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      Frequently Asked Questions About Celiac Disease   04/24/2018

      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 Celiac.com's FREE weekly eNewsletter   What is Celiac Disease and the Gluten-Free Diet? What are the major symptoms of celiac disease? Celiac Disease Symptoms What testing is available for celiac disease?  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 What if my doctor won't listen to me? An Open Letter to Skeptical Health Care Practitioners Gluten-Free recipes: Gluten-Free Recipes
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    GLUTEN FREE WATCHDOG, A NOVEL IDEA - AN INTERVIEW WITH TRICIA THOMPSON


    Rebecca  Herman

    In 2010, the U.S. market for gluten-free products was valued at $2.6 billion.  Projected sales in this market are expected to exceed $5 billion by 2015.(1) 


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    As the gluten-free product market expands, and as we continue to seek out new tools to aid us in our search for truly gluten-free products, we are in for a treat with the recent launch of Gluten Free Watchdog.  Tricia Thompson, the founder of Gluten Free Watchdog, agreed to discuss it with us.

    Can you explain what Gluten Free Watchdog is, and what is novel about it?
    Gluten Free Watchdog (www.glutenfreewatchdog.org) is a food testing site that was started to make expensive state-of-the-art gluten testing available to the gluten-free community at a fraction of the true cost. This is the first time this type of resource has been offered.

    Can you share your personal story – how you became interested in celiac disease and gluten sensitivity?
    I have been gluten free for over 27 years. In the early years, I became very frustrated by the contradictory information available on several key gluten-free issues—Are oats safe to eat? Why is wheat starch eaten by the gluten-free community in Europe? Why do some support groups say “grains” such as buckwheat, amaranth, and quinoa should be avoided? And then there was the issue of nutritional quality. Back then almost all gluten-free processed foods were made using refined rice/corn and starch. So after finishing graduate school I made a list of all the topics I wanted to research and then started writing (and writing and writing!). 

    In December 2008, the Chicago Tribune investigated three Wellshire Kids brand gluten-free products, sold exclusively at Whole Foods Market — Dinosaur Shapes Chicken Bites, Chicken Corn Dogs, and Beef Corn Dogs — and analytical results indicated that they contained gluten, ranging from 116 to 2,200 parts per million.  More recently, Paul Seeling, a North Carolina baker, was convicted of fraud relating to the packaging of wheat bread as a gluten-free product.  Have events like these influenced the Gluten Free Watchdog?

    Events such as what occurred with Wellshire Farms made me realize that some manufacturers, while well-intentioned, did not understand how consumers in the US define gluten free when they see it on a food label. It also made me realize that some manufacturers did not know how to accurately test their labeled gluten free products for gluten, and that some of them were operating under the mistaken belief that if a product is (or is made from) a naturally gluten-free grain the product does not need to be tested. We have learned a lot over the years about cross contamination, starting with the study published in the New England Journal of Medicine on gluten contamination of oats and more recently with the study on gluten contamination of naturally gluten-free grains and flours published in the Journal of the American Dietetic Association.

    Combined, these events and studies may have undermined consumer confidence in labeled gluten-free foods. Most manufacturers are doing things right. It is my hope that Gluten Free Watchdog will allow consumers to have confidence in the products they eat and feed their family.

    Over the last ten years, you have published a significant amount of research on gluten-free product labeling.  And you recently authored a chapter on gluten-free product labeling in Melinda Dennis’ and Daniel Leffler’s new book, Real Life with Celiac Disease:  Troubleshooting and Thriving Gluten Free, which was published by the American Gastroenterological Association.  How has your research influenced Gluten Free Watchdog?

    From the consumer perspective the most important thing to understand about allergen labeling is that it pertains to ingredients only—it does not pertain to allergens that may be in a product due to cross contact. Currently, Gluten Free Watchdog is only testing foods labeled gluten free. In the future, we may test foods that appear to be gluten free based on ingredients.

    The Food Allergy Labeling and Consumer Protect Act (FALCPA) does not currently require the disclosure of barley or rye; or, contamination by manufacturers on product labeling.  Can Gluten Free Watchdog help us to decipher product labeling that may be difficult to understand?

