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      Frequently Asked Questions About Celiac Disease   04/07/2018

      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 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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Frozen Meatballs

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My 3 y.o. son is super sensitive to texture and refuses all meat except hotdogs. I want to try again to introduce him to meat and was thinking that I might have the greatest success with ground beef. Are there any gluten-free frozen meatballs out there? I was thinking frozen because the texture is softer and fairly uniform, and I'm pretty sure that's why he will tolerate hotdogs.

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Meatballs are easy to make and freeze well. Try making your own.

I don't know of any gluten-free ones, frozen and premade.

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I learned that gyros are gluten-free on this site, and the meat is quite easy to make at home. It's not to difficult to make your own gluten-free meatballs (or loaf). Stick a piece of gluten-free bread in your mini food processor for 30-40 seconds, add meat of your choice (if you wanted to make it fish cakes, add safe tuna or salmon, or left over fish.)

Add 1 cup bread crumbs to a pound of meat, mix in chopped or minced onion (I like onion, I'd do a whole chopped onion), 1 egg. If you're going Italian, add a tsp. of oregeno. If you're going Indian, add 1/4 tsp. tumeric. You can vary by taste.

Form into balls or patties or loaf and cook until done. I like grape seed oil or avacado oil when I saute the fish cakes.

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Old post, buried deep in another unrelated topic.

For all of you that have been anxiously waiting, here is the answer to your questions about my balls.

Gluten Free Meatballs

The main recipe for meatballs calls for bread crumbs. We make these from Glutino Fiber Bread, but other gluten-free breads should work equally well. It is best for this purpose when it has been defrosted for at least a day, or that fresh bread is at least a day old. Tear it into pieces and then use the pulse setting on a blender or food processor until the desired consistency is achieved. Unused crumbs can be placed in a sealed container and stored in the freezer. If measuring frozen crumbs for a recipe, allow extra. We find 1 1/4 cups of frozen defrosts to about 1 cup.

Hmm, maybe this should be a secret recipe. It has eleven four different herbs and spices. :lol:

Preheat oven to 400F (200C)

15x10 inch pan, lightly greased (or use PAM)

Makes about 45-50 meatballs.

1 1/2 lbs extra lean ground beef (750g)

1 egg, lightly beaten

1 cup gluten-free bread crumbs (see above) (250 ml)

1 tbsp dried parsley flakes (15 ml)

1 tbsp dried basil (15 ml)

1 tbsp dried oregano (15 ml)

1/4 tsp ground black pepper (1 ml)

You can use fresh instead of dried herbs by doubling the measure, that is, 2 tbsp or 30 ml.

In a large bowl, gently mix together beef, egg, bread crumbs, parsley, basil, oregano and ground pepper. Shape into 1 inch balls. Place in single layer on prepared pan.

Bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes, or until no longer pink in the center.

To Freeze: Cool slightly then freeze baked meatballs on the jelly roll pan. Once frozen, remove from the pan and place in a heavy-duty freezer bag. They won't stick together. Remove as needed and add directly to sauce, or microwave until just thawed before adding to sauce.

The picture was taken while cooling after baking and before freezing.

Bon appetit.

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I will probably have to make my own. Not opposed to it, was only thinking about frozen b/c I can't explain it but frozen meatballs have a different texture than homemade. More consistent, sometimes softer. My son is autistic and getting him to try new things can be a challenge. I want to maximize my chance of success here b/c him eliminating an entire food group makes meal planning a real challenge. I was also thinking that maybe if I use a fattier ground beef it might be softer. If I can get him open to meat, I can healthy it up later.

Thanks for all your responses!

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If you live near a Costco Warehouse they have gluten-free meatballs, patties, & sausages that are gluten-free.. Sorry I don't have any at present & I can't remember the name on the pkg...I think they are chicken meatballs. They are very good.. I also make my own beef ones & freeze them...

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This company is the one one of the other posters was talking about I think. Their products can be found in the refrigerated section of many grocery stores with the hot dogs etc. http://www.aidells.com/allergen

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I will probably have to make my own. Not opposed to it, was only thinking about frozen b/c I can't explain it but frozen meatballs have a different texture than homemade. More consistent, sometimes softer. My son is autistic and getting him to try new things can be a challenge. I want to maximize my chance of success here b/c him eliminating an entire food group makes meal planning a real challenge. I was also thinking that maybe if I use a fattier ground beef it might be softer. If I can get him open to meat, I can healthy it up later.

