Celiac Disease Peer Mentorship Program
The Celiac Disease Program is proud to continue working with parents and children through their Peer Mentorship Program. The “Gluten-Free Buddies” Program is designed for children ages 4-12, and the “For Teens from Teens” Program is designed for teenagers ages 13-18. We aim to share information and participate in fun activities to help guide your child through life with celiac disease.
While children and teens meet with each other, parents will gather separately to connect with other parents of gluten-free children to exchange tips and advice for navigating the real world. A member of our board will be at this meeting to share their story raising a gluten-free child, followed by open discussion moderated by our psychologist, Shayna Coburn, Ph.D. All will have the opportunity to participate in the conversation to share concerns, sympathy, and wisdom with one another. Parents may attend even if their child does not attend the Buddies or Teen Program, but we ask that children do not come to the parent group.
Gluten-Free Buddies Cupcake Wars!
Sunday, May 19th, 2018, 10am-11:30am
Join us in participating in an iteration of the TV show Cupcake Wars! You'll be asked to create a special cupcake with a secret ingredient to be presented at the end of the event for judging.
Hope you can join us!
Ages 4 -12! Gluten-free baking supplies and treats are included in the ticket price. Please notify us of any other allergies.
Please RSVP and register no later than 5pm on Thursday, May 16th.
Location: Children's National Main Hospital- 111 Michigan Avenue NW- Diabetes Care Kitchen- Washington DC, 20010
Cost- $10 per person
Are you a podcast lover? Check out the most recent gluten-free podcasts from the Celiac Disease Program-
Gluten-Free Budget Bytes- This podcast discusses some budgeting and planning hacks for the kitchen. We hear all the time how people think it is too difficult or expensive to eat healthy on the gluten-free diet. We have Budgeting Food Lover, Beth Moncel, from Budget Bytes to disprove that theory while she shares some of her easy meal planning budgeting tips.
Listen on Blog Talk Radio
Listen on iTunes
Globally Gluten-Free!- Traveling is such an incredible part of life. There are so many sights around the world and thankfully, there are also lots of places with amazing gluten-free options. To discuss some of the best (and worst) destinations, we've got the Gluten-Free Globetrotter Erin Smith! She's an avid traveler and has lots of wisdom to pass along!
Listen on Blog Talk Radio
Listen on iTunes
Genetics and Disease Development- This podcast is about a topic that that is very important in the lives of people with celiac….genetics. Close to 40 percent of the population in America carries these genes, but only 3 percent of them go on to develop celiac...why would they do so? And, we have lots of families who regularly ask us if they carry the gene if they should just go gluten-free to prevent getting celiac disease. Is this right? To help our listeners better understand celiac genetic testing, Vanessa has Dr. Benny Kerzner in the studio with her. Dr. Kerzner is not only a leader in the global celiac disease community, but also the medical director of our Celiac Program here at Children’s National.
Listen on Blog Talk Radio
Listen on iTunes
It's never easy to stay in someone else's home. You're in unfamiliar surroundings, you feel you need to honor their routines and rhythms even if they're different from your own. It all creates that slight bit of tension and awkwardness.
But being a gluten-free house guest adds an entirely new set of fears and worries into the mix. How will you avoid the potential cross-contamination mine field and navigate a kitchen that is not your own? Here are some easy tips to plan ahead and make your visit easy-peasy (at least regarding your gluten-free concerns).
ii.Brown and Red Rice with Chia and Kale
iii.Spanish Rice and Red Beans
Also remember to label and designate a special storage spot for anything you bring so there is no potential cross-contamination or people eating by accident. Happy Holidays everyone!
Thanksgiving is a time to enjoy family, love and good food. But, to enjoy it safely there are some key measures to take.
3. Make sure each pie has a separate serving utensil- You know how everyone inevitably wants a sliver of each pie on the table? Make sure whoever is serving the pie uses a separate serving utensil for each pie and they don't get mixed. Otherwise, that great gluten-free pie you baked will only be enjoyed by everyone else.
Stay Safe and Enjoy! Happy Thanksgiving!
Thanksgiving is the national day of eating. A day we get to stuff our faces with stuffing, pie and mashed potatoes. I say this in the present tense because although this used to be a day gluten-free people dreaded, forced to sit out these decadent carb loaded faves, that's luckily no longer the case. Just as more and more gluten-free products hit the shelves all year long- there are also plenty of new gluten-free Thanksgiving products. Here's a round-up of my favorite finds.
1. Three Bakers Herb Seasoned Stuffing- Many of the gluten-free stuffing mixes I tried over the years tasted like cardboard or were basically boxes of spices where you still add a number of additional ingredients. Three Bakers was the first one I found that tastes great and is literally ready to go. You just add water and bake! If you're looking for an easy gluten-free stuffing that tastes great- make sure to check out Three Bakers!
2. King Arthur Gluten-Free Pie Crust Mix- By far the closest to a real pie crust I've found!
3. Katz Gluten-Free, Dairy-Free and Soy-Free Personal Pumpkin Pie- Last year I was nursing my colicky daughter and needed something that was dairy-free in addition to gluten-free. This pumpkin pie from Katz fit the bill. It was also helpful in that I could just bring it for myself and heat it up when I got there. If you're looking for something safe, traditional and tasty for just one person, this is a great option.