    Gluten Free Watchdog is primarily a food testing site. My other website www.glutenfreedietitian.com contains extensive information on labeling laws and ingredients.

    Under FALCPA, the Federal Food & Drug Administration (FDA) is considering a proposed government definition of the term “gluten-free” for food product labeling purposes.  Once FDA approves a final rule, will the role of Gluten Free Watchdog change?

    Possibly but it will remain primarily a food testing site. Consumers will still want to know the level of gluten at which foods are testing and will still want the added confidence that independent transparent third party testing provides.

    On your blog, Gluten Free Dietitian, you discuss R5 ELISA tests, Ridascreen 7001 and Ridascreen R7011.  What is the importance of these tests, and are these the tests that Gluten Free Watchdog is using?  Are home-test kits accurate?

    The standard sandwich R5 ELISA is one of only two commercially available ELISAs validated at the levels used for regulatory purposes and official governmental methods (the other is the Morinaga Wheat Protein ELISA). The R5 and Morinaga ELISAs also are included in the FDA’s proposed gluten-free labeling rule as possible methods for rule enforcement. The competitive R5 ELISA may be used in conjunction with the sandwich R5 ELISA when a food is highly hydrolyzed.

    Gluten Free Watchdog tests food using the standard sandwich R5 ELISA and will, if necessary, also use the competitive R5 ELISA.

    What products does Gluten Free Watchdog plan to test in the upcoming months?  Are there any products that are difficult to test; and if so, why?

    We have been and will continue to test a wide variety of products—grains, flours, breads, cereals, pastas, cookies, etc. Anyone can visit the site and browse through the products that have been tested to date. However, testing data is available only to subscribers. One of the nice features of Gluten Free Watchdog is that subscribers can request that certain products be tested.

    One of the keys to successful testing of products is getting a homogenized sample—meaning any contaminant is evenly distributed throughout the sample being tested and there are no “hot spots.” This is why we test two extractions of each “homogenized” sample at Gluten Free Watchdog—we want to make sure the sample is truly homogenized. It can sometimes be tricky to get a homogenized sample when testing raw grains in grain versus flour form.

    FALCPA does not cover foods regulated by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), and the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB) has yet to finalize an allergen labeling rule for distilled spirits, beer, and wine.  Under TTB’s current labeling provisions, the term “gluten-free” is considered a health claim and its use is prohibited.  Are USDA and TTB adequately protecting consumers?  If not, does Gluten Free Watchdog plan to test any products regulated by either?
    Neither the TTB nor the USDA have mandatory allergen labeling and it will be interesting to see how they proceed with gluten-free labeling once the FDA’s gluten-free labeling law is in place. I have been told by representatives of the USDA that they will adopt the FDA’s gluten-free labeling law rather than develop their own.

    Gluten Free Watchdog will test USDA-regulated foods that are labeled gluten free. As mentioned earlier, we may start testing foods that appear to be gluten free based on ingredients. When we do, we would be happy to test beverages regulated by the TTB.

    Is Gluten Free Watchdog affiliated with any companies that sell or market gluten-free products?
    Nope! That is why we really need the support of gluten-free consumers!! It is my hope that members of the gluten-free community will see the value in having this type of resource available and will be willing to contribute a relatively small amount in exchange for access to expensive testing and input on what is tested—similar to a co-op.

    Source:

    1. Gluten-Free Foods and Beverages in the U.S., 3rd Edition.  Packaged Facts, February 2011.


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    Guest David

    Posted

    I have not joined, but the samples I saw at the website and the article just seem like another advertising gimmick. Too much of this is going on in the gluten free world. What we need is real help, not just being taken advantage of. The site just looked like manufacturers paying to have their product displayed on the website. I hope I am wrong and they actually have the guts to show products that fail testing. So many people are out there posing as helpful experts, but they are really just trying to make a buck. You just get tired of it sometimes.

