Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Looking into 2009: 20 Goals

2008 was a weird year for me mostly spent learning to live with my Celiac Diagnosis in a city that knew very little about Celiac Disease and the Gluten Free diet. I'd like to thank the readers of this blog and the support I have received in comments and emails. I will strive to continue to promote change and awareness in our great city in the future but will need your help along the way. Please keep your ideas, findings and thoughts coming as you experience living Gluten Free in Raleigh.

Over the next few weeks during Christmas vacation, the posts on Gluten Free Raleigh Blog might be a little light. If I find out something important, I will try to post about it.... but until then, I leave you with my plans/thoughts for what is in store for 2009 on the Gluten Free Raleigh Blog.

2009 Plans (in no particular order)
  1. Wake County School System - Gluten Free lunches
  2. Review of National Celiac Organizations
  3. NCSU, UNC & Duke sporting event concessions
  4. UNC University System Cafeteria reviews
  5. Durham Bulls/Carolina Mudcats sporting event concessions
  6. Gluten Free Medications
  7. Gluten Free Tax Deductions/Flexible Spending Accounts
  8. Local Product Spotlights
  9. Local Blogger Spotlights
  10. Raleigh area Hospital Cafeteria/Pharmacy reviews
  11. Gluten Free Raleigh Blog Health Network expansion
  12. Restaurant Reviews/Restaurant Survey
  13. Grocery Store Reviews (Earth Fare, Trader Joe's, Harmony Farms)
  14. Fund raising Activities (run/walk, etc...)
  15. RDU International Airport food options
  16. NC State Fair - more GF Friendly
  17. Celiac Drug Therapy Updates
  18. Useful Resources additions
  19. Hosting/Organizing Cooking Classes/Author discussions
  20. Guest Authors?
AND - Stay tuned in early January for a potentially huge announcement from a local company breaking into the Gluten Free product/restaurant scene! Some final discussions are going on right now and Gluten Free Raleigh Blog has been involved in the process. Much more to come once everything is finalized! I cannot wait to share with you all the great news.

As always, please leave a comment or Email me with questions or topic suggestions if you would like to add an idea.

Monday, December 22, 2008

WRAL Interview - 12/30/2008 @ 5:30 PM

Make sure you watch the Tuesday December 30th 5:30 P.M. news cast on WRAL (Raleigh CBS affiliate) for an interview with the folks behind Rosie's Plate, Twins Kitchen and the Gluten Free Raleigh Blog (yours truly).

A special thanks to Rick Armstrong for meeting with us and helping us raise awareness for Celiac Disease in Raleigh. Also, thanks to Rose, Michelle and Lori for taking time out of their busy schedules to be a part of the story. And a huge THANKS for all you do to support folks that are living with special diets! Best of luck to all of you in 2009 and beyond.

A Good (Scary) Read: Chicago Tribune Follow-up Article

As a follow-up to their previous investigation into mislabeled Gluten Free foods, the Chicago Tribune is at it again. If you feel like being sick to your stomach, read on.

Click here for the latest article from the Chicago Tribune where they reviewed thousands of items at more than 60 locations and found over 100 products with labels that violate federal food labeling laws. The newspaper also conducted 50 lab tests which is more than the FDA and USDA (our supposed regulators) have done over the last few years combined!

Christmas Fun - Controllable Christmas Lights for Celiac Disease

Check out the following Web site for Alek's Controllable Christmas Lights for Celiac Disease.

You can control the Christmas light display on this Web site and when you are done, you can donate to the University of Maryland Center for Celiac Research. Over $30,000 has already been raised!

The display is set up by Alek Komarnitsky from Boulder, Colorado whose children have Celiac Disease.

Massive Christmas Cookie Recipe List

I do not write about Recipes often, but I will from time to time include links to other blogs that do.

Here is a massive listing of Christmas Cookie recipes from GingerLemonGirl.com.

And here is a great Gluten Free Christmas song to play while you bake all those GF goodies. Have a listen, it is pretty funny.

