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Karen B.

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About Karen B.

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    Texas, USA

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  1. Does it get any easier?

    I've been eating gluten free since 2003 and it does get better. I do remember when Hubby and I realized that I was getting sick every time I ate something cooked in a cast iron skillet and we had to burn it out and re-season it. It's incredible how sensitive it can be. After all this time, I still get hit with the strong wish for the convenience of being able to pick up a bucket of chicken for supper when we're tired although I stand by what I told my doc about the GFD... "I can't say it's not better for me to have to think about everything that I eat. I can't imagine living in a house with gluten. My hubby made the decision to have a gluten-free house when I was diagnosed when he realized that him kissing me when he had been eating gluten could make me sick. I didn't believe it until he proved it to me. If you have to share a kitchen with gluten, you need people that respect territorial boundaries. If you don't have that, you're going to keep getting sick.
  2. Non-dairy, non-soy calorie dense foods I have to limit (since I have the opposite problem) are avocado, nut butters, shellfish, oily fish, breaded foods fried in healthy fats, black olive tapenade (like pesto with black olives), gluten-free baked goods like cupcakes, muffins, homemade waffles, gluten-free breads with nuts added.
  3. Gluten Eating House Guests

    I see 2 issues: #1 -- How good of a hostess can you be if you're sick? And how will your guests feel if they are the cause of you being ill? #2 -- There are so many foods that are naturally gluten-free and good substitutions like Tinkyada, GFP French Bread, Chebe, etc. I can't see how you're shorting your guests at all. If you bake fresh, homemade bread, you'll actually be providing a treat most people don't get now. Home made gluten-free waffles are very easy and again, that's something most people don't get fresh and pipping hot. Serve with vanilla yogurt and fresh fruit for the healthy types and whipped cream for the ones that aren't worried about it. You can serve dishes with gluten-free pasta, rice, potatos, tacos, tostadas, salads and eating out. Have you tried making what I nicknamed stir-fry pasta? Basically cooking fresh vegatables and chicken, shrimp or what-have-you in EV olive oil and tossed with pasta. It's a great alternative to the standard red pasta sauce and you can vary the flavors by changing around the ingredients. Chicken, red peppers, onions, black beans, corn and pasta will have a completely different taste than shrimp, broccoli, carrots and green peas with pasta. Who misses bread when served a chili cheese baked potato? A Tex-Mex cassarole of cheese enchiladas topped with canned chili and cheese calls for rice and refried beans -- no bread needed. I'd make sure I had all the meals planned out and shopped for before your guests show up along with some familiar snacks like chips/dips, fresh fruit, etc. and some new snacks like Chebe parmesan bread sticks, gluten-free pretzels, maybe Namaste spice cake done as carrot cake muffins. Ask your guests for some of their favorite foods to get an idea ahead of time of dishes you might convert. And don't forget to ask if they have any allergies or extremely disliked foods. You never know, your guests might find their reflux disappears when they aren't eating Wonder Bread all the time.
  4. What kind of lettuce? I've been told iceberg lettuce is one of the most difficult foods to digest. Pre-diagnosis, iceberg lettuce is the only food that would routinely give me D. Gluten didn't bother me but iceberg lettuce would do me in. Other lettuces give me no problem.
  5. Your friend is totally correct -- the doc won't see the cheeks to which you apply blush. :-) They are under such a tight schedules and see so many patients in one day, you could meet the doc and nurse in the grocery store the following night and they wouldn't even know you.
  6. Yes, it is an excellent natural source of vitamin D but it also is high in vitamin A and according to Hubby's doc, too much vitamin A can weaken bones. He was taking liquid cod liver oil and not measuring it, just drinking it from the bottle. Add in eating large romaine lettuce salads ( [check vitamin A level for one head]) and cold water fish, he managed to take too much for several years and wound up with osteopenia. Fortunately, he was able to rebuild his bones with just stopping the vitamin A and taking calcium supplements. It was a lesson to me to find out the upper limits on the nutritional supplements I take.
  7. I take Advanced Nutritional Technology SuperEPA 2000 Natural Fish Oil Concentrate, 1000 mg and I take 2/day. I haven't had any nausea problems with it from the beginning. My hubby's cardio doc recommended them to him and when I wanted to try them for general health, I started taking them. They have EPA and DHA. I don't keep them in the fridge but we get them by mail order. My hubby was taking cod liver oil and gave himself a case of osteopenia from overdoing it. The doc explained that you want a lab grade fish oil that doesn't have vitamin A and to watch out for cheap oils because they sometimes have mercury. It has helped my arthiritis and my cholesterol/triglycerides are in a good spot. But I eat heart healthy anyway (EVOO or Benecol instead of butter).
  8. I found back in my pre-diagnosis baking days that melted butter made my tollhouse cookie or cookie bars chewy but regular cold butter made them crisp. You might try using real butter (although I now use Benecol and be the same effect) and melt it before adding it to the recipe. I like crisp crunchy cookies, so soft and chewy would be a problem for me. But I do know how to get there. :-) Pamela's chocolate chunk cookies were good but they weren't crisp enough for me so you might want to try them.
  9. At the time I was diagnosed, I had no Celiac symptoms, just anemia and sciatica from B vitamin and folic acid deficiency. When my Mom was diagnosed, she had no Celiac symptoms, just leg cramps and at 73, the doc couldn't believe she had Celiac. FYI -- The GFP Favorite Sandwich Bread is the closest I've tasted to plain white bread. Amazon has a pack of 6 for under $20. I haven't tasted the Kinnikinnick bread mentioned earlier. Someone else has mentioned Authentic Foods Cinnamon bread as the only bread their kids will eat (the kids have good taste, that bread is delicious). Amy's Mac and Cheese is really good. We had a mac-n-cheese conversation going a few days ago but I can't find it now. I don't have kids, but I think it's good to have a firm diagnosis and rule out other problems. I've seen several posts about kids that hit their teen years and decide to ignore their diet. If you have a diagnosis you can point to, it comes from a position. Personally speaking, I'm glad a diagnosis was obtainable for me. Many know they have a problem with gluten but the tests still have a lot of false negatives (but no false positives).
  10. Just a footnote... One package of Pamela's makes 2 12-14 inch pizza crusts but we made one crust and an assortment of bread sticks. Hubby was saving the last one for me and I was saving it for him so it went stale on the counter and became very tough. And I found out a new use for left over bread sticks. gluten-free dog chews! It took our dog about 15 minutes to chew his way from one end to the other. Now he wants another one. I told him he'll have to wait a week.
  11. Check out this earlier conversation. I posted several Chebe recipes in a string here. You can get a wide variety of effects just by changing up the cheese. I found out using fat-free cream cheese (the fat-free has xanthan gum) makes a white bread type dough. Parmesan makes a Schlotsky's type bread. Forget the cheese (as I did one time) and it makes a biscuit/scone type of item. I enjoy playing around with it just to see what I can do with it. I use parchment paper when I bake anything. I also make it with 6 oz. of parmesan and add the baking powder mentioned on the red package, do everything else according to package directions and divide it into 4 balls and press in my tortilla press for mini-pizza crusts. Cook them as directed on the package and freeze for pizza later. Or put the dough ball in a quart ziploc sprayed inside with butter PAM, pat out to an even thickness (s/b about 3/4 inch to 1 inch), cut the bag away (on the seams) and use a pizza cutter to zip it into 20 pieces. 3 or 4 of these makes great lunch mini sandwiches. I take 4 because my co-workers always ask for a taste. It's a very versitile dough. Just remember to wrap it in a cotton tea towel and let it air for 12-24 hours before you put it in an airtight container or in the fridge. Unlike rice flour products that dry out easily, Chebe has to have a chance to dry out or it goes gummy.
  12. Gluten-free Doesn't Seem So Bad

