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Note from Alice
Cooking with Oonagh
Allergic Living Sneak Peek
Oats & the gluten-free diet
Take the Pledge
A Taste of GREAT
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NFCA President & CEO
Inspiring Hope, Accelerating Innovation and Forging Pathways to a Cure
In last month’s newsletter, we took a look back at 2014 and all the things we accomplished together. Now, in the spirit of the New Year, the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness (NFCA) is looking at what’s to come in what I believe will be our greatest year yet. We’re shifting our focus, but rest assured, we are keeping you and your best interests at our core.
As we begin 2015, I am excited to unveil NFCA’s new Mission Statement.
We didn’t come by these words easily. We heard from our community. Our board discussed it. We got input from members of our Patient Advisory Council. Key stakeholders weighed in. Loaded with feedback, our entire team sat in a room and hashed out what we think reflects best what we do and how we do it. We want to show not just how important safe gluten-free options are for our community, but that our disease is serious and needs to be treated that way. Our disease is not the “latest eating disorder,” but a genetic autoimmune condition that causes severe damage to the body when left undiagnosed and untreated.
The time has come for gluten-related disorders to be understood, easily diagnosable and effectively managed. Without further ado, I’d like to share the words and beliefs that are driving each and every initiative pursued by NFCA:
The National Foundation for Celiac Awareness advances widespread understanding of celiac disease as a serious genetic autoimmune condition that can be easily diagnosed and effectively managed. We empower our community to live life to the fullest, and serve as a leading and trusted resource that inspires hope, accelerates innovation and forges pathways to a cure.
I speak for myself and the entire NFCA team when I say that we are proud to be serving you and your families as we work to make life better for everyone affected by gluten-related disorders – both those diagnosed and those waiting for an answer.
I encourage you to keep an eye on NFCA throughout the year. Big things are just around the corner and unveiling this new Mission Statement is the first of many new things to come.
Wishing you GREAT health in the New Year,
PS – Love the Mission Statement? Learn how you can bring it to life and Take the Pledge today.
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By Chef Oonagh Williams
I CAN'T BELIEVE IT'S NOT BARLEY AND BEEF SOUP
(Sorry, I just couldn't resist saying that!)
In England, I loved throwing barley into soups and stews, soft but chewy, different texture, totally wonderful. With gluten-free, I happily use quinoa grains in lots of recipes, but quinoa just isn't the same as barley. When I spoke at a conference in Atlanta in May, I heard Carol Fenster say that she uses sorghum for a barley substitute. Came home, tried it and it works. I do notice that even with soaking overnight and over an hour of cooking, plus sitting in whatever soup or stew it's in, sorghum still stays chewy and doesn't go “soggy.” So, kids who don't like texture might object to this dish or to having to chew the beef in the stew. So, it’s easier to use ground beef.
SNOW QUEEN MADE INTO SNOW BALLS
This is a dessert I've made for years. So very easy, quick to make and freeze, and it’s normally naturally gluten-free and very popular. I buy the plastic tub of 5-6 oz. of meringues, line the empty tub with plastic wrap and use it as the container/mold for the dessert. It looks quite dramatic on the dessert table with a raspberry sauce or chocolate ganache sauce – just eat it before it melts everywhere.
About Chef Oonagh Williams
I will appear on New Hampshire’s ABC WMUR Cook’s Corner on Friday, January 9, with quinoa Spanish rice with vegetables and chicken sausage, but it could also be suitable without the sausage for a Meatless Monday vegetarian or vegan recipe. I will post the clip on Gluten Free Cooking with Oonagh on Facebook.
Like Chef Oonagh at Gluten Free Cooking with Oonagh on Facebook where she posts recipes, tv appearances, products she's tasted, places she'll be. Contact her for conference sponsorships, corporate lectures, etc. Start off the New Year with some new tasty gluten-free recipes from her Delicious Gluten Free Cooking ebook. Over 200 pages for just $20. Consult with her on Skype. Email: [email protected].
Need to Know: Oats and the Gluten-Free Diet
By Patrick Bennett
The subject of oats and the gluten-free diet can be confusing. Here’s what you need to know.
Anyone with celiac disease quickly learns that the protein gluten is found in wheat, barley, rye – and a whole host of foods, not just cereal-based ones, but packaged products such as malt vinegar, pre-made burgers (as a filler) and soy sauce. But one food that is at least getting a second chance on the gluten-free diet is Avena sativa – the common oat.
Oats do not inherently contain gluten protein, yet they are usually listed next to wheat, barley and rye as cereal grains to be avoided on the strict gluten-free diet. Why is this?
Photo credit: Allergic Living & Thinkstock
So many in our community have excitedly accepted their prescription of a lifelong gluten-free diet. Others are grateful to feel better, but struggle to stay gluten-free. We’re all different, but we share a common belief, even if we don’t realize it. We want celiac disease and gluten sensitivity to be easy to diagnose, effectively managed and understood by doctors, foodservice professionals and the general public.
NFCA is already changing this goal from a pipe dream to a reality. You can be part of the movement.
That’s right! Whether it’s in a restaurant, hospital, school, nursing home, daycare center – wherever! – we believe that people with gluten-related disorders should be able to eat without fear. NFCA trains foodservice professionals in safe gluten-free food preparation through our comprehensive GREAT Kitchens and GREAT Schools, Colleges and Camps online training programs.
For the first time ever, we’re giving you a glimpse of the GREAT training programs. $10* will give you access to a portion of GREAT Kitchens so you can see what the restaurants are learning. Not only will this course give you some helpful tips for keeping a shared kitchen safe, but it will help you stress the importance of GREAT training in the establishments serving you and your family.
*Your $10 payment covers NFCA’s costs for delivering the "A Taste of GREAT" program.
With the rise of the gluten-free food fad, people often choose to skip testing for celiac disease and immediately start on a gluten-free diet. What is left out of the conversation far too often is the fact that 1 in 133 Americans medically require a gluten-free diet. It currently is the only available treatment for celiac disease, a serious genetic autoimmune condition. For these people, it is not a choice; it is a prescription.
So, don’t just go gluten-free before you learn all the facts! Learn why it is essential that you be tested before going gluten-free, and why an accurate celiac disease diagnosis will help you in the long run. Join NFCA and Dr. Benjamin Lebwohl of the Celiac Disease Center at Columbia University as we discuss the benefits of being tested for celiac disease before going gluten-free.
It might still be winter, but we've got baseball and warm weather on our minds!
NFCA is already gearing up for Celiac Awareness Day with the Philadelphia Phillies. This year, it's happening right at the end of May - Celiac Awareness Month. Come out to support NFCA and help us raise awareness of celiac disease, non-celiac gluten sensitivity ('gluten sensitivity') and the gluten-free diet.
Just like in years past, there will be a dedicated gluten-free concession stand and the NFCA gang will be on the 200 level by the Hall of Fame to provide educational materials to game attendees. Stop by NFCA's table to meet the team and enter into a free raffle to win a basket full of Phillies memorabilia and other fun surprises. Our friends at Aramark will be offering another free raffle for your chance to win four tickets to a regular season game, a parking pass and concession stand vouchers.
Learn more and purchase your tickets today!
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