Useful Resources: Gluten Free Search Engine

I received notification today about the world's first Gluten Free Search Engine, GlutenFreeFox.com. Google Insights reports that gluten-related search queries have increased nearly 150% since 2004. GlutenFreeFox.com is built on Google Search engine technology.

From PRWeb.com
The wealth of gluten-free information on the web just became easily accessible with a gluten-free search engine featured exclusively at GlutenFreeFox.com. Here gluten-intolerant, Celiac, and health conscious individuals can search topics related to gluten-free living, read the latest Gluten Free Fox feature articles, and access a directory of over 1000 gluten free foods and personal care products.

The web, the number one resource for gluten-free information, has become saturated with gluten-free blogs, forums and resource sites. GlutenFreeFox.com is the first search engine to utilize algorithmic filters and human-managed search results catering specifically to gluten-free needs. As a result, the Gluten Free Fox user is linked to the freshest, most noteworthy content from only the most respected gluten-free online sources.

Co-founded and created by Taylor Brown, notable Internet marketing manager and consultant, and Kristen Campbell, the diagnosed gluten sensitive author/creator of www.NaturallyDahling.com, the premier online gluten-free beauty website, and author of "Gluten Free Dieting--Trend or Staple" on Celiac.com, GlutenFreeFox.com is the work of two seasoned gluten-free and Internet search experts. After spending many months sifting through the wealth of gluten-free information (and misinformation) on the web, Kristen and Taylor decided to take matters into their own hands and customize a search engine that would cater specifically to the gluten-free community.
I searched for Raleigh and this blog came up as the 2nd listing - I like it already.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Rosie's Plate - Holiday Order Reminder

Just a friendly reminder that Friday (12/19) is the last day to order Holiday menu items from Rosie's Plate.

See my previous post here.

Reminder - Greater North Raleigh Celiac Support Group Meeting

Just a friendly reminder about this month's Greater North Raleigh Celiac Support Group meeting. The meeting is Thursday, December 18th at 7pm at Rex Hospital. A Gluten-Free Cookie/Goodies Exchange will take place.

Please email Pat Berger to request more information about the group or if you are interested in attending this month's meeting.

Useful Resources: SpecialGourmets.com

Thanks to a tip from a reader I was alerted to a Web site called SpecialGourmets.com. This resource is a community-driven guide of great restaurants, hotels and stores for people with Celiac Disease and food allergies. The idea is to let users of the site control the content to add places where they have had good experiences dining GF.

The coolest feature of the site is the map on the main page which shows all the GF establishments which have been added to your particular city. You can also view results as a list if you prefer that. As of now, it seemed to only have the major chain places like Outback, Bonefish, PF Changs, etc... but I guess it is up to us to add more content about the local GF friendly places. They have pretty much every place I have documented here but you may like the map feature a little better.

FYI - You must join (free membership) if you would like to add new places or make comments about existing places.

Click the link below to see the Raleigh Gluten Free map.

Thanks for linking to us

Enjoy Life Foods Survey

Here are a few surveys that Enjoy Life Foods would like for you to take to provide feedback about their products.

There are 4 surveys and 4 lucky participants will be chosen at random to receive a JUMBO gift box of Enjoy Life goodies.

See below for the links...
Have you ever eaten or purchased Enjoy Life Chocolate Chips?
Then take THIS survey.

Have you ever eaten or purchased Enjoy Life Bagels?
Then take THIS survey.

Have you ever eaten or purchased Enjoy Life Snickerdoodle Cookies?
Then take THIS survey.

Have you ever eaten or purchased Perky O's cereal?
Then take THIS survey.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Celiac Disease - A "Yuppie" Health Condition


That's about all I can say when I read the following ABC News article about the Top 10 "Yuppie" Health Conditions.

Here is how the story starts off...
Some conditions just can't seem to get society's respect.

