the sharing!

Be Free!

Got Celiac Disease? Hopefully Chelsea Clinton’s Gluten-Free Cake Has Many Saying “I DO!”

Sunday, August 15th, 2010

Without a doubt Chelsea Clinton’s July 31st wedding will be dubbed the event of the year, if not the century.

The wedding was picture-perfect: The bride’s Vera Wang wedding ensemble, and the Oscar de la Renta dress worn by Hillary; the swanky Rhinebeck, New York venue, Astor Courts Estates, which hosted the 500-plus guests; and the absolutely perfect weather for the estimated $3 to $5 million dollar extravaganza, which ultimately proved to me the Weather Gods absolutely, positively, and without a single-doubt have to be Democrats.

Chelsea made some fabulous choices when planning the details of her wedding, but what really caught my eye, and I’m sure had millions of others across the globe pining to find out more, was the gluten-free wedding cake.

From the bottom of my celiac-heart, thank you, Mrs. Mezvinsky.  (That’s Chelsea for those of you that didn’t know her married name).

With Chelsea saying “I Do” to a gluten-free wedding cake, she brought world-wide recognition to the gluten-free diet. The world has been abuzz with this wedding, and having a gluten-free wedding cake being the choice, and in the spotlight, of this former sweetheart of a first-daughter’s wedding, is big time for me, and the rest of the gluten-free set.

This 4-foot tall, nine-tiered, vanilla sponge cake layered with dark-chocolate mousse,  made by La Tulipe Desserts in Mount Kisco, New York, has sweetened the concept of being gluten-free. This famous cake has people chatting about the gluten-free diet and celiac disease; how “everyone knows someone with celiac disease”;  and most importantly, asking question about the disease, the reason why I and over 3 million other folks, just in the US alone, should be adhering to a gluten-free diet – not by choice, or by fad, but by medical necessity.

I am not exactly sure why Chelsea Clinton-Mezvinsky decided to choose a gluten-free cake on the day she said “I Do”, but thanks to her choice of cakes, and the publicity this famous gluten-free cake has garnered, my hope is that those with undiagnosed celiac disease all around the globe will become more aware of the disease, more conscious of the symptoms and have them questioning their doctors that maybe “I Do” have celiac too.

Want to find out more about Chelsea Clinton’s Gluten-Free wedding Cake? Check out this links:
Today MSNBC Article

or video

This Tuesday (July 13) Your Questions About Celiac Disease and the Gluten Free Diet… Answered!

Sunday, July 11th, 2010

Just a quick reminder to everyone to sign up for Dr. Daniel Leffler’s FREE webinar that will take place this TUESDAY night, July 13th.

This week’s webinar is the last of three-part summer series of webinars that are presented by riceworks brown rice crisps and sponsored by

Dr, Daniel Leffler, MD, MS, Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, and Division of Gastroenterology at BIDMC, has just launched his book Real Life with Celiac Disease (I got a sneak peak and it is a great resource!). Join Dr. Leffler this Tuesday July 13th to learn about a wide range of topics from his new book including screening and diagnosis, associated conditions, food allergies and intolerances, complications, nongastrointestinal manifestations, and what the difference is between celiac disease and a gluten intolerance.

This is a great way to learn more about celiac disease and the gluten-free diet, lifestyle and living!  

I hope to see you all there!
Be Free!

COMING TOMORROW! Tuesday 06/15…Free Webinar with Shelley Case!

Monday, June 14th, 2010

Gluten & Allergen Free Questions… Answered!

Just a quick reminder to everyone to make sure you remember to sign up for Shelley Case’s FREE webinar that will take place TOMORROW night, Tuesday, June 15.

Tomorrow night’s webinar is the first of three-part summer series of webinars that are presented by riceworks brown rice crisps and sponsored by

Shelley Case, a leading international nutrition expert on celiac disease and the gluten-free diet; and author of the book, The Gluten-Free Diet will be covering information on celiac disease and gluten sensitivity in addition to all her tips and facts for managing a gluten-free diet. Join Shelley on June 15th or June 22nd.

Dr, Daniel Leffler, MD, MS, Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, and Division of Gastroenterology at BIDMC, has just launched his book Real Life with Celiac Disease. Join Dr. Leffler on July 13th to learn about a wide range of topics from his book Real Life with Celiac Disease including screening and diagnosis, associated conditions, food allergies and intolerances, complications, nongastrointestinal manifestations, and celiac disease vs gluten intolerance.

These are a great way to learn more about the gluten-free diet, lifestyle and living!   I hope to see you all there!

Be Free!

