WIN-It-Wednesday: “Mommy, What Is Celiac Disease?” by Katie Chalmers

Explaining celiac disease and the gluten-free diet to kids can be tough. After being diagnosed, many favorite foods including macaroni & cheese, pizza, and chicken nuggets are now off-limits, unless prepared gluten-free. Understanding celiac disease is tough enough for adults, never mind for children.

How can you explain eating gluten-free and celiac disease to a child whose whole world is centered around pizza parties at school, a best-friends birthday party, or favorite foods that include chicken nuggets and onion rings? How can a child look at the sunny side of being gluten-free?

Enter the book: “Mommy, What Is Celiac Disease?” by Katie Chalmers.

This is a one-of-a-kind book that is written by a Mom who was diagnosed with celiac disease over three years ago, along with her daughter. Since their diagnosis they have learned to make the best out of living gluten-free and have so graciously shared so much with the rest of the gluten-free community.

If you haven’t checked it out yet make sure that you click-by Katie’s new and updated blog, Her blogs goal is to help gluten-free kids be happy & healthy.  She accomplishes this by sharing her family experiences of living a happy and healthy gluten-free lifestyle. What are some of my favorite sections that must be checked out? First off, and foremost, the resource collection of fun stuff for gluten-free kids – a must see for anyone raising a gluten-free kid. Some other pages to check out include the Recipe section full of kid-friendly dishes; reviews and giveaways… and more.

I am so very excited that “Mommy, What Is Celiac Disease?” by Katie Chalmers is this week’s WIN-It-Wednesday sponsor on

A total of four (4) BeFreeForMe members will be selected to win a copy of “Mommy, What is Celiac Disease?” Two winners will be randomly selected from the entries received before Tuesday, June 19, 2012 at 11:59 PM EST, and two more winners will be randomly selected to win from the entries received between Wednesday, June 20 and Tuesday, June 26, 2012 at 11:59PM. SO – make sure you enter to win two times!

How can you win?

Reply to this blog and let us know how you look at the sunny side of being gluten-free. (Me? I find myself eating more fruits and vegetables since my celiac diagnosis which has resulted in me discovering local farmers markets and expanding my own backyard garden).

Good luck, Keep the sunny side up… and as always,

Be Free!

Note: Want to buy a copy of “Mommy, What is Celiac Disease?” then check out this link on Mommy, What Is Celiac Disease?: A look at the sunny side of being a gluten-free kid

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25 Responses to “WIN-It-Wednesday: “Mommy, What Is Celiac Disease?” by Katie Chalmers”

  1. Pei Says:

    I find myself reading every single food labels and cook from scratch.

  2. Jennifer C Says:

    Since my diagnosis, I have tried many new things that I never would have tried before. I have always been a picky eater, but my diagnosis has broadened my food horizons!

  3. Cindy Says:

    I love eating simple fresh foods selected mainly from the perimeter of the grocery store!

  4. Sarah Says:

    I’m forced to find the sunny side of being gluten free in my household!
    I find the sunny side in my daughter’s new found smile, her new burst of energy, her rosy cheeks and being able to cuddle with her rather than rubbing her belly and wiping her tears…
    Going gluten free has turned my sick and unhealthy 2 year old into a thriving, happy 2 year old..
    Yes it can be tough, but when I look down at that little face I realize that there is nothing that I wouldn’t do for that princess!!
    Because of my princess, my whole family has become much more health conscious and we are eating healthy food only.. No more processed and sugary junk.
    At only 2 years old, our little girl has taught us so much, especially how to find the sunny side in certain situations and that having to go gluten free is the furthest thing from being the worst thing in the world..
    Hopefully as she gets older,and starts to understand, she still won’t mind the lifestyle change.

  5. Angel R. Says:

    I tell my son he is going to be healthier than everybody since he is on a strict gluten-free diet due to celiac.

  6. Michelle O'Connor Says:

    Looking on the sunny side of things…Next month will be one year since going gluten free for my daughter. Can’t believe it’s already been a year! I look on the sunny side of being gf by first being so thankful that we finally found the reason for so many health issues my daughter was having. It has been a tough road but the last year has helped us eat healthier, we love fresh fruits & veggies.

