Eating out is the most difficult part of living with celiac disease. Once you have been diagnosed with this chronic illness, eating out is forever changed. It will never be the same as it once was. This is an, unfortunate, stark reality check for those living with celiac. It sounds harsh, I know. But, it is true. There is no spontaneity with eating out anymore.
Navigating the gluten-free flour world can be a huge learning experience – and definitely an ongoing one – if you are converting wheat flour favourites into gluten free, delicious counterparts. This recipe for Gluten-Free Double Chocolate Brownies get the thumbs up from friends and family!
Are you confused about the new Canada Food Guide in regard to celiac disease? As a dietitian specializing in celiac disease, Selena De Vries highlights the parts of the food guide that we should pay attention to.
Being diagnosed with celiac disease can be very overwhelming. Many of my clients have told me that they were informed to ‘google’ the diet and were then shown the door.
Having celiac disease puts us under extra strain as we deal with severe dietary restrictions and the physical, emotional, and social challenges that go along with that. That’s why it’s essential that we celiacs take self-care seriously during the upcoming holiday season.
Are you stuck on gift ideas for your loved one with celiac disease? Don’t worry, Selena De Vries, RD has got you covered with lots of suggestions that they will love! Read more
Gluten free baking is an art. One that needs trial and error and a lot of practice. Selena shares some of her favourite tried and true recipes, tips, and tricks so you can embark on gluten-free holiday baking with success! Read more
“I got married last month! And, right before the wedding, wouldn’t you know it, I had a celiac attack.”
Young kids like variety in their lunches. Little bit of this, little bit of that, bite here, nibble there … you get the picture. A little creativity with simple, whole foods can sometimes be all that is needed to jazz up the old lunchbox routine and encourage little ones to eat a little bit more.
“My two children were recently diagnosed with celiac disease quite unexpectedly. We are struggling to cope.”
If anyone is a fast cook in the kitchen, it’s me. And, of course, I like to make healthy, tasty, and always gluten free food! I do love to spend time cooking and baking as I find it relaxing. But nowadays with a new baby, fast, healthy and delicious is the goal for our meals. So, here are some of my favorite, gluten free convenience foods that I use all the time to make dinner appear on the table in no time flat.
Starting up a new romance is nerve-wracking – our insecurities (Do they like me?) and neediness (Am I attractive enough?) flare up, and we try hard to make a good impression.
Having celiac disease puts us under extra strain as we deal with severe dietary restrictions and the physical, emotional, and social challenges that go along with that. That’s why it’s essential that we celiacs take self-care seriously.
Having to turn down well-intentioned family member’s gluten free food or interrogate family members or friends on the ingredients used to make a gluten free dish, is by far, the most dreaded conversation a celiac will encounter. Am I right? I know this topic tops the list for me, hands down, for sure.
Do you ever get bored with having celiac disease, and wish you could have a day off from it?
A diagnosis of celiac disease can be overwhelming. Often times, those with celiac disease or gluten sensitivity will deny food-related invitations due to the fact that they “don’t even want to deal with it.” Replacing food with fun takes the pressure off while your friend or family member adjusts to the gluten-free diet. Selena has some great ideas!
Six months ago, my mom died after a lengthy illness. In mourning her since then, I have noticed familiar feelings I associate with celiac disease.
Did you suffer on the Easter weekend, visiting relatives in gluten-filled environments? I did … but it definitely would have been harder without meditation. Let me explain! Maybe meditation can help you, too.
For those suffering from celiac disease, dried plums can help close the nutritional gap in many ways by improving bone and digestive health and managing blood sugar levels. Delicious too, in Selena’s Gluten Free Dark Chocolate and Dried Plum Energy Bars!
I hear it from clients all the time, “the gluten free diet is expensive.” And, while, there is certainly some truth to that for a minority of products, there are a multitude of ways to stay on budget, while still eating safely and I am excited to share them with you!
When life is challenging – financial woes, illness such as celiac disease, unemployment, divorce, or whatever – it seems hard to live in the present moment.
Ever wonder what is in a celiac dietitian’s grocery cart? Well, now is your chance! These foods are always stocked in our house, making meals easy to throw together with the pantry staples I keep in our cupboard, too (a post for another time).
This smoothie is packed with immune boosting foods such as ginger and kefir so it is perfect for the fall and winter season to help prevent the cold and flu.
If you had the ideal marriage partner, how would they support you emotionally? What would it feel like to be married to them?
On a gluten free diet, but still feel unwell? Tip the scales in favor of better digestion and vitality!
“An experimental blood test accurately identifies people who do, or don’t, have celiac disease, even if they are following gluten-free diets, researchers say.” Will Boggs, MD, Reuters1
Living with celiac disease is a challenge. It helps to take the time to identify our most painful difficulties and to come up with ways of dealing with them. Now is the perfect time to go through this process, and make Celiac New Year’s Resolutions!
