Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Orthodontic Retainers Can Contain Gluten

I have never copied another person's blog post before but this one is too important and unique not to share. 
Let me start by saying that www.celiac.com has a great articles and is worth signing up for. I get daily emails with posts. The email tells you what the post is about you and can decide if  you want to read it or not. I read about 1 in 5 posts. I want to thank Celiac.com and Jefferson Adams for bring this issue to the forefront.

Jefferson Adams wrote a post on 8/22/2014 called, "Can Gluten in Orthodontic Retainers Trigger Ongoing Celiac Symptoms?"

The article:
Celiac.com 08/22/2014 - It is often hard to tell if isolated case reports have anything to contribute to the larger understanding of celiac disease. However, some case reports are enough in themselves to cause reflection, whatever their contribution to the larger scientific understanding may be.
Photo: Wikimedia Commons--clockfaceFor most people with celiac disease, symptoms disappear and healing begins with the adoption of a gluten-free diet. For one 9-year-old girl, however, the battle to beat her symptoms and feel better did not end with a gluten-free diet.
The girl had initially complained of non-specific abdominal discomfort, and showed positive blood tests for celiac disease. Duodenal biopsies revealed Marsh 3B histopathology. So, she definitely had celiac disease with corresponding symptoms. Despite following a strict gluten-free diet, the girl continued to have symptoms and show positive blood tests for active disease.
Gluten is a common additive in plastics. After some detective work, the team discovered that the child was being exposed to gluten from her orthodontic retainer that contained a plasticized methacrylate polymer.
She discontinued its use and her symptoms disappeared and her celiac blood tests returned to normal.
This case illustrates that, even for patients on the strictest gluten-free diet, exposure to non-dietary sources of gluten, such as those used to make plastics, dental equipment, and cosmetics, can trigger or exacerbate celiac disease symptoms. This case also emphasizes the importance of ferreting out and removing all possible sources of gluten, including non-dietary, when managing celiac disease.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Philosophically Speaking

Philosophically speaking - If we do place pain in our bodies and therefore are able to release the pain then can we find ways to completely cure ourselves?

Years ago my father-in -law was told he needed quad- by-pass surgery. He left the cardiologist's office in a hoof and announced to all of us that he would not be having surgery. He proceed to purchase, "Reversing Heart Disease" by Dr. Dean Ornish. He read it, followed the program and even quit smoking at some point. My father-in law was in his early 70's at the time. He never did have a heart attack and died when he was 92 years young. 

Ten years ago I was told I had a ovarian cyst and was sent to get tests.Two days before the tests, I placed white light in the area and visualize a perfect ovary. The tests showed that I did not have a cyst despite the fact that I had symptoms and the doctor felt it  just a few days before.

 My sister-in law has recently been diagnosed with uterine cancer. She is her father's daughter and refused to worry about it. She just had the surgery to remove her uterus. She also refused to believe  she would be in pain or exhausted after the surgery. And guess what, she is not. She was back to work 1 week later even though it was major abdominal surgery. She will find out the biopsy results but again she has-- No Worries. 

Biospy results are now in and she only needs 4 weeks of chemo- once a week. 

So are these people unique or just too stubborn to buy into the collective consciousness of fear and panic. 

Food For Thought


Thursday, August 21, 2014

Do We Store Our Feelings In Our Bodies?

I had an OMG thought about autoimmune diseases the other day and was wondering what you think. Autoimmune Diseases are described, by Medical Plus as, " An autoimmune disorder occurs when the body’s immune system attacks and destroys healthy body tissue by mistake. There are more than 80 types of autoimmune disorders."

I believe that people subconsciously store emotional pain in various places in their bodies. 
I have 2 personal examples to share:

We can make ourselves sick. As a child I had to deal with a lot of emotional "difficulties." In addition, I was the 3rd child in 3 1/2 years and later the middle child of 5. I got very little attention. I learned early on in life that one of the only ways to get attention was to be sick. I became the child in the family that suffered from allergies, colds and a variety of other illnesses.

 I took this subconscious survival technique to my adulthood until I was confronted by my therapist. My therapist had me do a week long exercise where I placed my hand on the part of my body that was in discomfort then related it to an emotional issue I was facing. I then had to say, "It is not an option to place my emotions in my body." 
I was shock to discover that I had to do this numerous times a day. I continued the exercise for a very long time.

This photo by emotional-body-maps demonstrates how a person can store their feelings in their body.

Later in life, I discovered the Sedona Method by Hale Dworskin. 
Lester Levenson created the Sedona Method because (to summarize several pages) he was a very ill man, who lived an unhappy life. As a physicist he understood energy. At one point in his life he realized, he had placed all this negative energy in his body, which made him ill. If he placed it there, he theorized that he could then remove it.  

"The Sedona Method is a unique, simple, powerful, easy-to-learn and duplicate technique that shows you how to uncover your natural ability to let go of any painful or unwanted feeling in the moment. The Sedona Method consists of a series of questions you ask yourself that lead your awareness to what you are feeling in the moment and gently guide you into the experience of letting go."

This method of releasing stored pain has helped me heal so many of my physical issues. 