  7. Kim R Says:

    Dealing with Celiacs has made us cook and bake more at home. Its helping me teach my daughter the importance of fresh food and that there is nothing better than a home cooked meal made with love. She is able to see where food comes from now… not just from the store but from our garden and farms around the valley. It has also made up become more creative with baking 🙂

  8. Dana M Says:

    My son and I been on a very strict gluten free diet for 5 years. We started to see if it would help with his autism spectrum disorder. It had made a night and day difference. Even after 5 years he tells me it is way better than the red or blue meds. He is now 11 and most people would not know unless they knew what to look for. We do more than just GF. It has been worth all the work. Now to teach him how to do all this home cooking!!! I also spend hours in the stores reading labels and I still can not believe what the government lets these company put in our foods! One of my food rules…. IF YOU CAN NOT READ IT DO NOT EAT IT!!! 🙂

  9. cindy w. Says:

    Needing to eat gluten free has made me more aware of what I am putting into my body and I try to make healthier choices. I would LOVE to win this book to use in my preschool classes to bring more awareness of different issues some children have. Thank you for the giveaway.

  10. TXEdie Says:

    Mindless/impulsive eating is a thing of the past for a Celiac. Really being aware of the foods and flavors that we eat is a gift. That necessary awareness spills over to everyone in the family!

  11. Theresa Says:

    My older daughter and I deal with it by eating more healhty. We have had all the over processed fast food junk and enjoy our gluten free life. however my son who was born with it never has had a goldfish cracker or snacks like the other kids and for hi he has a hard time (age 6) why he can’t enjoy those things.

  12. Carmen D Says:

    We got the official Celiac diagnosis for our daughter on June 24th of last year, just hours before I fell and broke my wrist. How do we see the bright side of living GF? First and foremost, I learned that my husband can cook, and cook well! For about 6 weeks after her diagnosis my husband was responsible for cooking every meal (since my broken wrist left me able to do very little) We had so many wonderful meals (including enchiladas, made entirely from scratch) all from a man who swore he could not cook anything beyond toast. We’ve also found ourselves trying so many things we might not have without the Celiac diagnosis. We are eating more fruits and vegetables, spending more time at Farmer’s markets, have discovered the wonder of quinoa, and both my kids have developed a new found love of sushi.

    I think one of the best changes is that our fun no longer revolves around food. I never realized before how much we would use food to socialize, celebrate, etc. We’ve replaced going out to eat to celebrate with going to a movie or having a family game night. Our time together focuses more on the togetherness and less on the food.

  13. Catapatic Says:

    I support my local farmers markets, and U Pick farms, spend very little time in the grocery store, buying so few items there that I can use the self serve check out….it is freedom from preservatives and eating more and more foods organically and in their raw form. The result of the diagnosis has been an involuntary health regimend, the silver lining of the Celiac cloud, the blessing in disguise!

  14. Stacey Says:

    Finding out my daughter has Celiac Disease was a mixed blessing. Though I would ideally wish she not have any health issues, we finally had answers to why she was painful and miserable so much of the time. This was something we could actually take control of. Her diagnosis has helped our whole family become healthier and more knowledgeable about nutrition. It has also helped my daughter learn about choices and responsibility as she reads labels on everything, asks questions, helps to determine her options and does a terrific job at educating her friends, relatives and others she comes into contact with. She doesn’t feel sorry for herself or dwell on what she can’t have but instead focuses on how great she feels and how much healthier her life is. She has said she would continue eating gluten free even if she somehow didn’t have to any longer. She is my hero!

  15. Sarah @ Celiac in the City Says:

    There’s so much on the sunny side: learning to love new foods, getting creative in the kitchen, feeling 100% better and not being sick all the time, starting a blog, hosting monthly GF Get Together events in Milwaukee, so much to be thankful for. Great give away!