When chronic fatigue syndrome first came on to the scene, it was ridiculed as the "yuppie flu." Other pooh-poohed conditions got their negative associations by proxy -- "tennis elbow" became associated with country club snobbery. Irritable bowel syndrome, already embarrassing, was a perfect comedic tool for sensitive characters like Ben Stiller's portrayal of the uptight Reuben Feffer in "Along Came Polly."

Even after doctors find a genetic link, a blood test or a treatment, a number of conditions still get stuck with negative labels like "yuppie." Below is a list of 10 of the most besmirched conditions patients wish would be taken more seriously.
Dang - in case you missed it they just compared Celiac Disease with Tennis Elbow.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Restaurant Review: 18 Seaboard - Downtown Raleigh

Yesterday, I attended a work function for lunch. The location selected was 18 Seaboard located in Downtown Raleigh. I had previously never been there and they do NOT have a Gluten Free menu.

I called a few days in advance to inquire about their Gluten Free options (as I always do). I was told over the phone in a very confident manner that they indeed could accommodate my special diet. I tried to get more specifics over the phone as to what exactly I could eat but was instead told how they serve people with food allergies quite often and never have any issues.

I decided to show up a little early for the lunch (something else I always do) to talk over the menu in more depth. I spoke with my server and went over the menu. It was recommended that I try the Cracklin’ pork shank with blue cheese grits, spinach, and cantaloupe compote. I began asking some more questions about the meal once I saw blue cheese was included (some blue cheese is made from molded bread). They could switch out the blue cheese grits with cheddar grits. Then I asked how the pork was prepared & cooked. Turns out it is indeed cooked in the same pan which also cooks up other flour laced entrees. Good thing I asked. FYI - I was told that many other people who desired GF options have been served this in the past. Not good.

The server then went back to the chef (I asked to talk to the chef on several occasions but did not get the chance until after lunch) to inquire about other options. He returned with the option of fresh shrimp & asparagus over cheddar grits - this was also listed on the menu. I was told no modifications would be needed. I asked again how the shrimp and asparagus were prepared/cooked and was told "grilled". Another red flag for me is when my food is cooked on a grill. It is always a good idea to request your food to be cooked in a newly cleaned pan or broiled on a newly cleaned pan in the oven instead of on the grill where cross contamination is likely. I asked for my food prepared this way.

Long story short, the food was great. I really enjoyed the shrimp and grits together as it is not something that I usually eat. By the way, the grits were made from corn and I was told their supplier avoided cross contamination issues. It took a little while to figure everything out but this is something that is pretty usual for me - hence why I go early.

The moral to the story is that I am almost more weary of places that seem very confident and say they serve diners with dietary restrictions "all the time". From my experience, not very many people (let alone chefs and waitstaff) in this area are actually familiar with preparing Gluten Free meals. One place may have the ingredients part nailed but might be weak on the cross contamination issues. It is always better to ask a lot of questions until you feel safe.

I'd like to give a special thanks to the owner/chef, management and waitstaff of 18 Seaboard for taking the time to work with me during my dining experience. I had the opportunity to talk to the owner/chef Jason Smith after my meal. During this conversation, I raised the issue of being recommended items that were not actually Gluten Free. We discussed numerous things in our conversation and they were very open to improving their processes. Part of the issue with cooking Gluten Free is that most chefs don't do it every day. It is easy to forget everything that is included in the GF Diet when you don't practice it everyday. Hopefully, I can work with places like 18 Seaboard in the future to help them more easily provide GF options.

18 Seaboard
18 Seaboard Avenue, Suite 100
Seaboard Station - Downtown Raleigh
Raleigh, NC 27604-1144

11:30am – 2:00pm

5:00pm – 10:00pm
5:00pm – 11:00pm

Reservations & Info: 919-861-4318
Website: http://www.18seaboard.com

View Larger Map

A Good Read: Making Sure Your Food is GF

Check out the following article from Tricia Thompson's Diet.com Blog about Celiac Disease and the GF Diet which has 6 questions to ask food manufacturers to ensure your food is Gluten Free.