4. Udi's Gluten-Free French Dinner Rolls- Who doesn't love a dinner roll? Especially when it's warm and dripping with butter. These rolls from Udi's are already pre-cooked and ready to go after being warmed in the oven. Definitely worth checking out!
5. McCormick Gluten-Free Turkey Gravy- What turkey dinner would be complete without gravy? Now, the gluten-free participants at the table can enjoy a gravy pool in their mashed potatoes as well. Tastes great and you only need to mix with water to make!
Not only are these options all easy to make, they're easy to travel with or package separately for individual servings. Happy Thanksgiving everyone! Enjoy!
When you're managing a gluten-free lifestyle, preventing cross-contamination is crucially important. Here are five top spots we all might forget about in our own kitchens.
1)Your Kitchen Sponge- Do you have a separate sponge you only use for your gluten-free items? If not, you might be unintentionally cross contaminating your gluten-free prep area and cooking utensils. Set up a two sponge system in your house with two different colors. Only use the one for gluten-free cooking tools and prep areas and the other for everything else in your kitchen.
2)Your cutting boards- Do you use plastic or wooden cutting boards? Since they scratch and erode away with time, there are plenty of places for gluten to get trapped and hide. Use separate cutting boards for your gluten-free prep, or share one with vegetables only. Your other option is to get glass cutting boards which won't get those dangerous nooks and crannies.
3)Your cooking utensils- Do you use wooden or plastic spoons and spatulas? Again, you might be facing the same issue as above. As these utensils age, they are going to develop scratches and cracks where gluten can get trapped. Either get separate cooking utensils that are used for gluten-free prep only or switch to metal spatulas and spoons which won't pose that risk.
4)The microwave- Are you wiping down your microwave regularly? We all know those microwave explosions where the food overflows and shoots out everywhere. But although, we're often in a hurry, take that extra second to wipe up the mess. Otherwise, if some of those stuck food particles contain gluten, you can be in trouble. The next time a gluten-free item gets heated up, the steam created could cause some of those glutinous food particles to soften and drop into your food.
5)Shared Tupperware and storage containers- We've all seen those ugly stained tupperware with a residue left behind. Again, as stated above plastic erodes over time and using a container that last housed a glutinous item could potentially get you sick. Invest in glass containers or get a separate set of tupperware with different color lids that is used for gluten-free items only.
Bonus tip- The most common overlooked way most people get cross contaminated is from their own hands. If you prepare a sandwich or glutinous item for a family member and then something for yourself without washing your hands in between- you could have done everything else right- gluten-free food, new plate etc, but still be running the risk of cross-contamination from leftover crumbs. Either prepare your own food first or make sure you are overly conscious of remembering to wash your hands in between prep!
Have you ever read a label while grocery shopping that felt like it had conflicting information? You’re not alone. Label-reading can be tricky with celiac disease, and not just because gluten can hide in many ingredients.
Anything marked “gluten-free” on the label is safe to eat. Some products have a “certified gluten-free” symbol on it while others do not. However, any product in the United States labeled “gluten-free” must have less than 20 parts per million of gluten.
Products that do not have a "gluten-free" label are where it gets trickier. Although the FDA requires products to be labeled with allergen warnings alongside the ingredients, these allergen warnings are only for the 8 major allergens identified by the FDA. Those allergens are milk, eggs, fish, crustacean shellfish, tree nuts, peanuts, wheat, and soybeans. So, only wheat appears on the allergen lists, not gluten. If the allergen statement tells you the product contains wheat, of course don’t eat it. But, you have to look a little bit further into the ingredient label for any listed gluten.
Here are other common gray areas in labeling that need more clarification:
Looking to make some spooky gluten-free treats with the little ones this Halloween? Check out these easy food art ideas.
Enjoy Life Soft Baked Cookies Double Chocolate Brownie
Gluten-free Pretzel sticks
Skittles or M&Ms
Gluten-Free Rice Crispy Halloween Cut-Outs
1 package of Marshmallows (10 oz)
I box (10 oz) Gluten-Free Rice Crispy Cereal- Make sure to find one that is labeled Gluten-Free! Otherwise, most Rice Crispy cereals contain malted barley syrup. Kellogg's Rice Krispies ARE NOT gluten-free!
1 stick of butter
1 tsp GF vanilla extract
Halloween can be a fear provoking time for a gluten-free family, and for more reasons than the usual witch, ghost and goblin fright fest. Whenever there's a holiday centered so much around food, and one with unknown food on the go at that, there's a lot of potential for cross contamination and mistakes. I do at least have a few tips and resources for safety to make your lives easier.
One- Here is the latest list of approved Gluten-Free Halloween Candy from the Celiac Disease Foundation. This list is only a preliminary resource- make sure to still double-check ALL labels as things are always subject to change. Also ALWAYS remember that some special holiday recipes are different from the usual items on the shelves. For example, Reese's peanut butter cup pumpkins, Christmas trees and Easter eggs are a different recipe from REGULAR Reese's peanut butter cups and the holiday items ARE NOT gluten-free!
Two- Here is a link to a Halloween Safety webcast I did for the Celiac Disease Program. We also have a variety of other pre-recorded webcasts available on our channel for you to peruse and download to watch at your leisure.
Three- Check out the Teal Pumpkin Project and their available resources to promote a safer, happier Halloween for all with Non-Food treats this year. They also have a map on their website where participating houses in your neighborhood can register so you know where to go.
Hope these resources help you have a fun and safe Halloween this year! Enjoy!
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