A Spring, Sustainable (Or Celiac, Stevia, and Waste-Free Brunching)

It's no good to waste food, especially when it's gluten free. Eating with celiac costs me more coin often, and more often than coin it costs me time, but celiac or otherwise food waste wastes resource, demonstrates a carelessness with wealth, and can make or break a shoestring budget.

I've been noticing the abundance of Spring in Beantown. Buds are bursting. Not too long, and farm-stands and farmer's markets will be bursting too with green, and gold, and red-white-blue festivity of BERRIES. It will also be Earth Day.

And this week, I got both a package and crate. The package was from Nu Naturals, ( a family-owned company that makes supplements, and stevia-based-syrups, whom I met at Expo West in Anaheim. They're partnering this month with Earth Day Org & donating $1 for every order they receive April 1 - 30. Each dollar guarantees a tree-planted, and awareness spread of how important our stewardship of o…

Easter, Okonomiyaki, & Gluten-Free Festivity

If you're feeling uncommon, poor in the way of options, or wondering what to do with traditionally gluten-filled Easter menus, check out my brunch (below). I love freelancing and fusing foods -- and something about playing with variety pulls me right out of the old habit of self-pity, paralysis, and false sense of deprivation that celiac can induce. 
Easter is a time to receive life. Not deprivation or fear.
I eat gluten-free.
That means I eat -- and can eat -- a whole menagerie of fantastic foods. Like Okonomiyaki, the Japanese "pancake". Slow-roasted Eggs. Cuban Black Beans and Charred Corn Tortillas...

He is risen! goes the traditional Easter greeting. But so are doughs, breads ready to bake in traditional Easter-style, and a list of invites on my social media radar from friends holding brunches, picnics, and potlucks to celebrate Christ's dealing death to Death.

That doesn't mean I have to do the opposite of rise, and sink into isolation or self-pity.


Celiac Challenges: Explaining to the Non-Gluten Free with a "What If"

Celiac disease doesn't only affect the intestines. Celiac disease affects the whole orientation of one's day to day business. I don't always want to explain this to people. But then, explanations are inevitably dull -- it's like having someone lecture at you! I didn't tolerate that well even in school. Humor or a conversation convey meaning so much better; and they take into account relationship.So recently, when someone asked about my gluten-free need (and remarked that their sister-in-law "wasn't too seriously celiac, she could cheat a little" -- patently not safe or medically true), I opened my mouth. Shut it. And then had rather a brainstorm, and launched.SO WHAT IF SOMEONE IN HISTORY OR POP CULTURE HAD CELIAC?This is what it would look like.(And this makes the day-to-day explainingconcrete in a second for all those inquiring, or less-than-inquiring, minds that may need to know how celiac works, and affects you.)(Not all of these examples is who…

A Celiac Recap of Natural Foods Trade Show Expo West, 2017

I got to go to Expo West this year! the natural foods trade-show that swamps Anaheim each Spring with gluten-free new goods. Wicked w00t to that, because I love to travel -- and it's been 3 years I've missed out due to rotten celiac health. This year, I want to showcase those companies -- and products -- that are truly gluten-free, and thus, celiac safe.

I suppose I go to ExpoWest as a writer and nutritionist. But I went this year as a social advocate too. Out attitude to food,  Freedible founder, Cheryl Viirand has remarked, shapes culture. So does business; and those companies that put service & human dignity at the core of their mission, support celiacs & others living with food restrictions, and change the attitude of society. Of course, when it comes to food personally, I can't go anywhere where I'm not also celiac. It may not be my core identity. But it is a core piece of my life, and when I walk onto a floor full of food, it means I ask a lot of question…

Nuttzo Bad If I Do Say So Myself

So much food is naturally gluten free. But is all that edible milieu easily packable, and edible on the road?  Yes! Yes it is easy -- or so I thought recently, quick stream of consciousness before an interview in which I had a ream of questions to cover about the ease of living with celiac disease.

Then I thought: No.

Yes -- now it is.

But was it before? It was not.  I didn't inch away from a 30 minute hop back to my home kitchen post diagnosis. Not for 2 years.

Now I've walked across Ireland with a suitcase full of Nuttzo and honey sandwiches, and a dozen homemade gluten free  sweet tater muffins.

Now I've roadtripped from one side of the States to the other. Now I've spent days on trips, at conferences...

I never knew I could do what I did til I did it, and I never would have thought I could do what I've done except I decided to do it instead of wait to think about why I couldn't.

Celiac disease isn't crippling. Celiac disease is challenging. by nature, th…

[ PRODUCT REVIEW ] Really Big. Gluten-Free Bread. Canyon Bakehouse

When you look for a gluten-free bread, it has to measure up to 3 criteria: size, taste/texture, and structural integrity.

Does it fall apart? Out.

Does it taste like sawdust? Toss-it.

Is it thumbnail-sized? (Or at least...maybe a quarter of the size of regular bread?) Fare thee well.

Multiple loaves now hold up in all 3 levels. But in all honesty, most gluten-free breads are, as far as size, good enough. I don't trip along an aisle in the grocery, pulling out multiple large-loaves. I have celiac, and I get good taste, and good texture...and somewhat small slices, and I haven't much minded because I can make two sandwiches...

...but I can't make oneone of those mad-brilliant stacks that can fit a very large burger. Or anything like a tomato slice and lettuce and falafel, without it all falling out.

But yesterday, there was a sandwich on my plate as I said good-bye to a 5 year old I work with on managing gluten-freedom between his mum's and dad's separate homes.


Gluten Free, and The Repeat Endoscopy

Why is an endoscopy necessary in celiac disease? That's simple. Diagnostically, an intestinal biopsy is the current and only standard for positive identification of CD. (Except for the rare dermatitis herpetiformis diagnoxis with a skin nioody).

So a better question is: why in the world repeat it?

And the answer to that is two-fold:

1] To confirm and guarantee the body has healed and responded to the "GFD".
2] If symptoms persist, to discover WHY.

Both options demonstrate why a follow up endoscopy is important self care for the celiac.

Celiac Disease is a medical condition. Nor only that, celiac is still a baby on the block in terms of treatment, research, and professional understanding. The "Gluten Free Diet",, despite grab-bag assumptions isn't a cure. The  gluten free diet is a treatment. For celiacs,  celiac disease persists whatever diet they follow. Symptoms and damage are controlled by going gluten free. But maintaining a gluten-free plate,  while ne…