Nikki2777

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Nikki2777 last won the day on June 3 2016

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About Nikki2777

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  1. I won't repeat most of these great suggestions, but I echo those about getting dedicated colander, cutting boards and toaster/toaster oven. I don't have one color, but basically any item that has a color in my kitchen is gluten free. Because knives double dip in them, get separate jars of mayo/jam/etc. and mark them, and butter - I keep a separate gluten-free butter dish. I also put down parchment paper on the cookie sheets when I bake, as my husband bakes 'regular' cookies on them and there's just no way to keep them really clean. Trader Joe's gluten-free bread (green packaging) is my favorite. For dried pasta, I go for anything corn-based, but my favorites are Le Veneziane and Bionatura or something like that (orange and yellow packaging) - there are a couple of good 'fresh' pastas too if you want them, but can be hard to find. The Snyders pretzels marked gluten free are very good. I don't use jarred marinara sauce generally (I use olive oil and garlic), but when I do I check to make sure they're not sweetened with barley malt. And keep a sharpie on hand to hand write on tape or packaging to tell people to keep their gluteny hands off and out of the gluten-free items. Good luck! It's great that you're treating this seriously. It took a lot of convincing to get my mother to see that I wasn't just whining and she needed to be careful if I were to eat in her house.
  2. There was something in the news about six months ago about a brand of Probiotics labelled Gluten Free that actually wasn't Gluten Free. I guess you can try googling it if no one here knows. Good luck figuring out the cause!
  3. I'm somewhere in the middle of the "Man, I'm busy and just want to pop a meal in the microwave" and the "Why are you asking about butter? I churn my own" camps. So, I do both and no need to get snarky with either side -- The caveat in all this is I don't believe I'm super-sensitive, but I am very careful in my prep. We use Blue Apron and I have used Green Chef -- still cooking, but you don't have to shop. Blue Apron is very good with labelling and sometimes I just sub in gluten-free items for their non (e.g., gluten-free Pasta or Soy Sauce). I'm not sure, but I think that Green Chef is certified gluten-free now. For prepared, frozen meals, I use some Amy's, some Indian Chef, some Evol, some Trader Joe's... And speaking of Trader Joe's -- I've found that TJ's makes it very easy to cook super quick, gluten free meals by starting with their foods. For example, I have a dedicated gluten-free wok and with TJ's riced cauliflower (or microwavable rice, I guess) TJ's lemon pepper chicken or balsamic rosemary chicken, frozen Melodious Blend and Chili Lime Thai Cashews (along with McCormick's Asian Spice, and a little prechopped garlic, and gluten-free Soy Sauce), I can make a delicious chicken stir fry in less than 10 minutes and in one pot so easy to clean. Seriously. LMK if you want more detailed instructions. The side benefit of wanting things I can no longer get in restaurants is I've had to learn to make them on my own. And I'm way too impatient and busy to start from scratch all the time.
  4. Maybe it's already been discussed, but we stopped into a DD while travelling last weekend, and they had these little oatmeal pots for sale right near the register. I thought, "Oh, wouldn't it be great if I could have these for breakfast" (and yes, I know there are other brands, but there's a DD right near my office) I went to look to see if they were certified gluten-free oats - not only were they not certified, but the ingredients also listed barley and rye - the trifecta of trouble! Why they felt the need to add barley and rye to oatmeal, I have no clue. Now I know none of us would eat oatmeal that isn't certified, and we'd definitely check, but just wanted to make you guys aware.
  5. That said, I find the snack kiosks and carts to be sorely lacking in options. If you don't want to eat a bag of chips or a sad looking banana, you're out of luck. They could do a better job. We're going back to Disney in a month or so and I'm already thinking about what snacks of my own to bring.
  6. Nikki2777

    Tips for Eating at Restaurants?

    First, I wouldn't assume you need to avoid all foods that say "made in a facility..."; some do have that level of sensitivity. As for me, I try to glean whether we're likely to have cross contamination (biscuit factory vs. veggie processing plant). Your reaction may have been from something else, or from a specific vegetable in the mix. As for restaurants, I'm lucky in that I live in a highly gluten-aware city and many places have gluten free options noted on the menu. 75% of the time, the server's cousin, best friend, uncle has Celiac. But even when they do, I take certain precautions: - I never eat gluten free pizza in a regular pizzeria. I will eat it at certain italian restaurants after grilling the waitstaff and possibly chefs on the level of separation. That said, at this point, I have a few restaurants I trust for this. Similarly, I don't eat gluten-free muffins or cookies that aren't separately pre-packaged. - I always ask if gluten free pasta is made in separate water and I don't really like marinara sauce anyway, so I just get olive oil, garlic and parmesan as my sauce, And I request that my gluten free omelette is made in a separate pan (vs. the grill) with butter instead of oil or spray. Fries need to be made in a dedicated gluten free fryer. - I never eat grilled anything, assuming grills are shared. - I always ask about soy sauce in dressings or marinades -- lots of people don't realize that there's wheat in regular soy sauce and will say something is gluten-free because it doesn't have flour. - I always emphasize that I'm doing this for medical reasons, and when they bring back the plate, i ask again if it's gluten free (which sometimes pisses them off, but oh well) - I only eat at salad bars if everything on it is gluten free, and I watch how the staff at those salad prep places work -- usually they use the same gloved hand to scoop out gluten and gluten free ingredients, so I avoid those. - Find me Gluten Free app is a great resource when travelling. - As far as socially, if I don't see anything safe to eat, I just get wine ;-) I've learned it's about the companionship and the conversation, not about the food. And don't get defensive about why you're not eating what they think is safe. You haven't done anything wrong by having NCGS, and you can deflect their meddling with a "thanks for your input", and a smile, and then just do what's best for you anyway. Good luck.
  7. With well-meaning, but curious, friends, I will just say something about GI issues, hives and headaches mostly if asked about symptoms, then move on to another topic. With rude people who insist it's not real (honestly, very rare in my life, because - I'm told -- I give off a very matter of fact, not up for debate, attitude about it), my general response to whatever they say is "Well, that's not true, but thanks for your input" with a smile that hints at sarcasm and condescension. The more woeful and sad about it you sound, the more rude people will prey on you -- own the power you have to make healthy choices for yourself and keep this disease from destroying you.
  8. Nikki2777