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    Destiny Stone
    Celiac.com 04/29/2010 - May is designated as National Celiac Awareness Month. As such, I thought it would be a great opportunity to explore the history of celiac disease. Most people think of celiac disease as a modern day ailment, which predominantly affects  those of European descent and in Westernized societies. However in my research, I found that the best place to start when referencing the history of celiac disease, is actually the beginning of humans.
    In the beginning of humans, known as the Neolithic Period,  humans were hunters and gatherers and primarily survived on fruits, nuts, and meat when available. During the Neolithic Period,  humans evolved and began cultivating plants which quickly led to the agricultural revolution.
    With the agricultural revolution came a myriad of food antigens, such as dairy, eggs and processed grains. It was during this time that celiac disease was born. Some 8,000 years after making its debut, celiac was identified and named by a Greek physician known as Aretaeus of Cappadocia.
    In the first century A.D.,  Aretaeus documented information about, “The Coeliac Affection.” He named celiac disease, “koiliakos” derived from the Greek word for “abdomen”. In his descriptions of celiac Aretaeus stated, “If the stomach be  irretentive  of food and if it pass through undigested and crude, and nothing ascends into the body, we call such persons coeliacs”.  While a name had been given to the disease, people with celiac still had no idea how to heal from the condition, and were still vastly unaware of the cause for their ailments.
    It wasn't until the early 19th Century that Dr. Mathew Baillie published his observations on celiac disease which he sited as, 'chronic diarrheal disorder causing malnutrition and characterized by a gas-distended abdomen'. In his observations, Dr. Baillie documented that some of his patients appeared to benefit from eating only rice.
    However important Dr. Baillie's findings were, they still went largely unnoticed by the medical community until 75 years later when an English doctor known as Dr. Samuel Gee, came into the scene. In 1888  Dr. Gee was working for the Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children in the United Kingdom when he demonstrated a set of clinical trials performed on children and adults with celiac disease. Dr. Gee was quoted as saying, “To regulate the food is the main part of treatment. The allowance of farinaceous foods must be small, but if the patient can be cured at all, it must be by means of diet.” As an example he sited a very sick child that was fed the best Dutch mussels every day during mussel season. The child thrived during mussel season, but as soon as the season was over, the child regressed and died before the next mussel season.
    In the 1920's, Sidney Hass presented the “Banana diet”. Sydney successfully treated 8 out of 10 children suffering with celiac disease using the banana diet. He claimed to have cured the 8 children that were on the banana diet, but the other 2 children not on the banana diet, died. The banana diet included the elimination of all bread, crackers, potatoes and cereals and for several decades, the banana diet was the only cure for celiac disease.
    Another important marker in the history of celiac disease were the findings by Dutch pediatrician, Dr. Willem Karel Dicke. In 1953 Dr. Dicke wrote his doctoral thesis for the University of Utrecht based on  his observations that the ingestion of wheat proteins specifically, and not carbohydrates in general, were the cause of celiac disease. He was able to exemplify his findings based on bread shortages in the Netherlands during World War II. During the  bread shortages, he found that the health of children with celiac improved tremendously. However, when the allied planes began dropping bread to the Netherlands, the same children quickly deteriorated.
    In the 1960's, it became evident that the best method for testing for celiac disease was to perform a biopsy. However, doctors were urged not to diagnose people as having celiac disease until it was proven that gluten was the cause for the damage. To determine if a patient had celiac disease, a biopsy would be performed to evaluate the damage done to the intestines. The patient would then be put on a gluten-free diet. Another biopsy would then be preformed to determine improvement in the intestines. After improvement the patient would be put back on a gluten diet, and another (3rd) biopsy would be preformed to determine reoccurring damages to the intestine, and thus the presence of celiac disease. This method was used for over 20 years as the best method for testing for celiac disease.
    Then in the 1980's studies by Dr. Stefano Guandalini, showed that the presence of  celiac could be found in 95% of celiac cases by performing  a single biopsy.  In 1990 these findings helped create the new guidelines for celiac testing which  were  approved by ESPGHAN (European Society for Pediatric Gastroenterology). Also during this time, professionals starting recognizing celiac as an autoimmune disease and also began recognizing  the correlation between gluten sensitivity and other autoimmune diseases.
    Here we are now in the year 2010;  thirty years after the medical profession has successfully established the causes, tests and treatments for celiac disease, and thousands of years since celiac first made it's debut. Yet, as far as early diagnosis is concerned, we are still living in the dark ages. In this day and age, knowing what we know about celiac disease, childhood screening for celiac should already be mandatory. It's almost as if, when doctors were told in the 1960's to hold off on celiac diagnosis until they knew undoubtably that  gluten was the cause for damage to intestines, they were never told, 'okay, now it's safe to diagnose for celiac'. Unfortunately, many (if not most) doctors still don't know how to appropriately diagnose patients for celiac disease, and therefor they continue to 'hold off' making celiac diagnoses, or misdiagnose regularly.  Enforcing  mandatory celiac screening in school age children has potential to eliminate the  unnecessary suffering of millions of children and adults worldwide. My dearest hope is that we all get to see mandatory celiac testing in this lifetime.
    If you would like more information on “Celiac Awareness Month,” please check out the links below. The following links are trusted sites that also provide suggestions on how you can get involved and contribute to celiac awareness in your community.