    Ditto here. I'm glad that it's something I can control so easily. I see other people with stuff they have to take prescription drugs for and the side effects of the drugs are almost as worrisome as the health issue. But I really have to say my hubby helps me stay positive. He was so relieved it wasn't colon cancer like they thought! He does a lot of the cooking.
  13. New With Empty Pantry

    Good News -- Chocolatey-brownie-fudgey type things seem to be the easiest thing to do gluten-free. I've made great chocolate cake with Namaste mix and I'm told their brownie mix is terriffic too. I can buy Bob's Read Mill gluten-free brownie mix at my local store and they are good. I made Pamela's gluten-free brownie mix for the office gang recently and everyone liked them. There are some really great "from scratch" bakers here on this board but I'm not one of them. However, if you want to know a good, easy mix I can probably help you out. :-) Our home is gluten-free - my hubby's decision after he proved to me that when he ate Raisin Bran and kissed me (a light peck) without brushing his teeth, I got sick from his gluten residue. He said he didn't trust himself to remember and he didn't want to make me sick. With 2 young kids, I would think it would make your life easier if the entire house was a "safe zone" so you didn't have to worry about the Celiac kid getting the Play-Doh. (but I don't have kids)
  14. Please Tell Me This Gets Better...

    Just a quick "head up" on one think you should know right off -- gluten-free baked products tend to be higher in carbs and calories than their normal, gluten-containing counterparts. Something I posted the other day... Plain White Bread (regular gluten bread) Serving: 1 slice, 22 g Calories: 64 Carbs: 12g Fiber: 1 g gluten-free Sandwich Bread (from Whole Foods) Serving: 1 slice, 50 g Calories: 150 Carbs: 24g Fiber: 0 OTOH, Tinkyada pasta is the best gluten-free pasta I've tasted (friends can't tell when I serve it to them) and it's about the same as regular pasta but it's higher in fiber. Also, you may find this link handy. It's to the Hormel gluten-free list. All regular stuff you can buy at the grocery. You might want to see if you have a local Celiac group. Local groups have all the great info on where you can get the best gluten-free stuff for a good price. We can tell you what we've found to be good but not where to get it. Also, once you identify the products you like, check out Amazon for good prices on them. A lot of their gluten-free stuff ships free if you order more than $25 and the prices on most stuff is cheaper than local places. And if you find yourself ready to attack the next time you see an old favorite in someone else's hands, post something here and I'd bet people will have a gluten-free substitute. On second thought, don't wait until you're ready to attack. <grin>