Olive Salad

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Olive Salad

I don’t know about you, but fresh salads in the summer are one of my favorite things. Now just because it isn’t that time of year just yet, doesn’t mean I have to live off of “comfy” foods that are usually associated with winter. This salad is super easy to prepare and a favorite of my family. If you’re having a party, the recipe can easily be doubled. Also, I usually slice the olives or even prepare the olive mixture a day before to save myself some time if I’m making a larger salad. It may seem like an unnecessary step, but it really does save time when you’re trying to get ready for a party!  Just do not slice the tomatoes ahead of time as they don’t hold up as well!

 

  • 1 cup pitted green and black olives, halved (or one can of each)
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley leaves
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 5 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoons capers, rinsed and drained
  • 2 tsp mince garlic
  • 8 fresh basil leaves, chopped
  • 1 cup balsamic vinegar
  • 2-3 tomatoes
  1. Place balsamic vinegar (or vinaigrette if you don’t want it quite as strong) in a small saucepan over low heat and allow it to reduce by half.
  2. Allow vinegar to cool to room temperature.
  3. Slice olives in half lengthwise.
  4. Combine olives, parsley, capers, garlic, basil, and pepper in a large bowl.
  5. Pour olive oil over olive mixture and toss to coat well.
  6. Slice tomatoes and place on plate, slightly overlapping.
  7. Spoon olive mixture over the tomatoes and drizzle with the balsamic vinegar
  8. Serve immediately

 

 

Gluten Free Kitchen Basics

Gluten Free KitchenOne of the biggest challenges and yet by far the best plan for those with celiac disease is keeping a gluten free kitchen. When I lived alone this was not a big deal at all. After my diagnosis I took EVERYTHING out of my cabinets and the refrigerator and did a major overhaul.  I made sure EVERY crumb was picked up when I dusted and wiped the cabinets down as well as when I scrubbed the refrigerator. Who knows what that spill may have been!?!? It took an entire day but it was definitely worth the effort. I gave a ton of food to my parents and then filled my house with only gluten free food. I didn’t have to worry about reading labels once it landed in my cabinet.  It was my safe zone and I loved it.

Then it happened. I had a “serious” boyfriend. He was always over and had a love for snacks. He tried some gluten free cookies and would eat the pasta I would cook, but one day asked if he could leave some of his favorite snacks at my house- pretzels, cookies, etc. So we came up with a great solution, the basket on one of my shelves became the “gluten zone.” Anything containing gluten went into that container. Eventually my boyfriend spent more and more time at my place and that container had to become a small cabinet. No biggie. I just stayed away from there. It worked out great because it was a part of a small island and that became the area he would prepare gluten containing foods as well. It worked great! When we had friends over, all of the gluten food would go there and my counter space was still a gluten free zone. Woohoo!

Gluten free KitchenWell then he moved in. Damn. I had to share my refrigerator. And pots. And Pans. And well- everything. My fear of cross contamination had become my nightmare. My gluten-loving-Italian boyfriend (now fiancé) ruined my system. For the first month had not been so bad. Unfortunately, after that we both became a bit too comfortable and I spent 4 months miserable. We couldn’t figure out what the source until I decided to do another major overhaul of my kitchen. There were breadcrumbs in the butter.  My lettuce managed to get crumbs from his fried chicken (no joke… apparently men don’t cover food, they just toss things in the refrigerator).  It was chaos. Our solution was to go back to label EVERYTHING. Not only was it great for him to remind him of what he had to be careful with, but it was great for our guests as well!

 

 

Here are some of the helpful tips we tried and have really helped:

