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Gluten Dude

Am I supposed to embrace this?

I know some others out there are touting that it’s a good thing Pillsbury has jumped into the gluten-free game.

Me? I’m becoming immune to the whole thing. Absolutely immune.

It’s Celiac Awareness Month and I’m just at a loss of what to do to…you know…actually raise awareness.

When your up against the big boys like General Mills pumping out gluten-free crap to the masses, simply because they know the market is hot, I feel like an ant on a hot summer day, with a mean 8 year old boy, who looks just like the Pillsbury Doughboy, holding a magnifying glass over me.

I’m all hot and bothered…and while that may sound somewhat titillating, I assure you it’s the complete opposite.

Dude note: It’s 11:30 at night, I just worked a long, long day and I’m a tad cranky. I’m gonna come back to this post in the am to see if I may have a different viewpoint on this. See you in the morning.

Okay…I’m back. I’ve had a good night sleep, except for the dream where I’m bartending and people keep coming in and coming in and we are supposed to be closed but they keep coming in and I just want to go home. Make them stop!!!

So here’s the deal. I appreciate these companies are trying. I honestly do.

And I know many people LOVE the fact that there are now more gluten free options than ever to choose from. And I totally respect that.

I’m not a food bully and everyone has the right to put into their bodies whatever they would like.

As always, my intentions are good and all I’m looking to do is help my fellow celiacs.

But here’s my concern. I’m convinced, based on how I feel and how many of my fellow celiacs feel, that we have an extremely hard time digesting this kind of unhealthy food and the best way to heal our bodies is by eating MOSTLY natural foods. When I went totally Whole 30, I never felt better.

Pillsbury is owned by General Mills. General Mills also owns Betty Crocker and Chex Cereal. They have come out with many gluten free products.

But the problem is, most of them are crap and even worse they are being marketed as being healthy because they are gluten free.

Take a peek at the image below. This was taken by yours truly at one of my local grocery stores. They have a “Healthy Elements” tag posted under items throughout the store. The tag will say “low fat” or “low sodium”…things like that. But they use the same tag for “Gluten Free”. And while I appreciate the items being tagged, it sends a message to the uneducated that gluten free equals healthy and that sends celiac awareness down the crapper.

betty-crocker-gluten-free

I mean is high maltose corn syrup really a healthy element?

And their Chex cereals are just as bad. Take their Honey Nut cereal as an example. Although they market it as a nutritious breakfast, here are the ingredients: Whole Grain Corn, Corn Meal, Sugar, Honey, Salt, Brown Sugar Syrup, Molasses, Canola and/or Rice Bran Oil, Natural Almond Flavor, Natural Flavor. BHT Added to Preserve Freshness.

I used to have these every single morning until I realized that “Hey…I really feel like crap still. Maybe this is part of the problem and not part of the solution.”

My point is, and I know I took a long time to get here, is that just because something is gluten free does not mean we should be eating it.

Yes, it’s nice to have the options, especially those who have kids with celiac disease and still want them to feel “normal”.

It’s just that celiac disease has been kidnapped by the food industry and they’ve put the focus on “gluten free” instead of on our disease. All in the name of padding their bottom line.

If these companies want to make their unhealthy food gluten free, more power to them. Just please don’t try to market it as being healthy.

That ain’t celiac awareness.

63 thoughts on “The Pillsbury Doughboy is Now Gluten Free

  1. I know you don’t like these types of products. but slamming the Honey nut Chex cereal by publishing inaccurate ingredients to ” prove” it’s not gf is going a bit far, Dude.

    The barley malt might have been in them a few years ago, but its not now.

    http://generalmills.com/ColorBoxImage.aspx?ImageId={5EA354AA-7A33-49D4-B82C-C1E189878506}&Width=800&Height=372

    • Yikes…was my info not accurate? I simple copied and pasted from one of their pages.

      And in no way am I saying it’s not gluten free, just don’t market it as a healthy alternative for celiacs…that’s all. Again, my intentions are pure.

      • Yep, not accurate. Your clue should have been the barley malt extract?