    Celiac Disease Foundation Celiac Sprue Association Celiac Disease Timeline:
    Agricultural Revolution - celiac disease is born 1st Century A.D.- Aretaeus named celiac, “ koiliakos” 1st Century A. D.- Aretaeus documented“The Coeliac Affection.” 19th Century- Dr. Mathew Baillie published his observations on celiac 1888- Dr. Gee established the correlation between celiac and diet 1920's - Sydney Hass successfully treated celiac patients with “the banana diet” 1953 -  Dr. Willem Karel Dicke confirmed wheat protein to be the cause for celiac disease 1960's - Biopsy established as the most accurate test for celiac 1980's - Dr. Stefano Guandalini established a single biopsy  test for celiac 1990 -  ESPGHAN established new guidelines for celiac biopsy testing
    Sources:
    Impact America's Silent Epidemic

    Jefferson Adams
    Celiac.com 02/22/2013 - Scientists estimate that about 1% of the global population has celiac disease. For those who suffer, following a gluten-free diet is the only treatment available. Among doctors such treatment is known as 'medical nutritional therapy (MNT).'
    Recently, researchers have paid more attention to sourdough lactic acid bacteria as a way to improve the therapeutic benefits of gluten-free bread and baked goods for people on a gluten-free diet due to celiac disease.
    A team of researchers recently set out to assess use of sourdough lactic acid bacteria as a cell factory for delivering functional biomolecules and food ingredients in gluten free bread.
    The research team included Elke K Arendt, Alice Moroni and Emanuele Zannini. They are variously affiliated with the School of Food and Nutritional Sciences at University College Cork, Western Road, and the National Food Biotechnology Centre at University College Cork, in Cork, Ireland.
    More and more, consumers are demanding higher quality gluten-free bread, clean labels and natural products. Still, replacing gluten in bread presents significant technological challenges due to the low baking performance of gluten free products (gluten-free).
    Sourdough has been used since ancient times to improve quality, nutritional properties and shelf life of traditional breads, sourdough fermentation may offer a better solution for commercial production of gluten-free breads.
    In a recent issue of Microbial Cell Factories, the research team highlights how sourdough lactic acid bacteria can be an efficient cell factory for delivering functional biomolecules and food ingredients to enhance the quality of gluten free bread.
    Source:
    Microbial Cell Factories 2011, 10(Suppl 1):S15. doi:10.1186/1475-2859-10-S1-S15

    Jefferson Adams
    Celiac.com 08/08/2013 - I've happily reported the occasional story about a food bank here or there that has rallied to provide gluten-free food, or about the occasional gluten-free advocate who has helped to collect gluten-free donations, but the truth is that most food banks have minimal gluten-free options for those in need.
    That fact, and some of the challenging realities faced by people with limited incomes living with diabetes or celiac disease have been driven home in a new poverty survey by Women's Network PEI.
    Over the last few weeks, Women's Network has surveyed people with limited incomes living with diabetes or celiac disease. That survey has turned up stories about people facing difficult decisions about what food they can eat.
    Mike MacDonald, manager of Charlottetown's Upper Room Food Bank, says his staff are seeing more people with celiac and diabetes, and that, while staff try to accommodate people with health conditions, it's difficult for them to meet the increasing demand.
    MacDonald relates the story of one woman with celiac who said she knows that she's risking her health by eating food that she should not eat. For people like her, it's often a choice between food that's not very good for them and no food at all.
    "It's just more and more people coming through our doors with these restrictions," said MacDonald. Ten years ago, there were far fewer such requests, so it was easier meet gluten-free diet demands. Today there are more and more people making such requests, and there looks to be no end to the rising demand.
    The good news is that, based on this poverty survey, the Women's Network will make recommendations to government and local businesses. This will, hopefully, initiate some work toward a solution. Meantime, maybe check in with your local food bank and see what you can do to help.
    Source:
    http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/prince-edward-island/story/2013/06/18/pei-food-bank-diabetes-celiacs-584.html

