You Think Your Celiac Life is Challenging?

gluten free afghanistan

Having celiac disease is difficult. I do not want to minimize that.

But the next time we complain because we can’t enjoy a New York bagel.

The next time we complain because we can’t enjoy our favorite IPA.

The next time we complain because we need to play 20 questions with the waitress.

The next time we complain because we have to bring our own soy sauce when going out for sushi.

The next time we complain about our celiac lives…think of CPT B. Donald Andasik, a fellow celiac fighting a war in Afghanistan.

And then answer this question…who really has it more difficult?

On this Memorial Day, I salute CPT B. Donald Andasik and all of the soldiers fighting the good fight.

Please be safe.

Now let’s stop these endless wars and get our soldiers home.

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10 thoughts on “You Think Your Celiac Life is Challenging?”

  1. How’d he get into the military with Celiac, and/or how has not been medically discharged? When I tried to enlist I was told not only no, but hell no.

  2. Yes, what David said, I’m intrigued. I’m in Canada and I have a Celiac friend in the Navy because he was in pre-diagnosis, but he can only do certain things and is flagged that he definitely can’t go overseas. Definitely nobody with Celiac is allowed to join here and if you’re already in when diagnosed then you must abide by special rules/policies. Interesting!

    1. Interesting. I’ve heard the same thing on Twitter and Facebook. I am going to reach out to him directly and see if I can get an answer.

      To be continued…

    2. I live in Hungary, and things are same here and in many countries in the EU. If you’re celiac you cannot join the army. 10 years ago it was a must to join the army for 1 year, but if you were celiac you did not have to. Now you cannot. I don’t know whether it’s different in the US or not, but worth a check 🙂

  3. I was thinking the same thing Gluten Dude. Bully for him, but he must have gotten a diagnosis when still in the military. I see that he is a Captain and perhaps the Army needs his expertise and made an exception. But yay for him to be able to still be in the military.

  4. Thanks a million, CPT. B. Donald Andasik. When we say our thanks over our lunch, I’ll be thinking of you.

  5. CPT B. Donald Andasik, I thank you for your service. I am always humbled by those who serve and find you all heroic and selfless.

    I have absolutely no idea how you are eating safely with rations and mass-produced military food, but God bless you for persevering.

    Just curious….are you the same guy who posts on celiac.com?
    We have had a few soldiers with queries come through there
    and I have wondered how they made out.

    Stay well. Come home soon.

  6. Funny, in an ironic way. I tried the Coast Guard, Air Force and Navy as I wanted to be a rescue swimmer and ride around in helicopters. They all said Go Away when the Celiac diagnosis came up. So I lied to the Army, got in, then got a medical discharge on my third day because of strabismus in both eyes. That’s lazy eye. You can have one, but not two. I gave up for good after that, and probably for the best. MRE’s and the old C-rations were chock full of gluten.

  7. I’m in the National Guard and discovered I have celiac’s disease after my 2nd deployment. I had to get a waiver for my 3rd deployment for a NATO mission. Luckily many GF food suppliers mail to APO addresses but at the cost of the service member. I spent over $1000 in 9 months so I wasn’t malnourished or angry every time I went to dining facility. Hopefully I can make it to retirement in 7 years before I’m medically discharged!

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I AM someone who's been gluten-free since 2007 due to a diagnosis of severe celiac disease. I'm someone who can steer you in the right direction when it comes to going gluten-free. And I'm someone who will always give you the naked truth about going gluten free.

I AM NOT someone who embraces this gluten-free craziness. I didn’t find freedom, a better life or any of that other crap when I got diagnosed. With all due respect to Hunter S. Thompson, I found fear and loathing of an unknown world. But if I can share my wisdom, tell my stories and make the transition easier on you, I’ve done my job.

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