October 30, 2013

The Broken Road To Awareness

Why is Celiac Disease so misunderstood? Why is there so much varying information? Why can't we all be on the same page? Why? Why? Why?

Celiac is the only disease that I can think of, where the people who are diagnosed don't even really understand it, let alone the Doctor's diagnosing it.  We are sort of left to figure it out on our own, resulting in widespread misconceptions, wrong choices, inaccurate media coverage and best of all, the pain of accidental Glutening.


Uneducated Doctors : 
If the front line is not in order, how can we expect those who have Celiac Disease to fully understand their condition? Most family Doctors have minimal knowledge about Celiac. Many of them neglect to do the proper testing and suggest that their patients try a Gluten Free diet to see how it makes them feel. In the long run, they are only adding to the misconceptions. Due to the lax in proper diagnosis, some are just assuming that they have Celiac, when in fact they don't. Others face numerous hurdles in getting an accurate diagnosis.

Another issue is with the lack of Celiac Disease specialists. People who live near a facility such as the Chicago Center for Celiac Disease research luck out. But those of us who are nowhere near a research facility, often get put on the back burner unless we fiercely advocate for proper testing and the answers to go along with it.

Not enough awareness:  Celiac Disease awareness seems to be  IS severely lacking. Due to it being virtually non existent, people usually assume that eating Gluten Free is a choice and they do not associate it with a real disease. Both those who have Celiac and those who don't are not usually fully aware how serious this autoimmune disease is. Many people are too embarrassed to speak up and make sure food is Gluten Free, some admit that they "cheat" once in a while and others just don't know where to start. 

Resources are also limited. The support and information available to those who are newly diagnosed varies substantially from City to Province to Country. Celiac is a confusing and overwhelming disease to be diagnosed with. Many people are told they have the disease and then sent on their way with no formal education about it.

Fear mongers :  
There is a never ending flood of people with personal agendas. Weather they are out to make money, or to spread misinformation in hopes of roping people into their way on thinking (anti GMO, No Grains ect.) there are many who use Celiac as a platform to preach non related issues.

Greed: 
This one touches all facets of Celiac Disease. Gluten Free food does not need to be as overpriced as it is. Period. We have come a long way and it is clearly a highly profitable market. But we are still gouged at the grocery store. Why? Because we have no choice, we are chained to the medical need for Gluten Free.

Big companies want to sell us books on how to live and eat Gluten Free.  Many individuals have started websites to offer "helpful" information to those with Celiac Disease, but unfortunately you have to pay a fee to reap the so called benefits. Also, the information which is being sold, is widely available for FREE.

Scams and the people who buy into them:
I'm not even going to list the various companies that make this list,but I will tell you what to be vigilant against. There are MANY magic pills out there, offering a way to prevent damage after eating Gluten. Some even offer a downright cure. These are SCAMS!!! First of all, if and when a cure or remedy becomes available, it will be international news. You will hear about it from those who research Celiac Disease as well as awareness organizations such as the National Foundation For Celiac Awareness, Canadian Celiac Association and Coeliac UK . Also, after a medical breakthrough, it will be years before any type of medication reaches the market. I can guarantee you won't be able to obtain it without a proper prescription either. 


Media : Can we not get some legitimate air time? Everyone from local news stations to Dr Oz has something to say about Gluten Free. The problem is that the rare time that they mention Celiac Disease, they do so in passing, like it's not the real issue. I tend to cringe when I see a news report about "Gluten Free". The newscasters never seem to educate themselves about what they are discussing and the so called specialist is usually someone who has no real background or education in Celiac Disease. Do we discuss MS or Parkinson's with a Podiatrist? No. Contrary to what one may think, not all Doctors are created equal. This is why they specialize in specific areas of health.

The question I am left with is, how can WE as a Celiac public, band together and create the necessary and accurate awareness that is vacant from our communities?

October 27, 2013

Cheese Steak Hoagie




With the cold and wet weather here to stay, a warm and hearty meal is what we are all in need of this time of year. I used Udi's hot dog buns (sent to me by Udi's as part of their Fall Comfort Giveaway) and created my own little cheese steak hoagie.