    Jefferson Adams
    Celiac.com 05/22/2015 - The fact that celiac disease is commonly misdiagnosed will come as little surprise to anyone who's ever gone through what can often be a long, circuitous process of getting diagnosed. Celiac symptoms can be vague, and can mirror symptoms of numerous other conditions.
    Even though celiac awareness is improving, and blood screens are becoming more common, misdiagnosis remains common for people who are eventually diagnosed with celiac disease.
    Can you guess the most common misdiagnoses that doctors make for patients with celiac disease?
    The most common misdiagnoses include:
    Irritable bowel syndrome: People with celiac disease are often told that they have irritable dowel syndrome when they actually have celiac disease. In fact, IBS is the most common misdiagnosis for people with celiac disease. Inflammatory bowel disease: Coming in a close second to IBS, inflammatory bowel disease is another common misdiagnosis for people who actually have celiac disease. Gastro-esophageal reflux disease: People with GERD don't have any higher rates of celiac disease than the rest of the population. However, to be fair, a pretty high percentage of newly diagnosed celiac patients have reflux and/or esophageal dysmotility; which might explain the high prevalence of reflux symptoms in celiac disease patients, and the common misdiagnosis of GERD. Ulcers: Ulcers are often wrongly suspected, well before celiac disease is finally diagnosed. Viral gastroenteritis: Another very common thing doctors suspect long before they suspect celiac disease, is viral gastroenteritis. Chronic fatigue syndrome: Fatigue is a common complaint of many people with celiac disease, so maybe it's understandable why many people with celiac disease find themselves with a misdiagnosis of chronic fatigue, rather than an accurate diagnosis of celiac disease. Allergies: Many people find themselves wrongly diagnosed with environmental allergies long before they are diagnosed with celiac disease. Parasitic infection: Celiac disease symptoms can mirror symptoms of certain gut parasites, which is one reason that many people with celiac disease find themselves being checked for parasites long before they get checked for celiac disease. Gallbladder disease: Celiac disease symptoms can mirror symptoms of gallbladder disease, which is why many people who actually have celiac disease find themselves diagnosed with gallbladder problems. Colitis: Another common culprit for misdiagnosis is colitis, which shares many symptoms with celiac disease. Cystic fibrosis: Many people don't realize that in a number of cases, the symptoms of celiac disease can lead doctors to suspect cystic fibrosis, rather than celiac disease, thus prolonging diagnosis, treatment and recovery. Psychological dysfunction: In many cases, celiac disease symptoms can be so hard to pin down that doctors find themselves wondering if the symptoms aren't really in the patient's head. In their quest for diagnosis, many people with celiac disease have been referred to a psychologist, rather than evaluated for celiac disease. Lactose intolerance: Lactose intolerance is a common misdiagnosis in celiac patients, because the mucosal damage from gluten leaves them unable to digest lactose-containing products. In addition to being frustrating and painful, misdiagnosis of celiac disease is a big deal because, left unaddressed, the damage done by the disease continues unabated, and can snowball into further health and wellness problems.
    Have you, or anyone you know, suffered through misdiagnosis before being diagnosed with celiac disease? Share your story in our comments section.
    Source:
    US Pharmacist. 2014;39(12):44-48. 