        Here’s the real list, straight from their page:

        Whole Grain Corn, Corn Meal, Sugar, Honey, Salt, Brown Sugar Syrup, Molasses, Canola and/or Rice Bran Oil, Natural Almond Flavor, Natural Flavor. BHT Added to Preserve Freshness.

        Not saying its healthy, either, but at least its accurate.

      • She’s right dude no barley malt on honey nut in my pantry un-opened this second.
        But in your defense: whole grain corn, corn meal, sugar, honey, salt, brown sugar syrup, molasses, canola and/or rice bran oil, natural almond flavort & BHT (whatever that is) aren’t exactly whole celiac friendly ingredients either

  2. I think the problem is the whole of the food industry. For once it is not discriminating against celiacs. The one time it would be nice if it was. Equal opportunities cr@p.

    It is most of the world who need reeducation. Us gluten freeers mostly change to things like whole30 because we realize we have to.

    So, I have a conclusion…
    We found the silver lining, we are ahead of the pack, and will eventually live longer.

  3. I agree with you that we shouldn’t be eating this packaged, manufactured crud, it isn’t healthy for anyone. I personally will get a gluten free cookie from our local gluten free market every other week or so as a treat, but only as a rare treat. I feel that day to day eating should consist of vegetables, meats, eggs, raw nuts, cheese (if you can tolerate it) and maybe a fruit here and there. Most of the gluten free stuff I see out there on the shelves will still lead to diabetes if we include it in our daily diet. Thanks for another good post.

  4. I was patiently awaiting their ingredient list to judge them. Frankly I am just plain pissed now. May is celiac awareness month, not gluten free fad diet and profit from it month. I find it disgusting that so many companies are using this month as an excuse to pimp gluten free foods and profit from our disease.

    Was someone looking for a selfish asshole last week? How about these companies?

  5. Before I got diagnosed with Celiac disease, I would eat sweets but only occasionally. Mostly it was whole grains. I eat about 85% Paleo and have a “treat” once in a while. I think its good to have a treat once in a while. To say its healthy is another thing. Its not really healthy, but us Celiac folk won’t get sick eating it. That’s reaching a lot. I would much rather be able to eat the baked goodies from Jennifer’s Way Bakery, but I live in California—bummer.

  6. Eh, if they had come out with crescent rolls I might have been more excited. This just seems like another “me too” entry into the market that’s not really needed.

    They’re trying to make money like anyone else, but all it really says to me is ::snores:: If a company wants my money, they need to come up with something more original than pizza dough, pie crust, and cookie dough (or pasta, cookies, and crackers in the ready to eat category).

    Somebody else asked about the only thing I missed as a celiac on Facebook the other day. There’s not much that I really miss. Croissants are still tough for me to bake and I would love to be able to buy them fresh. That’s really it. Pillsbury crescent rolls are convenient but nothing I can’t leave without.

    • I’d skip the cookies in a bucket for GF crescent rolls. Puff paistry, philo & something GF to do home made pot pie again would be what I’d expect from pilsbury.
      GF cookies from their bake off in a bucket is eh, big deal.

    • Connie, when my kids were growing up their favorite dish was crescent roll hot dish. My daughter was misdiagnosed at 14 saying she had an ulcer ( much stomach pain). When my granddaughters came along and were both diagnosed with Celiac we now knew what my daughter’s true diagnosis should have been. Long story short… she found a recipe for crescent rolls online that are Glutten free!!! You cannot imagine her joy!!! Lol!

  7. Once again I totally agree with you Gluten Dude! Gluten-free does not equal healthy and should not be marketed that way. Yes, it is nice for people with Celiac to have safe treats once in awhile, but it shouldn’t be the focal point. It’s not about replacing what you used to eat with gluten-free options, it’s more about eating a healthier, clean diet over all and you obviously know this and eat that way (and feel better as a result!) I began my website and videos with clean eating recipes aimed at people who must follow certain nutritional guidelines due to allergies, celiac, diabetes etc, but because I began saying “gluten-free this and gluten-free that” I was labeled that way! Even I cringe when people talk about it now as a “healthy” alternative. I sitll don’t use gluten-free all purpose flours simply because they are still full of ingredients we DON’T NEED! I use individual flours for individual results without all the extra unneeded crap. I still thrive off of helping people eat well in a safe way and will continue to label certain recipes as gluten-free because that’s what they are, but seriously the big brands need to get off the bandwagon! Thanks again for putting into words what many of us feel. :-)

