I’m in a pretty pissy mood this morning. Not only do I have the celiac cranks (fighting thru exhaustion and feeling “off”), but it was just announced that many probiotics that say “gluten-free” on the label actually…aren’t.
And just in time for Celiac Awareness Month, which has been kidnapped and held for ransom by the food companies and even some celiacs using it for profit.
Reminder: It’s CELIAC Awareness Month. Not GLUTEN-FREE Awareness month.
So I may spew a curse word or two in today’s post. Well…since this is a family site, how about I use a replacement word. Let me look around my office.
Printer? Nah…too many syllables.
Lamp? Nah…too bright.
Clock? Hmmm…one syllable. Ends in ck. Clock it is.
So back to the probiotics disaster. There was a study done by Peter Green and his team at Columbia University that showed gluten in probiotics labeled gluten-free. I’m going to take direct quotes from the NY Times article about it and provide some enlightened feedback along the way.
Last year, doctors at Columbia University found that people with celiac disease frequently use probiotic supplements, but that those who take these products tend to experience more symptoms of the disease than those who do not.
Dude note: I’m a big fan of probiotics so this seriously concerns me. As a matter of fact, it is estimated that nearly a quarter of celiacs use them, so it should concern many of us.
Now these experts say they may know why: More than half of the top-selling probiotic supplements they analyzed contained gluten, a protein found in wheat, barley and rye that is harmful to people with celiac disease. The authors of the study found gluten in probiotic supplements that carried “gluten-free” claims on their labels, and they discovered that the most expensive supplements were just as likely to contain gluten as the cheapest products.
Dude note: What the clock??
The study results suggest that people with celiac disease, or those avoiding gluten for any reason, should be cautious about taking probiotic supplements.
Dude note: Just one more thing to add to our list.
“The question is: Why are companies putting wheat or barley or rye in probiotic supplements?” Dr. Green said. “People use these natural products in an attempt to be healthy. Yet it’s a very poorly regulated industry. Can anyone trust a gluten-free label?”
Dude note: And why is it unregulated? I’ll give you one gue$$. It seems the lobbyists bought off congress and passed the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act of 1994, which basically stripped the FDA of being able to regulate these products.
Profit over people. Every clockin’ time.
Studies show that celiac patients who use probiotic supplements report that they have a higher quality of life but – paradoxically – more bloating, cramping, irregular bowel movements and other symptoms of celiac disease.
Dude note: Doesn’t sound very “high-quality” to me.
Dr. Green and his team purchased 22 of the bestselling probiotic supplements from Amazon.com and several national retail chains. Then they subjected the products to a type of laboratory test known as liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry. The researchers found that 12 of the supplements – or roughly 55 percent – contained detectable levels of gluten. Eight of these 12 products carried gluten-free claims on their labels.
Dude note: Seriously…clock you.
Dr. Green said that two of the products that claimed to be gluten-free – or roughly 13 percent – were found to contain levels of gluten that exceeded the F.D.A. threshold. One product was found to contain high levels of wheat, and the other had high levels of barley. “We don’t know how many capsules people are taking each day,” he said. “If the level in a capsule is 19.8 parts per million it can qualify as gluten-free. But if people are taking a lot of this product, they’ll get cumulative amounts of gluten that will cause them damage.”
Dude note: Why the clock are these companies using ANY wheat or barley? And if they are, why the clock would they EVER label them gluten-free? A cynic would say because gluten-free has become a fad and by labeling it gluten-free, they will increase sales, putting people’s health at risk.
Good thing I’m not a cynic.
Dr. Green also said that even among people with wheat allergies and celiac disease, the level of gluten that can be tolerated varies tremendously from one person to the next. Some people “may be much more sensitive to even less than 20 parts per million,” he said. “So the question that comes up is: Why do these products have gluten anyway?”
Dude note: Why indeed.
Sadly, the study did not release the names of the products they tested. Dr. Green said “We don’t know exactly how widespread this is and whether the levels vary from batch to batch.”