  16. tina m. Says:

    I have been forced to read labels more. I was AMAZED at how much stuff had wheat in it. In the last 7 weeks of changing my eating habits I have lost 13 pounds and have SO much energy. My stomach issues cleared up almost over night. I have been forced to cook more of my food versus buying pre-made stuff. I found that I actually like to cook. I am trying to get my husband and daughter on board with eating gluten free, since they have a lot of the same stomach issue I had (they have not been diagnosed tho). They are VERY picky eaters, so it has been slow going.

  17. Debi Says:

    I read every label, every time I shop regardless if it is something I buy every time I shop. I also cook 99% of our meals, every now and then I will buy something that is pre-made (heat & Serve).

  18. amy Says:

    I have been gluten-free for nearly 12 years now. During this past year especially, I have been grateful for my celiac. My 4 year old son started preschool this year, and with his severe dairy allergy (anaphylactic and contact sensitive)- we have had a wild ride ensuring his safety in a new environment that is out of my control. Remembering my fears and issues starting on a gluten free diet has helped in communicating with the school and other parents about keeping snacks dairy free and adjusting their baking curriculum to be safe for my son. It has especially helped in making me not afraid to play with recipes (we love baked goods) to make them gluten free and dairy free so my whole family can enjoy them. But one of the best things to come of being gluten free is making it easier for my son to understand that there are some things some people can’t eat, including his mommy and him. It helps to ease the confusion and frustration when we are someplace where he can’t eat what he wants to and has made me a master of packing small treats to have on hand just in case to help him feel like he isn’t missing out.

  19. Sheri Says:

    My 7 year old daughter was diagnosed with Celiac Disease when she was 2 years old. Although watching her diet can be all consuming, I remind myself that she is overall a very healthy child and I am grateful that her symptoms can be controlled through her diet and she does not need to be receiving medical treatments to keep her healthy. There are still difficult times (such as traveling), however, eating gluten free has gotten much easier as the options continue to expand.

  20. Paula Says:

    Our three-year-old was recently diagnosed with Celiac disease. It’s amazing how positive she is about her diet change. I cleared out a cabinet in our kitchen to house all of her gluten-free items, and named it “Margaux’s No-Gluten Goodie Cabinet”. I decorated the inside cabinet door with labels of products she likes to include a section of “Stuff That Makes Me Go Yuck”. I find it to be a helpful reminder as I prepare weekly shopping lists.

  21. cindy w. Says:

    I keep things on the sunny side by being grateful that celiac disease can be controlled by choosing the right foods. So much better than an illness that requires medication or surgery. Thank you for the giveaway – and for all the great recipes each week.

  22. Julie Says:

    I read labels. My daughter was diagnosed with Celiac Disease over 5 years ago and it’s a lot easier now to cook and bake gluten free.

  23. Nicole Says:

    I see the sunny side of eating gluten free by baking gluten free goodies and enjoying them!

  24. kristie Says:

    I tell people all the time that with each door that closed two doors opened. My 10 yearold and I feel so much better. We have learned about some really great foods that we would have never known about. We eat healthier, have more energy with less sick days, and make a lot more homemade using very little processed food. All in all it has been a great change.

  25. Kathie Byrom Says:

    Have been g/f for 3 years. Reading labels, shopping local farmer’s markets (love summer time veggies and fruits), trying new food items and increasing my cooking skills, and educating others about CD have become my lifestyle. One of the PAs I see at my Drs. office. was able to diagnose a 3 month old simply because we were talking about symptoms that led to my diagnosis. I mentioned that CD is often overlooked in babies, and when a Dr. can’t figure out why a baby isn’t eating and keeping food in them it’s usually labeled “failure to thrive”. She commented that she had a baby that was sick all the time and she’d tested for everything to no avail; she called the parent right then and there to bring the little one in for a blood test and schedule an endoscopy. Little girl is now 8 months old and yes, she has CD; she is thriving well on a g/f diet and her family has adapted well to their new lifestyle of living g/f. That’s probably my most warm feeling inside to know that a child won’t have to go years being sick (and possibly passing away) before someone figured it out. Living g/f isn’t as hard as I first thought it would be; my friends are probably more afraid of it than me – they always hate to eat things that contain gluten in front of me, despite when I tell them it doesn’t bother me at all.

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