  8. I’ve been ignoring the giant companies that I wrote to back in the 70′s and 80′s about their lack of GF products because General Mills, Post, Kellogg, Kraft, etc. ignored me. None of them ever wrote back. So I would purchase what little was out there from Lundberg, Nature’s Path and others that my senior moment here is forgetting. Aging sucks.

    Anyway, now I’m writing the big companies and telling them thanks a lot for nothing. I can go eat a handful of sugar anytime I want. I don’t need them to sell that to me under the guise that I’ve been done a favor. I stick to those companies that were there when GF food was an absolute desert. GF beer is about the only thing I’m happy about nowadays as far as new GF products, and I refuse to purchase crap that costs twice as much and has half the volume of regular non GF crap . Those big companies can go to hell.

  9. When I switched to a gluten free diet, I fell for the replacement products and was almost as ill as eating gluten. When I switched to wholefoods I got my life back.

    But if I could have the odd cookie I would. But to be honest, I don’t think it would be the odd one.

  10. I’m with you. Just because I am gluten free does not mean I miss the convenience of food enough to purchase “junk” highly processed food. It’s a shame though, that they “junk” items are the more affordable.

  11. I’m not saying I disagree with your post about these types of foods being unhealthy, because they are. And based on what I’ve read here and elsewhere, I do understand that many Celiac’s feel much better on whole foods. However, as a parent of a small child with the disease, these types of options for occasional use are HUGE to the little person just trying to feel like he can eat the same things as the other kids at a 5-year-old birthday party. I try and keep it clean and whole and healthy much of the time, but items like this really help him from feeling left out and different. I do understand that he IS different and will have to deal with this his whole life, but I’d prefer to acclimate him to that idea over time to the extent possible. Additionally, for those people who don’t live in a large, metropolitan area with GF bakeries and such, this may be their only option to ever have these types of foods given that they are distributed widely. So, to say again, I agree that it’s bad for you and not something you want to incorporate in your everyday diet, but, for the occasional (if it doesn’t make you feel sick) use, I am glad to have access to more options for my son.

      • That’s a good point. When I had to go GF I had to just opt out of many social activities that involved food at all kinds of banquets, parties, or just meeting with friends after school. Having to explain over and over to parents, teachers and classmates about Celiac was nerve wracking, I got a special lunch in the school cafeteria, and I got asked at least twice every day what was so special about me that I got a special lunch. If that came across as sarcastic, good, because that was how it was asked. It’s tough being a kid with this disease.

        • It is definitely tough for kids, even with all the options (albeit unhealthy) that are now available. I am in the process of working on his 504 Disability plan for his entry into public school and, even though he won’t eat there, they will need to go through a lot of extra (probably obvious) steps in the cafeteria and classroom to keep him safe. In the meantime, I had some super advice from a mother of a Celiac child when my son was first diagnosed. She told me “you will never have an issue with him being hurt or upset about what he gets versus the other kids as long as his looks better.” It has been so true! So when the others get a crumbly clover-shaped sugar cookie on St. Patrick’s Day and he gets a GF chocolate cupcake with green M&Ms, he feels like he won the lottery :) I wish it would be that easy forever….

  12. There are two issues that mainstream companies jumping on the bandwagon don’t address:

    1.) Something can be legally gluten-free and still have 20 ppm, in the samples they measure, so some gluten-free stuff will still make sensitive people sick.

    Also, the 20 ppm is for gliadin, not avenin, the gluten protein in oats, so if you’re an oat-sensitive celiac, like some of us, something can be legally gluten-free, made on shared lines with oat cereals, and really make you sick.

    Chex cereals are the worst offenders for this. Lots of us who are more sensitive get sick from them. (Me, for example.)

