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Let's Give Some Good Shopping Advice


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25 replies to this topic

#1 BamBam

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Posted 03 March 2005 - 02:47 PM

We all know it is hard to afford buying gluten free items on the internet, or in a health food store. Many of us are on limited or very strict budgets. I think we need to offer some good shopping advice for those of us on limited budgets.

My one piece of advice right now, is the fact that I pretty much only shop the outer area at the grocery store for the most part. I walk almost a complete square shopping for fresh fruits and veggies, meat, milk, eggs, yogurt and margarine. However, I do buy frozen and canned veggies as needed also. I watch all sale ads!

I cannot afford very many advertised "gluten free" items. I mean a bag of 12 cookies cost close to $5.00. The second the words "gluten free" go on something it's like the price has to double or something. I do occasionally treat myself to something like a chocolate cake mix or maybe buy a bread mix or something like that, but that is my treat, I only buy them occasionally.

BamBam ;)
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Montana
Self-diagnosed after many tests and no results to feel better
Gluten Free since 8-6-2005
Lactose free for many years
Casein Free since 02/14/06

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#2 FaithInScienceToo

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Posted 03 March 2005 - 03:38 PM

One thing my boyfriend and I have decided to do is to purchase a 'chest-type' freezer...we figure we can even throw a nice cloth over it and use it as a side-table if need be -

It will come in very handy for buying gluten-free items in larger quantities (thus, less shopping= less time and gas = less costs), and I can buy 'expensive' items that freeze well 'en masse,' too.

It will also be good for making extra servings of gluten-free recipes that I know freeze well, so that I won't need to cook as often, and so that there will always be things available that I like and can eat - such as a delicious black bean vegetarian chili I love that freezes/defrosts perfectly.

"Individual-serving"- sized glass storage dishes are another thing worth purchasing, in my opinion. That way, you can defrost as many, or as few, servings as needed.

Thanks for starting this thread...

I agree that it IS sad to see 'the big companies' over-charging for "gluten-free"...the smaller 'start-ups' need to, of course.

Gina
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"Get busy living
or get busy dying."


From: The Shawshank Redemption
--------------------------------------------------------------
gluten-free since Jan 1 '05
Positive response to diet within days, felt 'alive again' within 2 weeks

Feb 22 '05:
Diagnosed "Celiac Sprue, and IBS" by a GI doc, Dr. David Lin of Danville, CA
via blood testing 53 days after I began the gluten-free diet on my own:
Test results at 53 days POST going gluten-free were:

Gliadin AB IgA = 29.9
Since 30+ = positive for Celiac Disease when ingesting gluten, my doc
diagnosed me with Celiac Sprue then and there.

Gliadin AB IgG was 5.6 at that point
-------------------------------------------
Endoscopy with biopsies, AND colonoscopy with biopsies were done,
only to rule out other possible GI problems (especially intestinal
lymphoma) - My doctor told me the results indicated "no current damage
found" - and that as long as I stay gluten-free, I don't need another
biopsy for ten years.

Follow-up blood testing was done about one year later, by the same
Gastro doc, in Nov '05:
Gliadin AB IgA =26, Gliadin AB IgG <1

Blood testing done again by him, 5 months later (March '06)
He then told me my tests results were back to normal, and "Keep up the
good work! You can't argue with success!" :-)

I now see him one time per year for routine testing to make sure I am
staying gluten-free.
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
ADDTIONALLY:
I was also diagnosed as positive for antibodies and autoimmune
response to gliadin by Enterolab, via stool specimen taken 56 days
gluten-free

and I have one of the two genes that 'cause' Celiac Disease:

"HLA-DQ8," via Enterolabs cheek cell test kit
---------------------------------------------------------------------
I began a COMPLETE 'Gluten-free Casein-free' diet in Nov '05, due to:
"positive" for casein antibodies from Enterolab (in Feb '05)
and
"positive" for casein IgG (Elisa) via York Labs' finger-prick blood
test, Sept '05
and continued 'stomach pains,' although nothing compared to before
going gluten-free....

