It’s Not Gluten-Free Land Over Here: Kardashian Kids Party Sparks ‘Food Fight’

If you haven’t been keeping up with the Kardashians lately, the reality-TV superstars got into some gluten-free drama Gluten-Free Living readers may find relatable. For those who actively avoid the celebrity family, it’s best to stop reading now. If you’re curious to see what the drama was and how it unfolded, we’ve got a brief recap.

It all started over a children’s birthday party.

The theme? Candy Land. The problem? Kourtney Kardashian insisting that there would be “too much candy” and not enough healthful options for kids. The party, thrown by Kim and Kourtney for their daughters North and Penelope, sparked a debate those living the gluten-free lifestyle may find all too familiar.

In the episode, Kourtney, who has tried several different diets through the years, including keto, intermittent fasting, and gluten free, was appalled there wouldn’t be some healthful choices at the party.

“Everyone’s gonna come to this party and everything is gonna be disgusting chemicals? We need to have some healthy options,” she told her younger sister.

The suggestion was not taken well.

“It’s a Candy Land themed party! Yes! That’s, like, what the party is about: Candy Land. It’s not gluten-free land over here,” Kim said.

Ouch. How many of you have heard some variation of: “It’s not gluten-free land over here”?

The drama unfolded further on Twitter where Kourtney clarified what she was trying to get across.

“I never said NO candy. I said not all junk food, let’s have some salads etc, and @KimKardashian said she wanted the ice cream truck and I suggested organic ice cream with some non dairy options. Moderation.”

If you’re wondering – yes, there was plenty of candy at the party.

13 Gluten-Free Goodies Available on Amazon

With so many gluten-free options out there searching for a product that’s just right can be a little difficult. So, we’ve put together a brief list of a few gluten-free snacks and treats to get your search started. All of the items listed below are available on Amazon. Happy eating!

Bobo’s Kids Bites

These pastries have 7 grams of protein each and are non-GMO certified, dairy free and vegan. They are sweet, have a satisfying texture and come in several flavors so you can find your favorite snack or breakfast option. This simple, wholesome food is scrumptious and you can feel good about eating it, since it’s made in the U.S. by people, never automated. Buy them here.

 

The Gluten Free Kid: A Child-Friendly Glimpse into Growing Up with Celiac

“The Gluten Free Kid” is a delightful children’s picture book by Hayley O’Connor, with illustrations by Anthony Corrigan. This charming tale follows Sid – the story’s young protagonist – after he discovers that he has celiac disease.

O’Connor’s drew inspiration for the book from her daughters, who are 1 and 4. With her and her husband both having celiac disease, she says the chances of one of her daughters developing celiac is high. She says she wanted to write a book that both kids and parents would enjoy.   

“Having celiac disease shouldn’t make you feel different and excluded from the world,” she says. “My hope is that my book will help every child understand the condition.”

O’Connor spoke with Gluten-Free Living about the book, what it’s like growing up with celiac disease and how parents can make their kids feel included in a gluten-filled world.

The Gluten Free Kid is available for purchase here.

This interview has been edited for length and clarity.

Q. We haven’t seen many kids’ books that explain celiac disease. What’s the inspiration for “The Gluten-Free Kid”?

 

A. I created the book to remove fear around the condition but explain it in realistic terms. Children are very accepting and if you can explain a condition in a non-patronizing way they will just accept it. When trying to explain the condition to a child, I feel you just spend a lot of time saying “I can’t eat that” or “make sure your food doesn’t come close to my food” and I just felt like I was almost creating fear around it and without any “real” explanation. This was not what I wanted so I decided to do something about it.

I wanted my eldest daughter to really understand what it meant. Our daughters (Alannah, 4, and Madison, 1) have a very high chance of developing the condition with both their parents being celiac. If we can educate them from a young age this will prevent fear and create an understanding of how to stay healthy. Even if my daughters never develop the condition, it’s hereditary – if they go on to have children of their own it’s possible that their children could develop it. Awareness and understanding are key but unfortunately, we need others to understand the condition too. This book is for every child, not just celiacs.

