kimjoy24

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Everything posted by kimjoy24

  1. Happy birthday and may God bless you today!

  2. Just wanted to pass this along- Chef Gerstenecker of Park 75 makes some of the best gluten-free cuisine in Atlanta and is a great supporter of the gluten-free movement. If you will be in the Atlanta area mid-April, this is worth checking out. Park 75 at The Four Seasons is offering a gluten-free dinner menu every night during the week of April 14-19. The meal is $45 per person (+ drink, tax, tip). Call the restaurant at 404-253-3840 to make a reservation. Their website is: http://www.fourseasons.com/atlanta/dining.html The menu for this gluten free tasting is as follows: Appetizers: Lobster Chili with Gluten Free Corn Bread OR Crab Ravioli with Gluten Free Pasta, Spring Pea Foam and Pea Shoot Salad Entrees: Braised Angus Short Rib with Early Season Succotash OR Roasted Turbot Quinoa with Japanese Eggplant Hash OR Gluten-Free Blue Crab Cake, red onions & shaved fennel, chive ginger cream Dessert: Berry Parfait, gluten-free Biscuit, Berries Marinated with Aged Balsamic and Cream or Cr
  3. So I found this link, titled, What's Up with 'Gluten-Free Food'?" on the homepage of AJC.com today. It leads to a blog entry "Got Gluten?"by a registered dietitian, of all people, who I felt has a real lack of understanding about gluten intolerance and Celiac Disease. I left a (long, okay very, very looong) response to try to help set the record straight. It would be great if other people on the board could take a moment to do the same (you don't have to drone on like I did). http://www.ajc.com/blogs/content/shared-bl...got_gluten.html Grrr. Maybe this just caught me on the wrong day but this really rubbed me the wrong way.
  4. That is such B.S.! It amazes me sometimes how people are so nosy. It's one thing if she saw smoke coming out of the toaster, but to go "tattletale" on you over something she simply didn't understand is ridiculous. For what it's worth, the same thing has happened to me at work, in the community break room. I have my toaster bag in the toaster and someone has to walk in and make some comment about it. It's to the point where I try to wait until the room is clear before I will go in and make my breakfast. I know they mean no harm, and they are just curious, but it's really annoying. I guess if I didn't know anything about Celiac disease or other food allergies and I saw someone stick what looked like a plastic bag in the toaster, I would make a mental note of it and then go Google it privately.
  5. kimjoy24

    Asheville, Nc

    Thanks- I wish that job was available, I would apply in a heartbeat! I actually do restaurant reviews for a local alternative paper. They don't know I'm gluten-free, so luckily I get to pick my own restaurants, otherwise I might get stuck reviewing a bakery and really be in a bind.
  6. kimjoy24