    2.) Many, many people with celiac cannot reasonably digest xanthan gum, guar gum, or the cellulose that subs in for gluten. It’s not uncommon to go gluten-free, and then have a much later epiphany about the gums.

    I would echo the statement that, “Just because it’s gluten-free, doesn’t mean it’s healthy.” However, I would add, “Just because it’s gluten-free doesn’t mean anyone can digest it.” Xanthan gum, guar gum and cellulose are laxatives. If you’re celiac and you’re still sick, try cutting out the gums, and see if your digestion becomes more, um, predictable.

    So, yeah, they can jump on the gluten-free band wagon all they want. Caveat emptor.

  13. And one more thing, because just thinking about it now, it’s really important:

    I have had serious complications from celiac disease, specifically microscopic colitis, which is what it sounds like, only it’s a curable form of colitis.

    I’m from a family of people who, in addition to being celiac, have autoimmune disorders that react really badly to red meat–which can be inflammatory all on its own.

    Even after a decade of being gluten-free, I didn’t get better, for real, until I stopped eating red meat.

    While eating healthy is good, Paleo is actually bad for some people with autoimmune disorders, if it includes red meat. But, it depends on the person.

  14. I couldn’t agree with you more. I’m on day 45 of a ‘whole 30′ and I feel great. I was already eating pretty good before – but completely avoiding processed food and alcohol (temporarily!) has me feeling great. While I appreciate that these companys are producing convenience foods and treats that I look forward to enjoying on occasion, no one’s diet, celiac or not, should be made of food products.

    If you haven’t seen it yet, you should check out the Michael Pollan article in the NYT magazine. Here’s the link:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2013/05/19/magazine/say-hello-to-the-100-trillion-bacteria-that-make-up-your-microbiome.html?ref=magazine&_r=0

    It’s about scientists researching gut microbes and trying to figure out what the best balance of bacteria is – and how things like processed foods mess with that. I can only imagine the terrible microbe systems that those of us with celiac have, and subsisting on processed, gluten free food, isn’t going to fix that.

  15. .. as much as i like (nay, love!) Cinnamon Chex, for me they are strictly ‘treat food’ for use after a brutal workout, or when I’m suddenly OK with the amount of sugar they contain… They simply don’t fill me up for longer than a few hours anyways!
    I’m 100% with you re: Pillsbury; I don’t trust that the ingredients are healthy in any way, and despite the fuse of it, I’ve become used to making my own GF stuff n’ things. If I don’t feel like making something pie-crust/pizza crust-y then I’ll try to think of GF alternatives. ‘Arepa pizza,’ or ‘quinoa ‘crust’ quiche’, or ‘oh hell, i’ll just eat a salad…’ ;)

  16. I think the big companies are jumping on the gluten-free bandwagon in the same way they went “fat-free” and “sugar-free”. Lord knows, those products weren’t healthy either! It’s just another market for them to tap into. I wasn’t a big buyer of the stuff before, and won’t be now. But, seeing as how there is no where nearby for me to buy a good gluten free baked item, I’m glad to know that I can buy ready to bake cookie dough and have an occasional treat.
    Really, the situation here is bad marketing by your store – why are they putting “healthy elements” labels on anything processed?
    Celiac awareness should not be about foods – it is a health issue, akin to cancer awareness, diabetes awareness, asthma awareness, or any of the many other disease awareness campaigns.

  17. Yeah, I’m usually with you. But I just can’t get all up in arms because a junk food manufacturer decides to add gluten-free junk food. That’s what they do. It’s up to each individual to decide what and what not to eat. Just like I don’t eat junk food or soda, even if it is gluten free. Just too many other things to get upset about. People eating unhealthy/junk food is a massive issue outside the scope of gluten free (although it certainly doesn’t help celiacs who may be needing to heal their systems).

  18. Here’s something many people don’t realize about TRUTH IN MARKETING and Gluten Free Certifications. Products are allowed to be called Gluten Free, even when they contain trace amounts of gluten.

    If you truly have been diagnosed with Celiac Disease, your immune system is triggered by even trace amounts of gluten from grains like wheat, rye, and barley products and products made from their derivatives.

    Only about 26% of products labeled gluten free are actually CERTIFIED to be gluten free!