    Smartcakes?

    Thank you, all -- I hadn't seen that on their website, about the "verified gluten free"; perhaps I read too quickly. And thanks for the heads up about the possible issue - I definitely would have been freaked out by GI issues around eating them. At least now I'll know. And I'll look up this Julian Bakery.
  9. Does anyone eat Tangerine Smartcakes? They were recommended to me - they look delicious, are low cal, low sugar and they are said to be made in a dedicated Gluten Free Facility. However, one of the ingredients in Oat Fiber, but I don't see anything on there about these being Certified Oats. Nor does the Gluten Free icon on the packaging indicated 'certified'. I'll probably get in touch with the company to be sure before I order them, but thought I'd check here. Thanks.
  10. Kind of random, I know, but we recently found ourselves in the Montclair/Caldwell area of NJ and looked for a place on Find Me Gluten Free App - ended up in a delicious small Thai restaurant in Bloomfield, NJ where they have a dedicated kitchen space for Gluten Free. The owner's daughter has Celiac, so he knows what he's doing. I was able to have my much-missed Larb salad for the first time in ages! Now, I do eat at Thai restaurants regularly, but I always order the same thing, I ask a million questions and there's always the worry in the back of my mind. It was so nice to feel secure that there would not be any cross-contamination. Highly recommend Boonsong Thai.
  11. Nikki2777

    Choosing against gluten-free?

    I really do second the counseling suggestion - you need to find a way to gain power over these feelings of isolation you get from following the gluten-free diet -- you are taking power over your own health, you are taking power over your own choices and well-being. By choosing to save your life, you are acknowledging that there are other joys in life beside food - friendship, conversation, travel, love... you know, life. And, all the better, if you can find a way to cook your own meal, eat safely and join in the conversation at pot-lucks, you are choosing to value yourself. Good luck.
  12. Nikki2777

    Overwhelmed and unable to accept

    I feel the same. Every so often, someone will roll their eyes. I try not to discuss it unless I have to, only because I don't love having the topic of conversation become me, but others seem genuinely curious. Every so often I have a pity party over not being able to just pick up a sandwich at the deli when I'm rushed, or having to pass up all the good desserts on the cart, but mostly it's no big deal. Maybe, like you, I know how lucky I am that I have something that can actually control and solve - without medications, chemo, surgery, etc.
  13. I can't remember, but it was a few years ago and maybe it had Maltodextrin in it, or maybe it was the 'flavorings' - which I never eat unless it's from a company like Kraft or McCormick that labels clearly. But given that you eat it safely, maybe I'll contact the company for a clear answer.
  14. Nikki2777

    Help with Not Feeling Crazy

    Hi - I think some of the issue here may be stemming from confusion about the word "exposed" and the two things in bold above -- while you are very strict about eating gluten, am I right that you've been accidentally eating some and for the past month have accidentally been not-gluten-free? If so, that likely is the cause of your cognitive problems, which I'm sure must be really difficult. It sounds like you're on the right track with trying to make sure you get this accidental gluten ingestion eliminated from your environment. Have you checked all your meds, hand moisturizers, etc. (I don't worry about most care products, but I do care about what goes on my hands)? Dedicated toaster, cutting board, non-stick cooking utensils and pots? Also, is your thyroid ok? As auto-immune disorders seem to run in packs, it's not unusual to have Hashimotos Hypothyroidism and Celiac together. As far as communicating the issue to others (your original question), I think it's fair to say to those who know you well that this is a side effect of an accidental glutening, and as for others, I think you can just let it go. Chances are they don't see your struggles as intensely as you feel them. Bringing it to their attention may even make it more of an issue.
  15. Funny - I was going to say 'hands down' on Canyon Bakehouse (rye style) and Trader Joe's. Honestly, I think TJ's is the closest to what I remember 'real' bread tasted like, I just wish the slices weren't so small. But I guess that's what you need to do if you don't have gluten to hold a big slice together!