Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Celiac Awareness Month: Gluten-Free Resource Round-Up

Going gluten-free isn't easy, but luckily there are plenty of resources available these days to help those who have been newly diagnosed with Celiac disease stay healthy. Here are some of our favorite ways to be gluten-free in every way:

Gluten-free labels at the grocery store
Image via Creative Commons license
  • Dining Out: Many restaurants are now offering gluten-free options on their menus, and the Celiac Support Association offers a searchable map of dedicated gluten-free establishments here on their website. Dining out can pose quite a challenge to those with Celiac disease, but you can find some excellent advice here and here to help you enjoy a successful gluten-free dining experience. 
  • Eating In: There are tons of great resources for gluten-free recipes these days, from traditional cookbooks to websites, blogs, and apps! We enjoy collecting our favorites here on Pinterest, which makes finding them a cinch later on since they're all in one place!  
  • Grocery Shopping: Natural foods stores are your best bet, but new even conventional grocery stores are stocking gluten-free products and labeling them clearly. Major brands are also introducing gluten-free versions of well-loved products (for example, Betty Crocker now makes gluten-free baking mixes). If you're new to the gluten-free diet, click here for a handy list from Gluten Free Living to help you remember which grains, ingredients, and foods are gluten-free. There are also lots of great printable PDFs available here from Celiac Central.
  • On The Go: Smartphone apps are a great way to find gluten-free restaurants and keep helpful information at your fingertips, no matter where you are! The Gluten Free Travel Site offers a free app for both Android and iPhone (more info & download links here on their website), or you can search your phone's app store to see what's available. 
  • Body Care: We covered this in our previous blog post, but it is generally recommended that those with Celiac disease avoid personal care products which contain gluten ingredients. Toothpaste, shampoo, lotions, and more can all have gluten-containing ingredients lurking within, and it can be quite a challenge to identify them on your own (read this blog post for more info on this issue). For those with extreme gluten sensitivities, sourcing products which are specifically labeled as gluten-free (for example, LaviShea lotion bars!) can help take the guesswork out of things. The Celiac Diva has some very useful information and product reviews of gluten-free personal care products located here in their directory..

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

May is Celiac Awareness Month

May is here, and did you know that is is Celiac Awareness Month? The National Foundation for Celiac Awareness encourages folks to learn more about Celiac disease by talking to their family members and encouraging relatives to get tested. There are lots of really fantastic resources available here on their website, including free gluten-free recipes, featured products, and other useful information.

While gluten-free foods are becoming more and more commonplace, there is still one area where gluten can lurk which folks might not be aware of: the everyday beauty and skincare products you use! Believe it or not, many lotions, potions, soaps and balms contain gluten ingredients, and this can cause issues for those with Celiac disease since these products are typically absorbed into your skin (especially in the case of lotions).

LaviShea lotion bars have always been gluten free (and always will be!), so we are pleased to share a few product updates with you this month: first, we had added skin-loving coconut oil to our moisturizing shea butter and soy base. Second, we have given our packaging a few recent updates: our containers are now made with recycled BPA-free plastic which is also recyclable. Not only that, but we have updated our containers to have a pop-off lid instead of a hinge. Last but not least, they are totally and 100% made in the USA!

We're pretty excited about all of these good-for-you and good-for-the-environment changes we've made to the LaviShea lineup.

Have a healthy Spring and LaviShea on!