    Asheville, Nc

    Over New Year's I stayed in Asheville, NC for a few days. It has kind of a hippy, organic vibe to it, so I figured it would be gluten-free friendly, and did some Internet research beforehand. I stayed at the 1900 Inn on Montford, a bed and breakfast. I indicated on their online form that I needed gluten-free meals, but apparently that transmission did not transfer properly to them. Luckily, they had a guest that had just left that was also on a gluten-free diet, so they knew what to expect. Overall, they did an excellent job. Breakfast was served each morning, which included a fruit course (one day they tried to serve me fruit with granola but that was the only error during my entire stay), then the main course (which was almost always egg based) and the dessert course, which they had no gluten-free substitutions for (it was a breakfast pastry). Frankly, I'm not used to eating hearty breakfasts every morning so 2 courses was more than sufficient for me. I'm sure they would have no problem if you wanted to bring your own gluten-free donuts or whatever and have them heat it up in the kitchen. There is a resident cat so if you have pet allergies, you might want to stay elsewhere. To me this was a bonus, a surrogate cat to keep me from missing my own kitties too much. http://www.innonmontford.com/index.htm The first night we ate at Bouchon. It's a little bohemian-like cafe. I had a great seafood entree that was gluten-free. They are best known for their mussels and fries- I did not inquire about the gluten-free status of the fries. Chocolate Fetish is a popular candy shop in Downtown Asheville. The owner's son has Celiac, so the owner is very aware of the gluten-free status of his confections. It's a great place to stop for a sweet fix: http://www.chocolatefetish.com/ New Year's Eve dinner was at MarketPlace. I wasn't that impressed. I was served bread and an amuse bouche that had a pancake on the bottom. I know NYE isn't the time to test a restaurant, but if you are used to big-city fine dining, you are apt to be a bit disappointed. I had a good meal at The Lobster Trap. In addition to fresh lobsters which you can get with gluten-free sides, I had a very nice entree of scallops with risotto. Honestly, I wasn't expecting much, since it is a more casual, lobster bib wearing kind of place, but it was really yummy. Surprisingly nice wine list as well. It also was one of the only places open on New Year's Day. http://www.thelobstertrap.biz/ For lunches, I hit Laurey's, Bistro 1896 and Tupelo Honey. Laurey's offers a selection of side dishes that you can combine into a meal. I had a tasty grilled avocado stuffed with salsa and a grilled chicken breast. I had a good apple, pear and walnut salad at Bistro 1896. Tupelo Honey was somewhat of a disappointment. I had to wait almost an hour for a table. I had already looked over the menu and despite the place having an organic focus, there were very limited gluten-free options (though it was nice that they labeled them gluten-free right on the menu). So I ended up with a veggie plate of salad, carrots and broccoli. http://www.tupelohoneycafe.com/ http://www.bistro1896.com/ http://www.laureysyum.com/shop/ I also visited the Biltmore Estates one day, and had lunch at the Stable cafe. I had the rotisserie chicken entree which was tasty. The wine tasting was great, but I really wished I had brought my own gluten-free "palate cleanser". My last nice dinner was at the Sunset Terrace at the Grove Park Inn. This is a semi-formal, pricey affair. The food was good, if not necessarily creative. I had a spinach salad, then a steak with a side of potatoes. http://www.groveparkinn.com/Leisure/Dining There are plenty of health food stores in town: Earth Fare, French Broad Co-Op, Greenlife Grocery. I was finally able to try New Grist and Bard's Tale beer, which I was excited about. Overall, Asheville seems to be aware and accommodating to those with special dietary needs.
  7. I totally agree...for me it was wanting what I couldn't have. I've always preferred wine over beer, though I was becoming a budding beer snob before the celiac disease kicked in. Still, it was really just about the only thing gluten-free out there that I hadn't tried so that made the anticipation even greater.
  8. I just wanted to follow up on what floridanative said, as far as Redbridge beer in the metro Atlanta area. It is now available (at least as of 12/20/06) at Mac's in Midtown. I bought a six-pack last night there and it was fully stocked in the refrigerated case. It was buried in the middle with all of the regular beer so you kind of have to hunt for it. It was around $8 with tax. http://www.macsbeerandwine.com/ As for the taste test...I am pleasantly surprised. This is definitely a decent beer. It reminds me of some of the products the local breweries here put out, which I always enjoyed. Obviously it's been awhile since I've had regular beer but I did have a friend taste it who drinks regular beer and she thought it was pretty good as well. It would be great to get other gluten-free labels in here just for a little variety but for now, I'm happy to have a little "brew" back in my life!
  9. Just to avoid any confusion, the product itself is gluten-free. Should you use it? Not in the way the original poster was inquiring. What it might help with are accidental glutenings. I have been taking these for the past month or so, anytime I'm going out to eat at a restaurant, or at some function where there could potentially be cross-contamination. I do feel that it helped at least in one particular case-my "glutening" episodes usually last for hours, and my last one passed within 1/2-1 hour. However, the other day, I had some kind of episode (glutening? stomach virus? who knows!) and the Gluten Ease did not help one bit. Of course, like I said, I'm not sure it was a glutening. There's no way to know for sure if it helps minimize internal damage from the glutening. You could do periodic lab tests while taking Gluten Ease regularly I suppose, but so many other factors could be involved. FWIW, I don't feel that the company itself is necessarily trying to sell Gluten Ease as a "cure-all" for Celiacs. I have found some 3rd party retailers that seem to be slanting it towards that angle though, unfortunately. Also, I believe there is another Gluten Ease discussion thread out there where a gentleman actually "tested" the product by taking a couple of capsules and then eating a sandwich with "regular" gluten containing bread. The results weren't so great.
  10. I received a large sampler gift box from this company last year for Xmas. The cinammon flavored variety was definitely my favorite. I wasn't so into the chocolate ones. The texture is quite nice, probably some of the best I've found, but I did note a distinct "beany" flavor in many of the varieties, which of course is to be expected since some form of bean flour is one of the main ingredients in most of their products. I think the stronger flavored ones, like the cinammon kind, help mask this underlying flavor, at least to my tastebuds.
  11. kimjoy24