One of my American customers told me of how his niece has to sit on her own every day at lunch because she is a celiac. If the school chose to educate her peers and how to keep their lunch in their own space and no sharing of food, they would know that exclusion isn’t necessary. I’m sure this is not the case in every school, but this broke my heart to hear. Having celiac disease shouldn’t make you feel different and excluded from the world. My hope is that my book will help every child understand the condition.

Q. How long have you been writing for and how did you get started?

 

A. The Gluten Free Kid is my first published book, but I’ve been writing for years. I’ve always had an active imagination. I’m an only child. My parents divorced when I was four and I grew up with a parent who suffers from depression. I think my imagination allowed me to escape from my reality and a difficult home. It was during my teenage years that I decided to explore the world of writing, but I still kept it a secret for many years and only revealed it to my husband Eoin last year.

After my husband’s encouragement, I decided to take my writing more seriously. I knew straight away children’s books was exactly the genre I wanted to focus on – creating books about “difficult” or “out of the ordinary” topics was my focus. The other children’s books I have written have varied topics – type 1 diabetes, divorce, ADHD, explaining a parent’s depression and being unique.

I suppose I created these books so no other child can or will experience the loneliness I felt as a child. If you can see yourself in a book and relate to that character, you know you’re not alone in the world. I never found this when I was young and if I can just help one child then I’ve done my job. I hope to have the rest of these titles out in the next few years.

Q. Tell us about the positive responses you’ve received about the book. It seems like people are enjoying having a kid-friendly way to explain celiac.

 

A. Yes! It’s been incredible and even overwhelming at times. I never thought that I could help so many families. At a recent event, I had parents come over to thank me for my book! They love my simplistic approach to explaining the condition. I think my use of rhyme creates fun and softness to the book while still being educational.

I’ve also had children tell me how they love bringing my book to school! They feel the book is all about them as they might be the only gluten-free kid in their class. It’s an amazing feeling knowing that the book is helping to make them feel special rather than different from their peers.

Q. We love the illustrations! What’s the story with the illustrator?

 

A. Anthony Corrigan was my illustrator. An Irish man from County Louth. He was absolutely incredible to work with. I’ve never worked with Anthony before, but he came highly recommended by the publisher. I spoke to many other illustrators but the reason I chose to go with Anthony was his classic style. He has a natural rawness to his art. A lot of books these days I feel are loud and with a very computerized look and it was actually very hard to find somebody who could offer me the style I wanted – so I was delighted to get in contact with Anthony.

The book has a serious topic and I felt having the classic softness would complement the seriousness and give it that beautiful balance. Anthony listened to everything that I wanted and helped bring “Sid”, The Gluten Free Kid, to life.

Q. Can you speak to the book’s central message, that celiac is serious and definitely not part of a fad diet?

 

A. This is something I feel very strongly about – it is far from a fad diet! It’s an autoimmune disease.

Unfortunately, I feel being “gluten-free” has almost been glamorized in recent years and is seen as a wonderful diet. Plenty of times I had people say. “you must be so healthy eating gluten-free foods.” It’s hard to explain that our alternative foods are not necessarily “more healthy”. These foods are probably more heavily processed and I’ve noticed generally have a higher sugar content, and as a celiac, we have a slightly increased chance of developing type 1 diabetes, so this is not ideal. A gluten-free diet is not optional to a celiac, it’s necessary.

I suppose the positive to this “glamourizing” is that gluten-free food has become more readily available and a wider variety are on the shelves, but it definitely makes eating out scarier. Yes, gluten-free options will be on most menus but what sort of cross-contamination policy will they have in place? Something may be gluten-free but not necessarily celiac friendly and explaining this, is still where the battle lies. I don’t think people realize that as little as one crumb can cause internal damage. So far, we have no medication to treat it, but following a strict diet will stop the body from attacking itself. If you’re not a celiac, gluten isn’t harmful – there is no need to remove it from your diet. It wouldn’t have any health benefit, and this is something I wish people would realize.

Is Medicine Gluten Free?