Thanks for all your responses!

All you have to do is grind the meat finer! In fact, I buy meat and then grind it in the food prosesser with all the extra's! Works great!

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OK, sorry to keep asking all these questions about meatballs! Hopeless cook question ... to do the bread crumbs, I am going to do what I usually do - use Udi's bread heels and put them in the blender. For a pound of ground beef, how many pieces of bread (or how many cups of bread crumbs) do I use? How long do I bake them? They won't have sauce b/c his highness won't eat it if that matters.

How I got to be 40 years old and never made meatballs I will never know ...

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To adjust the batch size of the recipe I shared above, most ingredients get adjusted proportionately.

Using 1 lb instead of 1.5 lbs of beef:

2/3 cup of bread crumbs

2 tsp instead of 1 Tbsp of each herb

I wouldn't change the pepper or the egg.

Cooking time is the same regardless of the batch size.

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The meatballs my son likes are not gluten-free. Ok for him, not for me. They say they are made with beef, pork & Romano cheese. I might try Peter's recipe with some ground turkey Italian sausage , beef, Romano for part of the bread crumbs & some gluten-free bread crumbs.

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To adjust the batch size of the recipe I shared above, most ingredients get adjusted proportionately.

Using 1 lb instead of 1.5 lbs of beef:

2/3 cup of bread crumbs

2 tsp instead of 1 Tbsp of each herb

I wouldn't change the pepper or the egg.

Cooking time is the same regardless of the batch size.

Thanks, Peter!

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Ok, hubby is a meatball pro:

First, for SOFT meatballs try ground veal.

Hubs Recipe:

1 lb. Ground beef

2 eggs

Dried parsley

Salt

Pepper

Grated Parmesan - LOTS OF CHEESE

Italian breadcrumbs if you want, but not necessary (make your own)

Hubs fries them in a skillet, he doesn't bake them. Usually fried in sausage drippings....but any oil will do.

I swear it's technique that gives the texture and softness...and he makes bigger meatballs - palm of the hand size not small ones.

We fry them and place them in pasta sauce to cook for about 30 minutes at the end of the sauce cooking time.

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I find that adding a little water to the meatballs as I mix them can make them softer when cooked. Part of the reason to include bread crumbs is to absorb moisture. I like mine fried and crunchy on the outside, but if his highness likes soft meat then I recommend cooking them in a crockpot or in a pot in the oven. They will get crunchy on the outside even with these methods if cooked too long, but you can check occasionally to see if the centers are cooked through and stop them before they get dry on the outside. Another option is to make a meatloaf with the same mixture, because once you cut away the outside of it, all of the inside will be soft, as opposed to meatballs, each of which have an outside dry/crisp layer. Very small meatballs can also be cooked in broth or soup - just drop them in raw. That will keep them tender. And you can use any kind of ground meat, even chopping it yourself in the food processor.

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Costco carries Aidells, Coleman's and AmyLu - some are gluten-free some not depending on flavor but the labels are usually clear. They are all precooked and yummy.

During the holidays last year, AmyLu had some turkey, cranberry and jalepeno meatballs that were to die for, especially cooked with a sauce of jellied cranberries and chili sauce. Great in the crockpot for potlucks. Yum! I hope they have them again this year....I'm going to buy 20 packages!

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I will probably have to make my own. Not opposed to it, was only thinking about frozen b/c I can't explain it but frozen meatballs have a different texture than homemade. More consistent, sometimes softer. My son is autistic and getting him to try new things can be a challenge. I want to maximize my chance of success here b/c him eliminating an entire food group makes meal planning a real challenge. I was also thinking that maybe if I use a fattier ground beef it might be softer. If I can get him open to meat, I can healthy it up later.

Thanks for all your responses!

