Monthly Archives: April 2013

Map of Grocery Stores With Gluten Free Products

Gluten free products are sometimes hard to come by. Most food stores either do not have a great selection or have none at all. So once you find one that does, you stick to it. But variety is always good, so it is also a good idea to venture out and try other stores that many have new and different products. I personally really like grocery shopping, as you may have known from my previous photo post. Below is a map I made of grocery stores in the South Jersey area that are my favorites for gluten free grocery shopping!

Here are the stores I included:

Check some of them out!

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Reasons Why People Go Gluten Free: Health Issues, Love, Fads

“Gluten free.” These words are everywhere in today’s world. This is because almost 29 percent of people in the United States are trying to avoid gluten in their diet. But why is this? Well, there are many reasons why people are going gluten free. It could be anything from something medical to just keeping up with the latest fad diet. There are endless possibilities about why people are eating this way. I’m here to fill you in on some of those reasons.

Autoimmune Disorders

The main reason people go gluten free is because they have some sort of autoimmune disorder that makes it necessary. The most popular one is Celiac Disease, which is a disease in which gluten destroys the villi of the small intestine, making it impossible to absorb nutrients. One in every 133 people are affected by Celiac Disease. Someone who has this disease has to be on a gluten free diet in order to survive, and feel better. “I have Celiac Disease, and once I went on a gluten free diet I felt like a completely new person. It was amazing!” says Megan Tradife, an 18-year-old with Celiac Disease.

Another autoimmune disorder that makes people go gluten free is Chron’s Disease. This disease causes inflammation of the digestive tract. Many doctors tell patients with Chron’s Disease to eat gluten free to avoid any unnecessary inflammation.

Autism

One lesser-known reason for going gluten is for Autism Spectrum Disorders, which affect children’s ability to interact socially. It has been shown that going on a gluten free and casein free diet can improve their condition.

Love/Moral Support

Going gluten free not only affects your own life, but the lives around you as well. For this reason, family members and loved ones of people on gluten free diets go on gluten free diets themselves. They do it for moral support, or just for an easier life. For example, say you live with your significant other who eats gluten free but you do not yourself. Cooking two different meals everyday can be hard and expensive, and sometimes it is easier to join forces and both eat gluten free. “My boyfriend eats gluten free, so I try to as well so I can give him some support,” says Ashlee Morawski.

Trends

Finally, the biggest reason why people are going gluten free right now is that it is a trend. There are numerous celebrities that claim to be on a gluten free diet, including Gwyneth Paltrow, Jessica Alba, and Zooey Deschanel. People want to emulate their favorite celebrities, and if they hear they are on a new diet, they want to try it too.

Although I think healthy dieting is a good thing, I am not too happy about gluten free diets being a trend. I personally think it minimizes the actual medical need to be gluten free. In my experience, when I go to a restaurant and ask for a gluten free menu, the waiter or waitress always thinks I am just trying to be trendy, and therefore is not as careful with my food. However, there is a plus side. There is definitely more gluten free options out there now that everyone wants to eat like it.

If you are thinking of going gluten free, I highly suggest you see a doctor or dietician first. They will guide you to the right foods and help you keep all of your vitamins and nutrients in check. It is a hard lifestyle to live, but if you feel that it would make you feel better or healthier, go for it!

Also, if you decide to go gluten free, check out my map of food stores in South Jersey that have gluten free products!

A Look Into a Gluten Free Household Featuring Paul McKean

Have you ever wondered what it is like to live with someone who is gluten free when you are not gluten free yourself? Well that’s the reality that 22-year-old Paul McKean is living right now. A year ago, he moved in with his girlfriend, Emma, who has to live gluten free due to Celiac Disease. So when he moved in with her, he changed his life. Love goes a long way, doesn’t it?

In the video, you’ll see Paul talking about how he had to change his life living in a gluten free household and how it has been an adjustment. You’ll also see clips of how Paul and Emma separate all of their food in the fridge, pantry, etc. Check it out to learn more!

 

 

Map of Best Gluten Free Restaurants in Southern NJ

Hey all! I know firsthand finding good gluten free restaurants is hard. It takes a while to find good ones that you can continuously go to and not have problems with. We all know it is a struggle and a journey to find your favorites, which we all have. I’ve even made a google map of my own favorites, which is below. Check it out and maybe you’ll see one that you have never tried!

Here are the restaurants I included:

Enjoy!

An Outing To A Gluten Free Restaurant Gone Wrong

Within the past few months, there has been a lot of talk in the gluten free community about Uno Chicago Grill and their gluten free menu. Other gluten free people I know were saying good things about it, and it received positive press. Hearing so many good things made me want to check it out myself. I just happened to be at the Deptford Mall recently, and there is an Uno’s close by, so I decided to stop by and try it. This was probably one of the worst decisions I have made in a while. I am still paying for it days later.

Even though it was a spur of the moment decision, I did do my research before going to the restaurant. I looked at the menu online, and their nutritional information. It did say on the website that the company cannot guarantee that everything gluten free will really be gluten free due to cross contamination. This should have been my first sign.

When I arrived, I was greeted by a friendly hostess and quickly seated. The staff was very nice and my waiter did know a lot about the gluten free foods. I informed him of my gluten allergy and he assured me everything would turn out okay. After looking at the menu, I decided on the gluten free veggie pizza. I was very excited to eat it seeing as how I haven’t really had pizza from a restaurant for the past four years.

The pizza arrived quickly and looked pretty appetizing. However, it was a little cold and had onions on it, which I told my waiter to leave off. And when I bit into it, I was not impressed. It was way too doughy and lacked taste. I could have made a better gluten free pizza by the frozen dough you can buy at the supermarket. Even though I was unimpressed by the pizza, I was not to mad about it. I had a good time out with friends and tried something new. However, right after I left I started to feel sick.

When a person with Celiac Disease or a gluten allergy consumes gluten, his or hers body goes crazy. It rejects the gluten, which can cause many things to happen, including many gross symptoms that I will spare you the details of. After i left the restaurant, I started experiencing some symptoms, so I automatically knew that the pizza I ate was not completely gluten free. It also takes days, and sometimes even weeks, for these symptoms to wear off. So here I am, days later, still sick. I think it is safe to say I was very disappointed with my Uno’s experience and will not be returning in the future.

16-Year-Old Daniele Kitsenger’s Perspective On Being Gluten Free

Being gluten free is always hard. But being gluten free at a very young age is even harder. Daniele Kitsenger is a 16 year old girl who deals with living gluten free with a positive attitude. She always has a smile on her face and doesn’t let her disease get in the way of her life. Below is an audio clip of Daniele talking about living gluten free in high school and giving advice to those in the same situation.

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Here is Daniele posing with the makings of her favorite gluten free snack, s’mores.