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      Frequently Asked Questions About Celiac Disease   09/30/2015

      This Celiac.com FAQ on celiac disease will guide you to all of the basic information you will need to know about the disease, its diagnosis, testing methods, a gluten-free diet, etc.   Subscribe to FREE Celiac.com email alerts What are the major symptoms of celiac disease? Celiac Disease Symptoms What testing is available for celiac disease? - list blood tests, endo with biopsy, genetic test and enterolab (not diagnostic) Celiac Disease Screening Interpretation of Celiac Disease Blood Test Results Can I be tested even though I am eating gluten free? How long must gluten be taken for the serological tests to be meaningful? The Gluten-Free Diet 101 - A Beginner's Guide to Going Gluten-Free Is celiac inherited? Should my children be tested? Ten Facts About Celiac Disease Genetic Testing Is there a link between celiac and other autoimmune diseases? Celiac Disease Research: Associated Diseases and Disorders Is there a list of gluten foods to avoid? Unsafe Gluten-Free Food List (Unsafe Ingredients) Is there a list of gluten free foods? Safe Gluten-Free Food List (Safe Ingredients) Gluten-Free Alcoholic Beverages Distilled Spirits (Grain Alcohols) and Vinegar: Are they Gluten-Free? Where does gluten hide? Additional Things to Beware of to Maintain a 100% Gluten-Free Diet Free recipes: Gluten-Free Recipes Where can I buy gluten-free stuff? Support this site by shopping at The Celiac.com Store.

Rome And Sicily Travel
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I am a type I diabetic with 11 months of gluten free experience. Also a physician, I am probably well suited to be Gluten free since I have 35 years of strict diet experience. We have just returned from 10 days of travel thru Sicily and then finally Rome. The areas of Sicily were on the South coast (Sciacca, Sambucca, Menfi, etc.), and then Palermo. English was generally useless, and we muddled thru with a bit of Spanish, and my dictionary. Here is what I did, and I am confident that in 10 days I was never poisoned by Gluten. I brought two sleeves of BiAglut spaghetti, three boxes of Pamela's cookies, and two loaves of vacuum sealed gluten free bread. I had a Sicilian friend write instructions on note cards, describing my condition, foods and additives to avoid, foods that are acceptible, and instructions for cooking my spaghetti. I weighed my spaghetti on a tiny scale at the hotel, and put the portion I wanted in a freezer bag before going out. I generally asked for a Pomodoro sauce (tomato). I then had a salad with olive oil and wine vinegar, and a meat or fish dish usually grilled. If you don't like fish, watch out for grilled fish, they grill the whole fish, head, eyes, skin and all! Sicilians are very proud of the fishing industry, and the fish is tasty. Although risoto (rice) is common in Sicilian cookery, I did not find menu items very often that were rice based. In more expensive and cosmopolitan restaurants (like in Palermo) there are potato dishes, but by that time I was really into my own pasta so I did not order these. All Italians seem to be familiar with gluten sensitivity, and they did not make any mistakes that I could see. (That is not true here in the US!). Gelato (ice cream) is superb, and the fruit, especially the oranges (arancia) are great. Of course wine is everywhere and excellent, so you won't miss beer at all. More complex pasta dishes are off limits (ravioli, lasagna, etc.) unless you stay in one area long enough to commission your pasta to be cooked into such a dish, and they would be willing to do that since these are the friendliest people on earth! I did not have time to explore how locals with celiac disease make out, but I think they carry their own pasta like me, since there was never any suprise at my bag of pasta! Rome was a slam dunk after Sicily since almost all the waiters there were bi-lingual. I still used the cards, but then we discussed it in English as well. Your luggage will be lighter for the trip home, so more room for gifts and souveneirs! Buono notta!

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Italy has such a high population of people with celiac disease. I believe they test all of their children by age 7 or something like that. I have heard lots of good things about travel there. It sounds like you had a great experience also. Congrats on the fun time!!

-Jessica :rolleyes:

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Yes, as Angel says, they test all kids by 5 years of age. Probably the incidence is not much higher than here in the US, but the difference is of course that they know it, and therefore are very able to help other celiacs.

We go to Italy every year for a month, but usually just rent a house, or an apartment if we're in a city. (Yes, I'm Italian.) This gives me complete control of my eating -- I haven't eaten out in a few years now (except coffee! :) ). And yes, Pamela's cookies are the best -- I like to sit in the piazza and have an espresso with my cookies. Italians also make almond cookies that are just almonds, sugar, and egg whites (I make these at home at least once a week) -- also a good option.

Your trip sounds very well planned and therefore, enjoyable. Hope the next one is just as good,

Patty

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    • does your diet have to be like a perfection?
      I  think you need to watch where you get your medical info!    Of course you can't introduce gluten back in. And  of course you have to be strictly gluten-free and not intentionally eat gluten.   "The gluten-free diet is a lifetime requirement. Eating any gluten, no matter how small an amount, can damage your intestine. This is true for anyone with the disease, including people who do not have noticeable symptoms. It can take weeks for antibody levels (indicating intestinal damage) to normalize after a person with celiac disease has consumed gluten. Depending on a person’s age at diagnosis, some problems, such as delayed growth and tooth discoloration, may not improve. The gluten-free diet requires a completely new approach to eating. You have to be extremely careful about what you buy for lunch at school or work, eat at cocktail parties, or grab from the refrigerator for a midnight snack. Eating out and traveling can be challenging as you learn to scrutinize menus for foods with gluten, question the waiter or chef about possible hidden sources of gluten, and search for safe options at airports or on the road. However, with practice, identifying potential sources of gluten becomes second nature and you’ll learn to recognize which foods are safe and which are off limits." http://www.cureceliacdisease.org/living-with-celiac/guide/treatment    
    • does your diet have to be like a perfection?
      FlowerQueen is correct.  Once diagnosed with celiac disease, you should never consume gluten again without the risk of becoming very ill (osteoporosis, liver damage, lymphoma, etc.).   I think everyone has trouble in the beginning sticking to a gluten free diet.  That's because gluten is in so many processed foods.  It takes time to learn to read labels, make a safe kitchen, learn to eat out, get your family to support you.  I would advise reading out Newbie 101 section under "Coping" within this forum.  It contains valuable tips for becoming gluten free.  Also, check out the University of Chicago's celiac website to learn about celiac disease.  Knowledge is power!   Everyone has different degrees of damage, but I would say that learning the diet and healing can take months to a year or longer.  The good news is that this is an autoimmune disorder that is treatable -- avoid gluten at all costs!   Take care and welcome to the forum!   
    • does your diet have to be like a perfection?
      Not sure what you mean by perfecting your diet? Do you mean accidentally eating gluten?   As to re-introducing gluten again, if you have celiac disease, please DO NOT ever re-introduce gluten again. It's an auto-immune disease, not a food intolerance. It will damage your gut again if you do.  Hope this helps.
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