This thought process has lead me to these questions, "Is one of the reasons people experience Autoimmune Diseases is because we have subconsciously created an unhealthy environment in our bodies, which has lead our bodies to attack itself?  And if so, "Does that mean we can help heal ourselves by releasing the emotionally store negative energy?


The photo is linked to emotional-body-maps at http://litbloc.com/category/life-culture/health/page/2/

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Happy Gluten-Free Anniversary to me and my family!

Let's party- it is an anniversary! So many of the people I know discuss living gluten-free as a burden rather than a new lease on life. So what if we can't eat bagels or bread anymore. I no longer have brain fog, intestinal pains, skin issues and so many other benefits that I can't see but feel. So let's celebrate our commitment to health and a better quality of life.

My Gluten-Free Anniversary!
August is the anniversary when my family and I decided to take living gluten-free to another whole level. Complete and total commitment not only to eating  gluten-free and using gluten-free body care products BUT also to learning everything we could about it.

 Though it feels like we have been gluten-free for a life time, it is almost 5 years. The 1st year was all about helping my daughter regain her health. She was tested and  told to eliminate 31 foods including gluten. Yes, we did remove gluten from the menu but truthfully it took months and endless hours of research to understand the various places gluten could be hiding.  

Sometime during that 1st year we realized the profound impact eliminating gluten and dairy had on my daughter's health and we began to focus on those 2 foods. There were so many questions I could not answer about gluten and where it could be lurking so I set out to find out.
While finding out the answers, I developed a passion for the gluten-free lifestyle. (My reason for writing "Gluten-Free Living 101: A step by Step Guide and Is Gluten Hiding in Your Shampoo? It was Hiding in Mine!

When is your anniversary date for living a gluten-free life?

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Gluten May in Your Kid's Art Supplies

One of my favorite things to do with my daughter when she was young was arts and craft projects. We dabbled in drawing, sculpture, ceramics, painting and so much more. I chose children's art supplies in hope that they would have less chemicals etc. but never once did I stop to think about gluten or dairy being in the art supplies. I was shocked to find gluten and sometimes dairy is in many children's products. 
Gluten can be found in kid's art supplies.

Since I have skin reactions to gluten, I am now aware of what is in these things. This is why I wrote is "Is Gluten Hiding in Your Kid's Things?" This book has a detailed list of the  many unusual places you may find gluten and other allergens in your kid's things and it is not just art supplies.

Photo by Da Vinci Creative Kid's

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

I Often Wonder - Robin Williams

I have often wondered what it would be like to be in a comedians head like  Robin Williams or Jim Carrey. Then I think - that is the last place I want to be. It has taken me a lifetime to slow down my mind and find a way to mediate and be quiet. And believe me this has been the biggest miracle in my life as my brain used to be firing all the time. 

 I do not have a comedians wit. My thoughts are always about how to create or build something; a family, a business,etc. When it comes to learning something new, I jump in feet first and have to be reminded to come up for air.  I rarely do something half way. Even when exploring spirituality, I went full throttle at first.

So I kinda understand that the very thing that makes these men such brilliant comedians is the very thing that must drive them to the brink.  Their lightening speed wit and constant motion must make it difficult to quiet their minds. Every person, image or scenario is inspiration for their craft. How do they even do the simplest things like take a walk or play with a child without writing scripts in their head. It must be exhausting!

May Robin Williams Rest In Peace!

Friday, August 8, 2014

My Journey to Parenthood

My  beautiful daughter is adopted. I rarely use the word adopted when I say "my daughter" because for me and all those that know and love us,  Alex is my daughter, plain and simple. Yet today,  I feel compelled to share my story.
Joys of Motherhood

Like many women with autoimmune diseases such as Hashimoto's and Leaky Gut, and Non Celiac- Gluten Sensitivity, I had infertility issues. I spent 3 years going through test after test, trying to find answers. I was shot up with hormones to  the point that my arms look like a drug addict's arms. Needle marks up and down them.

At the time, MRI machines filled a room and were so loud it could deafen a person. MRI machines were new to the medical industry and analyzing the results was an art that had not yet been perfected.  It took 12 doctors to analyze and determine that they thought I had a tumor on my pituitary gland. This diagnosis followed me for many years. It took another  20 years and a much clearer MRI scanning to determine that I did not have this tumor. 

Going on the premise that I did have a pituitary tumor (no one knew the connections with gluten issues and infertility until recently) and reviewing all the possible risks if I did get pregnant, my husband, Richard and I decided to try to adopt. 

I never did like roller coaster rides and the journey to becoming a parent was by far the scariest roller coaster I had ever been on. By the time we had decided to adopt we were exhausted. At first the issue was whether or not we would be able to have a child. As we pursued it, we began to realize there could by very frightening medical issues wrong with me, such as the pituitary tumor and all that would mean. The fear of loss of vision, terrifying surgery and hormone craziness overwhelmed us.

It was my father -in-law who had a moment of clarity while golfing with Richard. He asked why we would continue trying to get pregnant if it meant that the tumor may grow and I could  possibly lose my vision or worse. 