    Dizziness

    Oh yes, I had really bad dizzy spells. At first the docs thought it was low blood pressure (they put me on a high-salt diet made me so sick!) I finally was diagnosed with BPV (Benign Positional Vertigo). Mine bothers me most when looking up, but for awhile it was constant when I was sitting in front of my computer at work (I work on the computer all day so it was real torture). I almost went on medical leave. I also had the nausea. I was able to secure a different computer monitor for work that has me looking down most of the time and that has helped. I was sent to a physical therapist that showed me several different exercises that I was supposed to do on a daily basis. At first I thought it was hogwash, becuase it didn't seem to be helping, but slowly over time, most of the dizzy spells resolved themselves. It was a lot of repetitve motion of my head, up and down, side to side- the idea is to condition the body to get used to the "trigger" movement that causes your dizzy spells. I still get dizzy spells occasionally, especially if I'm looking up, like at the top shelf in a grocery store. Overall though, I am much better.
  12. I honestly don't know, as I have never used my own Kaiser insurance for Celiac-related tests. I just wanted to caution any Kaiser members out there that once they get over the initial hurdle of actually convincing their dr. that they need the test performed, make sure to check with member services that it will be covered. Members can also refer to their EOC (evidence of coverage), a booklet that goes into detail about what is and what is not covered in their particular plan.
  13. As I mentioned in another thread about Kaiser, I work for them paying insurance claims. Kaiser does use Quest for some lab services, but this could differ from region to region. Also, what's covered depends a lot upon the diagnosis code provided and the particular member's benefits. Even though I work for them, I still went to an outside source (Enterolab) to have my original celiac tests done. It's not necessarily that all Kaiser doctors are incompetent, it's more the structure and red tape they have to deal with that unfortunately can result in poor service to the member. As I mentioned in the previous thread, I've had lousy service from both Kaiser and non-Kaiser docs. I really hate how almost everything is suggested to be a mental issue, or something that some pill can take care of.
  14. I agree not too many people understand that being severely underweight is an actual health issue. I don't have any specific answers for Anne, but would just like to give a glimmer of hope. When I was at my worst, I dropped down to 105 lbs (I'm over 5'8" tall). All of my clothes just sagged on me, I had to wear a belt with everything, for fear that my pants would fall down in public. Then I started the gluten-free diet in earnest, no deliberate digestion of gluten, and slowly but surely, now almost a year and a half later, I'm up to 140 lbs. I'm actually starting to do additional exercises in addition to my daily walking because I'm getting a little flabby in the stomach area. I never thought I would weigh this much in my life, not that I'm saying it's a bad thing, I'm actually at a normal weight now. But after a decade of suffering from digestive issues, suffering from malabsorption, I just had no idea what healthy was like. So there is hope, just try to focus on improving little by little, day by day. At some point it just becomes a way of life.
  15. I ordered the sampler pack. It arrived on a particularly hot (about 100 degrees F) day here in Atlanta and sat in my mailbox probably an hour or two. They claim to not melt, but one flavor did (I can't remember which one). These were extreme conditions and I just threw it in the fridge and it was fine. I really liked the taste. The texture takes getting used to, it's not bad- just different. Sorry, I don't know what to compare it to or how to describe it better. I found them to be quite filling and I think they would make a good meal replacement or a hearty snack.
  16. Most people react to the egg whites, not the yolk, from what little research I have done so far tells me. Therefore, some people can eat the yolk even if they have a true egg white allergy. I guess the issue of separating the two would depend upon your level of reaction to the egg whites. I also do not know if egg allergies can cause long-term internal damage like we know gluten does to our bodies. From what I've gathered so far in my research, the symptoms tend to be more upper respiratory or skin-related in nature, like difficulty breathing or hives instead of GI though that is still a possibility.
  17. I just polished off a package of these myself (no- not all at once!) They are quite delicious, no real noticeable aftertaste.
  18. I unfortunately had the same negative experience with Optimum. I posted about it on here a couple of months ago. I waited I believe twelve weeks in total, and had to fax a threatening letter to them, stating that I would report them to the BBB if I did not receive my results, before the results finally surfaced. This was after numerous phone calls and emails. These tests aren't cheap and while I can understand maybe a slight delay over the advertised six weeks I really thought twice that long was false advertising. I'm also not sure if I trust the results. I tested on the high-end of moderate for egg whites. Egg allergies seem to have a pretty standard set of symptoms, especially when experienced by adults, and I have never had these symptons when eating eggs, which previous to the test I ate about twice a week. I plan on going back to Enterolab (which I had an excellent experience with) to be re-tested for eggs. I would not recommend Optimum to anyone until I hear via the Celiac community that they actually have their act together.
  19. kimjoy24

    Starbucks Gluten-free Cookie?

