Now, this film may not have the best editing (take it from this former broadcast journalism major), but I truly believe Susan’s documentary should be viewed by anyone diagnosed with CD. The material is interesting and I felt completely engaged as this is such an important cause to me and probably you if you’ve made it this far into this post! For those struggling with a recent diagnoses take a look at this videos because when you see the changes from 2005, you will only feel better about the awareness and progress that advocates for CD have made. Below are the details to purchase your copy for $4.50! I suggest you do so 🙂
PS: Have a great Gluten Free 4th of July! Be sure to share any delicious treats or recipes with me!
Well, I’m definitely writing this post with sore legs and a full stomach! Yesterday Craig Pinto and The Kicking 4 Celiac Foundation teamed up with The Center for Celiac Research at the University of Maryland. The “Making Tracks For Celiacs” was the first Celiac awareness 5k held on Long Island! It’s events like this that make me feel so lucky to be involved with such a great foundation. With about 200 walkers/runners the first year was a success to say the least. I just wanted to share some new information…
I spent some time speaking with Louisa Rasmussen, a registered dietitian. She herself understands what it’s like to be living a GF lifestyle. Her concept GFreely is really great. For 25 dollars a month you will receive a package with some delicious foods. If you’re looking to eat something healthy and delicious, I highly recommend looking into this. I tried the lentil salad and it was out of this world! You can visit their http://gfreely.com/ for more information.
Next up, “Alyssa’s Gluten Free.” Alyssa Pinto also recently diagnosed with Celiac has always been a foodie. She has taken the time and effort to find the best recipes to leave you wanting more. Yesterday I had her mini-cupcakes and kept going back for more. Be sure to “like” her facebook page, because you are most definitely going to want to order some delicious treats!
Also, for those of you in the New York area, I am excited to be speaking at the R.O.C.K (Raising Our Celiac Kids) Meeting regarding attending college living a gluten free lifestyle. The meeting on June 19th will start at 7:30 PM at Plainview – Old Bethpage Library. Hope to see you there! I’m so excited to speak about how Penn State Food Services has positively impacted my life! Be sure to check out their website as well as they have great information.
Looks like I found it – Find Me Gluten Free. Monday night a friend tweeted a link to me about the creation of a great app. Thanks to Ross, I quickly went to the app store and downloaded it, free of charge. Sitting among my other 5 gluten free apps I thought, how helpful could it be? I must admit I haven’t found my other apps to be too beneficial, but that night I was confident that I had found the best one yet.
During my uptown stay in NYC, I was craving for something other than my usually GF Sushi. I did a quick ‘around me’ search and found The Naked Pizza among many others. I called, ordered and was informed that the restaurant was free of cross contamination. Within 25 minutes the 13-dollar, that’s correct I said 13-dollar pizza was at my front door!
Excited by how useful the app was I immediately contacted Darin Alpert, COO of ‘Find Me Gluten Free’. Created by Jason Elmore, he himself was struggling to find a scrumptious GF meal. The other apps on my phone attempt to serve the same purpose, however the issue is that they don’t have many restaurants or include as much information as this one. Darin and Jason’s efforts have certainly helped me because I had more than 20 options available within a 10-mile radius.
I love the features of this because it allows you to add restaurants, comment, and rate them. By creating a profile you have the ability to let your voice be heard. For those with the Droid or iPhone the app also has a dining card, which explains what you can and cannot have. My only suggestion would be to change the card to include other languages in an attempt to benefit international travelers. (I wouldn’t be too surprised if that was already in the works!)
For mothers or fathers with little children, I certainly recommend ‘Find Me Gluten Free’. I know myself the issue I typically have is not being able to find a restaurant within a few miles distance. By the time I find one I’m sure you can agree it usually seems like a task to go to the restaurant.
Of course the app lists chain restaurants like Olive Garden that are gluten free friendly, but as always you should be sure to ask the right questions and make sure your server is familiar with the diet and precautions the chef must take to ensure you enjoy your meal.
Once you download the app you will find the simplicity in it. After speaking with Darin, I see what the app has to offer now and how it is really going to revolutionize the dining for all us “Celiacs” out there. I’d really love to hear what you think about the app…please be sure to comment! I was certainly impressed and look forward to finding more restaurants using this app!
For more information on the app visit: http://www.findmeglutenfree.com/
The Great Googa Mooga certainly lived up to its greatness this weekend. As I mentioned in my last post, I was attending the event in Prospect Park with some friends and was eager to dig into the gluten free goodness the festival had to offer. I was a bit upset when I heard from others that Saturday was quite the cluster, lines were crazy and many were only were able to taste two dishes from the over 75 vendors that were represented. Luckily, my friends and I had a plan of attack – we went early in the morning and had no issues waiting.
Between meeting Gary Reloj, co-founder of www.omgfoodie.com, Ali Fedotowsky, former Bachelorette and host of 1stLook on NBC and tasting delicious dishes the day could not have been more perfect for this aspiring broadcast journalist!
