Is Medication the only Answer to your Allergies?

Do you have a runny, stuffy and itchy nose? Of course you do, it’s Spring! Unless you’re one of the lucky few who don’t suffer spring allergies, I would recommend that you keep reading to learn more about allergies and the many different causes; some that you may not even be thinking of!

When you flip on the news every morning, you hear the local weatherman talking about the pollen and ragweed counts so you know what to expect from your allergies for the day. But, did you know that your runny nose may not have anything to do with what’s going on outside your body? Instead, it may have everything to do with what’s going on inside your body. For many people, food allergies or sensitivities can cause allergic reactions very similar to your common seasonal allergy. If this is the case, instead of resorting to allergy medication, simply adjusting the foods that you eat could cure the allergy symptoms that keep you inside on these beautiful spring days.

Here are a couple of clues that you may be suffering from food allergies: If you feel like you’re constantly taking medication and never feeling better, this is usually a sign that your allergies may be food related. Also, keep in mind that you shouldn’t discount food allergies if they only show up during this time of year. For many, eating habits change when spring arrives because of the availability of fresh fruits and vegetables, which are sometimes the cause of food allergies. If this is you, we recommended speaking with a dietitian to decide what’s right for you. With their expertise in this field, your dietitian can point you in the right direction and help you enjoy an allergy free life no matter the season! For more information, you can also check out The Total Food Allergy Health & Diet Guide at the NCES website. As always, our products are hand selected and approved by dietitians, so you’re sure to get the best information available!

5208 Total Food Allergy Health and Diet Guide


National Celiac Awareness Day

Tomorrow is Celiac Awareness Day. Celiac Disease is a condition that many of us are unaware of. But, research suggests that 3 million Americans suffer from Celiac Disease, and about 95% of people are completely undiagnosed. So, the first question is ‘What is Celiac Disease’? According to www.celiaccentral.org, Celiac Disease is “an autoimmune disorder triggered by the consumption of gluten, a protein found in wheat, barley and rye“. Can you think of the foods that you eat every day that contain gluten? Bread, pasta, cookies, muffins, oats… these are all the main things we think of when we think of gluten. But, gluten is also found in many dressings, gravy’s and other sauces. This disease definitely requires a change in lifestyle for those who are diagnosed.

Are you concerned that you may have Celiac Disease? Getting diagnosed is the first step in getting help! In order to be sure, you’ll need to talk to your doctor about a celiac blood test. But, you can start by going through CeliacCentral.org’s Celiac Disease Symptoms Checklist. Keep in mind, it’s always possible that you feel like you have Celiac Disease but your test comes back negative. You may have non-celiac gluten sensitivity. Whatever level of sensitivity you may have, it’s important to know that there are answers. There are things you can change within your life to stop suffering.

Have you already been diagnosed with Celiac Disease, or know someone who has? Living with Celiac Disease or a gluten allergy can be difficult, expensive and time consuming. But, NCES offers a line of books aimed at helping you live with Celiac Disease. As more and more people are diagnosed with Celiac Disease, more resources have become available. So, always talk to your health care professional about resources that are available to you.

To celebrate National Celiac Awareness Day, we’re taking 20% off the books in our Celiac/IBS & Gluten Free section for the rest of the week. Simply enter code ‘celiac’ upon checkout on the NCES website.

Do you know of any other great resources for Celiac Disease or Gluten Allergies that we haven’t included? Be sure to leave it in the comments section for everyone to share! Or, you can visit us on Facebook or Twitter to share your thoughts with all of our friends and fans!


Tips for a Gluten-Free Lifestyle (Week 2)

Considering that it’s Celiac Awareness Month, we decided to shed a little light on different ways you can live a gluten-free lifestyle, and still have a healthy, balanced diet.

One of the most complicated and difficult things a person can deal with is having a child who has celiac disease. Especially if the child is young, they may not even fully understand what they have to deal with or why.  So, it’s up to the parent to give them the guidance and direction they need to stay healthy.

When your child is outside of your sight, and out of your care, such as when they’re at a daycare center or preschool, it can be stressful on you as a parent. There are things you can do to make the transition easier.  By talking with your care-providers and your child, here are some ways to make the day go by more easily:

Teach your child to ask about ingredients, and to take control of their own diet. The more information you can get them to remember and to value, the better off they’ll be in the long run.

Educate the staff about your child’s condition. You can easily prevent your child from feeling left out by providing information on gluten-free meals that can be prepared.  You can also prepare for birthday parties and other celebrations by making gluten-free cupcakes ahead of time and storing them at the facility.

Make sure the staff and your child know about any crafts that might contain gluten that they would have to avoid or replace. Things like play-dough, silly putty, and noodles need to be avoided.

For a complete book on tips for your child’s gluten-free life, check out the “Incredible Edible Gluten-Free Food for Kids” book, by Sheri L. Sanderson. Packed with tips and meals for a gluten-free lifestyle, it will keep you and your family healthy and growing.   This book is item # 3242 in our catalog and at http://www.ncescatalog.com.


Gluten-Free Apple Date Bread

This recipe and many others can be found in ‘Gluten-Free Diet’.  Item # 3034 at www.ncescatalog.com or in our catalog.


  • 3 eggs
  • ½ cup chunky applesauce
  • ¾ cup apple juice or water
  • 1 tsp. apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 tbsp. vegetable oil


  • 2 cups white rice flour
  • ½ cup tapioca starch flour
  • ½ cup cornstarch

OR use 3 cups of your own favorite GF flour mix instead of the above flours

  • ½ cup non-fat dry milk
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tbsp. sugar
  • 2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tbsp. xanthan gum
  • 2 ¼ tsp. yeast


  • ¾ cup finely chopped GF pitted dates
  • 1 tsp. orange zest

Electric Mixer Instructions (Bread Machine Instructions included with book)

  • In a medium-sized bowl, mix all the liquid ingredients together and set aside.
  • Place all the dry ingredients, including the yeast, in to the mixer bowl and blend flours together on low speed.
  • Slowly add the liquid ingredients to the dry while the mixer is on low.
  • Beat on high for 3-4 minutes.  Mixture should look silky.  If the dough is too dry, add liquid 1 tablespoon at a time.
  • Add the dates and orange zest after the dough has been thoroughly mixed.
  • Place the dough into a 9 x 5-inch loaf pan that has been greased and dusted with rice flour.  Bake in a preheated 350°F oven for 60-70 minutes.  Start checking for the bread being done at 55 minutes.  When done, remove bread from pan and place on cooling rack.  Do not cut or package until the bread cools, approximately 2-3 hours.

Yield: 15 Slices (1/2” thick)

Note: Apple juice, applesauce and dates make this bread moist and flavorful.

Nutrition Analysis:

1 serving = 1 Slice (1/2 “ thick)

Calories (kcal) 187
Carbohydrates (g) 39
Dietary Fiber (g) 2
Fat (g) 2
Protein (g) 4
Iron (mg) 0.7
Calcium (mg) 51
Sodium (mg) 208


Case, Shelley. (2008). Gluten-free diet. Regina, Canada: Case Nutrition Consulting Inc.


Tips for a Gluten-Free Lifestyle

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)