You might try a meatloaf with lots of vegetables in it. I can't use egg because I am allergic so I put baby food squash in there instead of egg. I use whatever veggies I have in the house such as onion, pepper, spinach, mushrooms, zucchini, carrots and celery. First I chop them finely in the food processor then I saute them until almost all of the moisture is gone. Let cool then add to the ground beef with some gluten-free oats that have also been whizzed to powder in the food processor and combined with some V8 or tomato juice. I also add in a lot of ketchup. I use Italian seasoning. If you can't use the oats you can use gluten-free bread crumbs.

I form this mixture into individual loaves. Top with chili sauce but ketchup works as well. Bake at 350 for about an hour and let sit for about 10 minutes before serving. The texture is very tender.

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    WHAT IS CELIAC DISEASE?
    Celiac disease is an autoimmune condition that affects around 1% of the population. People with celiac disease suffer an autoimmune reaction when they consume wheat, rye or barley. The immune reaction is triggered by certain proteins in the wheat, rye, or barley, and, left untreated, causes damage to the small, finger-like structures, called villi, that line the gut. The damage occurs as shortening and villous flattening in the lamina propria and crypt regions of the intestines. The damage to these villi then leads to numerous other issues that commonly plague people with untreated celiac disease, including poor nutritional uptake, fatigue, and myriad other problems.
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    Celiac disease is most often uncovered because people experience symptoms that lead them to get tests for antibodies to gluten. If these tests are positive, then the people usually get biopsy confirmation of their celiac disease. Once they adopt a gluten-free diet, they usually see gut healing, and major improvements in their symptoms. 
    CLASSIC CELIAC DISEASE SYMPTOMS
    Symptoms of celiac disease can range from the classic features, such as diarrhea, upset stomach, bloating, gas, weight loss, and malnutrition, among others.
    LESS OBVIOUS SYMPTOMS
    Celiac disease can often less obvious symptoms, such fatigue, vitamin and nutrient deficiencies, anemia, to name a few. Often, these symptoms are regarded as less obvious because they are not gastrointestinal in nature. You got that right, it is not uncommon for people with celiac disease to have few or no gastrointestinal symptoms. That makes spotting and connecting these seemingly unrelated and unclear celiac symptoms so important.
    NO SYMPTOMS
    Currently, most people diagnosed with celiac disease do not show symptoms, but are diagnosed on the basis of referral for elevated risk factors. 

    CELIAC DISEASE VS. GLUTEN INTOLERANCE
    Gluten intolerance is a generic term for people who have some sort of sensitivity to gluten. These people may or may not have celiac disease. Researchers generally agree that there is a condition called non-celiac gluten sensitivity. That term has largely replaced the term gluten-intolerance. What’s the difference between celiac disease and non-celiac gluten-sensitivity? 
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    Gluten triggers symptoms and immune reactions in people with celiac disease. Gluten can also trigger symptoms in some people with NCGS, but the similarities largely end there.

    There are four main differences between celiac disease and non-celiac gluten sensitivity:
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    Doctors diagnose NCGS only by excluding both celiac disease, an IgE-mediated allergy to wheat, and by the noting ongoing adverse symptoms associated with gluten consumption. WHAT ABOUT IRRITABLE BOWEL SYNDROME (IBS) AND IRRITABLE BOWEL DISEASE (IBD)?
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    Crohn’s Disease and celiac disease share many common symptoms, though causes are different.  In Crohn’s disease, the immune system can cause disruption anywhere along the gastrointestinal tract, and a diagnosis of Crohn’s disease typically requires more diagnostic testing than does a celiac diagnosis.  
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    Diagnosis of celiac disease can be difficult. 

    Perhaps because celiac disease presents clinically in such a variety of ways, proper diagnosis often takes years. A positive serological test for antibodies against tissue transglutaminase is considered a very strong diagnostic indicator, and a duodenal biopsy revealing villous atrophy is still considered by many to be the diagnostic gold standard. 
    But this idea is being questioned; some think the biopsy is unnecessary in the face of clear serological tests and obvious symptoms. Also, researchers are developing accurate and reliable ways to test for celiac disease even when patients are already avoiding wheat. In the past, patients needed to be consuming wheat to get an accurate test result. 
    Celiac disease can have numerous vague, or confusing symptoms that can make diagnosis difficult.  Celiac disease is commonly misdiagnosed by doctors. Read a Personal Story About Celiac Disease Diagnosis from the Founder of Celiac.com Currently, testing and biopsy still form the cornerstone of celiac diagnosis.
    TESTING
    There are several serologic (blood) tests available that screen for celiac disease antibodies, but the most commonly used is called a tTG-IgA test. If blood test results suggest celiac disease, your physician will recommend a biopsy of your small intestine to confirm the diagnosis.
    Testing is fairly simple and involves screening the patients blood for antigliadin (AGA) and endomysium antibodies (EmA), and/or doing a biopsy on the areas of the intestines mentioned above, which is still the standard for a formal diagnosis. Also, it is now possible to test people for celiac disease without making them concume wheat products.