UPDATE: ALL remaining symptoms disappeared within weeks of going gluten-free&CF!
**********************

My PAST illnesses I believe are attributable to Untreated Celiac Disease:

Recurrent ear and throat infections in childhood
Frequent childhood stomach aches, underweight, picky eater
Tooth enamel problems/excessive cavities in childhood
Diagnosed in 20's with non-allergic rhinitis
Two spontaneous abortions (childless)
IBS diagnosis at age 28 (all better post going gluten-free and casein-free)
["Horrible" digestive problems from ages 32-47 - excess gas,
diarrhea gone post gluten-free!]
Reflux diagnosis at age 35 ('reflux' gone post gluten-free)
ADHD diagnosis at age 38 and at age 48 (not as bad with Gluten-free Casein-free diet)
Broke elbow in 2 places, age 39
Osteopenia diagnosed at age 44 (bone scan revealed thinning of spine -
taking Calcium and Vit D now)
Fibromyalgia diagnosis at age 40 (fatigue and pain all gone post gluten-free!)
Minor depression with anxiety diagnosed at age 42 (taking Paxil)
Skin cancer - squamous at age 43 and pre-melanoma at age 45
Adult acne (this, too, went away, but only after going dairy-free)
Topical dermatitis (so bad I needed steroid shots) diagnosed at age 46
(That's gone now, too!)
Excessive bruising of skin began at age 45:
I was told by derm doc AND family physician "That's just thin, aging
skin, nothing you can do about that" (GUESS WHAT?! ...NO unusual
bruising POST going gluten-free! I can now wear skirts and shorts
again!)


SO many years of being sick...
Hopefully, others will benefit from Science, and the increasing media
attention being given to Celiac Disease and gluten-based illnesses,
and will not have to go through what I, and others on here, have had
to go through.

#3 celiac3270

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Posted 03 March 2005 - 04:19 PM

The following companies list gluten on the label:

Aunt Nelly's
Balance
Baskin Robbins
Ben & Jerry
Betty Crocker
Blue Bunny
Butterball *lists wheat only
Breyers
Campbells
Cascadian Farms
Celestial Seasonings
ConAgra *lists wheat only
Country Crock
Edy's
General Mills
Good Humor
Green Giant
Haagen Daz
Hellman's
Hershey
Hormel
Hungry Jack
Jiffy
Knorr
Kozy Shack
Kraft
Libby's
Lipton
Martha White
McCormick
Nabisco
Nestle
Old El Paso
Ortega
Pillsbury
Popsicle
Post
Progresso
Russell Stover
Seneca Foods
Smucker
Stokely's
Sunny Delight
T Marzetti
Tyson
Unilever
Wishbone
Yoplait
Zatarain's

Richard compiled this list and posted it at the Delphi Forums board and today, at this board
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#4 tarnalberry

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Posted 03 March 2005 - 05:10 PM

I think the best advice is the easiest - buy whole, simple, ingredients, not specially prepared stuff, and cook at home. Also provides an awful lot of flavor. ;-)
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Tiffany aka "Have I Mentioned Chocolate Lately?"
Inconclusive Blood Tests, Positive Dietary Results, No Endoscopy
G.F. - September 2003; C.F. - July 2004
Hiker, Yoga Teacher, Engineer, Painter, Be-er of Me
Bellevue, WA

#5 mommida

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Posted 03 March 2005 - 06:31 PM

Has anyone looked into www.unitedbuyingclubs.com ? I have joined a group of 7 families with food allergies and organic food preferences. Deliveries are every 4 weeks. We can split cases of food amongst the group, and take advantage of the bulk discount. The web site will help you find an existing group in your area, or information to start your own. The group leader has helped me find the best tasting gluten free foods. I haven't wasted money paying inflated prices at the health food store on food I don't like, just because it's gluten free. It has worked out great for me! I did invest in a large freezer. I make a double batch of everything I can to have a spare meal on hand. I also am pretty picky about fresh fruit, so when it starts to look a little less than pristine, muffins or breads are a breeze to make up and freeze.

