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All I know is that I got DH like skin irritation from too much flour in the air when I was working in the bakery and when I taught classes. But it's a Hot Topic in the medical community as well -- just check out these three differing opinions:
from Celiac Disease Center at Columbia website:
Dermatitis herpetiformis (DH) is the skin manifestation of celiac disease. All patients with DH have celiac disease. It is an intensely itchy rash that usually occurs in the same place for each patient. This may be on the hands or fingers, forearms, buttocks or scalp or anywhere on the body. The rash typically consists of very itchy, small red dots that may develop into blisters or pimples. They are intensely itchy.
The diagnosis is clinical and can be confirmed by biopsy. The biopsy, for best results, needs to be taken from just adjacent to a lesion. The biopsy needs to have special immunofluorescence tests performed on it.
Treatment is first and foremost a gluten-free diet. This results in resolution of the lesions and will prevent new lesions. The diet also will prevent the development of lymphoma, that occurs at an increased rate as in patients with celiac disease. Drugs (Dapsone) may help patients recover from a severe episode, but are not a substitute for the diet. Patients with DH are very sensitive to small amounts of gluten.
Celiac disease: Can gluten be absorbed through the skin?
If I have celiac disease, do I need to be concerned about sunscreens, shampoos and cosmetics that contain gluten?
Gluten can't be absorbed through the skin, although this is a common misperception. Celiac disease is triggered by consumption of gluten. For this reason, people with celiac disease must eliminate all gluten from their diet. Gluten-containing skin-care products and cosmetics aren't a problem unless you accidentally swallow them. For this reason, you should avoid using such products on your lips or around your mouth. Also, avoid using gluten-containing dental products, such as mouthwash and toothpaste. If you're uncertain about whether a product contains gluten, check the ingredient list on the product label or call the manufacturer.
Some people develop a form of celiac disease called dermatitis herpetiformis (DH), which causes an itchy, blistering rash. This skin disorder is also linked to gluten intolerance. But although it involves the skin, DH is caused by ingesting gluten, not by skin contact with gluten. So, eliminating gluten from your diet will help clear up DH as well.
If you use a cosmetic or skin-care product that contains gluten and you develop a skin reaction, seek the advice of your doctor or dermatologist to help identify the cause. It is possible to have an allergy to wheat or another grain that could cause a skin reaction.
Medical Journal Articles:
BACKGROUND: Dermatitis herpetiformis (DH) is a cutaneous manifestation of gluten sensitivity, occasionally associated with other autoimmune disorders, and reportedly associated with an increased risk of lymphoproliferative disorders. We describe a series of patients with DH, focusing on associated disorders (particularly celiac disease), incidence of lymphoma, histopathology, and sensitivity of direct immunofluorescence (DIF) testing and serologic testing with antiendomysium antibodies for the diagnosis of DH. METHODS: The medical records of 264 patients with DH diagnosed between 1970 and 1996 were reviewed retrospectively. In addition, the records of six patients evaluated before the advent of DIF testing between 1932 and 1969 were reviewed. RESULTS: Established celiac disease was present in 12.6% of patients with DH, autoimmune systemic disorders in 22.2%, malignant neoplasms in 10.4%, sarcoidosis in four patients, and ulcerative colitis in six patients. Lymphoproliferative disorders were found in seven patients. The histopathologic examinations showed a marked predominance of neutrophils in the inflammatory infiltrate. DIF testing was positive in 92.4% of the patients tested. Indirect immunofluorescence assay indicated circulating antiendomysial antibodies in the sera of 40 of the 63 patients tested (63.5%). CONCLUSIONS: In this large series of patients with DH from a single institution, patients had a low incidence of symptomatic gluten-sensitive enteropathy, low risk of lymphoproliferative disorders, and associations with other systemic autoimmune disorders. The value of DIF testing in the diagnosis of DH was confirmed. The detection of antiendomysial antibodies by indirect immunofluorescence was less sensitive than indicated by other reports.
cross contamination -- is the obvious worry -- lots of information avlb at CSA and GIG:
as for recipes there are tons! from cookies, to brownies, to cakes, to salads, to all sorts of things. I agree something they could freeze would be best - -that way they only have to 'super clean' once in awhile and not everyday. That would make brownies and more dense cookies and cakes much better options.
Here is a gluten-free brownie recipe, (with DF and vegan options) more recipes at http://benevolentkitchen.blogspot.com:
makes about one tray
most traditional sauce recipes are already gluten-free (at least the ones not skimping on time by adding thickeners)
as for main dishes, again, vegetable, meat products, dairy products, they are gluten-free
as for things like bread crumbs -- gluten-free flour works well in many cases, so do corn flake (or other flake cereals), also, a great use for gluten-free bread after its even to dry to toast -- gluten-free bread crumbs