The list includes...
1) Ask manufacturer if facility is dedicated to GF products. If not, ask if the production line is dedicated to GF products. If not, ask about their cleaning standards (I tend to shy away from eating things on shared lines no matter the cleaning standards). You can also check to see if they test their food regularly when it comes off the production line (using either R5 ELISA or the omega-gliadin ELISA). 20 PPM is the level of gluten you are looking for here.

2) Check the manufacturer's Certificate of Analysis which will show their ingredient suppliers also follow strict standards for identifying gluten. Same tests apply here (R5 ELISA and the omega-gliadin ELISA). Again, 20 PPM.

3) Check if the manufacturer has been certified by the GFCO.

It also has the link to the proposed FDA rule on Gluten Free food labeling which should be officially released in the next few months. It's an interesting read.

Monday, December 15, 2008

GFRB Health Network Welcomes A Celiac Dietitian

I mentioned last week the formation of the Gluten Free Raleigh Blog (GFRB) Health Network which I hope turns into a large network of the health specialists in Raleigh who are the most familiar with Celiac Disease. If you need some help with issues surrounding Celiac Disease or the Gluten Free Diet, the hope is that you can use the Health Network as a starting point to get the help you need.

I'd like to welcome the first member of the GFRB Health Network, Leslie Gaillard. Leslie is a registered dietitian who has been living with Celiac Disease since 2003. Some of you may have been referred to a dietitian when you were first diagnosed for assistance in learning the GF Diet. I've heard examples of CD patients showing up and simply receiving print outs about the GF Diet from various Web sites. Most of you probably know more than the Dietitian you saw if they are not living the GF lifestyle. To bad you're probably out several hundred dollars before you can figure this out! This shouldn't be the case with Leslie since she is actually living the GF Diet.

Here is a little more information about Leslie...

Need a Dietitian who actually has and understands Celiac Disease?

Leslie Gaillard is a registered dietitian who is licensed in the state of North Carolina to provide nutrition counseling. She received her Master of Public Health degree with a focus in Nutrition from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She regularly counsels individuals in the area with Celiac disease as well as a variety of other gastrointestinal disorders including irritable bowel disorder and ulcerative colitis. Leslie has been living successfully with Celiac disease for the past 5 years. She also has other food allergies including dairy and soy. Leslie enjoys counseling new Celiacs and guiding them through the process of transitioning to this new way of eating. She wants them to understand that the diagnosis can be a blessing in disguise. The gluten free diet can be a well-balanced, nutritious, and enjoyable eating plan. If you are interested in speaking with her, contact her at mailto:leslie_gaillard@yahoo.com?subject=Gluten%20Free%20Raleigh%20Blog%20Health%20Network
Welcome aboard Leslie and thanks for helping out!

FYI - The Gluten Free Raleigh Blog does not benefit in any way by sharing this information with others. The GFRB Health Network is simply meant to be a useful tool in helping others with their Celiac Disease or GF Diet. If you have any questions or if you have any suggestions about potential members for this network, please email me.

Celiac Disease and Diabetes

There has been a lot of news over the last few days about the genetic link between Celiac Disease and Diabetes. Recent studies in the UK have shown the the genetic traits for CD and Type 1 (Juvenile) Diabetes overlap to a much greater extent the previously thought.

Both CD and Diabetes are autoimmune disorders which require both the genetic makeup and an "environmental factor" which makes the genes active. The research suggests that active Celiac can be an environmental trigger for Diabetes.

Diabetes occurs when your pancreas stops producing insulin which is a hormone that allows your body's cells to take in glucose from food for energy.

Check out the symptoms for Type 1 Diabetes here.

Check out some of the articles about this from other sources below.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Special Announcement: Gluten Free Raleigh Blog Health Network

I am in the middle of establishing something I have coined "The Gluten Free Raleigh Blog Health Network".

The GFRB Health Network will be a useful resource for readers of this blog to assist them with finding Celiac friendly Doctors, Nutritionists, Dietitians, Dentists, etc...