  1. Label. Label. Label. I purchased “gluten free” labels online and went crazy. Yes you can make them yourself, but these are really cute. I’m sorry. I’m a girl- the prettier the better. Plus, they don’t come off easily and they have even lasted in the dishwasher! Everything in my refrigerator that was gluten free was labeled and placed on a gluten free shelf.
  2. Label condiments and buy two when needed! We have two butter containers and one is labeled gluten free. The reason for doing this is to keep his gluten containing crumbs out of mine! This is especially helpful on those frequently used items!  I put one label on the container itself and one on the lid as well. Not only does this help with quick identification, but it keeps us from mixing them up and putting the wrong lid on the gluten free container. If you put them just on the lids, be careful! If you take the lids off of both the gluten free and gluten containing item you may inadvertently mix them up!
  3. Keep gluten free items on higher shelves. Just in case something spills or isn’t covered adequately, gluten won’t accidentally fall into your gluten free food!
  4. Dedicate a gluten free prep area. No gluten comes into this space. Ever. That being said, I would still wipe it down before cooking just to make sure no crumbs have fallen anywhere. My countertops are gluten free areas but I always wipe them down with a sponge before cooking
  5. That brings us to a gluten free sponge. Yes I have a dishwasher, but I tend to wipe down dishes/pans/etc before putting them in there so I have a gluten free sponge. Sponges can sometimes trap crumbs in the little holes. Your safest bet is to use two separate sponges. Some people color code them so you can remember but we also have a “sponge holder” next to the sink that is labeled gluten free.
  6. Get a second toaster. Crumbs fall and the slots are contaminated if you use gluten free and gluten containing bread in the same toaster. Be safe, get two. We have a tag hanging on the gluten free one as well so no one accidentally grabs the wrong one!
  7. We cook a lot of pasta so we have two colanders (strainers) as well. Those things can be pretty hard to clean with all of the holes so save some time and aggravation and invest in two! Do the same as the toaster and place a tag on it if you can so you know which ones I gluten free!
  8. Invest in a second cutting board. It’s possible to get small amounts of gluten stuck in the “cuts” on the board. They can be hard to remove so I always recommend using two separate cutting boards. Wiping them down does not always do a good enough job.
  9. Using separate baking/cooking equipment. We have designated gluten free pots/pans that are labeled.  It is the same thought process as the cutting board, sometimes things get trapped in small crevices, especially if they are coated pans!
  10. Educate your family. This is especially important when dealing with kids. If you’re living with a gluten free child, those labels make life so much easier for them! They already know what is safe and what isn’t. You may think that you don’t have to worry as much since you are their primary caregiver, but what happens when you’re not home? Grandparents may not be as familiar with their gluten free diet and babysitters may be clueless! This is okay though if things are labeled. They can easily find a snack or meal for them without causing alarm!
  11. Use placemats or at the very least avoid a table cloth. I know it sounds dumb, but using a table cloth can lead to trapped crumbs around your eating area. Unless you are okay with constantly washing it, you may want to skip it if you live with others that are not gluten free. However, if you love your tablecloths, the solution is to use a placemat when eating. This way your area is nice and clean!

Gluten Free Fig Cookies (Cuccidati)

Italian Fig CookiesCuccidati, or fig cookies as they are more often called, are one the popular treats that pop up around the holiday season.  A staple in Sicily, these yummy Christmastime cookies are filled with figs, dates, raisins, and a variety of spices! They are a bit time consuming to make, but worth the effort!

Filling

  • 2 cups dried figs
  • 1 cups dried dates
  • 1 cup raisins
  • ¾ cup chopped almonds
  • ¾ cup chopped walnuts
  • ¾ cup orange marmalade
  • ½ cup honey
  • ¼ cup brandy
  • 1½  tsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp cloves

Dough

  • 4 cups gluten free flour
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • 1 tbsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 large egg
  • ¾ cup milk
  • 1 ½ tbsp. vanilla extract

Icing

  • 3 cups powdered sugar
  • 1 egg white
  • 1tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp water
  1. Finely chop walnuts and almonds using a food processor and place in a large bowel
  2. Remove hard tips from figs and pits from dates
  3. Grind dates, figs, and raisins in the food processor, until well blended. Add to large bowel.
  4. Place marmalade in food processor with honey, brandy, and spices and blend. This will also help chop up the marmalade a it so that it is a smooth consistency. Pour into bowl and mix well. Your mixture should be thick at this point.
  5. Cool for at least 4 hours, or overnight
  6. Preheat oven to 350 degrees
  7. Sift flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in a large bowl
  8. Add butter to mixture and blend until well incorporated
  9. Whisk egg, milk and vanilla together then slowly add to dough mixture
  10. Divide dough in 4 sections, making a 18x3in rectangle (I use a pizza cutter to get straight edges once I roll it out. You can make longer rectangles but 12-18 inches is much easier to work with)
  11. Place filling in center of rectangle and roll dough over filling, pinching seam to close completely. Wet you fingers with water to help seal the dough
  12. Roll dough over so that the seam is facing downward, slice into 1 inch sectionsfig cookies
  13. Place on a cookie sheet and bake for 15 minutes until golden brown
  14. Allow cookies to completely cool
  15. Whisk together powdered sugar, vanilla, egg white and water. You may need to add additional water if it is too thick. Icing should be easy to spread and drip a bit down the sides of the cookies, but not watery
  16. Apply icing to cookies and decorate with colored sprinkles.

