Posts Tagged ‘celiac disease’

So Long Cheerios… it was fun while it lasted.

So you may have been following our gluten free Cheerios saga.  I couldn’t do it — I lasted two days before I got bubble guts and was pretty convinced that it was low enough to cause problems in a cumulative fashion.

My husband, on the other hand?  He was convinced Cheerios were the next best thing to sliced gluten free bread.  It brought back childhood memories, childhood flavors and he started eating it every day.  Every day.

In the course of the time that he was eating them so regularly, he got sick twice.  Two pretty aggressive colds — one possibly being a flu.  He complained of more stomach pain during this time than he usually did and complained of diarrhea.  He kept telling me it was because he ate something at work or maybe he has other food allergies.  I’d been suspicious.

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Gluten Free Cheerios Saga – Part Two

I have been writing this post in my head for the last week.  In fact, I wanted to write this post last week after about a week of Cheerios eating.  Unfortunately for me, some gluten slipped into the house and into my system and I’ve been struggling to repair.  Having gotten a little lax with my diet since being pregnant, I think I’ve also been sneaking in some of my other food allergies… only compounding the inflammation.

Needless to say, I’m afraid of the Cheerios in light of the stomach issues.  I managed two days of Cheerios pre-exposure and by day two, I had what my husband and I call bubble guts.  Hyperactive bowel sounds and bubbles all over.  Gas.  It was tolerable though mildly uncomfortable.  This could be from two things: mild response to the low ppm of gluten still in the Cheerios or from my guts simply not being sure what to do with all that fiber running through my system.  I would really have to try them for longer to have a clearer picture for myself of what is going on.  Unfortunately, I worry that it’s part of what made my gluten reaction so severe.  At some point, I may balls up again… but fortunately, there were two of us in this experiment.

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It’s Pumpkin Season! Gluten free Pumpkin Cheesecake Recipe

It’s almost officially fall!  The weather here in Seattle is now becoming overcast, cloudy and rainy.  I’ve only been here in Seattle for a year and a half but am already in love with having a real fall season.  We came from Arizona.  If you’ve ever lived there, visited there, or done anything there… it stays pretty much the same color all year round.

I love fall.  I love rainy, cloudy, orange weather.  I love leaves falling.  More importantly, I love hot chocolate and fall flavors… like pumpkin.  So using my pregnancy as an excuse to feed my craving ideas, I decided we needed a Pumpkin Cheesecake in the house.  I adapted from a gluten filled Betty Crocker recipe to make this pretty gal.  Unfortunately, my husband doesn’t share the same love for pumpkin… oh well.  More for me!

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The Celiac Kryptonite: Unexpected Exposures

You could say things were going so well.  I don’t remember the last time I was really glutened.  By “really” glutened, I mean with symptoms more than just the little head rush from something small.  I’m 25 weeks pregnant and hadn’t thrown up once this pregnancy.

My biggest gluten worry at this point had been the gluten free Cheerios we were trialing in the house (more on that in another post to come!).

This past Saturday, we found out about Han’s German Deli and went to check it out.  My husband, being in the states for the last 5 years now, squealed like a kid finding out about Christmas for the first time.  Apfelschole, Mettwurst, Butter kase, pommes sauce, Apfel Wein, imported Haribo flavors… german chocolates…

It’s amazing that we didn’t spend more.  We spent a little time in Germany since being gluten free and are quite familiar with the German words for wheat.  Germans seem to hide wheat into their chocolates.  He said he was reading all the ingredients… and I trusted him.

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Gluten free Lemon Blueberry Cheesecake Pie style

I have a confession.  I’ve never made cheesecake before.  Not once.  In fact, last week was the first time I had even ever made a Key Lime Pie (and that actually came out pretty tasty).  But when I found this recipe for lemon blueberry cheesecake bars on Only Taste Matters… I got excited.  I got excited but I’m also pregnant…

So as I started on her recipe, I went on autopilot.  I started building myself a pie crust using my Kinnikinnick Gluten Free Graham Cracker Crumbs.  In a pie pan.  Her recipe is for beautiful yummy bars.  Well, then it was too late and I had to adapt. 

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Gluten Free Fad – Is it Hurting or Helping?

Walk into most grocery stores these days and you will find a whole (albeit small) section dedicated to “Gluten Free Foods.”  Not only this – but you will also find gluten free foods still scattered throughout the store.  Maybe strategically done by the grocer so you’ll buy more.

You’ll find cookies, and flours, and breads, and brownie mixes.  You’ll find cereal, cereal bars, and sweets galore.  Forget the fruits and vegetables.  You have your own aisle dedicated to replacing all the things you haven’t been able to eat on this new celiac buzz.

A research paper done by Lee, Ng, Zivin & Green reviewed the costs and variety of gluten free products available in several types of grocery stores and noted that (what we all know) gluten free products were twice as expensive as other wheat-filled products and was impacted by type of venue.

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This is your Brain. This is your Brain on Gluten.

We don’t fully understand the immune system.  We recognize, realize, and know that it is a defensive system; it sees a threat and attacks.  It senses a virus and alarms sound, “Intruder! Intruder!”

It raises body temperature to make the environment unlivable for viruses and bacteria.  It releases histamine, fighter cells, white blood cells and so many others in effort to regulate the body system and maintain homeostasis.

What happens when the immune system stops seeing invaders and begins to see itself as the invader?  This is the simplified version of what happens in the celiac.  Gluten comes in, spurs a response, immune cells go crazy and attack the person with celiac rather than the gluten.  The average person consumes 10 to 50 grams of gluten per day.  The FDA label guidelines for gluten free products is a gluten allowance of less than 20 ppm.  A celiac reacts to less than 20 ppm – what is happening in the undiagnosed celiac?

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Bonding Over Gluten – The Love Story of Two Celiacs

When my husband and I first met, we bonded over a long night of cheap whiskey and jello shots. He drank beer, I drank the whiskey. It was awkward – obviously, the alcohol helped. Even in my slightly tipsy state, I remember the 0330 conversation we were having with a friend of ours about her boyfriend situation. She was getting sleepy in front of my fire place and was frustrated with the type of guys she was dating; she felt like they never had their crap together. I remember giving her advice and I wish I remember what he said but I remember how what he said made me feel. He said something brilliant – adorable, intelligent, completely reasonable. He said something that I would have said. I looked at him and for the first real time that night, I remember my heart going pitter pat. Shortly after that moment, he kissed me for the first time…

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Can We Eat Gluten Again? The Celiac Wonder Drug – AVL003.

Even if you don’t really know what celiac disease or gluten intolerance is, you know the treatment. Everyone knows at least that one person who says, “oh, I can’t eat that. I have… (fill in the blank) “ celiac, gluten intolerance, I’m trying to be gluten free for health reasons… et cetera. The treatment for these things is incredibly socially constraining and culturally limiting – you can’t eat gluten. It’s Seinfeld’s soup nazi becoming the gluten nazi in your body screaming “No gluten for you!” No bread, no soy sauce, no barley, no beer, no alcohols made from grain unless well distilled, no Starbucks Frappuccino Lights… on and on it goes.

While the last few years have spawned a greater awareness of issues with gluten and created a whole new range of gluten free foods, we still do not have any real “treatment” other than abstinence. We all know how well that has been working for the some of the schools out there with sex ed. Maybe that doesn’t really apply here but seriously – some of us may try to cheat on the diet and we pay for it. Or some of us are OK with paying for it. Personally, I can do without the brain fog…

But AVL003 is trying to change the game.

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