Celiac disease (an intolerance to gluten, a protein found in wheat, rye, and barley) is an autoimmune condition in which the inner surface of the small intestine becomes damaged, leading to reduced absorption of all nutrients. People with Type 1 diabetes are 10 times more likely than people without Type 1 diabetes to have it; and the only treatment for the condition is maintaining a gluten-free diet.
At first, a diagnosis of celiac disease may seem overwhelming, given that gluten can be found in so many things: breads, pastries, pasta, and cereals, as well as lipstick, medicines, and condiments. There’s also the potential for cross-contamination; for example, a gluten-free meal prepared with utensils that have been used with foods containing gluten can still cause problems for people with celiac disease. Until recently, few people had ever heard of celiac disease, but in recent years awareness of it — and of a condition provisionally known as non-celiac gluten sensitivity — is increasing. As a result, a wider variety of gluten-free food products is available than ever before. The following resources offer guidance on shopping, cooking, and eating safely for people with celiac disease or any other form of gluten sensitivity.
A Hidden Epidemic
Peter Green, MD, and Rory Jones
New York, 2010
A resource for people with celiac disease and other gluten-related disorders, this book by the head of the Celiac Disease Center at Columbia University explains how gluten affects the digestive tract, discusses the symptoms of celiac disease, describes related complications, explains how to live well with the condition, and more.
The Essential Beginner’s Guide to Easy Gluten-Free Cooking
Carol Fenster, PhD
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company
New York, 2013
This book contains nearly 200 recipes intended to make putting together gluten-free meals fast and easy. Part One includes information on basics, such as stocking a gluten-free pantry, and Part Two contains the recipes.
The Nation’s Leading Expert Offers the Essential Guide to a Healthy, Gluten-Free Lifestyle
Alessio Fasano, MD
New York, 2014
Written by the head of the Center for Celiac Research and Treatment at MassGeneral Hospital for Children, this book explores the latest developments in celiac research and treatment, shares best practices for dealing with gluten-related disorders, and includes recipes for an authentic, gluten-free Italian dinner.
25 Braintree Hill Office Park, Suite 404
Braintree, MA 02184
Gluten-Free Living magazine offers guidance on nutrition and health for people with celiac disease and gluten sensitivity. The magazine is published six times a year in print and digital form; recipes, a blog, articles on the gluten-free lifestyle, and more can be found on the official Web site, www.glutenfreeliving.com.
CELIAC DISEASE AND GLUTEN-FREE DIET FORUM
This message board (run by Celiac.com) allows people with celiac disease to share tips and advice with each other. Topics include celiac testing, dealing with celiac disease while pregnant, how to find a good doctor, and others. There’s also a section for people who don’t have celiac disease but have friends or relatives who do.
UDI’S GLUTEN FREE FOODS FACEBOOK PAGE
This Facebook page is run by the staff of Udi’s Gluten Free Foods, a popular food manufacturer. As well as providing information about Udi’s products, the page’s roughly 1,340,000 followers participate actively in discussion threads about nutrition, health, and living with celiac disease.
FIND ME GLUTEN FREE
JATX Tech, LLC
This free app helps users find nearby gluten-free and gluten-free–friendly restaurants, bars, grocery stores, and other businesses, providing directions and menu information. Users can also read and contribute ratings and reviews and save favorite places for quick reference. Find Me Gluten Free is available from the Apple App Store or Android Marketplace.
GLUTEN FREE RECIPES 1000
Do No(t Much) Evil
This free app offers nearly 1,000 gluten-free recipes; users can also sort by other factors to find dairy-free and meat-free content. Gluten Free Recipes 1000 is available from the Android Marketplace.
IS THAT GLUTEN FREE?
Garden Bay Software
This app, meant as a companion for grocery shopping, compiles hundreds of brands and common ingredients and thousands of products into a searchable database. Each entry is color-coded to indicate that it is safe (green), possibly unsafe (yellow), or unsafe (red). A similar app, Is That Gluten Free? Eating Out, includes detailed menu and ingredient information on 36 restaurant chains. Both apps are available from the Apple App Store.
CELIAC DISEASE FOUNDATION
20350 Ventura Blvd., Suite 240
Woodland Hills, CA 91364
Fax: (818) 267-5577
The Celiac Disease Foundation (CDF) is devoted to raising awareness of celiac disease among the general public. Its Web site offers links to local support systems and advice for teens and children with celiac disease, as well as detailed information on reading food labels, product alerts, and travel tips. A number of informative, downloadable PDFs are also available.
GLUTEN INTOLERANCE GROUP OF NORTH AMERICA
31214 124th Avenue SE
Auburn, WA 98092
Fax: (253) 833-6675
The Gluten Intolerance Group (GIG) focuses on outreach, advocacy, and education for people who must follow gluten-free diets. It offers a recipe database and a listing of celiac disease-friendly health-care professionals. It has programs to educate restaurant owners about how to offer a gluten-free menu and avoid common problems (such as cross-contamination). It also includes the Gluten-Free Certification Organization, which issues the GF label certifying that a product does not contain gluten.
NATIONAL FOUNDATION FOR CELIAC AWARENESS (NFCA)
P.O. Box 544
Ambler, PA 19002-0544
Fax: (215) 643-1707
The NFCA’s mission centers on driving the diagnosis of celiac disease and other gluten-related disorders and improving the quality of life for people on a gluten-free diet through “empowerment, education, advocacy, and advancing research.” The website features a symptoms checklist, tip sheets and printable guides about the gluten-free diet, a list of gluten-free bloggers, gluten-free recipes, and more.
CELIAC DISEASE AWARENESS CAMPAIGN
c/o National Digestive Diseases Information Clearinghouse
2 Information Way
Bethesda, MD 20892-3570
TTY: (866) 569-1162
Fax: (703) 738-4929
This site offers scientific information on celiac disease and related conditions, providing links to resources for health-care providers and updates on the latest study opportunities.