May is National Celiac Awareness Month. In light of that, we have decided to highlight some of the ways dealing with the disease and the diet required for it, can be made easier. Having celiac disease can be difficult to cope with. It involves a major overhaul of your diet to ensure a healthy and long life.
Having celiac disease means that your body can’t break down the proteins found in wheat, rye, and barley. Not only do these grains not break down, but each time they are ingested, they damage the small intestine. It’s a very serious disease with serious consequences, but it’s manageable.
Not only do wheat, rye, and barley have to be avoided in foods and meal preparation, but people looking for a gluten-free diet (or a diet without gluten: the protein in wheat, rye and barley) have to avoid things such as grain that was processed in the same containers and plants as one of those three other grains, which significantly increases the risk of contamination.
A basic tip for those looking to make gluten-free meals at home is to separate the places in your kitchen between gluten-free and gluten-containing foods. You can separate them by shelf or cabinet, and have the containers marked in a special way so that you can tell at a glance which one is which.
Sheri L. Sanderson, author of “Incredible Edible Gluten-Free Foods for Kids” recommends even going so far as to double up on a few mixing and preparation items, so as to nix any chance of contamination that might occur in the kitchen area. Things like measuring cups and spoons, mixing bowls and spatulas, or paring knives and cutting boards are cheap enough that you would normally have multiple ones in the kitchen anyway. By having doubles of these ready and at hand, you can mark certain ones for use in gluten-free prep, and the others for gluten-containing foods, and your stress level will go down as well.
“Incredible Edible Gluten-Free Foods for Kids” can be found at http://www.ncescatalog.com, or in our catalog in the Food Allergies section (Item # 3242)