    Even CERTIFIED gluten free products (with the GF logo) are allowed to contain up to 10-ppm gluten and still be labeled and marketed as gluten free. Shocking!

    Lesson: People with Celiac Disease, for your health, don’t eat products labeled gluten free unless they are labeled with wording that includes something like “made in dedicated gluten free facility”.

    • I think this is spot on, and one of the big things that gets me mad about labeling. If something says it is GF, is should be 100% GF, not down to 10ppm or 20 ppm or level it is set at. GF is GF, not “sort of GF” – especially for those of us who are sensitive to even those trace amounts. A dedicated facility, with dedicated suppliers, and NO G at all is the only way I’ll feel safe. What will it take to get that basic idea across?? The fad thing is only hurting true awareness and safety in this sense.
      It is just this reason that I eat on the “keep it whole” approach, no packaged stuff, just what comes out of the ground/vine/tree. Too much can go wrong with any company, and I’m not about to risk my health.

      I know this is sort of an aside from the subject of the day, but I think it does bear on the marketing and expansion of “GF” products, and being aware of the motives and risks that go into it. All I’m after is full and open disclosure, emphasis on the full. That way people can decide for themselves what their tolerance is, what makes them comfortable, and what they want to eat in a conscious, knowledge way. That might differ from mine, and that’s fine! Just be open and upfront!

  19. Choosing products from a “certified GF” facility, IMHO will give you the best assurance, perhaps… and I have never felt ill effects from indulging in any of them from time to time.

    But the point I believe the Dude is trying to make is: gluten free or not, these types of “foods” are not the healthiest stuff for anyone.
    At least, that’s how I interpret it.
    Dude? correct me if I am wrong, please.

    Marketing to the GF crowd is… Hot, hot, hot right now and let’s face it,
    these products are going to keep coming out.. BTW, I have tasted those tubs of frosting you have pictured and they are just terrible! People can make their own frosting from real food(cream cheese, butter, sugar, vanilla ) in a matter of minutes and they taste awesome! But why don’t they? They are busy with work and life and rely on packaged foods. That’s understandable.

    I can also see how these new products can be included in your diet from time to time, but choose wisely. (for example, I am not sure red dye and MSG is a good thing).They both affect me for sure.

    The point is…just because it is available, it does not mean you have to buy it, but if other GFreers want to, well, that’s their choice. Their bodies. (it’s like anything in life regarding choices: if you smoke, drink, do drugs or root for the Jets, well, you are making that choice and you live with the consequences) :)

    I still go by own rule which is “would my Gramma have eaten this?”
    If not, I don’t. I do not eat anything with words I cannot pronounce or my chemist hubs cannot identify either. But, that’s just me.

  20. I find the photos here quite deceptive.

    First of all, you talk about Pillsbury, then show a can of Betty Crocker frosting. I have never found Betty Crocker frosting to be Gluten-free, but Pillsbury is. I have never had a reaction from Pillsbury’s.

    Second, while it’s not food that is good for us, I applaud the fact that it does give us an option when we need one. You don’t eat pizza, chocolate chip cookies, or pies every day – but to go to the store and have the option there when you need it is only a plus.

  21. I’m not sure some of you understand the way the testing works. If you used the same test on the inside of a tomato you have grown yourself, it will still say <10 ppm. That doesn't mean it has any gluten. It's just that the tests can't read 0.

      • The lowest test used by companies is 5 ppm. I don’t remember who uses that. I’m remembering that its a few of the big ones but definitely not all. Supposedly there is one for 3 ppm, but in I’m not sure about the accuracy of that one o if it is being used commercially, yet.

        Some companies use the 20 ppm, some use the 10 or the 5. Even if there was a legal definition of 20 ppm ( which I think is the definition in some countries), companies can use the more expensive lower ppm tests. Therefore, if we had a legal definition that gf is <20 ppm, many products could actually be testing lower. Also, remember, that that homegrown tomato would still test at < 20 ppm or < 5 ppm. Depending on the test.

