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Georgia_guy

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I've been trying to cope with the fact that it appears there aren't many celiacs around where I live. We have no health food stores, very very limited selection of gluten-free products in the chain stores, no support groups, and medical professionals who seem clueless about celiac (trying to say it's an allergy and I don't need to eat gluten to be tested, etc).

Well, today at church, one of the ladies there was asking me if I've been alright cuz I've missed church the past couple weeks. She is a retired ER nurse, so I went ahead and explained the short version of what's been going on and ended with I'm pretty sure it's celiac, and I'm trying to get my insurance to approve the tests. She said she had no clue what celiac was (I think she retired many years ago), so I explained it's an AI that reacts to gluten. She told me that one of the ladies in her gardening club always avoids pasta, breads, and other random things at their lunches if she eats anything. I was like "yep, that sounds like it's probably celiac." She's gonna talk to that lady and get her in touch with me (if she's willing) to help guide me on recipes, where to shop for a good selection, etc. ☺️

After church (at the suggestion of my nutritionist), I went to everyone's favorite store walmart. My goal: find gluten-free food products to recreate some meals I have in my "food and symptom diary" so when I go back to the doc they can't say "maybe it's not gluten, maybe it's whatever in the meals". First recipe to recreate: my infamous thrown together pasta (simply penne pasta, breakfast sausage, bell pepper, onion, tomato sauce, and cheddar cheese. Cook noodles, mix ingredients together, put extra cheese on top, bake for 30 minutes at 350, enjoy). It's thrown together cuz a friend's wedding I catered, they wanted 5 dishes and I only had 4 in their price range, so I went shopping and combined those and it's delicious. But anywho, as I'm looking at the 2 brands of pasta walmart has that are labeled gluten-free, this guy come down the aisle, instinctively grabs a couple things of pasta from the gluten-free section, and moves on to sauces. Seeing that, I stop him and ask which brand he recommends. I am not the only celiac in my town, and I now have proof of such.

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I agree, since finding a gluten free support group in my area I feel a bit less like an alien.  :). Luckily, a lot of my friends and co-workers were already well aware of what Celiac was so I don't seem to have to do a lot of explaining.  Our local grocery store added big "Gluten Free" tags to everything on the shelves.  I still have to search for the ones that are certified gluten free but it really helps to narrow down the choices.  Hopefully in time, more grocery stores will follow.  If you don't have a lot of options locally, there may be some options online.  I had a couple of people recommend Amazon.com.  I haven't tried any of them yet so I can't be of any help beyond that... Celiac newbie.  Good luck finding more support locally!

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I went into whole foods for the first time a while back, and asked someone for help. I said I was newly diagnosed with Celiac and was looking for what ever I was looking for (I don't remember now). But it had to be gluten and soy free. The nice gentleman said - I'm a Celiac too! I know just what you need.... I talked to him for 5 minutes! I remember thinking when I left, I just found my new place to hang out <BG>! It is exciting to meet someone who gets it!

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