    I just wanted to let anyone in the metro Atlanta area know that I found the gluten-free peanut butter whoopie pies at the Starbucks at Peachtree and 7th in Midtown Atlanta, right across the street from the shiny new Spire high-rise condo building. The cashier checked with the manager who verified they are gluten-free (there was no tag on it in the display case). It's pretty tasty, though quite sweet, so I only ate half of it in one sitting.
  20. When I went on the Specific Carbohydrate Diet before going gluten-free (the SCD being way more strict than gluten-free diet) I lost almost 10 pounds in about a week. I was down to 105 pounds and I'm 5'8. I agree with the others that posted the initial weight loss may be because your wife has removed all or most of the junk food from her diet, and is eating whole foods in a more natural state. It took almost a year for me to start putting weight back on, but now I'm hovering around 140. That's the largest I've ever been in my life, but it's actually normal for my height. I'm seeing a little flab now that I need to firm up, when before, it was just skin and bones. I hope one factor that resulted in my weight gain is the fact that my gut has healed significantly (I did have severe malabsorption when first tested). However, I'm sure another factor is that I'm eating more processed gluten-free foods now (chips, crackers, cookies, etc).
  21. kimjoy24

    The Real Chow Baby

    Thanks for the recent visit review on The Real Chow Baby. I had a good media lunch there last year, and actually sent an email to the culinary head to ask about gluten-free sauces and stuff, and they told me they would have to research it but never got back to me. Also, that's great about the "allergy stick" thing- I was concerned about recommending them as a gluten-free dining spot only because of the possible cross-contamination the Mongolian grill style cooking can present. But that's good to know they cook it in a clean wok.
  22. I've used it and never had a reaction.
  23. kimjoy24

    I Hate Kaiser!

    I have a unique perspective- I actually work for Kaiser (non-medical role- I process claims). I've worked for them for six years. I also was born at a Kaiser facility and went to their facilities while growing up. I am not posting to defend them. I haven't even went through Kaiser to deal with my Celiac disease, opting to do the stool/blood tests that you can order online and choose myself to go on a gluten-free diet. Why? Because of the system, which isn't that much different than other HMO's, but just too time-consuming and frustrating. I agree with other posters who said it's a mixed bag, sometimes you'll get a good doc that seems to want to listen to you, other times you get a jerk. I previously had Blue Cross/Blue Shield and had a terrible experience on just a general physical exam. The doctor's office looked like it belonged in a third world country- they tried to test my hearing next to a fax machine that was going off. And when I first started having serious digestive issues back in college, my parents shelled out $150 to see a specialist (non-Kaiser, we didn't have insurance at this point). I went in with a food journal, notes about the symptoms I was experiencing etc etc. He took one look at me and said, "You look fine." I had a nurse practicioner (non-Kaiser) tell me that my problem was I needed to make friends. I agree with the previous poster about the time limits that they have for visits, etc. This is the tradeoff with HMO's- lower costs but less personalized care. I agree PPO is better if you can afford it, or think you will be going to the Dr. a lot, but it's no guarantee that you are going to get a great doctor. And to the original poster, you should definitely file a complaint with member services. That NP was way out of line. I will say that an internal survey was done recently about Kaiser's services and patient satisfaction with services scored quite low. A lot of emphasis is being put on treating members better, from when they check-in for their appointment to when they actually interact with the doctor. We just had a big meeting about this a couple of weeks ago.
  24. I recently did the 96-food panel test with Optimum. I reported in another thread about my disappointment in how long it took to get my test results. They advertise 4-6 weeks, but it actually took 12 weeks to get my test results, after numerous emails, phone calls, and one nasty fax letter. So I finally get the test results, and the food item that I scored most allergic to (a high-moderate reaction): eggs. I eat eggs on a weekly basis and do not have any of the classic reaction symptoms, nor did I have an egg allergy as a kid. I'm not saying the results are inaccurate....I'm just saying I want a second opinion.
  25. So after quite a wait, I finally received my test results back from Optimum Healthcare Resource. Happily, I showed "no reaction" to gluten/wheat, so I must be doing pretty well on the gluten-free diet. Surprisingly, dairy only registered a "low" response. In another thread, I discuss how just this past week I reacted quite badly to a product that had possible casein in it. Asparagus showed up as a "moderate" reaction. Fine with me, not my favorite vegetable. Banana and sugar cane registered as a "low" reaction. Does this mean I should avoid all sugar? 'Cuz I don't think that is going to happen, though I don't doubt that some of my gas/bloating issues are due to sugar. The only real shocker was my "high-moderate" reaction to egg whites. I never was diagnosed with an egg allergy as a child, and have eaten them all of my life with seemingly no reaction that I ever remember. I've read that in adults, it's more rashes, asthma, that kind of thing. I eat eggs twice a week, and then whatever I get in baking products, etc. So has anyone else tested fairly high for an egg allergy but doesn't have any symptoms? Did you notice any difference when you stopped eating them? I also get a flu shot just about every year, and have never had a reaction. Since the test comes with a year's worth of dr's consultation, I'm going to contact the dr. to investigate the egg issue further.