I am looking into an organic farm arrangement. Fresh produce, eggs, poultry and beef, and the assurance that it is fresh. We bought 1/4 of a cow. It has saved money by cutting out the grocery store middle-man. The meat is processed when all parts have been sold.

Last fall I helped an older couple do their yearly canning. I learned how to can and they gave me a case of everything we canned. I enjoyed their company more than anything else. Canning your own vegetables is cheap if you don't mind doing the work and have the time.

Laura
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Michigan

#6 cdford

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Posted 04 March 2005 - 01:13 AM

If you do much baking, you are probably better off in the long run to buy whole grains (such as rices) and mill them yourself rather than paying the exhorbitant prices at the grocery store. You can buy large amounts of flours but some of them don't seem to stay as fresh. I mill brown rice, bean, and sometimes amaranth, teff, and millet about once a week and mix up a large batch of flour to keep in the fridge. It is fresh and ready for use as needed.

The recommendations about keeping it simple and cooking from scratch are both good ones. We would never be able to afford extras like cookies or brownies if we had to buy the gluten-free mixes. Dry beans and rices are easy and very inexpensive. We even do potato chips from scratch on those occasions when we eat that kind of stuff. I watch for sales and stock up on those items I know we will eat. For example, one of our local grocery stores just had a "10 for" sale. At 10 for a $1.00, I got a lot of canned stuff. It may take up space, but I only bought the items I know we will eat. It isn't a bargain if it doesn't get eaten.

Using simple meats and veggies, I manage to feed a family of five on around $250 a month. About every three months, I spend an extra hundred dollars on mail order gluten-free items I need for baking. One of the tricks to this is never go to the store hungry. It helps if you go without the kids or the husband, but I can never seem to manage that. I have just learned to say no.

We did a homeschool project once where we had the kids go to the store and shop for a week's worth of groceries. The only caveat was that they could only spend $25.00. They managed, but they also learned a lot in the process.
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Donna
South Georgia
9 yrs gluten-free
...also DH, fibromyalgia, neuropathy, osteopenia, hypothyroid...

After almost 10 years, I am doing soooo much better!

#7 lovegrov

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Posted 04 March 2005 - 06:26 AM

I'm not on a real tight budget but I rarely buy specialty gluten-free food. I cook my own meals from primarily fresh ingredients and I rarely eat out. If you must have bread, cookies, cake etc, start experimenting with making your own. Some of the flours that cost an arm and a leg in a health food store are extremely cheap at an international or Asian market.

richard
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#8 stef_the_kicking_cuty

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Posted 04 March 2005 - 10:54 AM

I started to make my own bread. And with the breadmaker I have you can make your own jam as well. And when I go for shopping, my weekly menu depends on the special offers in the shop. That was cheapest for me so far.

I will try that website, which Laura posted here. It sounds good.

Hugs, Stef
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Stef

Next goals:
Results for 2011:
1x PA State Champ (I defended my title in pointfighting) and also again Grand Champion in pointfighting
August 20-27: Karate and Kickboxing World Championships in Germany (my homecountry)
gluten-free since 07/21/2004
Shermans Dale, PA

#9 celiac3270

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Posted 04 March 2005 - 12:41 PM

Has anyone looked into www.unitedbuyingclubs.com ? I have joined a group of 7 families with food allergies and organic food preferences. Deliveries are every 4 weeks. We can split cases of food amongst the group, and take advantage of the bulk discount. The web site will help you find an existing group in your area, or information to start your own. The group leader has helped me find the best tasting gluten free foods.

Very good point--I have a celiac friend here in NYC and we live within....four blocks (less than 1/4 of a mile) so our parents coordinate when ordering online--same sort of thing, but on a smaller scale.
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#10 mommida

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Posted 04 March 2005 - 07:17 PM

It occured to me that you will not find the price list on line. You need the price booklet you are ordering from. Here is an example of the price breakdown.

item #, 12/10oz. packages, product-Amy's whole meal cheese enchilada,
This is the cheese enchilada with black beans and corn on the side.