Those new to the gluten-free diet may find it overwhelming when faced with the long list of foods and ingredients that are no longer on the menu. Many may be surprised to discover that some unexpected items, like toothpaste or medicine, may also be on that list.

In fact, some prescription drugs and even non-prescription medication may be made with gluten. Meaning there is a chance they could cause distressing symptoms for those with celiac disease or a gluten intolerance. 

However, there is good news. The majority of medications do not contain gluten, but it’s always smart to take precautions, especially if you’re looking to avoid unwanted symptoms.

Determining whether or not a medication contains gluten can be tricky. Right now, there are no laws in place requiring drug manufacturers to label drugs made with gluten. That could be changing though. In April 2019, U.S. Rep. Tim Ryan of Ohio introduced a bill into Congress that if passed would require that all medicines containing gluten be labeled as such. Learn more about the bill and how to support getting it made into law here.

According to bill’s sponsors, if passed it “will make it easier to identify gluten in prescription drugs” and “will allow concerned consumers to know, for example, if the starch in their prescription drugs comes from wheat or corn; that small distinction is an important one.”

In the meantime, those concerned about whether or not there’s gluten in their medicine should contact drug manufacturers for more information. Alternatively, a good pharmacist could serve as a valuable resource for figuring out whether gluten was used to make medicine. For more on how your pharmacist can help, see here.

So, just how does gluten get in medication in the first place? While it’s rare for gluten to be used in a medication itself, drug makers may use wheat starch to bind the pills together. These ingredients are called excipients. To avoid ingesting gluten from medication be sure to review a medication’s inactive ingredients and whether or no gluten was used in any of the excipients.

3 Friends Went Gluten Free for 30 Days – Here’s What Happened

How long have you been living the gluten-free lifestyle? A few days? A couple of years? Most of your life?

However long it’s been, you’re aware of how challenging going gluten-free can be. Here are the stages of going gluten-free for those who don’t know. First, there’s shock at how pervasive gluten is (it seems to be everywhere!). Then, frustration kicks in as the search for gluten-free alternatives begins. Finally – this stage can be particularly difficult – there’s a barrage of questions from friends and family about your new diet. Let us know how many times you’ve been asked – “can you eat this?”

But what would happen if you gave up gluten for 30 days? Even if you didn’t have to? Three friends over at Goodful.com found out in a recent video.

Does this sound familiar?

“I was pretty surprised that things I thought were naturally gluten free ended up not being. I went to grab my favorite salad dressing and it has wheat. All the salad dressings I looked at had wheat in them”

How about this?

“All I wanted was some French fries. I was determined so I pulled over just so I could Google ‘what fast-food chain has gluten-free fries’.”

Or this?

“I wonder what it would be like for someone who doesn’t live in a big city. I went to Palm Springs and realized I live in a gluten-free bubble in Los Angeles.”

See what other lessons the friends learned in this 12-minute clip. One surprising thing they found, going gluten free did seem to have some health benefits. And at least one person isn’t going back to gluten after the challenge.

Gluten Free Expo Returns to Bay Area with New Name, Same Mission

Nourished: The Gluten Free, Allergy & Specialty Diet Festival, formerly The Gluten Free & Allergen Friendly Expo, is returning to the San Francisco area. The Bay Area stop of the festival is set for November 16-17 in the San Mateo County Event Center, Fiesta Hall.

In 2019, all Nourished Festival locations will provide expanded offerings to better accommodate the most popular food lifestyles. In addition to the existing gluten-free and nut-free zones, paleo, keto, and plant-based products will bring variety and educational opportunities to everyone living a gluten-free lifestyle. As in the past, all products at the festival will be gluten free.

At the Nourished Festival, attendees will have one-on-one moments with over 75 brands exhibiting the best products for food sensitivities, food allergies and specialty diets. The festival also provides the opportunity to sample and purchase products, meet founders, receive coupons and attend free educational presentations hosted by industry-respected speakers.

While all products at the festival are gluten free, many exhibitors will also showcase products free from the top eight allergens – and beyond. The Nourished Festivals are managed by The Nourished Group, with a team fluent in gluten-free living, celiac disease, and food allergies – and the rising need to find safe and delicious food and lifestyle products for any specialty diet. Presented by allergen-friendly sponsor Enjoy Life Foods, this event is family friendly.