Food Allergies & Celiac Disease in the News

Sunday, June 13th, 2010

This week that there were a flurry of articles and tidbits on food allergies, celiac disease and gluten-free living that crossed by desktop. Below are some of the best-of-the-best and new-worthy mentions.

Note: In the spirit of sharing, please feel free to reply to this blog and let me know of any “news” that you find and want to share with others!

Is the Gluten Free Diet “Cool”?
Gwyneth Paltrow, Victoria Beckham and Rachel Weisz are among the celebs who reportedly stick to a gluten-free diet. But are these non-celiac celebs making the gluten-free diet seem like just a trend, and not a medically needed special diet? Many non-celiacs on a gluten-free diet say that a gluten-free diet boosts their energy and make it easier to lose weight… but some health experts claim it causes a variety of health problems. Check out this article for the full-scoop…

Allergies Prompt US to Consider Banning Nuts on All Airplanes.
According to this article, “Advocates say the move would ease fears and potential harm to the estimated 1.8 million Americans who suffer from a peanut allergy. Peanut farmers and food packagers, however, say it would be overreaching and unfair to their legume.” What are your thoughts? 

USDA Developing a Low-Allergy Peanut:
Good news for nut-allergy sufferers: Scientists at the  U.S. Department of Agriculture are developing a low-allergy natural peanut that could offer an alternative to sufferers of severe nut allergies.

These researchers hope to create a peanut with the lowest chance of triggering an allergic reaction  for those that are diagnosed with a  severe peanut allergy, which according to this article is the most common cause of food-related death in the United States.

Nut Allergy in Children on the Rise:
Researchers from the Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York found that between 1 to 2 percent of children in the United States may have allergies to peanuts or tree nuts, with rates seemingly tripling since 1997. Why is this happening? Read more here…

New From Across the Pond: Big Boom in Gluten-Free Foods
Gluten-free products have become Britain’s fastest selling food category, as millions of consumers are buying up gluten-free products. According to this article, 5% of every new food and drink product launched last year in the UK was labeled as gluten-free. Wow!
Coeliac UK, a support group for those with celiac disease, said that one in 100 adults were celiacs in the UK.

Good Chemistry Baking: Every Street Corner Needs One of These!
Gluten-free lemon bars, cupcakes, muffins, scones, biscuits, brownies; plus, soups, sandwiches and salads. A new Bakery / Café has opened in Oakland, California (I’ve sent my sister over to check it out!). Inspired and opened by a celiac, Jane O’Hara, she is excited about Good Chemistry Baking, a 100% designated gluten-free facility that features good tasting gluten-free offerings!

Another 100% designated gluten-free facility, located in Massachusetts, is All Can Eat Bakery, which offers fantastic cupcakes, breads and ready-to-eat meals.

Food Allergies: There’s an App for That!
A great new iPhone app for those with food allergies! This app features 100’s of gluten and allergen free recipes that can be customized to fit many food allergy needs. This app will also calculate ingredient substitutions so you can avoid your allergen trigger list. Makes me want to go out and trade in my blackberry for a new iphone! Check out more info here.

Domino’s Pizza Goes Gluten Free?

Monday, May 10th, 2010

Am I the only celiac that transfixes on the television every time a Domino’s Pizza commercial flashes across the screen? The cheese, the sauce, the toppings… and that crust.

Ode to the days of ordering a gooey & cheesy Domino’s Pizza that is delivered to your doorstep.

Well, fret no more gluten-free friends…It looks as if Domino’s Pizza has come out with 13 gluten-free pizza varieties. Although at this time these gluten-free pizza’s are currently only offered in New Zealand market, celiacs everywhere have to hope that Domino’s Pizza is taking a step in the right direction and will roll out the gluten-free pizza’s across the globe soon.

According to a press release Domino’s reports, “… After months of development and testing we have found a gluten free base which tastes great. The Thin’n’Crispy style base means gluten free customers can now enjoy take away pizza and with more than 13 regular menu pizzas made with gluten free ingredients plus the option to design their own, they have the freedom and control of enjoying pizza without the worry.”

When I find out more about the Domino’s gluten-free pizza availability, as well as any preparation / cross-contamination pre-cautions, I will update this blog posting.

Oh, and one more thing… does anyone know if Domino’s Pizza will deliver to North America from New Zealand?

WIN-It-Wednesday: Kettle Cuisine Soups (Nominated for the 2010 Foodie Awards!)

Tuesday, May 4th, 2010

Kettle Cuisine Soups are some of my favorites. That why I was delighted to hear that their Tomato Soup with Garden Vegetables has received accolades from Vegetarian Times Magazine and has been nominated for the 2010 Foodie Awards!

Now the voting begins for the winners!

