Thursday, December 31, 2009

Mellow Mushroom: New Gluten Free Pizza!

I've been away for awhile with a needed Christmas vacation and moving but will return soon... in the meantime, to give you something to wet your appetite, I'd thought I'd share some exciting breaking news.

Mellow Mushroom will soon be debuting it's brand new Gluten Free Pizza at one select location... can you guess which one? That's right, right here in good old Raleigh, NC. Out of over 100 locations (10 in NC), we are extremely lucky to get the first bite. The new pizza should be available sometime in January. I'm busy working on getting all the details and will share more soon.

Any Mellow Mushroom fans out there? One of my personal favorites before going GF. This adds to the already large amount of choices for GF Pizza here in Raleigh (ZPizza, Uno, Lilly's, Bella Monica, Rosie's Plate... just to name a few).

Stay tuned...

Friday, December 11, 2009

Poll Question: What Do You Call Accidential Gluten Ingestion?

If you select other, please leave a comment with your term.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Celiac Disease On Dr. Oz Show Recap

Not sure if you caught the Dr. Oz show this afternoon (12/10) but the first 25 minutes or so was all about Celiac Disease and eating Gluten Free. The show featured Elisabeth Hasselbeck and Dr. Peter Green and did as good a job covering the disease and diet as you can in 20 minutes.
As of yet, I have not been able to find the video anywhere out there but if I do, I'll update this post.

A couple thoughts on the episode...
  • Love or hate her, Elisabeth Hasselbeck is raising awareness for Celiac Disease. The more doctors are educated on this, the more diagnosed cases there will be and the more GF products there will be for us to eat. Increasing general knowledge among the public is also good thing so that restaurant workers and people hosting parties can cater to us.

  • I had a few issues though with Elisabeth... mainly that after they focused on Celiac and the "G Free Diet" as she calls it (I don't like that term), they spent some time saying that the GF Diet is good for others as a weight loss diet. I truly believe she is saying this to sell books as everything I read clearly says that only folks with Celiac or Gluten Intolerance benefit from the GF Diet. There is no research conducted on how eating GF affects normal folks and in fact the GF Diet often lacks many key vitamins/minerals which need to be supplemented. I wish Elisabeth would stick to the science and discuss CD/Gluten Intolerance and leave the diet part out. This can turn eating GF into a fad which will give me more to eat, but only on a temporary basis.

  • At the end of the show, Dr. Oz went over his recap and said something along the lines of "If you suspect you have Celiac Disease, try going Gluten Free for 3 weeks.... if you feel better, then ask your doctor to get you tested for CD"... This is simply not the way to diagnose CD. The blood test involved requires a person with CD to be eating Gluten in order for the antibodies to be produced. This type of misinformation can severely limit proper diagnosis. A more correct statement would have been a multi-staged approach to a 100% true diagnosis of Celiac.... 1) Blood test (while eating gluten)... if positive, 2) Endoscopy with biopsy of small intestine to check for damage to villi. Multiple sites need to be sampled by an experienced GI who is used to looking for Celiac damage - it often is not uniform... If damage is present then, 3)Eat a Gluten Free diet and if you feel better after a period of time (depends on extent of damage found in 2), then bam - you're officially a member of the Celiac club. I'd be happier if Dr. Oz said this instead.

Overall, it's good to see Celiac being mentioned as the epidemic it truly is on a show seen by 3.5 million people on average. According to the latest ratings, the Dr. Oz show (only in its first season) has very similar ratings (and could soon surpass) to the widely successful and long running Dr. Phil show. Dr. Phil is rated 2nd behind Oprah as the most watched daytime TV show in the US.

What are your thoughts?

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Rosie's Plate: 10% Order Until 12/12/09

I received the following email from Rosie's Plate. 10% off all items from now until this Saturday 12/12/09.
Come and Get It...
10% OFF
Deli and Bakery
Including Some Fun Holiday Treats!
Sale Through Saturday
December 12th
weekdays 10-6:30 p.m.
Saturday 10-4 p.m.

Betty Crocker - More GF News

I've been a little busy itching/scratching a recent DH flare up - sorry I've been away... Regardless, we've already had so much good news from General Mills (like that they clearly label 200+ products as Gluten Free), but here is some more - again from Betty Crocker.

You may have already begun seeing the newly labeled Betty Crocker frosting containers in grocery stores in the area. General Mills had originally planned for this labeling change to begin this fall but they appear to have just now begun arriving. Now you can put some GF frosting on your Betty Crocker GF brownie or cake mix!