Let’s get to the good stuff, below are some highlights of the delicious GF foods that must be tasted, and must be tasted ASAP!
Free Bread: This was my first stop! For obvious reasons I felt the most safe here. After speaking with Karen Freer and tasting her delicious treats, I needed to know where I get them beyond the gates of the Googa Mooga Festival. Although Karen, a Celiac herself, doesn’t have a storefront you can order her delicious food by visiting http://freebreadinc.com/order.html. The flavor and texture of the bread was delicious. More specifically, the JALAA made with Japaleno, sharp cheddar and buttermilk was to die for! Toasty hot with at touch of butter, is certainly something I would recommend for dinner parties and to enjoy at a restaurant while your friends are munching on bread. I must note, my friend Ashley (not a Celiac, but a foodie) said this was her favorite dish of the day!
Big Gay Ice Cream – Besides for the fact that owners Doug and Brian were hysterical and lovely to speak with, their milkshake was FANTASTIC! I’m not a ginger or curry lover on their own, but together the Ginger Curry milkshake was a match made in gluten free heaven. For those who are curious, the shake most reminded me of a coffee flavor. A stop at Big Gay Ice Cream is a MUST on your summer to-do list! While all of the flavors at Googa Mooga were gluten free that’s not the case in the store so be sure to ask. Doug and Brian were adamant that if you ask for help in store that they and their staff will be extremely happy to accommodate their customer’s dietary needs. It’s important to trust the people serving you, and I felt completely at ease after two minutes of speaking with them. For more information visit: http://biggayicecream.com/.
The Big Banana: There is nothing I love more than chocolate covered bananas, especially a freezing cold one on a gorgeous hot day. Once again, these owners were very knowledgeable on Celiac disease and had other great options as well. The bananas are all packaged individually. They do say they may contain traces of wheat, but I did speak with the staff and they told me the chocolate covered banana was gluten free and there was no issue with cross contamination. More information can be found at http://www.rockawaybeachclub.com/
There were many other places I had contacted before the event that had gluten free foods, unfortunately Arancini Bros. the gluten free meatballs I was looking forward to trying were being cooked in the same fryer as the other ones and I couldn’t risk cross contamination. They smelled delicious so I think I’m going to have to add Arancini to my summer bucket list and hope they can accommodate me in their shop!
All in all the day, company, food, and music were great at the Great Googa Mooga! I am so happy I took the time to prepare for the day and pack a few of my own snacks so that I could enjoy the same experience as my friends and 40,000 others! With a little dedication and research it’s nice to know that it’s possible to go to a food festival and dig in just like everyone else! If you are planning on going to an event or concert and are unsure of how to prepare for it please reach out and I will be happy to help you!
Six letters formulate a single word that has been affecting lives across the nation. This word is GLUTEN. While many are familiar with the word, people do not know what this actually means. Gluten is a protein found in wheat, rye, barely, and certain oats. If you are reading this and do not have a gluten intolerance or Celiac Disease it’s still important to have a clear understanding of it, seeing as how more people have been diagnosed than ever before. People like myself, living with Celiac Disease do not have the antibodies to break down and process food the same way a person without Celiac Disease can. The villi of a person with Celiac Disease is flattened whereas anyone living a normal lifestyle has villi standing up that absorb the nutrients.
Now that you have a better understanding, this is how my story begins. I graduated from Jericho high school in 2008 and after a few years of feeling sick, bloated and several trips to the ER with kidney stones my parents and I recognized that there was a problem that needed to be fixed – I was not living my life the way a 17 year old should. When I was diagnosed with Celiac Disease a week before starting college at Penn State University I was nervous and overwhelmed. At that time, even though it was just 4 years ago, very few people were familiar with this disease and the implications it can have on your life.
Upon my diagnosis, which was first done with a simple blood test and later verified through an endoscopy, I turned to WebMD to answer some questions (not a good move). Not only was I highly uneducated, but I didn’t know where to turn for information. I was about encounter the challenges most graduating high school seniors face when making the transition from high school to college, and now I had to add this ‘disease’ to my list. Looking back now, at the age of 21 and post graduation, I can confidently say that I have overcome many hurdles and I want to share my experiences to help make someone’s (maybe your) life a little less stressful. I am putting the pen to the paper so to speak to tell my tale of a girl who is YOUNG WILD AND GLUTEN FREE! I know what it’s like to go out on a date and quickly hit a boys hand before he puts his gluten contaminated fork in your dish. I know what it’s like to have everyone at a party ask, “Oh my god, you can’t drink beer, how do you survive?” But most importantly, I know what it’s like to take something that you may think of being negative and turn it into a positive.
Through this blog I will share with you:
– Restaurants in the New York Area
– Travel information (what to pack/where to eat)
– My involvement with Kicking 4 Celiac Foundation(http://www.kicking4celiac.org/)