A big part of what I am trying to accomplish with this Blog is to raise awareness about Celiac Disease and the GF Diet in Raleigh. The natural progression of this is for me to reach out to local Health Care providers in this city to make them more Celiac friendly. Granted, there are some great ones already out there. Hopefully you have been lucky enough to find one. If you have, please email me with their information and I will attempt to bring them into this network.

The first part of this Network will be to "partner" in a way with resources I know are already Celiac/GF friendly. Readers will easily be able to find resources to contact for more assistance. The Network may be small now, but it is a start. I have been reaching out to local resources over the past few weeks with more to come in the future.

Stay tuned for further posts about the first member of the GFRB Health Network. I'll give you a hint, she's a Dietitian (who actually has Celiac Disease and has been living GF for 5 years).

Raleigh Trader Joe's Update

The Raleigh Trader Joe's store is currently under construction at the corner of Six Forks and Wake Forest in Raleigh. I have been informed that the store has a tentative opening date of late Spring 2009 (May/June). I will let you know more as soon as I find out.

FYI - The average Trader Joe's carries hundreds of Gluten Free products which will provide another grocery option which is never a bad thing.

Christmas Gift Idea: KIND Bar Gift Capsule

Here's an idea for a Christmas gift for that special GF person on your list, The KIND Bar Gift Capsule. Interesting name, but it basically is a big tube of yummy GF KIND Bars.

Check it out here and make sure to enter coupon code "KSHG08" to receive 10% off your order.

BeFreeForMe.com Coupons

Check out the following new coupons sent out by BeFreeForMe.com.

1) NuGo Nutrition Bars - Use Coupon Code webGF3 to receive 10% off your total purchase.
2) Free Bag of Riceworks when you take this survey.

See my earlier post about this coupon Web site.

Word of Caution: Pace Foods No Longer GF

I have read a few things over the past few days alerting me to the fact that Pace Foods no longer provides anything Gluten Free. A factory/ingredient change took place in October 2008 so please check "Use by" date on any Pace products you may have.

Check Cecelia's Marketplace Product Alert for more information.

The alert above also contains information about Swanson broth, Campbell's soups, Prego sauces and Old El Paso products.

Feel free to contact Pace and their parent company Campbell's and let them have it.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Rosie's Plate: Holiday Menu Now Available

Rosie's Plate did a fantastic job with their Thanksgiving menu and now their Holiday menu is available. The theme is similar, you provide the main course (ham, turkey, etc...) and Rosie's Plate will provide the sides (scalloped Potatoes, Savory Roasted Root Vegetables, Sweet Potato w/ Bourbon Brown Sugar Glaze and Brussels Sprouts w/ Carroway-Mustard Butter), extras (Herbed Olives, Sugared Spicy Pecans and Classic Cheese Straws), sauces (Gravy, Apple/Cherry/Red Onion Chutney and Honey Dijon) and desserts (Divine Chocolate Torte, Chocolate Linzer Stars, Mexican Wedding Cookies, Sugar Cookies w/ Peppermint Candy, Sesame-Sunflower Seed Brittle, White Chocolate Peppermint Bark, Apricot Cranberry Bars and Apple Crumble Pie).

Rosie's is also offering some interesting gift ideas including a Gluten Free Baking Kit and a Cocktail Gift Bag. They also have some Goodie Trays and Dessert Trays that would be great for bringing to a party.

Orders must be placed 2 days in advance by calling 919-833-0505. The last day to order from the Holiday menu is 12/19/08. There will be special pick-up hours on 12/23/08 from 10AM to 5PM. Rosie's Plate will be closed on 12/24/08 and 12/25/08 but will open on 12/26/08 at 10AM.

Check the following Web site for more information.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

A Good Read: Celiac Vaccine?

Check out this article about a potential Celiac Vaccine being studied in the UK.