    BIOPSY
    Until recently, biopsy confirmation of a positive gluten antibody test was the gold standard for celiac diagnosis. It still is, but things are changing fairly quickly. Children can now be accurately diagnosed for celiac disease without biopsy. Diagnosis based on level of TGA-IgA 10-fold or more the ULN, a positive result from the EMA tests in a second blood sample, and the presence of at least 1 symptom could avoid risks and costs of endoscopy for more than half the children with celiac disease worldwide.

    WHY A GLUTEN-FREE DIET?
    Currently the only effective, medically approved treatment for celiac disease is a strict gluten-free diet. Following a gluten-free diet relieves symptoms, promotes gut healing, and prevents nearly all celiac-related complications. 
    A gluten-free diet means avoiding all products that contain wheat, rye and barley, or any of their derivatives. This is a difficult task as there are many hidden sources of gluten found in the ingredients of many processed foods. Still, with effort, most people with celiac disease manage to make the transition. The vast majority of celiac disease patients who follow a gluten-free diet see symptom relief and experience gut healing within two years.
    For these reasons, a gluten-free diet remains the only effective, medically proven treatment for celiac disease.
    WHAT ABOUT ENZYMES, VACCINES, ETC.?
    There is currently no enzyme or vaccine that can replace a gluten-free diet for people with celiac disease.
    There are enzyme supplements currently available, such as AN-PEP, Latiglutetenase, GluteGuard, and KumaMax, which may help to mitigate accidental gluten ingestion by celiacs. KumaMax, has been shown to survive the stomach, and to break down gluten in the small intestine. Latiglutenase, formerly known as ALV003, is an enzyme therapy designed to be taken with meals. GluteGuard has been shown to significantly protect celiac patients from the serious symptoms they would normally experience after gluten ingestion. There are other enzymes, including those based on papaya enzymes.

    Additionally, there are many celiac disease drugs, enzymes, and therapies in various stages of development by pharmaceutical companies, including at least one vaccine that has received financial backing. At some point in the not too distant future there will likely be new treatments available for those who seek an alternative to a lifelong gluten-free diet. 

    For now though, there are no products on the market that can take the place of a gluten-free diet. Any enzyme or other treatment for celiac disease is intended to be used in conjunction with a gluten-free diet, not as a replacement.

    ASSOCIATED DISEASES
    The most common disorders associated with celiac disease are thyroid disease and Type 1 Diabetes, however, celiac disease is associated with many other conditions, including but not limited to the following autoimmune conditions:
    Type 1 Diabetes Mellitus: 2.4-16.4% Multiple Sclerosis (MS): 11% Hashimoto’s thyroiditis: 4-6% Autoimmune hepatitis: 6-15% Addison disease: 6% Arthritis: 1.5-7.5% Sjögren’s syndrome: 2-15% Idiopathic dilated cardiomyopathy: 5.7% IgA Nephropathy (Berger’s Disease): 3.6% Other celiac co-morditities include:
    Crohn’s Disease; Inflammatory Bowel Disease Chronic Pancreatitis Down Syndrome Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) Lupus Multiple Sclerosis Primary Biliary Cirrhosis Primary Sclerosing Cholangitis Psoriasis Rheumatoid Arthritis Scleroderma Turner Syndrome Ulcerative Colitis; Inflammatory Bowel Disease Williams Syndrome Cancers:
    Non-Hodgkin lymphoma (intestinal and extra-intestinal, T- and B-cell types) Small intestinal adenocarcinoma Esophageal carcinoma Papillary thyroid cancer Melanoma CELIAC DISEASE REFERENCES:
    Celiac Disease Center, Columbia University
    Gluten Intolerance Group
    National Institutes of Health
    U.S. National Library of Medicine
    Mayo Clinic
    University of Chicago Celiac Disease Center