“Our festivals nourish the needs of the entire food community – whether its those with celiac disease, autism, autoimmune or inflammatory conditions or those committed to living a healthy lifestyle,” says Nourished Festival founder, Jen Cafferty. “With comfort foods like pizza and baked goods to healthy lifestyle options like protein bars and probiotic drinks, this festival truly offers something for everyone. An event of this scale being accessible to the general public is a rare and exciting way to explore new options and sample products before buying them in store.”

A sample of this year’s exhibitors includes: 

  • Santa Barbara’s Lilac Patisserie, a dedicated gluten-free bakery and cafe that ships nationwide. 
  • LarkEllen Farm featuring Grain-Free Granola including new limited edition Gingerbread flavor for the holidays.
  • Bay Area’s Marin Gourmetfeaturing vegetarian products – like their artichoke, green olives, capers and garlic dip – made from fresh ingredients grown in Northern California. 
  • Local favorite Odd Bagel, providing gluten-free bagels to the Bay Area and beyond.

Tickets can be purchased in advance or at the door. A one-day ticket is $15 for adults and $5 for children at the door. Parking is $15 a day at the San Mateo County Event Center.

For more information, visit https://nourishedfestival.com/.

Gluten Free Living: Here’s What’s Trending

We’ve got the latest on gluten-free news, research, and updates, but Gluten-Free Living also enjoys sharing the  off-beat items that are making the rounds online in Here’s What’s Trending. Find out more about actress Kristen Bell learning she had a genetic marker for celiac disease, a gluten contamination study with some surprising results and much more!

The Good Place Star Kristen Bell Sees Bright Side of Celiac Disease

Celiac.com: “The Good Place star Kristen Bell got some bad news earlier this year when her doctor revealed that she has a genetic marker for celiac disease. She had already started an elimination diet to clear gluten from her system and suss out other problematic food groups, when she got the word. ‘I was like come again? All I eat is bagels,’ Bell tells Women’s Health.” Click here for the full story.

Allergen-Friendly Faves for Halloween

Simply Gluten Free: “Halloween is all about treats and indulgences, and while that’s great for most people, it can be pretty daunting for families with food allergies and intolerances. Luckily, we’ve found some delicious gluten-free treats that are also free of many other allergens. The following products can be handed out to trick-or-treaters, shared with your kids’ class for Halloween parties, or enjoyed at home for a special occasion.” Click here for more.

Ten Amazing Facts About Celiac Disease

Celiac.com: Did you know the celiac disease is linked to Neanderthal ancestry? How about that celiac affects more women than men? Or that most people don’t ever exhibit symptoms? Learn about more amazing facts by clicking here.

The Gluten Contamination Study We’ve Been Waiting For

Celiac.com: A team of researchers recently set out to assess three common scenarios where people with celiac disease might reasonably fear gluten contamination. How did the actual risk for each situation measure up? Click here to learn more.

 

Good Source Foods Enters Snack Market with New Gluten-Free Offerings  

A new Wisconsin-based brand is offering a different kind of gluten-free snack, one designed to satisfy, but with a focus on health.

Good Source Foods officially launched on Sept. 3 with a line of three chocolate clusters, each made to provide different benefits throughout the day.   

The different chocolate clusters feature ginger root for a morning brain boost function, cayenne pepper to spice up your afternoon and metabolism, and lavender powder should provide a way to relax at night  nighttime calming, according to the company. Also the snacks are packed with protein and soluble fiber to satisfy hunger.

Good Source co-founders John Byrnes and Scott Repinski say they wanted to offer snacks that are as close to eating whole foods as possible.

By relying on a few, whole food ingredients, the snacks shouldn’t provide the highs and lows of heavily processed foods.

“We’re targeting a mid-range glycemic index to help avoid the highs, lows and crashes that so many of us experience when we eat conventional snacks,” said Repinski. “The combination of low-sugar, high-protein, and soluble fiber creates slow-metabolizing carbohydrates that give our bodies more energy over an extended period. Fresh, whole foods are always best, but when fresh is not possible, our Good Source snacks are a smart choice.”