        Currently, in the US, with no legal definition, its possible to label something gf without testing it. You can't label something gf that you know has gluten in it. That is the same laws that govern all food ingredients. For example, you can't say something is sugar free and add cane sugar to it.

        Many gf companies will tell you which test they use and about their manufacturing processes if you email them.

        • Australia and New Zealand require that companies prove no gluten down to 3 ppm. I think that’s been in place for a couple of years now. Don’t know if it’s led to better outcomes for recovering celiacs or not, though.

  22. I was freaking out about Chex not being safe for people who are sensitive to oats (which I may or may not be) and Googled a little. I turned up this incredibly interesting advertising plan for gluten-free Chex back in 2009 (accidentally leaked, presumably): http://www.slideshare.net/writeseth/gluten-free-chex-cereal. Here’s a good excerpt:

    “Simply put, our advertising objective is as follows: Inform consumers of the innovative and socially responsible product, Gluten-Free Chex Cereal, that General Mills has created, while highlighting the growing health concern of Celiac Disease and General Mills’ stance on this health issue in order to gain market share. A more long-term intention is that this advertising objective will also pave the way for other gluten-free General Mills products that will continue to help them gain market share in the future.”

    They really seem to have achieved the initial objective—I know that most people now who think “gluten-free cereal” think “Chex”—and now they’re moving on with the “long-term intention.” So, yeah, it all boils down to gaining market share. But that’s what businesses do. And there’s other stuff in that advertising plan to suggest that they’re aware of the seriousness of the illness and the importance of complying with industry standards for testing (even if the case may be that testing isn’t good enough, given this oats revelation—argh, Lisa Mims, I have so many boxes of Chex to go through! They have to be gluten-free!).

    I guess I’m just saying I find this all interesting but don’t feel surprised or betrayed by the idea that General Mills is mainly out to make money. If you’re a Mad Men watcher that advertising plan is worth a read, by the way.

  23. Of course the companies are out to make money….they couldn’t stay in business if they didn’t.

    Why do people think gf Chex have oats? Or are cc’d with oats? Has anyone asked the company? Or is this some silly Internet rumor? I remember that originally the gf Chex were made with gf Chex and no other cereal. Not sure where the last come in?

  24. I agree that processed food is generally unhealthy and preparing food ourselves is best. I also understand that convenience is alluring and helpful.

    As a person with Celiac Disease, I learned the hard way that GF labeling does not mean “safe for people with Celiac Disease”. I want to help others avoid my mistakes by letting consumers know that even when products are labeled Gluten Free and Certified GF, it is safest to only select products that include statements like “100% gluten free production” or “Dedicated Gluten Free Facility”.

    It’s each person’s choice as to what type of food one wants to eat. I always want to eat 100% gluten free due to my Celiac Disease.

    General “Gluten Free” eating has been proven to be healthier and increase performance in professional athletes, which is making gluten free labeling more popular. It’s great that more and more products are out there for those folks.

    With an immune disease like Celiac Disease, the doctor’s prescription is to avoid even trace amounts of gluten. Period. Not, “do your best to avoid gluten” or “trace amounts wont’ hurt you” or “it’s okay to eat whatever you want once in a while”.

    For me, I say no to “artificial color/flavor” and “natural color/flavor”, no to High Fructose Corn Syrup, No to Hydroginated Oils, No to MSG, etc.

    It’s a free country where we can eat healthy or not. BUT LABELING SHOULD BE 100% CLEAR AND TRUTHFUL. In the USA it is absolutely not and it’s legally done. In other counties, they are not allowed to list things like “gelling agent” in their jams. They have to state, “Gelling Agent: Fruit Pectin”… for example.

  25. I hear you and understand you GD, but coming from overseas on a holiday to the US I am sooooooo happy with the choices you have here. My child (5) has CD and feeding her here is so much easier than back home. We bake our own bread and cookíes etc, cook from scratch, organic options where possible. It tastes better that way and is defenitely more healthy. But now being on holiday I am so happy that there are options!!!!! We have very few options and it is so nice to be able to get stuff here. It’s the freedom of choice that is so great. Do you do home made/baked or go to the store? We dont have that option back home and it’s so nice to have it for a few weeks!!!!