For years Kettle Cuisine has been making all natural soups that are full of fresh and healthy ingredients. Gluten-free is a way of life for the folks over at Kettle Cuisine since the founder’s (Jerry & Lorna) daughter, Kate, has been diagnosed with celiac disease for several years.

And if you have yet to try these soups, you need to give them a try. Kettle Cuisine soups are made just the way you or I would make them at home… with no shortcuts, no artificial ingredients. All ten varieties of Kettle Cuisine soups are gluten-free, and several are also dairy-free, low-fat and vegetarian too. Kettle Cuisine does not have that tin-canny mass-produced taste that many soups out there have. Kettle Cuisine is just good old fashioned soup – made the way we would ourselves.

I think it would be so very, very awesome if Kettle Cuisine wins the Vegetarian Times 2010 Foodie Award! Kettle Cuisine has been so supportive of the gluten-free and the food allergic communities. It would be great to see such a strong supporter of our communities win this ever prestigious award!

Soooo, I am asking every BeFreeForMe members to log on to VOTE for Kettle Cuisine! How can you vote? Easy…

• Click on this link
• Scroll down, enter your name and email address
• You can then cast your vote in as many categories as you choose but be sure to answer question 21 and pick Kettle Cuisine!
• Click submit.
• Forward this email to friends and family and ask them to vote too.
• Remember… You only have until June 9th to vote.

PLUS – This week Kettle Cuisine is offering five (Yes, 5!) LUCKY BeFreeForMe members a FREE Coupon for the Kettle Cuisine Soup of your choice!

How can you WIN?

Reply to this blog, and let us know which Kettle Cuisine Soup variety is your favorite, or one you would like to try the most.

Remember, all replies for the WIN-It-Wednesday must be received by 12:00 midnight EST on Tuesday, May 11, 2010.

Good Luck, May both YOU and Kettle Cuisine WIN!… and as always,

Be Free!

Spread the Word! May is Celiac Disease Awareness Month

Sunday, May 2nd, 2010

Happy Celiac Disease Awareness Month everyone!

May has unofficially been the month to bring awareness to celiac disease. However, there are many states that have taken this monthly recognition of celiac disease a step further and have officially declared May “Celiac Disease Awareness Month”.

Just this weekend, I ran across some activities & actions that supporters are engaging in to bring awareness to celiac disease. If any of you know of any states / provinces that recognize May as Celiac Disease Awareness Month or any activities that are happening during the month to bring awareness to celiac disease, please share by posting a comment to this blog post.

The American Celiac Disease Alliance is campaigning folks to make sure all State Representatives know about celiac disease during the month of May. Check out this link for a quick and easy way to shout out to your state representative. (Note: It’s great! All you do is enter your zip code and it links you up with your state rep with an standard letter that can also be customized – so quick & so easy!).  

Here are some of the noteworthy activities regarding the celebration of Celiac Disease Awareness month that I recently became aware of:

New York Senate Declares May Celiac Disease Awareness Month & Proposes Two Bills Concerning Celiac Disease:

According to the, Senator Kevin Parker recognized various organizations and groups for their work in helping to raise awareness of Celiac Disease in the state of New York. Some of the organizations that were recognized include: The Greater New York City Celiac Support Group, NYCeliac, The New York Restaurant Association, The Celiac Disease Center at Columbia University, Sherry Lynn’s Gluten Free Restaurant, Wheatfield’s Restaurant, The Celiac Disease Foundation and The Celiac Disease Resource, Inc.

In addition to acknowledging May as Celiac Disease Awareness Month there are also two proposed bills in New York. One would raise awareness of celiac disease by creating a statewide educational program to train health care workers on the causes and consequences of celiac disease.

The second bill would require every cafeteria leased or operated by the state of New York to post information regarding which foods being served contains gluten.  My Take?: New Yorkers now need to rally and follow in Massachusetts lead to take this law a step further…  they need to implement this regulation to include ALL food allergens and to request it into law at ALL food service establishments.

North Carolina Governor Declares May Celiac Disease Awareness Month:

According to Zach at The Gluten Free Raleigh Blog, Governor Beverly Perdue has declared May 2010 “Celiac Disease Awareness Month” in North Carolina. The Gluten Free Raleigh Blog and Pat Berger, leader of the North Raleigh Celiac Sprue Association (CSA) Support Group brought the petition to the Governor’s office regarding the awareness month. Cheers to Zach and Pat!

In celebration of Celiac Disease Awareness Month, residents in the Raleigh N.C. area can participate in a gluten-free food drive at various locations or make a monetary donation to help stock the Food Bank of Central and Eastern North Carolina. Find out more on Zach’s website. 