I get it…kind of. But do they really think they may have just gotten some bad samples or a rare batch that happened to contain gluten? Make an example of these mother-clockers and call em out.
Why does it always seem the corporations get more protection that the people? What’s that? Corporations ARE people?
We live in a clocked-up world.
Don’t you agree John Oliver? (This is a must-see “take-down” of Dr. Oz and the dietary supplement industry.)
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Thanks for the balanced approach, whether it is funny, sad, angry, silly or loving. We have all been through the emotional roller coaster. I look forward to hearing the real voices of the folks who comment here. You bring out the best in all of us! Thanks Dude!
This is the best Celiac blog I have found. When I just want to scream from frustration, this is the place I come to find joy, peace, positive thinking, sarcasm, laughter, frustration and the will to keep moving forward and to know I have another day of healing behind me.
I want to thank you for everything that you have done to make me feel more comfortable about eating gluten-free. This website has made a significant impact on me. I don't feel so alone anymore and even though living with this disease will never be easy, this website makes it somewhat bearable. It makes me feel better that there are others that feel all of the emotions and symptoms that I do. I will forever be grateful for people like you and the rest of the amazing gluten free community. THANK YOU!
You were a life line for me when I was bewildered, brain foggy and ...sick. Thank you.
Before discovering you and your amazing followers I honestly thought I was just nuts. Now I know to rest when needed, to not trust something just because it says gf on the label, and most importantly, to advocate and be a voice for myself and this disease. Thank you Gluten Dude! Keep up your awesomeness.
When I read this blog, it makes me smile and although I wish everyone healing, energy and recovery - it is just so nice to feel normal for a few minutes every day! Thank you, thank you!
I would just like to say a big thank you to you, and all of those who comment on the blog. Together you have all educated, made me mad, made me cry and most importantly, made me feel like I'm not alone in all this.
I spent 50 years feeling like crap! At about 50 years, I couldn’t take it anymore and attempted suicide, which landed me in ICU for 4 days on life support. As tears roll down my face, I think of how much you have helped and encouraged me and others; I thank you for your humor, your wisdom and your knowledge. Every day that I feel well, I have you to thank. Because of you, I now eat unprocessed foods most of the time and the suicidal thoughts are now rare. In essence, you (and this support group) saved my life. I know I am just one person, but I hope you know how important you are to SO many of us!
Dude…Where the hell have you been all my life? Kudos and thanks for all that you do.
Great blog. I have a coeliac teen and your stuff is perfect for her, a balance of info and fun. Plus she loves anyone who will take a shot at a Kardashian :) Way to make being a coeliac cool. Thank you!
You are aaawesome!!! I found your site today and I have literally spent the whole day reading it. I learnt some things that months of online trolling for information has failed to teach me... so thank for the effort that you put into your words; they are short, to the point and funny.
You make me smile, you make me cry, and you make me mad. But, most of all, you make me grateful that I don’t have to figure this all out on my own.
Every search for a GF food kicked me to a blog, somehow, some way. Your GD site captured my my attention. It was the first non-flowery, realistic and relatable information I saw. Translation: You made no attempt to blow smoke up my shorts about how awesome it is to be a celiac.
Thank you for all your struggles and your fight for us celiacs. You have given me a better outlook to living with celiac.
I am a well educated researcher on celiac disease; because not only was I diagnosed 4 years ago, so was my husband. This is the only site that has the most credible and the most knowledgeable information on how to handle the disease and the community who promote products as being gluten free. Thank you, from the bottom of our celiac guts, for your time and keeping us informed.
I just want to say that I discovered you about 5 months ago & you have quite literally changed my life. You and your site, along with all the fantastic people who follow you, have educated me in ways you could never know. Thank you. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.
Thanks Gluten Dude. You rock. You are a hilarious breath of fresh air when I feel like no one (except my mom) understands.
Gluten Dude…you have touched so many lives and you have a way of making anyone who finds your blog to feel so understood and a part of a welcoming and supportive community.