Boy, was this a family crowd pleaser!

Want to make your own? Follow the simple steps below:

Ingredients

4 Udi's hot dog buns
Quick Fry Steak cut into thin strips
1/2 White Onion
1/2 Green Pepper
3 Mushrooms
1 tsp Steak Spice
Mozzarella Cheese cut into cubes
Gluten Free smokey BBQ sauce

*Cut vegetables as thin or thick as you like 
*Use as much or as little cheese and BBQ sauce as you desire

Directions

Cook steak on medium heat until lightly browned. Add steak spice. Then add mushrooms, onion and pepper.Remove from heat and add cheese to the skillet.

Place a layer of cheese on the bottom of the bun. Then add skillet mix of steak,cheese and vegetables. Drizzle some BBQ sauce on the top and enjoy!


October 06, 2013

Udi's French Toast Sticks With Cranberry Apple Compote

Here is the first recipe that I have come up with using the Udi's products that were sent to me. I hope that you find it as warm and comforting as my family does. Two awesome things about this recipe are that the components can be eaten together or separately and can be easily frozen for a quick bite when you are in a rush.


French Toast Sticks With Cranberry Apple Compote


Ingredients

French Toast Sticks
4 slices of Udi's Whole Grain Bread
2  large eggs
1/4 cup milk
1 tsp ground cinnamon

Cranberry Apple Compote
2 small apples
2 tbsp lemon juice
1/4 cup canned cranberries
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tbsp margarine
1 tbsp cornstarch


Directions

French Toast Sticks
Slice bread into four equal rectangles.
Whisk together eggs, milk and cinnamon.

Preheat a non stick pan on medium heat with margarine or butter.
Soak bread slices in the egg mixture, turning once and making sure they are completely coated. When bread is no longer firm to the touch it is ready to be removed.
Add bread sticks, a few at a time to pan and cook until all four sides are slightly toasted.


Cranberry Apple Compote
Peel and chop apples into small cubes and place in a pot.
Add lemon juice, cranberries, brown sugar, cinnamon, and margarine then mix with wooden spoon on med/low heat.
Once juices start seeping from the apples, mix cornstarch with enough cold water to make a paste and add to mixture while stirring.
Leave on heat for several minutes, stirring occasionally until mixture is thick and apples are no longer crunchy.


Head over to the Udi's Fall Comfort Giveaway on my blog for a chance to win $150.00 CDN worth of amazing products from Udi's!

October 01, 2013

Udi's Fall Comfort Giveaway

According to a recent survey commissioned by Udi's, 4.3 million Canadians are saying goodbye to Gluten. People are choosing to eliminate Gluten for various reasons ranging from Celiac Disease and Gluten Intolerance or because it helps to alleviate other medical conditions that thrive with a Gluten Free substitution such as Autism or MS. A lot of people are making the switch a family affair to show support for relatives who must adhere to this way of life.

Eating Gluten Free doesn't have to be boring and tasteless. To prove that, I will be participating in a "Fall Comfort" food challenge hosted by Udi's. They have supplied me with the same items that YOU COULD WIN!

In the next few weeks I will be showcasing various recipes that I have come up with using the items that I have received from Udi's . Are you excited to see what I come up with? I am!

Udi's has offered a prize pack valued at $150.00 Canadian, to one of my lucky readers. The prize pack includes plenty of Gluten Free items to make your Fall a little more comforting, plus a cutting board, Udi's lunch box and a cozy throw to keep you warm.


Udi's Prize Pack


You can find Udi's products at most major retailers including Sobeys, Metro, and Real Canadian Superstore. Don't forget to check your local health food shop as well.

Visit Udi's website to see their product range or to view some tasty recipes.You can follow them on Twitter Facebook and Pinterest as well.

Enter to win this Udi's prize by following the Rafflecopter instructions below.

Good Luck! 


a Rafflecopter giveaway

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