$3.62 per meal, = your price for the case $43.47 ( This is not a sale price!)

I checked the price at the health food store for this item $6.99

The booklet lists the items that are gluten free with a small g.
There are also monthly sales on items.

This particular item may not be a great deal for your area, but it is a great price for my area.

In the information about starting your own club, it was mentioned that some groups might not give individuals the full discount for their purchases. That seems rude to me, and if you can cover the $750 monthly order, start your own group. You don't have to have meetings. You just have to make sure the money is there to meet the truck.

Laura
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Michigan

#11 Thomas

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Posted 05 March 2005 - 03:14 AM

I think all the advice you guys have given is great!!
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#12 brdbntL

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Posted 05 March 2005 - 05:49 AM

Smith,
What about Tacos-
Corn tortillas naturally gluten free- and if you don't buy the already made ones like Old El Paso, you can get like 20 for $1.29 ( in my area). Just moisten some paper towels put the tortillas in, I do up to 4 at a time, and microwave for 20-30 s depending on your microwave. The meat is easy, brown ground meat, if you don't want to use a seasoning mix, but McCormick seems to be gluten-free, season with garlic powder, onion powder, cumin, chili powder, or whatever you like. Top with lettuce, cheese, tomatoes, black olives, avocado, sour cream, whatever hits your fancy or whatever was on sale.
You can also fry the corn tortillas or bake them in the oven. Frying has a much better texture imo, but baking is healthier. If you fry or bake them flat, spread refried beans of your choice, homemade or canned, any leftover meat ( we use leftover baked chicken, season with whatever seasonings you prefer, spread shredded cheese (cheddar, pepper jack, again whatever you prefer) bake in oven until cheese is melted. Top with suggestions from above. You can make these there own meal or serve with mexican rice (I am still experimenting so I don't have a decent recipe to share and I haven't found a gluten-free boxed one).
Going south of the border so to speak is an inexpensive gluten-free way to cook imo. I also do enchiladas with corn tortillas. If you have a Goya section in your grocery store you might get some more ideas. (Just be careful most of there spice mixes contain gluten and I have family that has trouble with their canned beans due to preservatives)
Oh and these are pretty fast- I can get the tacos on the table in like 15 minutes. If you buy prefried flat corn tortillas and canned refried beans the chalupas are about the same.
I hope this gives you some ideas.
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#13 Rikki Tikki

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Posted 05 March 2005 - 10:48 AM

Hi celiac3270:

Thanks for all that research on the products that list gluten. Is that the new labeling law that was passed. I live in California and have been waiting to see when it would take effect.
Thanks
Sally
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Nostaglia is a file that removes the rough edges from the good old days!!!!

" 15 years of it's stress!"
"blood work show's a disease called celiac,
but it can't be that because it's rare!"
Diagnosed via blood and biopsy 2003


Not a medical professional just a silly celiac
offering support, my
experience and advice

#14 Rikki Tikki

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Posted 05 March 2005 - 10:52 AM

Hi Smith:

I know what you mean by expensive. I am also on a limited budget. I did find out that the baking mix can be used as coating for meats. I have used it on chicken and pork chops and it was really good. I have had a problem finding the flour in my area. I just thought I'd pass that on. I don't know of a way to make cheaper food, I bought a cookbook but then again the initial purchase of all the ingredents is out of my price range.
If anybody has any ideas that would be wonderful
Sally
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Nostaglia is a file that removes the rough edges from the good old days!!!!

" 15 years of it's stress!"
"blood work show's a disease called celiac,
but it can't be that because it's rare!"
Diagnosed via blood and biopsy 2003


Not a medical professional just a silly celiac
offering support, my
experience and advice

#15 Merika

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Posted 05 March 2005 - 01:58 PM

Hi Donna,

Can you tell me more about your grain mill? Is it a regular flour mill, what kind, where did you get it, is it easy to clean (does it need to be cleaned?)?

Thanks!
Merika
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