Cookies & Candies & Cakes – Oh My!

Watching one of my all time favorite classic movies this weekend, The Wizard of Oz, I realized that Dorothy and her group of friends have so many lessons to teach those of us who have been diagnosed with celiac disease or food allergies.

After my diagnoses with celiac disease I discovered that I wasn’t in “Kansas anymore”. Tragedy will strike us all at some point in our lives, but by no means is a diagnosis of celiac disease or a food allergy a tragedy – it may be life-altering, but by no means life-shattering. This is always, always, very important to remember, and the most important advise I can give the newly diagnosed celiac and food allergic.

The greatest lesson that Dorothy and her friends teach is to always believe in yourself, be accepting of who you are and respect the obstacles that are handed to you.  I know that believing in myself and being accepting of my celiac diagnosis has made me a stronger, healthier and better person, both inside and out.

It also takes brains, courage and a heart to embrace a celiac and food allergy diagnosis:

Brains / Knowledge:
The wizard told the scarecrow, “What they have that you do not, is just a piece of paper”. The lesson to be learned here is to always believe in yourself and your abilities. Having celiac disease or a food allergy makes us savvier when it comes to food. Be smart. Think ahead. Research. Learn. And most importantly share…

The Cowardly Lion learned through his journey that the key to success does not lie in the absence of fear, but the ability to embrace your fears, and tackle them headfirst. Face your celiac diagnosis or food allergy straight on. Be brave. Explore. Try new things. Be adventurous. 

The Tin Man searched for a heart, knowing that he could not be complete without love. From this we must learn to be enthusiastic about our new lifestyle changes. Give back to others in the celiac / food allergic community. Be passionate and embrace your new dietary lifestyle. Be happy. Keep in mind that some “Ha-ha-ha’s. Ho-ho-ho’s. And a couple of Tra-la-la’s” are always good for the soul!

Through the lessons learned from Dorothy and her gang, we should all realize that everything we need and seek to be healthy and happy while living with celiac disease and food allergies is right inside us all the time.

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3 Responses to “Cookies & Candies & Cakes – Oh My!”

  1. Cathy Says:

    Great article – my favorite movie brought into my adult life! I am loving your website and was so pleased to meet and have lunch with you at the Summit. I am so glad to see this getting off the ground! Best of luck!

  2. Sara Says:

    Awesome Kath…truly one of your best!!!

  3. Kathleen Reale Says:


    Thanks so much for your encouraging words! I can not wait until next years Gluten Free Culinary Summit!

    The best to you and your family this holiday season…

    Be Free!

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