Enjoy!

xoxo

Gluten Free Shampoo & Conditioner

gluten free shampoo & conditionerThe decision to use gluten free shampoo and conditioner is entirely individual. Some people recommend using them, others do not. Now, please mind you that I’m simply sharing my OPINION on this sensitive subject. For myself, I try to use a gluten free shampoo and I do recommend it for my patients (please note that I’m a pediatrician so my patients are kids).  Gluten is not absorbed through the skin and I know that we generally do not go around eating our shampoo.  HOWEVER, kids do. They are constantly putting things in their mouth and I do not want to trust that they will keep their mouths completely closed while bathing. So yes, I do recommend gluten free shampoo and conditioners for kids.

As for myself, I have the annoying habbit of playing with my hair and yes, I can admit it, I sometimes use my mouth to hold sections while curling my hair. Don’t judge, you know you do it too.  This doesn’t mean I won’t use a shampoo that isn’t gluten free. Of course I will, I’m just much more careful when I’m using it. I don’t question it at the salon because I do not have the risk of getting it in my mouth when rinsing it out.  There are a few gluten free brands that are easy to find and very reasonably priced- you may be using them already and not even know it!  Lots of people with celiac do not use GF shampoo and conditioner and do very well. Others feel that it does cause a reaction and choose to use GF products.  If you opt to use them, here is a short list to get you started!

California Baby Skin Protectant Shampoo & Body Wash California baby is great- their website lists if there is gluten in their products or not. I highly recommend them if you’re just getting started because their website is very user friendly!

Dove Damage Therapy– Dove is great with their labels, if it contains gluten, it’s usually written on the ingredients list.

Intelligent Nutrients Harmonic Hair Care Smells great and works amazing but pricey!

Kirkland Signature Moisture Shampoo & Conditioner This is one of my favorites! It’s from Costco and very reasonably priced! It works great!

Savonerrie -great source of GF products

xoxo

Celiac basics for patients & those that love us

So what IS celiac disease?

This is a question I answer all too frequently. Usually someone will interject that it is a food allergy. No, it isn’t. I’m not allergic in the same way that someone is allergic to bees or peanuts.  Celiac disease is considered to be an autoimmune disorder. Our small intestine normally has villi, small fingerlike projections that stick inward helping our body absorb what we eat. In celiac disease, our body begins to attack these villi, destroying them. Without these projections, we cannot absorb nutrients well. Untreated, celiac disease can lead to osteoporosis, infertility, and even cancer.  The tricky thing with celiac disease is that not everyone’s symptoms are the same. Yes, of course, there are the most common symptoms of abdominal cramping and diarrhea, but that does not mean every celiac patient has those symptoms!

Now you may have heard of gluten insensitivity and wheat allergies. They are not the same. However, celiac disease(CD), non-celiac gluten sensitivity (NCGS) and wheat allergies all fall under the same umbrella term of “gluten intolerance.” The end result is the same- avoid gluten because it is doing some form of damage, however, the mechanism of damage is different for each. You may wonder “what difference does it make?” Well, ultimately it doesn’t when you are considering treatment- the gluten free diet is ideal for all three. However, the genetics of celiac disease and the associated illnesses apply to CELIAC DISEASE. This makes a huge difference when we are looking at long term prognosis and symptoms as well as what it means for our families due to genetics.

If you’re reading this blog, you either 1) have celiac disease, 2) love someone with celiac disease, 3) love the gluten free diet, or 4) are learning about celiac disease for other random purposes.  This post is directed to those who love us. If you have celiac disease- you get it. You know what happens. If you don’t have celiac disease, you have to work really hard to understand and learn “the rules.”  Trust me, my fiancé took a while to figure out what it would be like to date someone with celiac disease and 3 years later, he’s still learning. It can be daunting, but it’s doable! I’m going to try to keep this pretty straightforward so consider it your celiac disease 101. Eventually you’ll move up to the next course!

What happens if you eat gluten?

