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Found 5 results

  1. Celiac.com 09/20/2018 - Some people with celiac disease experience extreme symptoms when they eat gluten. These folks adopt various strategies for navigating the world. One of those strategies involves getting a gluten-sniffing service dog. We’ve done a few stories on gluten-sniffing dogs over the years. Dogs like Zeus and Hawkeye are famous for helping their owners sniff out gluten before they can eat it. Can Gluten-Sniffing Dogs Help People with Celiac Disease? The stories are always popular. People love the stories, and people love the dogs. After all, pretty much anyone with celiac disease who has ever read about gluten-sniffing dogs would love to have one. Who could say no to a warm, fuzzy dog that can take a sniff of your food and signal you when it contains gluten? The stories almost always generate plenty of feedback and more than a few questions. To answer some of those questions, we’ve decided to do an article that provides some facts about gluten-sniffing dogs. Here are a few factors to keep in mind about gluten-sniffing service dogs: Gluten-free Dog Status: One thing to remember is that proper gluten-sniffing dogs are professionally trained service animals, much like seeing-eye dogs or hearing-ear dogs. As professional service animals, the dogs must be trained and certified as service animals. The dogs may then accompany their master pretty much anywhere they go, and are available to assess all food and snacks. Gluten-free Dog Training: Proper training takes time, which equals money. Professional trainers might only train one or two dogs, and the training can take about a year. There are very few trainers for gluten-sniffing dogs, and there are also currently no official guidelines or certification. Gluten-free Dog Cost: In our recent story on the gluten-sniffing black Lab, Hawkeye, we noted that the dog cost $16,000, not including food, and vet bills. Gluten-free Dog Reliability: Nimasensor.com notes that “[g]luten-sniffing dogs may detect gluten in amounts as small as .0025 parts per million with 95 percent to 98 percent accuracy.” The Mercola.com website says that Willow, a gluten-sniffing German shorthaired pointer in Michigan, can detect gluten with 95 percent to 98 percent accuracy. Read more on gluten-sniffing dogs: Gluten-Sniffing Dogs Are Game Changers for People With Celiac Disease Gluten-sniffing dogs help people with celiac disease What to Know About Gluten-Sniffing Dogs Gluten-Sniffing Assistance Dog Helps Celiac Sufferer Lead Normal Life
  2. Celiac.com 02/27/2018 - A pair of disabled veterans recently filed a federal lawsuit against a gluten-free bakery, Aimee's Love, and the city of Longmont, Colorado. The suit claims that on two separate occasions the bakery owners and the city both violated the Americans with Disabilities Act when they refused to serve the couple due to the presence of their service dogs. The suit also contends that Aimee's Love violated the Colorado Anti-Discrimination Act, and that the city violated the Rehabilitation Act of 1973. The Blocks are seeking unspecified damages. Under the ADA, people with disabilities may bring animals into businesses and other buildings where they would usually be excluded. The Blocks allege that they were first denied service by the bakery on March 8, when they attempted to enter with a Great Dane named Rajah, which they term a "service animal in training." The Blocks claim they asked the owners to familiarize themselves with federal laws regarding service animals. They claim that they were later denied service a second time, when they tried to enter the bakery with a different dog. According to Jennifer and Gary Block, Longmont police officers responded to the second incident improperly by wrongly making the couple and their dog leave the business. A Longmont police report claims the couple left on their own after the first incident, and that the bakery owners merely asked if the dogs were legitimate service dogs. It was during the second incident that the police told the Blocks and their dog to leave the bakery, the suit alleges. The suit also contends that the bakery owners and police violated federal disability law by demanding "proof" that the Blocks' dog was indeed a service animal. Under federal law, business owners may ask if a dog is a service animal and what task it performs, but can't ask any further questions of the dog's handler. They are not allowed to ask for "proof" that the service animal is "legitimate." Stay tuned for more news on this and other gluten-free-related stories. Read more at: Timescall.com
  3. Celiac.com 06/02/2017 - Though I tried to avoid eating with locals, it seemed to come up over and over again. Military duties frequently required me to work and meet with the locals to facilitate contracts we had in place and ensure work was done properly. At various times and locations, I traveled with a small group of other soldiers among a larger population of Afghans. Many of the Afghans carried weapons, such as the AK-47, and had them slung over their shoulders. We were able to strike a chord with the locals, creating an atmosphere of camaraderie. The U.S. government was paying them to do a job; they were collecting a wage, and everyone left satisfied. At times, this relationship felt like any manager/employee relationship, and at other times it felt like we were paying the mafia to keep them from doing harm. The situation could be tough and would get tougher as our relationship with the locals became strained due to regional politics. An example of this strain occurred in February 2012, when a group of Afghan workers near Kabul (a few hundred miles away) were angered by the sight of Korans in a burn pile. The Koran is the religious text of Islam, which Muslims consider the word of God. An Arabic Koran is cared for in a special manner, and the sight of these sacred texts in a burn pit was enough to incite violence and riots throughout the country. Unlike the United States, where news travels instantly, news in Afghanistan travels slowly, mostly by word of mouth, and it took several days before Afghans in Kandahar heard about the incident. They began to protest, and we were all instructed to be on high alert with loaded weapons. Meanwhile, in Kabul, the riots took the lives of American soldiers. This included a friend of mine, a fellow Maryland Guardsmen and Army officer. He had been working with the Afghan National Army (ANA) in the Kabul region. Bob was a good man, and I will remember him fondly. Work did not stop, even with the angry protests. Along with a small group of soldiers, I found myself at the local Kandahar Transshipment Yard, roughly two miles from the main post of KAF. The group of about twelve U.S. soldiers was there, mixed with over one hundred local Afghans and Pakistanis, most of whom were working