The snack market is seeing more growth than any other food and beverage segment. Last year, Americans ate more than 836 million ready-to-eat snacks.

Byrnes and Repinski said they saw an opportunity to provide a healthy alternative two years ago, which is when the idea for Good Source Foods came together.

The new products are made with ingredients designed to provide benefits at certain times of day.

For example, the company’s Morning Jump cluster is made with ginger root, which studies indicate may help with brain function and memory. Almonds, pomegranate seeds and blueberries are also included for memory.

The Afternoon Boost snack has walnuts, cayenne pepper and dried apples. Antioxidant rich walnuts, studies show, enhance cognitive performance while cayenne pepper may boost metabolism and lessen food cravings.

Evening Calm contains dried cherries, which are a natural source of the sleep-enhancing hormone melatonin. It also contains lavender for a calming effect, as well as turmeric, honey, walnuts and oats.

Good Source Foods is targeting whom it refers to as “mindful eaters” – those who take the time read labels with an eye toward natural ingredients.

All Good Source Foods products are manufactured in-house at their SQF certified manufacturing facilities in St. Francis, Wisconsin. The snacks are Non-GMO Project Verified, gluten free, and made with all-natural ingredients without the use of industrial emulsifiers. The dark chocolate clusters come in resealable 4-oz packages as well as 1.5-oz packages. Purchase them online through the company’s website, and are set for distribution with Unfi Supervalu and Niemann Foods, Inc.

8 Lip-Smacking Gluten-Free Beer Alternatives

GF beer alternatives featured image

Beer is the drink of choice for many football fans—but not everyone enjoys the taste. If you’re not a beer drinker, check out these gluten-free alternatives to savor during the Big Game on Sunday.

Hard sodas

The hottest area of growth at the moment is the rise of “hard” sodas. While many of the popular alcoholic root
beers include barley malt, there are several that pass muster for those on a gluten-free diet. Louisiana’s Abita
Brewing Company offers an alcoholic version of its famous root beer. It’s the first product in the brewery’s line
of Bayou Bootlegger hard sodas and can be found primarily east of the Mississippi River. The flavor profile
delivers aromas of wintergreen, vanilla and sassafras, with hints of clove and anise.

Root Sellers’ Row Hard Root Beer
root_sellers_ginger_beer-FRAME
Root Sellers’ Pedal Hard Ginger Beer

Root Sellers, based in Missouri with distribution
concentrated in the Midwest and New England,
brews its Row Hard Root Beer without grains.
Row Hard is made with pure cane sugar, molasses, spices and botanicals. The brewery
also produces gluten-free Pedal Hard Ginger
Beer, brewed with ginger root, molasses and
cane sugar.

Combining fruits and vegetables, the brewery’s Himmel & Erde Carrot Apple Ale presents another gluten-free beverage option. Based on a German dish with potatoes and applesauce, the ale is made from fermented carrot juice and added sweetener that is part apple juice.

Hard sparkling water

For a lighter fizz, look for gluten-free “hard” sparkling waters such as those from Truly Spiked & Sparkling
and SpikedSeltzer. Distribution for both brands is rapidly expanding beyond the companies’ New England
bases into the Midwest and Mid-Atlantic states.

TRULY_Bucket_FRAME

Boston Beer, the producer of gluten-free
Angry Orchard alcoholic ciders, introduced
its Truly brand in April 2016. This spiked
sparkling water with a hint of fruit is an
alternative to light beer, especially for
those seeking something refreshing
made with simple ingredients and no
artificial flavors or sweeteners. Truly’s
three flavors—Colima lime, grapefruit
and pomelo, and pomegranate—are
100 calories per 12-ounce serving and
have 2 grams of carbohydrates.

 

 

SpikedSeltzer's four varieties. Photo by Edward Garrity for SpikedSeltzer.
SpikedSeltzer’s four varieties. Photo by Edward Garrity for SpikedSeltzer.

