Showing posts from April, 2019

New Celiac Blood Test May Allow You to Skip the Biopsy

"The Unknown", photo (c) Angelica Nelson Dr. Vikas K. Sarna and colleagues have a new blood test that does several wonderful things.  It can be used to detect Celiac Disease even if you're no longer eating gluten, so it eliminates the potentially damaging gluten challenge.  It's 90% accurate, so far.  It doesn't require a biopsy/endoscopy.  And it's much cheaper than the way we detect Celiac Disease right now.  So why isn't it already being used?  Your guess is as good as mine.  So far the only negative I'm seeing is that the study is fairly small, with 62 participants.  And there are perfectly reasonable calls for a larger study.  However, Nexvaxx, the "Celiac vaccine" has a bit more than double that number of participants, which is still small.  And the news is all agog over that one.  There is a currently a call to action to have a bill pass Congress that would hold drug makers to the same gluten free labeling as other FDA regu

Nima , Gluten Free Pizza and Pasta in Restaurants, plus Farms!

There's some interesting news about the "gluten free" options at restaurants.  It's about a study that tested restaurants across the country for gluten contamination in menu items that are claimed to be gluten free.  Most Celiacs who have been at this a while know that restaurants with mixed menus are risky and require extensive quizzing of the server and food preparer.  Something as simple as failing to switch gloves before arranging a salad plate can leave a gluten sensitive person in agony for days or weeks.  And there's no visual way to know that it happened. It's also interesting that the commercial product, Nima was used to do the actual testing instead of sending samples of food to a lab for testing.  There has been significant backlash about Nima in well respected corners of the Gluten Free community.   And the study is crowdsourced: "Adherence to a gluten-free (GF) diet is the mainstay of therapy for celiac disease. Until now, those wishi

Gluten Free, Celiac and IBD

Gluten is a funny thing.  A person might not react to it in the traditional way, but it still causes a problem with zonulin (the thing that prevents leaky gut syndrome), and if so, it can mess up thyroid, liver or other organs.  I think our focus on HLA as the "only cause" of Celiac disease, which is the "only" serious disease caused in a few people with unfortunate genes is very short sighted. It's actually circular reasoning that ignores the extra-intestinal manifestations of the disease.  Since IBD is focused on the large intestine, and Celiac Disease damage (that's tested for) happens in the small intestine, there is a false assumption that they aren't related.  But a recent scientific essay (opinion) suggests a possible direction for where to find the relationships that are missing. How many people who just read that essay thought... hey wait, I've heard of glutamate before... isn't it involved in some neural problems?  Yes, exactly.  I

Primal Restaurant is Closed!

One of the Celiac safe promotional dinner events at Primal Food and Spirits, while it was open. Primal is closed!  I'm as shocked as you are!  In fact both restaurants run by Tim Lyons are closed: Only the bar in Hillsborough is still open: /  Please join me in thanking Tim Lyons and Bo Peterson for their dedication to Celiac-safe 100% gluten free restaurant food in the Triangle!  You can message him through Facebook, I suppose.  At this time, I've asked "what happened?" but haven't received a reply yet.  A local restaurant blog did answer though and it looks like the restaurants may not have been as profitable as hoped.  But I'm not sure.  I'd like to write a longer thank you article, including how long they were in business, what challenges they faced, and maybe a story or two of the good time

Secrets of Gluten Free Flours

If you've tried your hand at making gluten free flour mixes, then you've wondered how come two types of rice can have totally different binding capacity .  And if you've looked at India's cooking (as I have), looking for secrets of gluten free thickening and binding, you've noticed they use something called a wet grinder to prepare grains and beans before making a thickened sauce or a dough.  Today I'm going to explore this aspect of gluten free cooking because I stumbled on a detail I hadn't found before and I want to share it. Maybe it will help someone who's never heard of a wet grinder and might find it useful.  I've tried several online forums to find out why Indian cooks use a wet grinder, instead of cooking a grain and then mashing the softened grain.  I'm not sure if the technology and strategy of it has survived over time.  Or maybe the people I got in touch with couldn't explain clearly.  Like most people they probably just do as