  26. Mjay – Be careful buying food in the USA marked Gluten Free. Very few items will actually be 100% gluten free, as even “certified gluten free” products are allowed to have up to 20ppm of gluten. I have CD too and learned the hard way! My advice is to read fine print on labels for things like “dedicated gluten free facility” so you know for sure there was no cross contamination in the manufacturing process. Denise

  27. I definitely agree that it’s better to eat all natural foods than eating processed gf foods. It is nice as a treat every now and then but I realised when I get back into the habit of eating processed foods, I always feel like crap. Then I go back and start cutting out things again. Sometimes its just not worth it!!

    Its good that there are more gf products available and sometimes some of them are healthier. But at the end of the day everyone needs to realise that processed food in general is not healthy. The problem is we live in a society that thrives on convenience. We have to start changing the way people think…

  28. Actually, the oats thing is my own internet rumour–I read somewhere that they make it in facilities where they make oat cereals. It could be 10 or 15 ppm in the air, even, if that is true.

    Oats would explain testing at 20 ppm or less for gliadin (wheat protein) for a cereal that makes me sick, and apparently causes symptoms in lots of other people.

    General Mills isn’t lying–they’re just marketing creatively.

  29. Just because we can (eat it), doesn’t mean we should. Junk food and treats should be “once in a while” items.

  30. I agree with Gluten Dude although I have to say that it makes it a bit easier for those of us recently diagnosed to make the transition. I’m not a bigger baker so sometimes it’s nice to eat a prepackaged gluten free cookie without it being a big production.

    That said, I’m slowly but surely moving towards mainly homemade, “clean” foods. I recently went to see a dietitian to help me sort out the facts from fiction…she mainly showed me lists of gluten free prepacked meals/products. When I told her that I really try to eat natural/clean foods, she seemed confused. I was trying to ask her questions like “what about spices” etc. I didn’t get much help.

    I’m by no means better. I’ve only been at it for about a month and I just got glutened at brunch on Sunday due to me being too chicken to say I’m Celiac. Growing pains. I learned my lesson. I guess I’m still trying to muck my way through it all. Anyway, the lesson I’ve learned so far is that making it from scratch seems to help me feel better quicker. Sometimes convenience is inconvenient in the end.

  31. Question here…..the “healthy” label is that more the grocery store or the actual product ? Looks to me from the pic that its probably the store and they are using the same label for low salt as GF. I guess i’m sorta with you sorta not. I agree GF doesn’t mean healthy. I mean butter is GF does that mean i can eat it by the stick ? (oh if only : ) !!! )

    but….i am all for companies creating variety out there. i worry that if we (celiac community) ask for GF products, then complain about what they give us will they stop all together ? I get your point though….we want GF, but we want GF that’s at least semi-healthy. As far as the grocery store goes i personally don’t care whaty they put on the label as long as they are trying to point out GF to me i find it helpful. Its hard to scour labels and look for GF or not. I wonder if the grocery stores point of saying “healthy” on that green label is that if you are celiac its more “healthy” for you to eat a GF icing than a non GF one ? Well DUH. Funny…my biggest fear is not more GF junik food coming out but that they will stop all together. I don’t care if its a fad or not or why the comapnies are doing it, just keep producing GF food. I think the reason they do the popular junk food first is cuz its easier to convert and they know it will sell. Health food type items don’t always sell as much and it doesnt last on the shelf so maybe if some of the mass market stuff sells, they will then move to the more specialty healthy type items ? just a thought.

    i also get it people need alternatives for their kids and i gotta tell you when i go on vacation or to visit a person its nice that they have some easy options to buy for me. It makes them feel better and at least i know its GF. For example, i don’t really eat bagels but if i went to visit someone i’m much more comfortable eating an Udi’s bagel straight from the bag than if they had tried to bake me GF bread or made eggs in their gluten filled skillet that i either refuse to eat and look like a nut or eat and pray. Just my two cents.