as truck drivers delivering supplies. The atmosphere was abnormally quiet as we went about our business and talked with the Afghans. They stared at us but made no ill gestures as we walked up to them. Someone nearby started yelling. There was a scuffle. Silence followed. One of the locals stepped out from his group and walked over to me. He spoke no English but reached out his hand and offered me food. This seemed intended as a gesture of friendship. I could eat it and risk a variety of potential side effects to include a gluten reaction, or I could turn it down, which may have been considered an insult in what was already shaping up to be a tense situation. What do you do? I did what any leader would do, and made the best of the situation in spite of my diet. I imagine anyone would. Why risk violence just to avoid eating gluten? Yet the ramifications are clear for anyone considering joining military service. They may be putting themselves in a compromising position. Those of us out there make the best of it and do not mind the selfless service when required. Yet even at home in our day-to-day lives, where violence is not a factor, I see celiacs and gluten-free dieters compromising their dietary standards due to social pressures. Maybe they do it to fit in, or rub elbows with a supervisor at work, or maybe just to avoid seeming difficult. We may be given a salad with croutons and quietly brush them out of the way rather than be an inconvenience. And when we do this we are not only harming ourselves but each other. The more vocal celiacs are about their diet, the easier it will be for the next celiac who will follow in their footsteps, or are seated in the same restaurant later on. While it may seem curt, or perhaps crass, I politely reject any food that I am not confident is gluten-free, while ensuring that the server knows I am concerned about gluten. It does not matter to me if it is at a social event, a work event, or just casual dining. While I do know some gluten-free dieters who will only eat food from their own kitchen, I am not quite so stringent and am willing to go out to eat. However, I am also known for bombarding servers and cooks with a host of questions until I'm reasonably assured that my meal will not be cross contaminated or contain gluten. Several of the vignettes I include in Gluten Free in Afghanistan tell my story of difficult times eating gluten-free, both at home and abroad. While war-time scenarios do not unfold too often, and are probably far from your mind while eating at a restaurant, you may want to remember the above story when your gluten-free meal comes with wheat toast on top of it, or the crouton crumbs are scattered on top of your salad. Is it likely that the person who handed it to you is heavily armed and going to be offended? If they are, I would recommend you leave the area immediately for your safety and the safety of those around you. If they are likely not armed, politely explaining why this food is not healthy for gluten-free dieters will not only benefit you, it will benefit any celiac who is there after you. Stay safe out there. An excerpt from his book Gluten Free in Afghanistan.
  4. Celiac.com 10/19/2012 - Irish citizens with celiac disease will no longer be reimbursed for the gluten-free products they buy, under to a newly announced cutback to their health benefits. The Irish Pharmacy Union (IPU) says that new cuts to health benefits by the Irish health service (HSE) mean that many gluten-free products will no longer be reimbursed by the government, including products purchased by patients with medical cards, and those receiving long-term illness benefits. Gluten-free products that will no longer be covered include baking powder, breads, cornflakes, flour, muesli, pasta, pizza and porridge. People with celiac disease must eat gluten-free foods to avoid suffering from significant health problems. The IPU says this means that celiac patients, who rely on gluten-free products to maintain their health, will no longer receive financial support to help them cover the cost of these products. The HSE announced the controversial €130 million in cuts last spring, but made no mention that gluten-free products would be removed from the list of free items. The HSE announcement said only that 'certain products including' glucosamine, the obesity drug Orlistat, and Omega-3 Triglycerides to protect against heart disease, would be removed from the list of reimbursable products. In confirming the elimination of reimbursements for gluten-free products, an HSE spokesperson said that the agency was choosing to cut products for which there was 'doubt about their clinical efficacy.' What do you think? Are gluten-free products medically questionable for people with celiac disease? Let us know your thoughts by commenting below. Source: Irish Health
  5. Celiac.com 08/08/2012 - In the UK, people with celiac disease get their gluten-free food subsidized by the government as part of their national health care. This includes items like gluten-free pizzas. This practice works in much the same way that insurance companies in America cover drug prescriptions for their members. Those members with a doctor's prescription pay a reduced cost or no cost at all on certain items. In the UK, everyone is insured by the National Health Service (NHS). There, people with celiac disease and certain other conditions get prescriptions that allow them to obtain gluten-free food at a reduced cost. In a recent story, BBC news claims that, as part of this service, the NHS is spending £17 (about $26) on each gluten-free pizza it supplies. That amount would equal four times the original base price of the pizza, since they originally cost less than £4.50 (about $6) each. According to the BBC, once manufacturing, handling and delivery fees were added, the bill for the NHS had risen to £34 (over fifty bucks) for two pizzas. Without acknowledging the actual cost per pizza, Stuart Lakin, head of medicines management at NHS Rotherham, said that the NHS was making efforts to minimize wholesaler delivery charges on the pizzas by switching patients from brands that attract additional charges. He added that costs for all gluten-free products was down from £274,611 in 2009/10 to just £177,153 in 2011/12. Moreover, he noted, only patients with clinically diagnosed celiac disease are eligible for prescriptions for gluten-free products. Health Secretary Andrew Lansley pointed out that prescriptions encouraged celiac sufferers to more strictly follow gluten-free diets, but admitted that the practice is ‘under ongoing review.' What do you think? Should gluten-free food be treated like medicine for people with celiac disease, and be covered under insurance plans like prescription drugs? Is $26 dollars too much to pay for a gluten-free pizza? Source: BBC News
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