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    Tammy Rhodes
    Celiac.com 04/24/2018 - Did you know in 2017 alone, the United States had OVER TENS OF THOUSANDS of people evacuate their homes due to natural disasters such as fires, floods, hurricanes, tornadoes and tsunamis? Most evacuation sites are not equipped to feed your family the safe gluten free foods that are required to stay healthy.  Are you prepared in case of an emergency? Do you have your Gluten Free Emergency Food Bag ready to grab and go?  
    I have already lived through two natural disasters. Neither of which I ever want to experience again, but they taught me a very valuable lesson, which is why I created a Gluten Free Emergency Food Bag (see link below). Here’s my story. If you’ve ever lived in or visited the Los Angeles area, you’re probably familiar with the Santa Ana winds and how bitter sweet they are. Sweet for cleaning the air and leaving the skies a brilliant crystal blue, and bitter for the power outages and potential brush fires that might ensue.  It was one of those bitter nights where the Santa Ana winds were howling, and we had subsequently lost our power. We had to drive over an hour just to find a restaurant so we could eat dinner. I remember vividly seeing the glow of a brush fire on the upper hillside of the San Gabriel Mountains, a good distance from our neighborhood. I really didn’t think much of it, given that it seemed so far from where we lived, and I was hungry! After we ate, we headed back home to a very dark house and called it a night. 
    That’s where the story takes a dangerous turn….about 3:15am. I awoke to the TV blaring loudly, along with the lights shining brightly. Our power was back on! I proceeded to walk throughout the house turning everything off at exactly the same time our neighbor, who was told to evacuate our street, saw me through our window, assuming I knew that our hillside was ablaze with flames. Flames that were shooting 50 feet into the air. I went back to bed and fell fast asleep. The fire department was assured we had left because our house was dark and quiet again. Two hours had passed.  I suddenly awoke to screams coming from a family member yelling, “fire, fire, fire”! Flames were shooting straight up into the sky, just blocks from our house. We lived on a private drive with only one way in and one way out.  The entrance to our street was full of smoke and the fire fighters were doing their best to save our neighbors homes. We literally had enough time to grab our dogs, pile into the car, and speed to safety. As we were coming down our street, fire trucks passed us with sirens blaring, and I wondered if I would ever see my house and our possessions ever again. Where do we go? Who do we turn to? Are shelters a safe option? 
    When our daughter was almost three years old, we left the West Coast and relocated to Northern Illinois. A place where severe weather is a common occurrence. Since the age of two, I noticed that my daughter appeared gaunt, had an incredibly distended belly, along with gas, stomach pain, low weight, slow growth, unusual looking stool, and a dislike for pizza, hotdog buns, crackers, Toast, etc. The phone call from our doctor overwhelmed me.  She was diagnosed with Celiac Disease. I broke down into tears sobbing. What am I going to feed my child? Gluten is everywhere.
    After being scoped at Children's Hospital of Chicago, and my daughters Celiac Disease officially confirmed, I worried about her getting all the nutrients her under nourished body so desperately needed. I already knew she had a peanut allergy from blood tests, but just assumed she would be safe with other nuts. I was so horribly wrong. After feeding her a small bite of a pistachio, which she immediately spit out, nuts would become her enemy. Her anaphylactic reaction came within minutes of taking a bite of that pistachio. She was complaining of horrible stomach cramps when the vomiting set in. She then went limp and starting welting. We called 911.
    Now we never leave home without our Epipens and our gluten free food supplies. We analyze every food label. We are hyper vigilant about cross contamination. We are constantly looking for welts and praying for no stomach pain. We are always prepared and on guard. It's just what we do now. Anything to protect our child, our love...like so many other parents out there have to do every moment of ever day!  
    Then, my second brush with a natural disaster happened, without any notice, leaving us once again scrambling to find a safe place to shelter. It was a warm and muggy summer morning, and my husband was away on a business trip leaving my young daughter and me to enjoy our summer day. Our Severe Weather Alert Radio was going off, again, as I continued getting our daughter ready for gymnastics.  Having gotten used to the (what seemed to be daily) “Severe Thunderstorm warning,” I didn’t pay much attention to it. I continued downstairs with my daughter and our dog, when I caught a glimpse out the window of an incredibly black looking cloud. By the time I got downstairs, I saw the cover to our grill literally shoot straight up into the air. Because we didn’t have a fenced in yard, I quickly ran outside and chased the cover, when subsequently, I saw my neighbor’s lawn furniture blow pass me. I quickly realized I made a big mistake going outside. As I ran back inside, I heard debris hitting the front of our home.  Our dog was the first one to the basement door! As we sat huddled in the dark corner of our basement, I was once again thinking where are we going to go if our house is destroyed. I was not prepared, and I should have been. I should have learned my lesson the first time. Once the storm passed, we quickly realized we were without power and most of our trees were destroyed. We were lucky that our house had minimal damage, but that wasn’t true for most of the area surrounding us.  We were without power for five days. We lost most of our food - our gluten free food.
    That is when I knew we had to be prepared. No more winging it. We couldn’t take a chance like that ever again. We were “lucky” one too many times. We were very fortunate that we did not lose our home to the Los Angeles wildfire, and only had minimal damage from the severe storm which hit our home in Illinois.
      