  32. Although it’s great that there are more GF options becoming available and it’s fine to indulge ourselves with a “treat” once in a while, it’s important to keep in mind that celiac and diabetes ride on the same gene, so that’s another very important reason to make healthy choices when eating. In addition to lots of sugar or high fructose corn syrup, one needs to be concerned about anything hydrogenated…that’s also very bad for you. Many celiacs lose weight before being diagnosed, but once they start eating GF and their “gut” heals, they start absorbing nutrients again, so it’s important to make healthy choices (naturally GF foods like vegetables, fruits and fresh meats, poultry and fish) or you could start packing on the pounds if you indulge in all those processed GF products.

  33. Even though they are actually GF now, those Honey Nut Chex still have 3 types of sugar. If I want sugar at breakfast, I’d much rather have some dark chocolate ;)
    I think it’s great that companies are coming out with “replacement” products for people who need to eat gluten free.
    The problem really lies in how most americans are used to eating. Pizza night isn’t as big of a deal when it’s a regular occurrence. As a group, we like processed convenience foods, but we also want them to taste a certain way, and while we’re at it, we want it to be as cheap as possible. It’s a freakin’ mess, just look at what could’ve happened if all those subsidies didn’t go through at the beginning of the year. We have no idea how much food actually costs.
    On first glance, I thought the pizza dough might be nice when I don’t have my homemade dough in the freezer…but then I saw the ingredient list. Yikes. I try to avoid soy, canola, gmo corn, and limit rice flours. It’s so hard to navigate, so I can see how these sort of options are appealing to people.

  34. Just saw this. I get your point and agree that eating natural is best. But I can also tell you I am jumping for joy over the Pillsbury pie crust. Would non-processed be best? Sure, but talk to me when you have to host a holiday dinner and need to make three or four pies. If I can do gluten free Easily and provide options then I am all over the product.

  35. I was so psyched when I first saw these Pillsbury GF doughs! Look, I’m pretty healthy (haven’t had red meat in 20 yrs, off gluten since diagnosed with CD in 2006) but I’m so sick and tired of being forced to eat healthy bc of my disease. Sometimes I want fun, crappy food. Just because I have Celiac doesn’t mean I always want raw cane sugar/agave/carob/soy cheese/etc. I want the fake stuff as a treat once in a while! Now I finally have it.

    That being said, while the cookie dough is damn good (a little gritty, but yummy) but the pizza dough can bite my hiney. Gave it 2 chances and will never return.

  36. I think you’re looking a gift-horse in the mouth. Give thanks that the time for GF eaters to get marketers’ attention has arrived. This means that a) we have options, and b) whatever is done from here on in to make gluten food healthy (such as the imminent FDA ban on trans-fats) will also be done to our GF food. They will move in parallel towards “healthier.”

    Also, eating GF IS healthier, even for those without Celiac or gluten sensitivity. I read a while back that if the average American were to convert to GF eating, s/he would gain an extra 3 years of life.

    Yes, whole, unprocessed foods are best. But even the GF grains are better than today’s wheat. Have you ever read at the Weston Price website what is done to make a loaf of wheat bread, and how today’s commercial wheat compares with wheat of days gone by ? If not, you owe it to yourself to read that.

    So, on this basis, I could actually “buy” the notion that GF junkfood is still healthier than gluten junk food…Except for the extra carbs.

  37. Gluten free does not equal healthy. I don’t give a rip about health nuts and their apple sauce sugar substitutes. If I want to be healthy and organic I’ll do that regardless. I wouldn’t be buying canned frosting in the first place!

    Their healthy label was wrong and dumb (on frosting?!?!!? frosting now made with asparagus, apple sauce and water!)

    but… I don’t give a rip about being healthy! I DO care about not being in PAIN. Give me GF pizza and cookies all day every day and let me have my heart attack but don’t pretend I am in it for the organick-i-ness of it. If they come out with GF taco bell burritoes and tacos I will be there! When I want to diet.. I’ll buy veggies. Stop pushing the health thing on those of us that don’t care

  38. btw… when I was a wee one.. there was NO gf food. ALL I could eat was rice and PLAIN chicken. I couldn’t go to one single restaurant. It SUCKED.. so PLEASE companies HOP ON THE BAND WAGON!!!!

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