Thank you! I am just starting month three of a gluten free lifestyle after finally being diagnosed with celiac disease and your blogs have helped to educate me (and my family) and put things in perspective.
Your take on things is amazingly refreshing. I learn more from you than from the dozens (hundreds?) of other gluten free blogs on a regular basis. You done good, Dude!
I don’t subscribe to your blog so that you can lie to me or convince me to try different products. I subscribe because your humanity shines through my computer screen and I think you are just like the rest of us……and on any given day that changes.
I just wanted to drop a quick line to say thank you. I was just recently diagnosed via endoscopy, with the blood test several months before that showing very high anti body levels (there was a waiting list to get the endoscopy, hence the delay). In that time however your blog/website and latterly eBook have been an invaluable resource which has allowed me to really hit the ground running once the diagnosis was confirmed. Having some good and honest advice has made the whole experience a lot less daunting.
The blogs, comments and links from you and others in this community have given me much of my life back. Thank you!
Your blog has made me feel understood for that I say THANK YOU
Thank you for your blog, which brings a sense of sanity to my chaotic world! It is wonderful to know we are not alone and that we can have like-minded people who can say straight up that having celiac disease sucks.
There are people in the Gluten Dude community with fantastic knowledge that has helped me a lot and I've only been reading the Dude's blog for a couple weeks. It's an awesome place.
I'm at work right now crying while reading your site. I blame you and thank you at the same time. I'm glad to meet a sane individual in the same boat as me. Finally a place where I'm not viewed as 'weird' or 'fanatic' about food. OMG I can exhale.
You and your site have saved me from the nut house! It was such a relief to hear other voices and experiences from people I could relate to. Struggling through health issues and trying to eat gluten free can make a person feel a tad…alone. This community makes a person feel like they are apart of a larger family. Your time and effort is truly appreciated!
Your latest post is why my son wants to be Gluten Dude when he grows up.
One of your blogs appeared in the middle of a sea of the usual B.S. and feel-good nonsense about celiac and gluten that is all over the Internet. What a relief to find what you are doing here. I can't believe it. Finally!
Thank you - you beautiful soul. It is the only place where with not an ounce of self pity, we can just say. FUCK THIS.
Keep rockin’ Gluten Dude. You are changing the world for us.
I want to thank you for being so honest and supporting a gluten free community that uses their knowledge and power for the good of the community. You are fighting the good fight sir and I appreciate you more than my words can really say.
Thank you for your answers, wisdom, support and humor. I could not live this life without you.
Thank you for your website! It is so nice to not be alone through all of this. Your writing is amazing. I was diagnosed with Celiac a few months ago after feeling horrible for 20 years and doctors never knowing what was wrong. Thanks again for all your posts and being a voice for us Celiacs! You've given me some hope.
As a direct result of your educational sharing and awareness raising efforts, I am confident that the health of countless lives have already been drastically improved. Best wishes and most importantly, THANK YOU hero!
You have made me laugh and cry and everything in between and I'm only two weeks into your blog!!!
I Googled “fuck celiac” and found my way to your blog. Thanks for blazing the trail. My life is better for your efforts.
I have met so many wonderful people on your blog including YOU! Thank you for all the hard work and energy you put into making this a place with lots of good information, lots of good people and lots of laughter!
You just made me weep in the frozen food aisle of the grocery store while I wait for yet another prescription for our ever-sickly children! Thank you Dude!!!! You rock!
As the father of a celiac daughter, I absolutely look forward to reading your blog-word-by-word. Every one. You've got such a talent for storytelling, infectiously. Firm, witty and honest.
Being a "baby" celiac patient (almost 3 months now)...and finding this website has been EXTREMELY helpful to me. The seriousness, the comedy, the information, all of it has helped me transition as smoothly as possible.
I just want to say that you rock. I ended up staying up most of the night reading your 100 blog posts... Good Stuff. I am definitely sharing with family and friends that tend to not fully get it.