I look back at the moment Richard came home and told me what he and his dad had discussed. It was a moment of relief. An audible release could be heard when I realized Richard and I could have the child we wanted without taking undo risks to my health. And he was more then okay with it. 

We were scared but we started researching the adoption possibilities immediately. Vista Del Mar in Culver City was the adoption agency that helped Richard's aunt and uncle adopt a child years before so we went there to talk to them. We were so comfortable with them that we decided it was the right place to be.

The process took months. There was so much paperwork to fill out. The agency needed to investigate us and then we had to go through counseling.  These months were a gift. It gave us time to mourn the idea that we would not have a biologically child. Then it gave us the time we needed to address the issues of adoption. By the time we got the call that we were chosen by the birth mother we were in such a healthy place.

I got to spend much of the last 7 weeks of the birth mother's pregnancy with her and she honored me by allowing me to be the  Lamaze coach. Watching my child being born was a unique and awesome experience. Holding her in my arms for the first time was like magic. Instant love, immediate bonding and a gift from God I will always be grateful for.   

I love my daughter unconditionally and can't image loving someone more than I love her.  My hope for her is that one day she can reunite with her biological relatives, so that she can have a genetic history as well as a family history. I will be forever grateful that her birth mother chose Richard and I to raise Alex.

For those of you out there struggling with infertility issues, please know that the moment you hold your child, you will forever fall in love. It does not make a difference who carried that child. All that matters is that child is now in your life. 

I truly hope this helps anyone who is going through similar issues and gives them the sense of hope we all need to overcome these challenges. 

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

August 5, 2014: New Gluten-Free Labeling Take Effect

Today, August 5, 2014 is the official day for the new gluten-free labeling laws to take effect. It has been a long time coming. After years of fighting for a standard of labeling for gluten-free foods, the FDA came up with new guidelines. Many companies have already put this new law into place over the last year. 

Excerpt from: Gluten-Free Living 101: A Step by Step Guide (pp 55 -57)

 In August 2013,  FDA passed a law to allow manufacturers to label a food “gluten-free” if the food does not contain any of the following:
  •  An ingredient that is any type of wheat, rye, barley, or crossbreeds of these grains.
  •  An ingredient derived from these grains and that has not been processed to remove gluten 
  • An ingredient derived from these grains and that has been processed to remove gluten, if it results in the food containing 20 or more parts per million (ppm) gluten. (fda.gov) – Manufacturers are required to comply with this law by August 2014. – This rule includes all foods imported into the United States. 
  • Foods that are naturally gluten-free (such as fruit or vegetables) can be labeled gluten-free. 
  • Oats do not have to be certified as gluten-free to be labeled gluten-free, however, oats that are labeled gluten-free must contain less than 20 ppm of gluten. 
  • The final rule applies to all FDA-regulated foods, including dietary supplements. The rule excludes those foods whose labeling is regulated by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB

The topping  label has clearly stated that it contains WHEAT FLOUR but does not state whether or not the caramel coloring and/or natural and artificial flavors contain barley.  The manufacturing companies are only required to include the top 8 allergens in the ingredient list and/or the separate CONTAIN list.  Since barley and rye are not in the top 8 allergen list it is only required to include them on the label if they are used as a whole product and not if they are added  to another ingredient such as caramel coloring.  

The Top 8 Allergens are milk, eggs, fish, Crustacean shellfish, tree nuts, wheat, peanuts, and soybeans.

To read more about "How to Read Labels", or for "Surprising Places Gluten May be Hiding", see Gluten-Free Living 101: A Step by Step Guide

Photo by Thank Your Body. This site has an article on how to decode food labels that can help a person understand how to purchase healthy foods.  

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Blueberry & Lime Zest Coconut Ice Cream

During the sweltering days of summer, ice cream is a delightful relief. My family is all dairy-free so I have been creating unique coconut ice cream recipes. I wanted to make ice cream yesterday so I looked around the kitchen to see what flavor I could create. 

There were fresh blueberries and lots of limes. 
Blueberry/ Lime Zest Coconut Ice Cream     

I served this over homemade gluten-free, dairy-free banana muffins. ( I used my banana bread recipe and reduced the bananas from 3 to 1 1/2 so the muffins would not be overly moist. )

I want to tell you - this was so good. The lime zest added just the right acidity to a sweet, fresh tasting ice cream. The combination of the bananas in the muffins and the blueberry-lime was incredible.


1 (14 ounce) can of full fat coconut milk
2 tablespoons of honey
2 egg yolks
1 cup blueberries
Zest if 1 small lime

1. Place coconut milk, honey, blueberries and lime zest  in a blender or food processor and   
2. Pour the mixture into a sauce pan over medium heat. Add egg yolks and whisk constantly. 
    Bring to a low boil. Just as the mixture begins to boil take it off the heat and let it cool. 
3. Transfer the mixture into a bowl and cover. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours.,
4. Following the directions from your ice cream maker, place mixture in ice cream maker and 
5. Serve or freeze. 

I add 1 cup of whatever I am in the mood to create.
It could be fruit, crumbled GF cookies,  cookie dough (miss the eggs) etc.