A quote from the article...
We have developed a peptide-based therapeutic vaccine based on the dominant problem T-cell epitopes of gluten. The "vaccine" has the potential to treat at about 80% of people with the disease and having the appropriate genetic background. In common with traditional desensitization therapy for allergy, peptide-based therapeutic vaccines administered in many small doses over a course of injections could induce immune tolerance not only to the selected gluten fragments but also suppress the toxicity of other toxic gluten components," explained Dr Anderson. Dr Anderson is joint founder and CEO of Nexpep Pty Ltd, the company developing the coeliac vaccine in Australia. Dr Anderson said, "Nexpep is currently raising capital for a clinical trial program for a peptide-based therapeutic vaccine and intends to commence a Phase 1 clinical trial in the first half of 2009.

A Good Read: Newsweek Article about GF Diet

Check out this Newsweek article about the Gluten Free Diet. Although only approximately 3 million Americans have Celiac Disease and are thus required to eat GF, 15 to 30 million Americans are buying Gluten Free products. The article states that $2 billion worth of GF products were purchased in the last year by people with Celiac, ADHD, Autism, pregnant women and other food allergies. Heck, even Oprah went on a 21-day GF cleansing this past summer. We've all heard about Jenny McCarthy and her autistic son going GF with good results.

Are these people good or bad for those of us who are medically required to eat GF? There is no medical proof to my knowledge about the benefits of eating GF for anything other than Celiac. On one hand, they are helping to drive the market for GF products with increased demand. This means there will be more available. On the other hand, with most diet fads in America, this too may fizzle out and once those extra GF folks leave so will the manufacturers, right? Only time will tell. For now, I will enjoy the new products coming to market and hope they stay around (the good ones at least)!

Hopefully all this attention (good or bad) will kick the FDA/USDA in the pants as well!

Gluten Free Cafe - New Frozen Meals

I discovered a new choice for frozen meals this weekend during a trip to Kroger. I noticed two new items from a company called Gluten Free Cafe. The new frozen meals are brought to you by the folks at Hain Celestial Group which has many other GF product lines including Arrowhead Mills, DeBoles Pasta, Imagine Soups and Rice Dream/Soy Dream.

The products and Web site seem to be pretty new so there is not much more information available. I'll let you know how my Lemon Basil Chicken over Rice is after lunch!

Their product selection is Asian Curry Noodles, Fettuccini Alfredo, Lemon Basil Chicken, Pasta Primavera. The box has the statement "Gluten Free Cafe is the only line of gluten free frozen foods with sauce fortified with vitamins, minerals and Inulin. The product is also certified Gluten Free by the GFCO.

Monday, December 8, 2008

A Good Read: Gluten Intolerance Group 2008 Summary

I recently received the following from the Gluten Intolerance Group (GIG) which details what they accomplished in the year 2008 and what they look forward to in the future. Some interesting things in the message.

The GIG is a national support group (how many of these do we ha for those with Celiac Disease, Gluten Intolerance, dermatitis herpetiformis and other Gluten sensitivities.

Read below for the message...
Dear GIG Supporters,

In today's uncertain times, everyone has felt the crunch of rising costs and an unstable economy. Despite the state of the markets, national leaders in nonprofit management encourage donors to open their hearts and give more to serve a wider need. The need continues to grow in the gluten-free community. Over 25 million people are now purchasing gluten-free foods and are also searching for answers for better health. Hundreds of persons with Celiac disease and other forms of gluten intolerance seek help from the GIG office each month, not to mention the consumer emails and calls of those already living the gluten-free lifestyle.

We task ourselves to manage the resources entrusted to us, to use them effectively for the greatest good.

GIG is proud of our 2008 accomplishments:
The major accomplishments in our social programs include:
•100% support of kids requesting scholarships for GIG Kids Camp
•100% support of those requesting scholarships for the Annual Education conference
•All day leadership training event attended by 75% of our Branch leaders
•Working cooperatively with companies to provide education support and resources to consumers
•On-going support through individual consultations to gluten-free consumers, health care professionals and food companies.