Gluten Dude…….your blog has given me so much info when I started on this gluten-free journey a year and a half ago. It’s been rough, but with others sharing what they go through, and how they deal with it, it has made that road easier! Thank you for always giving us information, sharing your experiences, and generally helping us all feel that we aren’t crazy!!! I appreciate you, Dude!!! Keep up the good work.
I come to this blog to feel understood.! It’s nice knowing that there are other people who feel exactly the way I do about Celiac Disease!
Thank you SO much! Your blog is wonderful; it is such a huge relief to know that you (as well as your followers and guest bloggers) actually understand. It really means so much!
If you would have told me 18 months ago how blessed I would be by stumbling onto Gluten Dude’s blog one frustrated day – I would have laughed and said “no way”. Now, I sit here reading all these names I have grown attached to and think “HOW WOULD I DO IT WITHOUT THEM?” Their stories resonate with me and I don’t feel like the odd woman out.
I must say that reading what you and my fellow celiacs have to say makes me feel better...less isolated and frustrated. The support on this page is so good for me. Thank you all so much!
Gluten Dude, you really have impacted our two year ride with Celiac Disease. You reflect such a realistic view on this disease......while no one else understands, you and the people who gather here, make me feel just a little bit less crazy! THANK YOU!!!
I want to thank you, Gluten Dude, for creating a safe and welcoming forum. I'm not alone out here and for that I am grateful.
The morning after I found out I have Celiac Disease, I went to your site for comfort. I laughed and cried because this was where I felt connected. I thank you so much; YOU and Mrs. Dude have helped me cope better than anyone.
Your website and the Gluten Dude community you have brought together is so POSITIVE and crucial for my health and happiness and knowledge and celiac confidence! Thank you.
I know I can’t wallow and feel sorry for myself forever but I literally bawled my eyes out reading your blog because someone finally was being honest and understood and wrote the truth. So thank you so much!
I just wanted to say that I have really enjoyed reading your blog. I have been diagnosed 10 years....and THIS is what I've been missing.
I just wanted to thank you for hosting such an open, honest, funny, sad, wonderful forum where all of us Celiacs can laugh, cry, commiserate, share, and gain some support in dealing with this disease.
Thanks for your great blog and articles and just everything you do. You bring a bit of hope to my life whenever I feel down and out or tired (which happens a lot).
Thank you for your blog, your bravery, for sharing all the personal parts of your life that sometimes drive you to the brink of insanity. Thank you for creating a place where I can go to find comfort and solace when I am sick of explaining my disease. Please don't ever stop sharing your stories.
Thank you for your blog. It gives me so much strength whenever i am hurting. You are a shining light.
You are like tonic to the gut, bubbling with humorous dialogue to cure the sad soul of any celiac needing attention. I am lifted from my moody mornings into hope for our future in a healthy community as I read your lines and the comments they generate.
I just found your website and I wanted to say thanks! Your posts are the most relatable to my own journey that I have found. I really appreciate the time you put in to help your fellow Celiacs.
Thank you for your efforts in our community. It makes a ginormous difference to me to have an outspoken, educated and funny voice here on this p-o-s gluten-free roller coaster. I'm just overly and completely impressed by you.
Finding this website was like walking into a house full of old friends and family for me.
I just had to write and tell you how much I appreciate your blunt honesty and fighting voice in the celiac community. While I might not suffer with it, it has been an eye opener to read about just a fraction of what your intimate community faces each and everyday. Hearing the stories and the battles you all have had to face has made me an advocate and given me a desire to fight for you all.
I found you earlier today and I have not laughed and cried so much in one night ever. Thank you so much for what you do!
Thank you for all you do to help those of us struggling with this disease! It is reassuring to hear I am not alone from someone who finds good and bad in your experiences. You help in ways the Dr.'s and textbooks can't.
I absolutely love your blogs and hearing new peeps stories and lessons. It helps so much! Someone get this dude a badge, a certificate, hell something for all that he does! He is one SuperGlutenDudeman!
This blog just stopped me from going over the edge. Thank you!
