Saturday, January 28, 2012

Gone Gluten Free

I've been absent from this blog since I began writing for (I didn't want to be competing with myself), but my recent diagnosis of celiac disease has brought me back to blogging for myself. My life as a foodie has completely changed since being diagnosed a month ago, and it's hard to say if it's for the better or the worse. For those of you who don't know, celiac disease is when gluten (found in all wheat and wheat byproducts) creates an autoimmune response in the intestines, eroding the intestinal lining. Untreated, the disease leads to malnutrition, osteoporosis, and even cancer. The only treatment? Cutting all gluten and gluten-contaminated products out of your diet.

No bread, pasta, wheat noodles, cakes, cookies, etc. The obvious stuff. But there's also the not so obvious stuff -- some kinds of vinegar, soy sauce, shredded cheeses, processed foods, fried food from restaurants (the oil is often shared with battered items), and even makeup and toothpaste. This really required a full-life overhaul for me.

That being said, I was prepared. My brothers also have celiac disease, and my nephew has severe food allergies (dairy, egg, nuts, mustard), so I cook Thanksgiving dinner and it's a gluten/dairy/egg/nut/spice free meal. If I can cook that, I can deal with just a gluten allergy. Since my brother was diagnosed 3 years ago, I've made it a point to educate myself on the disease, so I had a better starting off point than most people diagnosed with celiac disease. The other difficult thing for people who go gluten free is giving up beer -- however, I gave up beer and alcohol years ago due to an allergy, so I have already won half the battle!

So anyway, this will be the new direction of the blog. I've hated how long I ignored this blog, but now I have a focus that will help differentiate from what I do for I plan to blog about trying to live gluten free in the Boston area, and review gluten free items. If there's anything you'd like me to address, please let me know!

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