    In 2017 alone, FEMA (Federal Emergency Management Agency) had 137 natural disasters declared within the United States. According to FEMA, around 50% of the United States population isn’t prepared for a natural disaster. These disasters can happen anywhere, anytime and some without notice. It’s hard enough being a parent, let alone being a parent of a gluten free family member. Now, add a natural disaster on top of that. Are you prepared?
    You can find my Gluten Free Emergency Food Bags and other useful products at www.allergynavigator.com.  

    Jefferson Adams
    Celiac.com 04/23/2018 - A team of researchers recently set out to learn whether celiac disease patients commonly suffer cognitive impairment at the time they are diagnosed, and to compare their cognitive performance with non-celiac subjects with similar chronic symptoms and to a group of healthy control subjects.
    The research team included G Longarini, P Richly, MP Temprano, AF Costa, H Vázquez, ML Moreno, S Niveloni, P López, E Smecuol, R Mazure, A González, E Mauriño, and JC Bai. They are variously associated with the Small Bowel Section, Department of Medicine, Dr. C. Bonorino Udaondo Gastroenterology Hospital; Neurocience Cognitive and Traslational Institute (INECO), Favaloro Fundation, CONICET, Buenos Aires; the Brain Health Center (CESAL), Quilmes, Argentina; the Research Council, MSAL, CABA; and with the Research Institute, School of Medicine, Universidad del Salvador.
    The team enrolled fifty adults with symptoms and indications of celiac disease in a prospective cohort without regard to the final diagnosis.  At baseline, all individuals underwent cognitive functional and psychological evaluation. The team then compared celiac disease patients with subjects without celiac disease, and with healthy controls matched by sex, age, and education.
    Celiac disease patients had similar cognitive performance and anxiety, but no significant differences in depression scores compared with disease controls.
    A total of thirty-three subjects were diagnosed with celiac disease. Compared with the 26 healthy control subjects, the 17 celiac disease subjects, and the 17 disease control subjects, who mostly had irritable bowel syndrome, showed impaired cognitive performance (P=0.02 and P=0.04, respectively), functional impairment (P<0.01), and higher depression (P<0.01). 
    From their data, the team noted that any abnormal cognitive functions they saw in adults with newly diagnosed celiac disease did not seem not to be a result of the disease itself. 
    Their results indicate that cognitive dysfunction in celiac patients could be related to long-term symptoms from chronic disease, in general.
    Source:
    J Clin Gastroenterol. 2018 Mar 1. doi: 10.1097/MCG.0000000000001018.

    Connie Sarros
    Celiac.com 04/21/2018 - Dear Friends and Readers,
    I have been writing articles for Scott Adams since the 2002 Summer Issue of the Scott-Free Press. The Scott-Free Press evolved into the Journal of Gluten Sensitivity. I felt honored when Scott asked me ten years ago to contribute to his quarterly journal and it's been a privilege to write articles for his publication ever since.
    Due to personal health reasons and restrictions, I find that I need to retire. My husband and I can no longer travel the country speaking at conferences and to support groups (which we dearly loved to do) nor can I commit to writing more books, articles, or menus. Consequently, I will no longer be contributing articles to the Journal of Gluten Sensitivity. 
    My following books will still be available at Amazon.com:
    Gluten-free Cooking for Dummies Student's Vegetarian Cookbook for Dummies Wheat-free Gluten-free Dessert Cookbook Wheat-free Gluten-free Reduced Calorie Cookbook Wheat-free Gluten-free Cookbook for Kids and Busy Adults (revised version) My first book was published in 1996. My journey since then has been incredible. I have met so many in the celiac community and I feel blessed to be able to call you friends. Many of you have told me that I helped to change your life – let me assure you that your kind words, your phone calls, your thoughtful notes, and your feedback throughout the years have had a vital impact on my life, too. Thank you for all of your support through these years.

