May is Celiac Awareness month and there are so many great resources available to those newly diagnosed with Celiac Disease, as well as to those who are gluten-intolerant and need to maintain a gluten-free lifestyle.
From organizations dedicated to helping those live with Celiac Disease, getting FDA standards in place for gluten-free food labeling, cookbook authors and food writers, our community is supportive and there to help you along this journey.
Here are some great resources I have personally found helpful along my journey:
- Celiac Disease Foundation
- Celiac Sprue Association
- Gluten Intolerance Group (GIG)
- National Foundation for Celiac Awareness
Each offer boundless resources, from medical checklist you can take into your doctor to determine if you have a gluten intolerance and/or have Celiac Disease, recipes, webinars, doctors, new food products as they’re released onto the market. Already diagnosed, there are resources available too!
Be your own health advocate, as it’s important to know your body and listen to it. Eating healthy whole nutrient rich foods is the key and reducing processed foods as a whole within your diet will certainly start you off on the right foot. According to the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness website the “FDA recommendations encourage everyone, including those on a gluten-free diet, to avoid overly processed foods, and keep refined sugar and saturated fat intakes to a minimum.”
Gluten is hidden in so many foods, personal care products, and its so important to read labels and understand what is in our foods and personal care products. What are we putting in and on our bodies – We should know so make sure to read the labels and you can always ask! Organizations like 1in133 started in an effort have gluten-free foods labeled appropriately and a set of standards across the industry – We are still awaiting the FDA to put mandatory requirements in place, that is why its imperative you read the labels on products you purchase. I’ve been caught many a time purchasing food products that stated they were gluten-free and then when I went to use them upon further reading the label stated “may have been manufactured in a facility that also processes wheat, soy, nuts” – This is a risk I am no longer willing to take, the product is gluten-free or it’s not, its as simple as that.
Living with a gluten intolerance and/or Celiac Disease can be tough at times. There are so many resources available to you and your family. Education is key and staying positive, you can learn to live a gluten-free lifestyle and actually eat and enjoy food just as much, if not more when maintaining a gluten-free lifestyle.
Stay tuned this week as I will be sharing a list of my favorite cookbooks and food writers tomorrow as part of May’s National Celiac Awareness Month!