When gut systems are compromised, the body’s happiness system is damaged, too.
THE SITUATION: My celiac child isn’t invited to a party because the party-throwers aren’t willing to make it safe for my child.
MY BELIEF: They should invite my child to the party.
Celiac disease makes us feel like crap in many ways, and when we feel like crap, it’s easy to behave badly.
As celiacs, many of our social and emotional issues arise from wanting to say YES, but needing to say NO. We need to learn how to feel comfortable saying NO. Psychologists call this “Drawing Boundaries.” There are lots of long and complicated books about it.
Trauma comes in many forms: it can be ongoing abuse that we experienced as a child, it can be a single horrible incident like an accident or a disaster, it can be a surgery, and so on. There’s even a thing called trans-generational trauma, in which we kind of ‘inherit’ the unresolved issues of our ancestors.
As a celiac, I find it frightening to go on trips. Will I be able to find safe food? Will I have to go hungry? Will I get ‘glutened’ and have to deal with the illness away from the comfort and privacy of home?
Years ago, when I was first diagnosed with celiac disease and was making a lot of mistakes with the gluten-free diet, I used to hide my digestive distress from everyone at work. The work scene, I thought, required me to be perfect. Being sick wasn’t perfect!
One thing that comes up for me over and over as a celiac is the feeling that I shouldn’t have to spend so much time and energy finding something safe to eat. Everyone else just reaches out, grabs something to eat, and carries on with their fast-paced lifestyle. Why can’t I do the same? It’s not fair. I have to search and search while everyone else gets ahead of me and I’m left behind, hungry and cranky and feeling like the victim of an injustice.
As parents, we don’t want our children to have a disease … we feel our children’s pain, we want everything to be perfect for them, we fear for their wellbeing. Our celiac kids can sense when their parents are upset about their disease, and they feel bad about it.
It’s easy to see what not to like about being a celiac – I don’t like packing all my own food in case the available food is cross-contaminated, I don’t like eating a can of cold soup while everyone else is lining up for a buffet that I paid for too, I don’t like going hungry while everyone else is eating pizza, I don’t like saying no to food that people offer me, I don’t like worrying that something delicious I’m eating at a restaurant is possibly poisoning me with each bite, I don’t like facing weeks of debilitating digestive issues after a mistake, and so on.
- Imagine yourself as a wheel, rolling along through life. Now that you’re in Celiac Territory, you will encounter all kinds of hazards that can give you a flat!
I’m a celiac – should I be taking supplements?
- It’s natural to experience anger, resentment, sadness, desperation, frustration, fear and exasperation as we adjust to to the gluten-free diet.
- Betty always spends two weeks at the home of her aging parents in the summer. Now that Betty has celiac disease, she suffers anxiety, hunger, sadness, and resentment on these holidays because her parents can’t/won’t make their home safe for her.
“It’s been two years since I went gluten free but my energy levels are decreasing even though all my lab results are within normal.”
- When your parents or in-laws are gluten-clueless and unwilling/unable to learn, staying with them may no longer be an option. How can you deal with this limitation that celiac disease has introduced into your life?
- Celiacs often face upsetting social situations around food. We fear that being assertive about our needs will seem rude, and we don’t want to offend anyone or wreck anyone’s fun.
- “I remember the day as if it were yesterday. It was the day where someone else (besides my partner) attempted to cook gluten free for me.”
- Celiac disease can help us become less prejudiced against people and situations in the world around us.
- Want to get off the cycle of pain? The physical pain of celiac disease makes us angry, desperate, frustrated, and afraid. This emotional pain makes the physical pain worse. We’re already dealing with cramps or mouth sores or whatever it is, and then we add the extra suffering of anger or sadness or fear on top of it — putting us in a cycle of increasing pain. Here’s how to get off that cycle of increasing pain.
- QUESTION: My 5yr old son has Celiac disease. He was diagnosed about 8mths ago, to make it easier we have made our house gluten free but the thing I am struggling with the most right now is school lunches. When we took away the gluten we took away most of his favourite foods and now lunches are becoming boring, any suggestions?
- See Selena’s response below!
- Celiac Pain: Celiac disease presents each of us with our own unique set of pains to deal with – pain such as sores in the mouth, abdominal cramps, bloating, headaches, nausea, and so on. Normally, we wish this pain would go away. We tense up against it, wishing it weren’t there. We get frustrated, angry, and resentful that the pain is in our life. We feel like a victim, like it’s not fair, like our life is being ruined. We fear that the pain is a sign that something even worse is happening with our health. We hate the pain!
- COMMENT: I’ve always been a very anxious person, and now that I’ve been diagnosed with celiac disease, I’m wondering if the celiac disease has something to do with it.
- ISSUE: My travel companions pressure me to make quick decisions and take risks when I need a snack from a convenience store. I feel hurt and disrespected.