    Jefferson Adams
    Celiac.com 04/20/2018 - A digital media company and a label data company are teaming up to help major manufacturers target, reach and convert their desired shoppers based on dietary needs, such as gluten-free diet. The deal could bring synergy in emerging markets such as the gluten-free and allergen-free markets, which represent major growth sectors in the global food industry. 
    Under the deal, personalized digital media company Catalina will be joining forces with Label Insight. Catalina uses consumer purchases data to target shoppers on a personal base, while Label Insight works with major companies like Kellogg, Betty Crocker, and Pepsi to provide insight on food label data to government, retailers, manufacturers and app developers.
    "Brands with very specific product benefits, gluten-free for example, require precise targeting to efficiently reach and convert their desired shoppers,” says Todd Morris, President of Catalina's Go-to-Market organization, adding that “Catalina offers the only purchase-based targeting solution with this capability.” 
    Label Insight’s clients include food and beverage giants such as Unilever, Ben & Jerry's, Lipton and Hellman’s. Label Insight technology has helped the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) build the sector’s very first scientifically accurate database of food ingredients, health attributes and claims.
    Morris says the joint partnership will allow Catalina to “enhance our dataset and further increase our ability to target shoppers who are currently buying - or have shown intent to buy - in these emerging categories,” including gluten-free, allergen-free, and other free-from foods.
    The deal will likely make for easier, more precise targeting of goods to consumers, and thus provide benefits for manufacturers and retailers looking to better serve their retail food customers, especially in specialty areas like gluten-free and allergen-free foods.
    Source:
    fdfworld.com

    Jefferson Adams
    Celiac.com 04/19/2018 - Previous genome and linkage studies indicate the existence of a new disease triggering mechanism that involves amino acid metabolism and nutrient sensing signaling pathways. In an effort to determine if amino acids might play a role in the development of celiac disease, a team of researchers recently set out to investigate if plasma amino acid levels differed among children with celiac disease compared with a control group.
     
    The research team included Åsa Torinsson Naluai, Ladan Saadat Vafa, Audur H. Gudjonsdottir, Henrik Arnell, Lars Browaldh, and Daniel Agardh. They are variously affiliated with the Institute of Biomedicine, Department of Microbiology & Immunology, Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg, Gothenburg, Sweden; the Institute of Clinical Sciences, Sahlgrenska Academy at the University of Gothenburg, Gothenburg, Sweden; the Department of Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology and Nutrition, Karolinska University Hospital and Division of Pediatrics, CLINTEC, Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden; the Department of Clinical Science and Education, Karolinska Institute, Sodersjukhuset, Stockholm, Sweden; the Department of Mathematical Sciences, Chalmers University of Technology, Gothenburg, Sweden; the Diabetes & Celiac Disease Unit, Department of Clinical Sciences, Lund University, Malmö, Sweden; and with the Nathan S Kline Institute in the U.S.A.
    First, the team used liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry (LC/MS) to analyze amino acid levels in fasting plasma samples from 141 children with celiac disease and 129 non-celiac disease controls. They then crafted a general linear model using age and experimental effects as covariates to compare amino acid levels between children with celiac disease and non-celiac control subjects.
    Compared with the control group, seven out of twenty-three children with celiac disease showed elevated levels of the the following amino acids: tryptophan; taurine; glutamic acid; proline; ornithine; alanine; and methionine.
    The significance of the individual amino acids do not survive multiple correction, however, multivariate analyses of the amino acid profile showed significantly altered amino acid levels in children with celiac disease overall and after correction for age, sex and experimental effects.
    This study shows that amino acids can influence inflammation and may play a role in the development of celiac disease.
    Source:
    PLoS One. 2018; 13(3): e0193764. doi: & 10.1371/journal.pone.0193764