The first hard seltzer brand, SpikedSeltzer
launched in 2013 and is available in four
flavors: West Indies Lime, Indian River
Grapefruit, Valencia Orange, and Cape Cod
Cranberry. The alcohol in SpikedSeltzer is
derived from cold-brewed sugar, resulting in
a low-carb, low-calorie drink. Even Oprah is
a fan, featuring it as The Find in the June 2016
issue of her O magazine on account of its
refreshing, fruity and just-sweet-enough taste.

 

 

 

 

 

Mead

While obscure, mead is one of the oldest alcoholic drinks in existence. Also known as honey wine, mead is
created by fermenting honey with water and, unless grains are added (a variety known as braggot), it is gluten
free. Like wine, mead can be dry or sweet, still or sparkling.

Photo by Kerry Trusewicz
B. Nektar Tuco-Style Freakout. Photo by Kerry Trusewicz.

Mead makers, which number fewer than
200 in the U.S. (compared to more than
6,000 wineries), tend to focus on local or
regional distribution given their size.
B. Nektar in Michigan, which opened its
doors on National Mead Day (who knew!)
in 2008, produces several varieties of mead
with fun labels and names, including Zombies
Take Manhattan, Kill All the Golfers and Dragons
Are Real. Give one a try for National Mead Day
on August 6!

 

 

 

 

Vodka

The producer of the famed Stolichnaya vodka released a completely new gluten-free recipe to meet the
needs of consumers. Made with 88% corn and 12% buckwheat, Stoli Gluten Free is available nationwide.
The vodka is labeled “gluten free” pursuant to the U.S. government’s labeling classification, which requires
alcoholic beverages to be made with naturally gluten-free ingredients.

Titos-FRAME

Tito’s vodka, produced at the oldest distillery
in Texas, is made with corn instead of potatoes
and certified gluten free by the Gluten
Intolerance Group. According to founder and
owner Tito Beveridge, “some producers add a
little bit of mash back into the spirit after
distillation, which would add gluten content into
an otherwise gluten-free distillate [if using wheat
as the base], but I don’t do that regardless.”
Made in batches using old-fashioned pot stills,
Tito’s has grown exponentially since the first
case was sold in 1997 and is now one of the
best-selling vodkas in the U.S.

 

Gluten-Free Salad Toppers

Think you have to go without croutons or other fun and delicious salad fixings because you are gluten free? Think again! These gluten-free salad toppers will add fantastic flavor to your mixed greens.

Grate Parmesan

Go Veggie Lactose Free Grated Parmesan cheese alternative is the perfect addition to any salad for all you cheese lovers out there. It’s not limited to salad either. Sprinkle it on pizza, pasta and even popcorn—any dish or snack that could use a Parmesan punch. And this tasty, versatile topping is both lactose and gluten free.
 

 

 

 

 

 

Get dressed up

A salad with no dressing is really no salad at all. Luckily, Briannas Fine Salad Dressings has got you covered (literally!), since 12 of their 15 salad dressings are gluten free. Their tasty varieties include Champagne Vinaigrette, Rich Poppy Seed, Blush Wine Vinaigrette and Creamy Cilantro Lime, so go ahead and get dressed.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Sprinkled with love

Ever have difficulty putting together the perfect mix of toppings to complement your salad? Never fear! Sheffa Salad Sprinkles are here to do the heavy lifting for you. Each package contains a variety of gluten-free ingredients carefully selected to boost your salad. Your dinner guests never need be the wiser!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Get your crouton on

Salads are healthy, but that doesn’t mean they don’t occasionally need help in the taste department. That’s where Ian’s stepped in to create a line of delicious gluten-free croutons. Available in a variety of flavors including Italian and Rosemary Garlic, they are sure to spice up any salad.

 

 

 

 

 

If you’re looking for some tasty salad recipes to try these terrific toppers on, here are some of our favorites:

Greek Tomato Salad with Feta Cheese and Olives

Kale Salad with Cranberries

All-Season Salad with Chicken and Apple

Citrus Kale Salad

Warmed Asparagus, Fennel & Minted Fava Bean Salad with Apricots and Feta