Gluten Dude, we are here b/c you have helped us all, made us laugh and we know we are not alone. Thank you.
I had to let you know how much help your blog has been in getting my husband to understand better what it is like to have Celiac. For the first time in 14 years I found a place where I feel “normal”. Thanks GD.
Thanks 4 putting into words what many celiacs feel!
I just wanted to say thank you, for being the only RELIABLE voice out there (that I've found). Starting out 5 years ago, I fell into many doctor "recommendations" that were a horrible choice to follow, and suffered for them. I didn't find your blog right away, and went through many trial and errors on what gluten free really meant. I'm so glad I did eventually (last year) stumble upon your blog. Not symptom free by a long shot, but getting there, MOSTLY because of what you share, so again thank you.
Thank you for keeping me educated and uplifted….. You have helped me become a better mom
This place feels to me the same way walking into the back door of my childhood home does...acceptance and understanding from my people!
Thank you, thank you, thank you. I can't say it enough. Your knowledge and honesty is like a life raft in an unknown and terrifying ocean.
I came across your Blog today and you had me in tears!!!! Tears of recognition that other people go through these frustrations, tears of laughter through understanding and tears of pain as I go through all of your contributors rants and rages!!! THANK YOU!
My husband has Celiac disease and your blog is a life saver. Everything you discuss is so spot on. Thank you for all the insight, humor, and perfectly worded content that your blog provides. Is that wrong that we want to be friends with you and your wife (who also seems super cool)?
I’ve been gluten free for over a year and your blog was the first one that made me feel normal for a celiac. Thanks for that!
You have brought us laughter, information and a safe place to rant and vent. You have created a place where we can let it all hang out, and just be ourselves. We all know there is worse than this. But sometimes we just need to be in the company of fellow travelers along this road. You gave that to us. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. You changed the journey for me.
God heavens, you are amazing. This site just turned my day around.
Living gluten free is a tough life to live and I think the reality of it that you portray on your blog helps those of us who still struggle with it. Keep up the good work.
Like John Lennon coaxing Prudence from her room, the Gluten Dude asks other celiacs to come out and play. With acerbic wit, candor and a touch of rebellion, he's sharing his journey and he's enticing the celiac community to do the same.
I am ever so grateful to have found your site. Your frustrations, humor and encouragement have already helped me tremendously to carry on.
I am so glad I found your website; it has me feel like I'm not alone or 'making thing's up'. Plus it has made laugh, cry & kept me sane so far. Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU!!
You help people feel less lost/angry/scared/sad. You certainly do help, educate and have me laughing like crazy. You make a huge difference by bringing us all together in this celiac/coeliac “family”. Thank you for doing what you do.
I am grateful to bloggers like you for putting some humour into the coeliac discussion. Thanks for your blog, and for making it a little bit cooler to be a coeliac.
This blog has helped me a TON! I live in a very rural area with no local resources for Celiacs. Reading Gluten Dude’s blog has helped me feel “normal” – it isn’t a happy disease. I appreciate someone speaking honestly and from the heart about the down and dirty of celiac.
I applaud you, Gluten Dude, for giving us Celiacs a place where we can chat, complain, celebrate and laugh at our all too real struggles.
In a time of Omission and Cheerios hawking insta-phonies, I just wanted to say thanks for your tireless work and for keeping your integrity over the years. You are true and passionate celiac disease advocate, and an important voice to celiacs all over the world. Your advice was a lifeline in the early days of my celiac diagnosis in 2014 (after ~20 years of suffering undiagnosed). The gluten free diet is scary and confusing, and it doesn't help that it is misrepresented by predatory money grubbers like Papa Johns or Omission (I'm still holding a grudge because I was badly glutened by their nasty beer when it first came out).
I understand how easy it is to get discouraged by the gluten-free or celiac phonies, the apathetic medical community, the corrupt food industry, and the ignorant celebrities and media. I just wanted to drop you a line to let you know that your contributions to the celiac community are appreciated!