Resources Page

Frequently updated.  Resources and a network of local providers, meetups, conferences and food sources.  I will add to this post as often as I confirm new information.  It should be Featured (pinned to the top of the blog).  If it's not, please let me know. General Information on Celiac Disease and related links are found at the bottom of the article (very long page, and yes it needs some reorganization).

Need some advice now that you're diagnosed with Celiac Disease or Non-Celiac Gluten Sensitivity?  It can be hard to find my older articles that are of special help to those starting out, but I've collected them on This Page for your convenience.
MeetingsRaleigh Celiac Support Group (Rex Hospital) -- Third Thursday every other month  (next, July 19th TBD)

GIG WakeMed Celiac & Food Allergy Support Group -- Next meeting will be on June 17 at  6:30 pm at WakeMed Cary Hospital, 1900 Kildaire Farm Rd, Cary 27518

Wildcraft - Want to try some foraging?  This June 23rd, the…

Wrapping Up Celiac Awareness Month

On this beautiful end of May day, we wrap up Celiac Awareness Month (from last year) with gratitude and renewed courage.  Every year brings us closer to clarity on where gluten hides in our everyday foods.  Every year bring us closer to an answer for why Celiac disease itself is accelerating in our community.  Each voice raised in compassion toward those who have limited food choices brings us closer to dietary freedom and respect.

I note with pride that our community cares for one another and protects our right to safe food even when it inconveniences our community businesses.  Let this year be the year we educate our local restaurants, the year we  protect all children from ridicule because they're "different."  Our freedoms are interlinked.  I will not be free to respectfully decline a cross-contaminated meal until every dieter of every sort is free to choose their food according to their preference or need.

And let this be the year when medical professionals finally…

The Ugly Arsenic-in-Rice Controversy

Rice is one of  the most popular grains in the world. To those of us who need gluten free food, it's a substitute for gluten grains such as wheat, for many cooking purposes, and it's considered hypoallergenic.  In Asia it's a central part of the diet. In Gluten Free cooking and baking, it's usually well represented, and almost ubiquitous.  But it could also contain arsenic at harmful levels and so far, rice in the US isn't routinely tested for arsenic content. The gluten free community has already sounded the alarm about the possibility of arsenic in rice and how that problem is magnified in the Celiac community, where the most popular flour, wheat flour, is not used.  However, there isn't a lot of depth to many articles so I'm going to delve into this subject with gusto!

First a quote from the Verywell article just mentioned:  "the Mayo Clinic looked directly at levels of arsenic in people with and without celiac disease who were following the glute…

Celiac Disease Model, Organoids

In the past few days, a study was published about "organoids" being used to learn more about Celiac Disease.  This is new, but not brand new, since organoids have been used to study Inflammatory Bowel Disease (a condition that's 1/5th as common as Celiac).  The technique has already given us new insight into Celiac, but has some limitations, so let's look more closely at it.

What's an Organoid?
An  organoid is like having a model of the gut (like you might see in a doctor's office) but it works better because it's made up of human tissue kept alive in a laboratory setting.  It can be used to learn more about a disease that affects human tissues like the epithelium of the gut.  Where is it from?  Biopsy tissue that's collected in routine tests might be grown in a lab, then placed in an organoid giving researchers a new way to study a disease. (Fans of Star Trek may be mildly amused by "matrigel's" similarity to "biomemetic gel."…

The Joy of Daring

No matter what sport or activity you enjoy, or how much you concern yourself with exercise as a part of health, daring, itself, is a big part of health today.  I spend some time on this blog worrying about whether health policy writers are being honest when they give out advice, and whether they are just mistaken about some things (listen to the near-panic in the tone of the last paragraph in this article).  I occasionally buck the mainstream advice because I think we can do better.  So as part of that, I'll attempt to show that self-challenge, and confidence building is just as much part of your health, as remembering to eat your greens and drink water every day.

So let's think about that.  What do people often do when they commit to health?  They train for a 5k race, or even a marathon, right?  Or they do as this body-positive athlete does and train for an Ironman competition.  Though she obviously isn't doing that to "lose weight" I think it's daring for …

New Celiac Blood Test May Allow You to Skip the Biopsy

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 regulated things.  Please participate in it.  And while you'…

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 wishing to a…

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.  If t…

Rewilding for Better Nutrition

Just to show that no matter how much you know, there's always another new idea out there if you're open to it, I had just written an article about Common Sense Health Tips, and along comes something that moves the goal posts of nutrition, called rewilding. This is going to be a post with many "soapbox" moments.  I can't help that, but I'm not as critical of the modern world as some who practice rewilding.  To be honest, I haven't practiced it in more than 15 years and until recently I didn't know there was a word for it.  About two years ago I was reminded of it by a random email I received. Recently, I've been inspired by a new book I'm reading.

Matters of nutrition are central to my health, and often have a lot to do with Celiac Disease.  I don't think a person needs rewilding to recover from CD, but I will lay out my belief that my health deteriorated after I stopped taking actions like passively foraging for some of my food. I did th…