The major accomplishments in our industry programs include:
•Increased company participation in the Gluten Free Certification (GFCO) program by 93% during 2008
•Increased restaurant participation in the Gluten Free Restaurant Awareness Program (GFRAP) by 65 new locations
•Launched the market trial of the Gluten Free Food Service Training and Management Accreditation program with food services of various sizes, including a major food service provider in health care, schools and universities. This program provides Best Practices for gluten-free food service production, training and management.

Our pledge for 2009 is to:
1.Enhance consumer support through additional education information and enhanced awareness
2.Meet the growing consumer needs with little or no increase in program costs
3.Support our employees and volunteers in a manner that is reasonable and in keeping with best practices for nonprofits
4.Continue to work closely with more manufacturers to provide resources, information and support to their consumers about products
5.Provide speakers nationally and locally to consumer groups, the public, health care providers and the food industry
6.Increase awareness of gluten sensitivity through direct marketing opportunities with retailers, manufacturers, schools, and in the health industry through increased publications, lectures and exhibits at consumer and professional conferences, such as THRIVE, Digestive Disease Week, Natural Market Expo and the American Dietetic Association Conference
7.Expand GIG Industry Programs nationally and internationally

We can do so much more, with your help, to support all persons with Celiac disease and other forms of gluten intolerances; the health care professionals needing patient handouts; food companies and retailers who want to support persons living a gluten-free diet. Your help through cash contributions, in-kind donations, and the gifts of your time and skills can make it easier for these persons to live daily, a healthy gluten-free life.

Remember the appreciation you have felt when someone is there for you to talk to giving needed guidance. Help GIG to be the helping hands that brings support to a child, teen, adult and the elderly.

Every dollar makes a difference.

You may make donations via our website www.gluten.net
or mail to GIG, 31214 124th Ave SE, Auburn, WA 98092-3667
or fax with Visa or MasterCard credit card number to: 253-833-6675

Thank you for being a GIG supporter.

May you and your family be blessed with love, good health, and happiness during the holidays and the coming year.

Grocery Store Review: Kroger

I actually do most of my GF shopping at the Kroger which is right around the corner from my house. Whole Foods is about 20 minutes away (without any traffic) on the other side of town and the new Trader Joe's is not open in Raleigh yet (more to come on this).

Anyway, not sure if all area Kroger have the same selection of GF items as the one by me, but I am very pleased with what my local Kroger offers. I have an easy time finding cereal, pasta, frozen foods, soups, crackers, cookie/brownie/bread mix/pizza mix, frozen and fresh bread, waffles, power bars, cookies and much more in the Nature's Market section.

In addition, in the last few months, numerous Gluten Free signs have gone up beside the product price labels on store shelves. This really makes the item pop out at you when you are hunting through the other organic/non-GF items in the Nature's Market section (FYI - I always still read the ingredients!).

Here are a couple Web sites with more information.
Healthy Living page
Kroger Private Labels Product page
Gluten Store Guide page

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Rosie's Plate Survey - $5 off your next order!

I received the following email from the owner of Rosie's Plate. Looks like they are looking for some customer feedback on their 6 month birthday. Let's help them out by taking the survey and you get $5 off your next order!
It's hard to believe that Rosie's Plate is almost six months old! We are growing everyday because of your great patronage and we thank everyone who has helped spread the word about Rosie's Plate. It is our mission to make your life easier by offering you delicious healthy foods that work within your diet.

We are asking everyone on our mailing list to fill out a brief survey to let us know how we are doing. We value your input, so if you have a spare minute please click on the link below. To thank you for your time, we'll take $5 off your next order!

Click here for Rosie's Survey

Thank you for your help. We look forward to seeing you at Rosie's Plate soon.

Rose Waring
Rosie's Plate

RedBridge at RBC Center Update

I have experienced an outage of RedBridge Beer at Canes games the last few visits to the RBC Center. I have also received emails from readers wondering what was going on with the RedBridge situation. I contacted the folks over there and they assured me that RedBridge is in stock and available. The timing of this is good since I will need a few of them tonight after I see new coach Paul Maurice on the bench for the first time. What's next, home games in Greensboro?