Well, like I said, everyone is different. It can range from abdominal bloating and pain, chronic diarrhea, nausea/vomiting, constipation, fatigue, etc. (here’s a list!)  Most commonly, your loved one will end up with abdominal cramps and diarrhea. It’s not pleasant. It can last a few hours, or a few days. Plus, its embarassing. I don’t want to tell anyone that I have diarrhea constantly- and they don’t want to hear about it either. Some people end up with rashes including dermatitis herpetiformis, psoriasis, eczema, and even with oral ulcers. This makes for very unhappy people!

What is the hardest part of the gluten free diet?

Oddly enough, at this point, I don’t think the diet is too hard. For ME, when I’m in control. See? There’s the catch.  I feel safe in my bubble, but we can’t all live in a bubble now can we? Now for me to give that control over to someone at a restaurant or, even more worse- at their own house, is pretty daunting. I’m usually confident that if the chef/waitress understand “gluten free” that they will be able to figure out what I can/cannot eat, especially if they are able to come up with substitutions without hesitating. My friends? Well, they are well meaning, but more often than not, unreliable. My close friends and family will usually run over the list of ingredients with me, but I feel bad sometimes asking people to securitize their labels.  This is usually when I’m just getting to know someone or I’m a guest of someone I’ve never really met.  That being said, I usually get over it pretty quickly though because I’m not willing to suffer for their benefit. (Okay unless it was my niece that tried really hard to share her birthday cake with me by removing all of the cake and giving me just frosting- full of cake crumbs. Yeah, I ate a bite. But she’s beyond adorable and how could I tell a 6 year old she didn’t do it right?)

Cross contamination is a real concern. I love my friends and family but sometimes they don’t get it either so don’t feel too bad. Gluten can hide in lots of places, you can’t just wipe off a pan used for gluten containing food and cook something gluten free. Same with the barbeque grill. In my house, we line everything with foil or parchment paper. This saves a ton of time worrying and aggravation when I realize something isn’t right just a little too late. I used to have a completely gluten free household, but since my fiancé moved in, cross contamination has become an issue.

Other than food, what else contains gluten?

Makeup, lotion, lipstick, shampoo, soaps, you name it. The list is long, and it’s hidden in a lot of different things. You don’t have to master it all. I usually recommend picking a few different things in each category.  Here’s a list of a few gluten free lotions. Are there more? Absolutely! But please don’t overwhelm yourself. I recommend my patient’s and families find a few go to items in each category. Once you’re comfortable, feel free to add to your own list, but remember to check ingredients with the companies because they can change without warning. Going gluten free isn’t just about sticking to a diet. It’s a lifestyle.

What can other’s do to keep celiacs safe?

It’s simple. Avoid cross contamination. Don’t eat off my plate with your fork if you’re eating gluten containing pasta. Can we share? Sure! Get a second set of silverware just for that when you’re out to eat! Don’t mess up my refrigerator. Seriously.  My fiancé would occasionally leave uncovered fried chicken on the top shelf and crumbs would tumble down onto other things. So ours is labeled carefully and he has specific places he can place food in there. Also, everything is labeled.  We buy condiments in 2’s. One is his, one is gluten free.  For example, we have two identical butter containers, one is his and one is mine. Mine is labeled and on a separate shelf. Anyone that is gluten free can use mine, otherwise, they have to use his.  I don’t want to worry about crumbs!

If you’re still worried or have questions- just ask! Trust me, I would rather have someone ask too many questions about what I can/cannot have than just assume something and put me at risk.  If you’re trying to learn about celiac disease because someone you love has it, there are plenty of resources out there! If you’re having trouble finding answers- shoot me a message and, hopefully, I can point you in the right direction!

Hope this helps get you started!

xoxo

Gluten free lotions

I had a few mixed emotions when deciding what to do when it came to beauty products. For myself, I’m okay with not being 100% gluten free with certain things, including lotions. I know you have to EAT gluten for it to cause a problem and I certainly do not eat lotion. Or do I? I’m pretty sure that it doesn’t seem very tasty, but there are other ways one can consume lotion. Generally not an issue for adults, but as a pediatrician, it’s something I try to caution my families about.  Kids are always putting things in their mouths. They bite their nails. They suck their thumbs. So… they kinda eat their lotion too.  So while I’m not super strict with myself, I do caution those with kids.  I do have a few products that I love that are not necessarily gluten free. I love Eucerin products, but they cannot guarantee my safety. My solution is that my unending love of aquaphor can continue- on my legs, arms, feet, and torso, but NOT on my hands.  My hands are gluten free zones most of the time.