Click here to see a complete listing of the available Gluten Free Betty Crocker frostings. Click each link to open a picture of the packaging. I've included a sample to the left. You can see the Gluten Free in the bottom right side of the label.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

New Product Testing Policy

Effective 12/4/2009, all products reviewed and promoted on Gluten Free Raleigh will be subject to the new Product Testing Policy outline below. 
  1. From time to time, GFR features product reviews from local Raleigh area companies. In order to be featured on this blog, the products will now be tested for PPM Gluten.
  2. Any company that does not agree to this Policy will not be featured on GFR. Company owners will be notified of this testing policy upfront. No witch hunts will be conducted.
  3. Where possible, representatives from the company will be present during testing so that results can be known immediately and can be done openly. Testing kits will not be opened until the time of the test.
  4. A recognized, reputable company/product will be used in testing the Gluten status of products featured on GFR. GFR has the right to select whatever company provides the most cost effective, accurate testing. Examples of such companies are ELISA Technologies, Inc and R-Biopharm. These Gluten testing companies/products are widely used and recognized in the Gluten Free product marketplace.
  5. GFR will pay for the costs of the Gluten testing.
  6. GFR will clearly state what testing product was used, what GF products where tested and what the results of the test were.
  7. In most cases, photographs will be taken of the testing process and/or test results.
  8. In every case, any questionable test result (positive) will be first discussed with the company/product in question before being published on GFR. If possible, GFR will make itself available to attempt to consult with the company to try to solve their Gluten infiltration.
  9. This policy applies to companies that are not already undergoing some form of Gluten testing where they can provide evidence to GFR of the testing procedure and results.
This product testing policy was created in honor of Paul Seelig, owner/operator of the company formerly known as Great Specialty Products and will be enforced to ensure that no other fraudulent companies or scam artists fool or poison us again.

Changes to this policy may occur at any time.

Friday, December 4, 2009

New FTC Policy For Bloggers

It has always been my intention to fully disclose any relationships with the various companies/products I write about here on Gluten Free Raleigh. In cases where I am compensated, I have made that known (see Triumph Dining post here). I will continue this policy in the future and will now disclose when companies offer me free samples of their products.

Below is some information about a brand new Policy/Guideline that the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has made effective on 12/1/2009. The guideline deals with full disclosure and Gluten Free Raleigh will comply fully. Transparency is critical to my credibility with my readers. In addition, I must be careful to confirm the accuracy of any statements that I make about a product or service that I am writing about and am responsible for what I write.

New FTC Guideline for Bloggers
The Guidelines issued by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) on October 5, 2009 relate to endorsement and testimonial advertising. These new Guidelines went into effect on December 1, and reflect the FTC’s interpretation with respect to federal law relating to advertising. These new Guidelines specifically apply to bloggers and could impose liability on bloggers for endorsements or testimonials.

The revised Guidelines state that:
-The Guidelines apply to Bloggers and online word-of-mouth marketers and require them to disclose any material connection to a company when reviewing the company’s products or services (failure to disclose any payment or receipt of free product from an advertiser or someone acting on their behalf could expose you to liability);
-Both advertisers and endorsers can be liable for false or unsubstantiated claims made in an endorsement (if you were given a product for free or were paid to write a review, then the claims you make about the product must be accurate and substantiated);
-Advertisements containing consumer endorsements, or testimonials, must disclose what results a reasonable consumer could expect from the product and can no longer rely on a disclaimer that “results may vary”.

The complete revised Guidelines can be found here. The FTC has also posted several short videos explaining the Guidelines here.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

General Mills Update - Over 200 GF Products Now Available

I've written many times about the great things General Mills is doing for the Gluten Free product marketplace. Click here for some of my previous entries on this topic. I recently saw this article from about some new announcements from General Mills.

General Mills has launched a brand new Web site and newsletter around their Gluten Free product offering. The Web site is called Live Gluten Freely and it states there that the site is "your destination for gluten-free product information, new product news and recipes from General Mills. Our goal is to help you live your life without gluten…". The Web site also features recipes and a newsletter as well as an explanation about how they label their GF products (see picture to the left).

General Mills is a top 5 food company in the USA and is currently offering over 200 products which are labeled as Gluten Free. You can see the extensive list here. The PDF version (last updated on 11/30/09) is here. The products include major brands like Betty Crocker dessert mixes & fruit snacks, Chex cereal, Lara Bars, Progresso Soups and Yoplait yogurt.

Additionally, you can follow General Mills on Facebook & Twitter.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

More News From Rosie's Plate

Here are some more tidbits about happenings at Rosie's Plate.
  • The brand new December menu is now available. Click here to see the new items.
  • Rosie's Plate is now offering Gift Bags for holiday gifts. See the store for details.
  • There are some excellent classes coming up as well at Rosie's Plate. Click here for more details on classes like "Healthy Eating and Supplementation" on Jan 16, "Baking Gluten, Egg and Dairy Free" on Jan 9 and another installation of "Gluten Free 101" on Jan 23 (taught by yours truly). I previously taught this class in October and plan to do so on a regular basis to help those new to the GF diet.
  • Also, you can stop by Rosie's Plate on Friday December 18 from 5-7p for a Holiday Tasting Event.
  • Finally, be sure to check out Rosie's Plate at the 2010 Healthy Marketplace event held at the NC State Fairgrounds on Jan 30 - 31. Click here for more information. The Healthy Choice Marketplace is an expo of natural, integrative, and alternative health care professionals and products in the Triangle. Event hours are Saturday, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sunday Noon. to 6 p.m.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Rosie's Plate Holiday Menu Survey

Would you like to have input on the menu items offered at Rosie's Plate for the upcoming Holiday season? Click the survey link below for a unique opportunity to get exactly the menu choices you want.

Click here to take the one question survey.