See my previous posts about how to get and where to find RedBridge during Canes games here.

A Good Read: Xanthan Gum Issues?

Here's a good read from the folks at Celiac.com about potential issues with Xanthan Gum which is a very common ingredient in Gluten Free foods. The author recommends Guar Gum instead.

A quote from the article...
Some people develop an allergy to xanthan, with gastrointestinal symptoms such as bloating, gas, and diarrhea. Even consumption of a very minor amount can lead to days and days of recovery and many trips to the bathroom. Hmm. Sound like anything we've heard before? And that's the problem. Experiencing a xanthan reaction can make you question your gluten-free diet, make you think you were accidentally exposed to gluten, or mystify you completely.
Anybody had issues with Xanthan Gum?

Poll Results tallied - New Polls added

Here are the results of the set of Poll questions that have been on GlutenFreeRaleigh since 11-3. I try to put up new poll questions every 30 days or so. I use this information to decide what to research and write about so please vote and let me know what you are interested in!

1)How often do you eat out?
never 3 (10%)
monthly 4 (13%)
weekly 21 (70%)
more than weekly 2 (6%)

Votes: 30

2)How long have you been GF?
less than 6 months 11 (34%)
1 to 5 years 20 (62%)
5 to 10 years 0 (0%)
more than 10 years 1 (3%)

Votes: 32

I have also added some new Poll Questions to the right side bar. I will continue to put up new Polls often to try to get a better understanding of what readers of this blog would like me to focus on.

Please vote!

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Local Blogger Spotlight: The Gluten-Free Dish

I was recently contacted by a local Gluten-Free Blogger, The Gluten-Free 'Dish', who wanted to share information about a holistic doctor in Raleigh who has helped her a great deal. Her family eats Gluten-Free (amongst other things) and her son has Celiac Disease.

For more information about her experiences with the holistic doctor, see this post.

Check out The Gluten-Free Dish Blog.

20 Parts Per Million Explained

Here is an interesting read/reminder about what 20 PPM really means in a real life context from Tricia Thompson, The Gluten Free Dietitian.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Twins Kitchen: Gluten Free Holiday Gifts Now Available

Check out the following news from the Twins Kitchen Blog.

Looks like they will be offering a wide variety of Holiday Gift Boxes including Cookies, Brownies, Cupcakes and Sauces!

Gluten Free Christmas Gift Ideas

Christmas is approaching quickly and some of you may be scrambling to find ideas for your Christmas lists or for ideas for your loved one with Celiac Disease. If your newly diagnosed then you will probably have a lot of new appliances and baking utensils on your list.

Triumph Dining Blog put together this cool list of the Top 10 Gluten Free Gifts for 2008.

The Breadman and magazine subscriptions are on my list.

Number 10 on the list (A Gluten-Free Christmas) would be great but highly unlikely outside of my home. Man am I gonna miss all my favorite cookies this year.

Useful Resources: Celiac Disease on iTunes

Check out this recent post from the Gluten-Free Hub Blog about Celiac Disease on iTunes.

Looks like some good stuff if you are an iTunes user.

My First Gluten Free Thanksgiving

Hope you all had a Happy Thanksgiving! I've been out of commission for a few days on a turkey hangover but am trying to get caught up on all the latest Celiac Disease/Gluten Free News. More to come!

My First Gluten Free Thanksgiving
I had a pretty great first GF Thanksgiving. I had both Whole Foods and Butterball turkeys and both were yummy. Mashed potatoes were easy and naturally gluten free. I also had sweet potatoes, cranberries and butternut squash side dishes - all gluten free. I ordered several items from Rosie's Plate and was extremely satisfied. The items were green been casserole, stuffing, gravy and pumpkin pie - all items that normally would contain gluten. Also, we used a GF frozen pie crust from the Whole Foods Bakery to make an apple pie and thought it was very good as well.

Feel free to provide your experiences about your Gluten Free Thanksgiving here.