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    • Reactions to alcohol may not just be autoimmune in nature, but due to a damaged gut from an autoimmune disorder.  So, hard to say what can be blamed on wine and hard liquor.  I know that when either my celiac disease is triggered or my autoimmune gastritis is flaring (no known trigger), I can not drink any alcohol.  I follow standard celiac recommendations usually sticking with wine or some vodka.   As far as Omission beer, I am going to continue to avoid it until the research is complete.  I am adhering to th Gluten Free Watchdog’s advice: https://www.glutenfreewatchdog.org/news/can-individuals-with-celiac-disease-drink-barley-based-gluten-removed-beers-such-as-omission-a-gluten-free-watchdog-special-report/ I just had a recent endoscopy that revealed a healed small intestine.  I would be interested to know that if you consumed an Omission beer daily for a few months and then had an endoscopy, what would it reveal?  
    • Well, you can always post the result here.  Include all the lab ranges.  We are not doctors, but we can read celiac lab results. Even the pathologist’s report (exact wording) would be useful.  I would definitely get a second medical opinion.  So, the biopsies revealed a lactose (milk sugar) intolerance.  Why would he NOT recommend going lactose free?  Ugh!  Take her off all dairy for a week or so.  Then start adding in dairy that has the least amount of lactose like hard cheeses or yogurt.  Those items through fermentation have had lots of the sugar removed by the bacteria.  The last bit of dairy to add back is regular milk or ice cream.   If she has celiac disease, going lactose free can help with intestinal symptoms, but the damage villi that releases the enzymes to digest lactose will still be damaged.  Once a celiac heals, they often can then digest lactose again, unless you are part of the world’s population who can not digest lactose for genetic reasons (e.g. not historically herders).   The med prescribed?  I would get a second opinion preferably from a Ped GI.  I would make sure she has a firm diagnosis for the Colitis which is commonly linked to celiac disease and may resolve on a gluten free diet.  This drug is powerful and we are talking about a kid.   So, post the results and get a second opinion.  In the meantime, get her off lactose ASAP.   I am so sorry that you both are dealing with this!  
    • I know this topic has probably been beaten to death as far as what liquors contain gluten, used to contain gluten, and have had gluten removed.   I've been gluten free for nearly 15 years now and I left alcohol alone for a long time except red wine but that time came to an end a few years ago and I am trying to put together some experiences of others to figure out what can/cannot be had, or what causes the reaction.   Has anyone ever compiled a list of what makes them react, and what does not?   I can drink Omission Lager by the 6 pack and feel perfect while I've heard tons of others have a bad reaction.  I love bourbon...I can take a sip of Makers Mark and feel terrible.  Basil Haden does OK by me.  JW Black and Blue I feel fine but Blanton's gives me fits.  Willet, Journeyman, and Angels Envy I feel fine.   Japanese whiskeys like Hibiki and Kikori(although this is 100 percent rice) I feel fine but Toki(made by the same company has Hibiki) I feel ill within 20 minutes.   Would some of you mind posting things that do/do not make you react?  I know a lot of people also forgo trying different things because of one bad experience but any info some could provide would be helpful.
    • Thank you for your response!  Sorry it took me so long to get back to you....it's been a stressful week.  To answer your question, I do not know which celiac blood tests were given.  For some reason, the lab work results that I have access to online don't show which ones she did.  So, I'm calling this week to request those (again).  To throw another loop in it, I received another call from the doctor this week, saying that my daughter is lactose intolerant, according to the biopsy.  This, after she told me that the dairy allergy blood results were normal.   She said I could remove dairy if I wanted, but I didn't have to.  ???  Basically, she just wants me to give my child Sulfasalazine for the next 6 months.  I'd rather change her diet and see if that helps first.  I'm so done with this doctor!  I need to find someone who I can take all these results to, and they can read them for me.
    • I believe it's one entire slice of bread every day , maybe two. The endoscopy is easy.
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