Here’s my list of go to products for lotions/creams that are gluten free:

I know this is a pretty short list, but I didn’t want to overwhelm you. Yes there are plenty of gluten free options out there, these are just some of my favorite. They work great and they are pretty easy to find. You don’t need a Whole Foods near you! Target carries most of these brands too!

xoxo

Pumpkin Gingersnap Cookies

20131104-095936.jpgGoodbye Halloween! Hello Thanksgiving! Time to make the transition to the next holiday! Now, I am definitely one of those people that absolutely loves this time of year. However, if I am to be perfectly honest, I may love it a little too much and struggled to NOT pull out the Christmas decorations while looking for my Thanksgiving centerpieces. I nearly justified putting up a Christmas tree as long as I didn’t put the ornaments on. Yeah. I’m one of those. You would think I was six instead of thirty-something! So this recipe is a perfect reflection of my holiday dilema! Christmas gingersnap cookies combined with yummy fall pumpkin? Ah-maze-ing!

  • ½ cup of pumpkin puree
  • ¼ cup of maple syrup
  • 1 large egg
  • ½ cup of butter, softened
  • 1 cup sugar, plus more to roll your cookies in
  • 1 ¼ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 ½ cups gluten free flour (again I used Namaste Perfect Blend)
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1 ½ teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon ground cloves
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  1. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking soda, spices, and salt.
  2. In a large bowl, beat the butter and 1 cup sugar together until smooth.
  3. Add the pumpkin, maple syrup, egg, and vanilla extract to the large bowl and mix until well combined.
  4. Add dry ingredients to large bowl slowly and mix until combined.
  5. Chill dough for 1 hour. If you skip this step your cookies may not be soft and fluffy!
  6. Peheat oven to 350° F.
  7. Place small amount of sugar in a small bowl.
  8. Roll tablespoon-sized balls of dough in sugar until well coated and place on prepared baking sheet, about 2 inches apart.
  9. Bake for 10–12 minutes, or until cookies look cracked and set at the edges.
  10. Allow the cookies to cool for a 2-3 minutes after removing them from the oven, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. They will be soft when you remove them from the oven, but if you allow them to cool before transferring them to the wire rack will alow them to set and firm up just a bit!

Enjoy!

xoxo

Essentially yours

A few years ago I was introduced to essential oils by a friend of mine. Being a typical girl, I loved smelling the various fragrances and, as I’m sure most of you can relate, many of the scents triggered specific memories or feelings. Lavender has long been known to have a calming effect and is great for helping you relax. Citrus scents are great revitalizers- which is why it’s associated with summer scents/flavors! Eucalyptus (which is my absolute favorite) is great for that “clean feeling” and is often used to treat headaches, colds, and sinus congestion amongst other things. In homeopathic medicine as well as other non-western medical practices, aromatherapy is a well known and utilized tool. If you don’t believe me just think back to your childhood. If your mom was anything like mine, as soon as a cold started she would slather my chest with Vick’s Vapor Rub. What’s in that amazing little jar? Camphor, Eucalyptus oil, and menthol (amongst a few other things as well!).

One of my favorite things to do with my oils is to take a 4 oz spray bottle and fill it with water along with 25-30 drops of my favorite oil. Right now my spray bottle has lavender in it and I’ve sprayed it over the bed sheets/blankets for a calming feeling at night.

Another fun trick I have used is to take warm water with a few drops of oil and oak a few washcloths, ring them out, and put them in individual baggies. When I come home from the gym and need a quick pick me up, I can grab one from the refrigerator where I store them and hold it to my face for a few minutes and take some slow deep breaths. It works like a champ- between the cold and the aroma it’s heaven! (And in case you’re wondering- I use my orange citrus oil most of the time for the towels!)