And to sweeten the celebration, Bella Monica Italian Restaurant is hosting a six-course gluten-free dinner prepared by Vanessa Maltin, food and lifestyle editor for Delight Gluten-free Magazine. I Wish I lived closer so I could attend! I love Bella Monica pizza and everything Vanessa cooks-up, so I am certain this event is one of the most-happening & tasty celiac events this month!

Last, The Gluten Free Raleigh Blog worked with Sofia Noble of the design firm This Is Beautiful to create a poster featuring all of the top food allergens, including gluten. This poster is now available for download in English and Spanish at the Gluten Free Raleigh Blog.

Thanks, Zach for all you do for the gluten free / celiac community!

Again, please post a comment to let us know of any celiac awareness activities happening in YOUR area during the month of May!

Food Allergies & Celiac Disease in the News

Sunday, April 25th, 2010

Every week I discover great articles, updates and tidbits regarding food allergies, celiac disease and gluten-free living.  In the spirit of sharing, I decided to periodically post a blog entry detailing the best-of-the-best of these news-worthy items that come my way.

Let’s keep the sharing going… Please reply to this blog and let me know of any “news” that you find and want to share with others!

The following items are some that are worth noting from the week ending April 24, 2010. Enjoy!

Fantastic Article on Celiac Disease:
This article titled, “Gluten Free: Millions Have Celiac, Few Diagnosed”  was found in the Long Island Press and brought to my attention by a BeFreeForMe member. Written by Jaclyn Gallucci this article is probably one of the best articles I’ve read on what it is like to live with celiac disease. A must read.

A Comical View of Cooking for a Friend with Celiac Disease:
After reading “The Gluten Game: How to Cross a Menu Minefield” found in The Atlantic, I thought it could have been written by a few of my own friends! Also, make sure you check out the recipes that the writer ended up serving to her gluten-free friend –Crispy Shrimp Stir Fry & Jasmine Rice.

Dairy Free Options at Starbucks:
According to Go Dairy Free, Starbucks is rolling out Dairy-Free & Vegan Frappaccinos to their menu offerings. This soy-based, dairy-free and vegan option is now available only in the LA area; but be on the lookout for this dairy-free alternative soon at a Starbucks near you!

Peanut Allergy Research Study:
This study was brought to my attention by my friends at the Asthma & Allergy Foundation of America (AAFA) New England Chapter.

Brigham and Women’s Hospital is conducting a clinical research study for adults with peanut allergy. If you have an allergy to peanut and are 18 years and older, you may be eligible to participate. Eligible subjects will receive an investigational medication to study its safety on peanut allergic patients.  All study visits will take place at the Allergy Clinic at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, 850 Boylston St. Chestnut Hill, MA.  Subjects will be asked to complete 10 outpatient visits over 4 months.  Most visits will take approximately 30 minutes. You will be reimbursed $20.00 for each visit to pay for parking or transportation.  For more information contact Pierre Debrosse at 617-525-7794.

Video of Shopping with Celiac Disease:
Check out this video from a TV station located in South Dakota on shopping with celiac disease. Although the doctor incorrectly called celiac disease an “allergy”, at least the the segment stresses that early diagnosis is important.

Gluten & Allergy-Free Food Day at the Boston Globe?

Sunday, April 11th, 2010

Last Wednesday, April 7th, must have been gluten-free / food allergy day for the Boston Globe.

In this daily issue there were two articles on gluten-free and food-allergic living. I was both shocked and thrilled to find them both!

The articles touched upon how the educational sector and big businesses are realizing the need to adapt their strategies in order to assist those with food allergies, gluten-intolerances or celiac disease.

The first article details the ways that colleges are responding to the challenge of students with food allergies or celiac disease.  I was diagnosed with celiac disease after graduating from college, but I have to imagine that the college years must be the hardest for anyone being on a restricted diet. However, this article explains how colleges are assisting students with food intolerances. Some ways that colleges are catering to these students include supplying small kitchenettes stocked-full of convenient gluten and allergen-free meals, as well as having chefs and dieticians assist these students with meal planning and preparation.

The article is interesting, especially for those involved in applying for and making college enrollment decisions.

The second article was the about the new gluten-free baking mixes and flours that Norwich, Vermont based King Arthur Flour has introduced. This interesting article details how King Arthur developed their gluten-free product line (which includes multipurpose flour, cake, brownie, pizza crust and cookie mixes) “basically by trial and error”. The article also states that the King Arthur test kitchen is working on developing a higher fiber gluten-free product in the near future. Something I am looking forward to trying.

Do you often find articles on celiac disease and food allergies in your local newspaper? If so, please share any articles that you find by commenting below and including a link to the article. We all love reading new and interesting articles… so let’s keep sharing!

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