Northeast Ohio Celiac Network

Columbus Gluten Free Allergy Free Fest 2016

The Gluten-Free Food Allergy Fest is coming back to Columbus, OH in 2016! Details will be available closer to the event.
Go to
April 30-May 1, 2016
Saturday: 10am to 4pm
Sunday: 10am to 4pm
Ohio Expo Center
Lausche Building
717E 17th Ave
Columbus, OH 43211
There’ll be tons of exhibitors, demos and lectures, and of course, lots and lots of samples to fill you up!!! Check back closer to the event for updates on special group rates for attendees and exhibitors, and for accommodation information.
Go to and sign up for their mailing list to get updates, ticket discount codes and more emailed right to your inbox. Just fill in your information and choose Columbus as the show you’re interested in.

Help Pass HR 3648 – Gluten in Medicine Disclosure Act

Did you know that some probiotics contain gluten? Because celiac disease centers are concerned about gluten being labeled in over- the-counter drugs as well as prescription medications, Ohio Representative Tim Ryan (District 13) and
Nita Lowey (New York, District 17) introduced House Resolution HR3648, which requires that gluten  be easily identified in pharmaceutical products.

The Celiac Disease Foundation has made it easy for you to support this Bill and have your voice heard. They have a sample “cut and paste” patient letter that can be sent to your representative. Go to and simply identify your representative by zip code to send an email. You can also write the content yourself. Either way, let Congress know we want medications labeled if they contain gluten so our medications help–not hurt– celiac patients!

GF Lex – GF, Sister: The Importance of Testing First-Degree Relatives for Celiac Disease

Perhaps I approached my celiac disease diagnosis with a unique perspective.

My symptoms were certainly not unique. As a young woman, I felt weak and generally “sick” most of the time, I was often disoriented, and I was retaining massive amounts of fluid. I suffered from severe indigestion, irregular bowel habits, and worst of all, bloating: my stomach was so distended that I agonized over the sensation of it stretching. Most intensely, I experienced a stabbing, cramping pain in my gut that worsened when I ate, and never went away. It reminded me of the way an ulcer would feel, and though I was incredibly hungry, nothing I consumed could ever sate or soothe me.

I was certain my number had finally come up. At age 21, I felt in my heart that these symptoms meant that I had cancer, and that I was going to die.

Why did I jump to this conclusion? Well, for one reason, I am incredibly paranoid. Another reason, however, was my unique perspective. Continue reading GF Lex – GF, Sister: The Importance of Testing First-Degree Relatives for Celiac Disease

GF Luncheon at Cuyahoga Community College Eastern Campus Nov. 24-25

Each year hospitality students at Tri-C offer the community open luncheons to showcase their culinary skills. On the Tuesday and Wednesday before Thanksgiving (Nov. 24th & 25th), the menu will be gluten free! The cost is $9 (cash only) and reservations are required. You can make a reservation any time between 11:15 and 12:30pm. Directions? Off Harvard past Richmond turn left and then left again into the parking lot. Go left until you reach a corner building with wall to wall windows. There should be signs to the Café 4250 entrance.

They will be featuring: Roasted Butternut Squash Soup, Sweet and Savory Maple Cranberry Pork Chop with Chipotle Mashed Sweet Potatoes, Rainbow Carrots and Pumpkin Mousse for dessert.

Treat yourself to an elegant luncheon with cloth tablecloths and servers who offer you their full attention as they learn their craft.
Café 4250
Student Run Restaurant/Cafe
Cuyahoga Community College Eastern Campus
4250 Richmond Road
Highland Hills, Ohio 44122
For reservations call 216-987-2496
or Email:

Don’t miss out! See you there!

Gluten Free Holiday Tips: Halloween, Thanksgiving, Hanukah, Christmas

Halloween Candy
•Two gluten free candy lists at 2015 or CDF Candy List.
• Warning: Some candy bars that are  normally GF are not gluten free if they are in holiday shapes or are  miniaturized. (i.e. York Peppermint Patty, Butterfinger)

Thanksgiving & Christmas
• Butterball & Honeysuckle Turkey (and more brands) are GF.
(Butterball even has a GF gravy packet)
• Beware of how the turkey is cooked. If possible, ask the  host to keep stuffing and gravy  separated  from the turkey  so you can enjoy the  main entrée. If the turkey is made in a cooking bag, it is possible that  flour is used to coat the bag so the turkey doesn’t stick to it. Ask your host if  cornstarch can be used instead.
• Honey Baked Ham and Honey Baked  Roasted or Smoked Turkey are GF.
• Pumpkin (Libby’s canned is GF) or apple pie are easily made GF. For crust, consider using Bob’s Red Mill Pie Crust Mix. It  makes 2 crusts and is available at Marc’s.

Gluten free social situations:
BYOM (Bring Your Own Meal)
-Consider bringing something in a covered serving dish, that is easily reheated in microwave and is without much fuss.
-Make it “substantial” (with protein and veggies),
Serve yourself first (prevents cross contamination)
-Make sure it’s something special, so you do not feel deprived … and others do not feel sorry for you.

Continue reading Gluten Free Holiday Tips: Halloween, Thanksgiving, Hanukah, Christmas

Ask The Dietitian: Recipe For Successful Dining

thCBEIROFUQuestion: I have had celiac disease for 2 years and I’m comfortable cooking at home. When I eat out, however, sometimes I run into servers who don’t seem to take my dietary restriction seriously. How do I get them to understand that I have to be gluten-free and I’m not just on some fad diet that I read about in a magazine? -James W.

Answer: Your question is an excellent one. You are not alone! It has long been my opinion that restaurant eating is the most challenging aspect of being gluten-free. As a first step, please take a look at the detailed list of suggestions on our website. In addition to what you will read there, here are some other tips you may find helpful:

1. Having basic knowledge of how food is prepared provides a tremendous advantage and will help you to know which questions to ask depending on what you are planning to order.

2. It is important that your servers understand that you cannot have any items containing flour, wheat, or gluten. This may help them understand the scope of your restriction. Many people try to handle menu decisions on their own without involving the server, which increases their chances of receiving an unsafe meal.

3. Use of the word “allergy” vs. celiac disease: There seems to be a bit of a backlash against people with “gluten allergy” as evidenced by comments made on late-night talk shows and sitcoms, as well as memes shared on social networking. To clarify, celiac disease is an autoimmune disorder, not an allergy. However, many with CD use the term “allergy” with the goal of emphasizing the seriousness of their special diet. According to servers interviewed, some customers claim to have a “gluten allergy” and then proceed to order food with gluten. Understandably, this is confusing to wait staff! Since so many people use the phrase “gluten allergy” these days (including people who are trying a new fad diet, those who heard it was healthy, and those with true intolerance, wheat allergy, or celiac disease) this two-word phrase has become confusing and significantly less meaningful over the past several years. Perhaps you can say, “I have celiac disease so I need to be strictly gluten-free.”

4. To dine out safely, it is vital to understand the ins and outs of the diet. Know which ingredients you can and cannot have. When we solely rely on the wait and cook staff, who may have little or no knowledge of which ingredients contain gluten, it is risky. While they may be aware that bread and pasta contain gluten, they may not be trained to scrutinize ingredient lists for words such as malt, rye, oats, barley, or even wheat. If you would like to receive counseling to discuss the specifics of a GF diet, consider scheduling an appointment with a dietitian who thoroughly understands your disease and its sole treatment.

For more dining tips, check out
Dining Tips from NFCA
Celiac Disease Foundation Dining Out

Thank you for your question and I wish you happy and safe dining!

Trisha B. Lyons, RDN