I know a lot of people like to add the oils to the bathtub, but I’ve never had much luck with simply putting drops in the water. Oil doesn’t dilute in the water. Umm it’s oil. My best solution is to take Epsom salt and add a few drops of my favorite essential oil (usually 1cup salt to 20-25 drops of oil). I’ve been known to make 2 cups at a time and then store them in an airtight container. Mason jars work great for this! Then add 1/2 cup to the water (or more if you’re so inclined) and enjoy a nice warm bath for 20 minutes! It’s a great way to end your day! You can use epsom salts, sea salts, etc, but remember the larger the salt is, the longer it takes to dissolve. Plus, you have to stand on them to get in the tub and then sit on them. Do you want to sit on pebbles during a bath?!?! I think not!

bath salts/eucalyptus oilThere are a ton of different websites to learn about the benefits of different oils. I tend to use Aura Cacia most often. Their website is great and there’s an app for your smartphone as well! They even have an essential oil directory to help you get started!

http://www.auracacia.com/auracacia/aclearn/ar_directory.html

Enjoy!

xoxo

Trick or Treat!

When I was growing up, Halloween was one of my FAVORITE times of year. Come on! You get to dress up in a cool costume and get candy from your neighbors? That’s a pretty sweet deal!  After my cousins and I would finish going door to door, we would dump all of our candy out into piles and start trading for our favorites.  For a kid, that was amazing!

It’s been a LONG time since I’ve gone trick or treating and I don’t have any kids of my own, but my heart breaks for kids with food allergies. I know how scary it must be for their moms and dads as well. I try to give the best advice I can to my own patients- let kids be kids. Do NOT prevent them from trick or treating. Do NOT take all of their candy away (unless of course they come home with an obscene amount- then donate it to a shelter or food pantry). My recommendation for dealing with food allergies actually falls back on my childhood memories- candy trading. Okay stop laughing, I’m serious. Pick up a bag or two of gluten free snacks your kids love and start trading with them. Offer a pack of m&m’s for their kitkat bars, etc.

There are studies that show children with food allergies can sometimes be alienated from their peers.   So check out this list provided by the Celiac Disease Foundation and get your kids out there!

http://www.celiac.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=198&Itemid=38

Happy Halloween!

xoxo

Perfectly Imperfect

Anyone with celiac can relate to the awful moment when some gluten has managed to get past their lips. For me, those have always included being pretty angry and disappointed in myself. I would think: I’m never going to figure out this diet. I don’t want to go out to eat anymore. I don’t trust anyone with preparing my food except myself and, honestly, sometimes I didn’t even trust myself. After about 5 years of the diet I think I have finally gotten the hang of it. While I know its bad to cheat on the GFD, I will be honest and say I have done it in the past. Is it worth it? Nope. Seriously- the food wasn’t as good as I thought it would be and I would be sick for days! Plus, there’s always the long term consequences associated with NOT following the GFD! I don’t know about you, but infertility, osteoporosis and CANCER do not sound like a great trade off for that pizza or cookie! 

So for the first few months I would CONSTANTLY beat myself up about my mistakes. It made the processes pretty miserable for myself. I now know much better and give myself some slack. When I talk to people who are new to the diet, I try to warn them that mistakes are bound to happen. It’s a part of life and you just need to quickly identify your source and get rid of it. I can’t tell you how many times I have taken everything out of my refrigerator or my cabinets and gone over every label. EVERY SINGLE LABEL. It may sound like an overkill, but hey, sometimes the ingredients change! 

About 6 weeks ago I started to have trouble sleeping. I was increasingly fatigued and had various joint and muscle aches. I’m one to end up with mouth sore with my “flares” and I ended up with a few of them on and off over the past few weeks. My personal life had been pretty damn stressful lately so I pretty well attributed it all to stress. That is until the cramping and stomach pains kicked in. Apparently, after 5 years of the diet, things still manage to slip past me. I had changed my kcups for my keurig and apparently not realized that one brand “contains trace amount of wheat.” One or two k-cups each week had not done too much damage but it was a whole different story when I started having them daily, then twice each day, and finally 3-4 times each day! Oh come on! The more tired I was, the more coffee I would drink! Now I know there are concerns out there about coffee in general being a source of gluten and let me tell you that is FALSE! In fact, most (almost all) are gluten free! It’s the fancy-shmacy flavored ones you need to double and triple check! (In case you’re wondering, I was pounding cafe escapes french vanilla cafe au lait) http://www.keurig.com/customer-service/k-cups-and-beverages-support/frequently-asked-questions

The reason I decided to take a moment and post this is because I’m sure there are many other celiacs out there that have had to deal with accidental ingestion. It’s frustrating, but it happens to the best of us! None of us are perfect no matter how hard we try.  

xoxo