A local branch of Gluten Intolerance Group (GIG) of North America providing support for
people with all types of gluten intolerances, in order to live healthy, productive lives.
Meeting Calendar
May 20th, 6-8pm:
Cooking2Thrive - cooking demo and dinner (at Trinity Episcopal Cathedral - click for directions)
June 17th:
guest speaker Craig Cooney
We meet on the Third (3rd) Monday of each month from 6-8pm.
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For more information, contact:
Sherri Clay, President
(501) 821-0111
& Thanks
Every year, we ask our supporters to donate money to help us continue to spread the word about gluten intolerance. As you know, Gluten Intolerance Group of Central Arkansas (GIGCA) is a non-profit organization run by volunteers. Would you consider helping us by making a tax deductible gift of $20 or more?
You can bring your donation to the next GIGCA meeting or mail it to:
     Beaura Cavalier
     GIGCA Treasurer
     4 Willow Oak Cove
     Maumelle, AR 72113
(If you mail your donation, please indicate if you would like to be mailed a tax receipt in return, and if we have your permission to list your name in our newsletter as a donor, or if you would like to remain anonymous.)
If you have any questions, you can contact Beaura at:
beauracavalier@gmail.com     (501) 749-9328
We would like to thank those donors who wish to remain anonymous and the following people for their generous donations:
  Barbara Owen 
  Bke Millwee
  David & Nancy Cranford
  Earl & Mildred Hillard
  Emma Carothers
  Hope Massery
  LaVina Warren
  Mark Eaton
  Rebecca Moran
  Rusty Baltz
  Terri Murdock
  Tony Pipkin
Gluten Free 101
If you would like more details on living gluten free, please contact Anne or LaDonna to arrange a personal “Gluten-Free 101” session.
Little Rock Area
Anne Luther
(501) 681-5544
Hot Springs Area
LaDonna Brock
(501) 733-9026
 We Want to Hear
from You!
We need your input to make this newsletter great! 
Send in your:
* favorite GF recipies
* GF product reviews
* restaurant reviews
* GF book reviews
* Children's Corner story
* your personal GF story
or anything else you would like to share with the group.(Please indicate whether you want to be anonymous or have your first or last name used.)
Please write it up and send it to: aluther@comcast.net.
Dempsey Bakery
Be sure to "like" Dempsey Bakery on Facebook to stay up to date on new items.
 In This Issue:
  ~ News from Our President, Sherri Clay
  ~ Upcoming Meeting Info
  ~ Restaurants: Bumpy's Texmex, Gluten Free Passport, Gluten Free Registry
  ~ Gluten Free Awards
  ~ YOUR Opinions
  ~ New Gluten-Free Products
  ~ Contact Info for Other GIG Groups
  ~ Children's Corner
  ~ Recipe Corner: Chocolate Chip Cookies, Chocolate Haystacks
  ~ Research, Books, Blogs, Webinars:
     * Effects of Gluten on the Brain
     * Free Webinar on Budget-Friendly GF Meal Planning
     * Intestinal Biopsies for CD
     * IBS Treatment Center blog
News from Our President, Sherri Clay
A woman called me today because her doctor recently diagnosed her with celiac disease.  The written information her doctor provided conflicted itself, plus she had met two ladies at the store who told her she also needed to give up dairy and sweets.  Understandably, she was totally overwhelmed and confused.  Having had a similar experience, I asked her what she wanted to know.  The answer was where she could eat out and which cookies and pies on the market tasted good.  She came to the right place for answers to both of those questions!
With this month being Celiac Awareness Month, I am proposing a challenge.  What if each of us gently reached one interested person? (That probably eliminates our families!)  Since going gluten free is an overwhelming change for most people, what if we just give out information on a need to know basis?  That might mean just giving one of our handy dandy brochures and then inviting them to our next meeting.  It's hard for those of us who have so much information we want to share, so we might have to bite our tongues!  But people won't care how much we know until they know how much we care!
P.S.  I am going to contact her doctor to see if he wants to give out our brochures!
 Upcoming Meeting Info
Monday, May 20th, 6-8pm:  Cooking2Thrive has invited us for a GF cooking demo/feast at Trinity Episcopal Cathedral, 310 W. 17th, Little Rock, in Morrison Hall.  The menu will be: Tarragon Gorgonzola Fried Chicken Tenders, Southern Style Green Beans, Gouda Muffins, and Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter Cookies. The cost for ingredients will be $6 per person at the door.
Space will be limited, so if you are planning to attend this meeting, please RSVP to LaDonna (ladonnakbrock@yahoo.com or 501-733-9026) to save your spot.
Monday, June 17th, 6-8pm:  Craig Cooney will be our guest speaker.
From Anne Luther: "I recently enjoyed fajitas for the first time in 10 years at Bumpy’s TexMex Grill & Cantina. Although they do not have a specific GF menu, they do have many items that are GF. I talked with Wade Greenough who is the owner of this restaurant. He told me that they use fresh and locally grown meats and vegetables whenever possible. All the sauces and spices are GF. The staff has knowledge about cross contamination issues. The fries are hand cut and in a dedicated fryer. The fried fish is coated with corn meal. Brenda Tortilla makes the tortillas. This is a local company. Wade said he has been there and the corn tortillas are made on their own machine. I have not checked with the company about cross contamination concerns as they do make flour tortillas too. I did eat one tortilla. The meal was excellent. I ordered fajitas, sautéed spinach, and a side salad.
The Gluten Free Passport website has apps for finding restaurants. There is even one with fast food allergen information. http://glutenfreepassport.com/allergy-gluten-free-apps/
The Gluten Free Registry (www.glutenfreeregistry.com) is great when traveling. You can look up GF friendly restaurants by city. There is a place to recommend restaurants and to add reviews too. They also have an app if you want this on your phone.
 Gluten-Free Awards
The Best of Gluten-Free Awards” (sponsored by Triumph Dining) are chosen by popular vote within the gluten-free community. This year, almost 10,000 people came forward to cast their vote.
In the bread category, Udi’s was a winner in several categories.  To see all the winners of 2013, including the best baking mix and the best Gluten-Free Blog, click on http://bestofglutenfreeawards.com/winners-2013/.
YOUR Opinions
From Andrea on Facebook:  "Best food ever! My whole family loves everything, and they are not GF."  - talking about the company Gluten-Free Heaven in Utah that does mail orders for their GF mixes and products. From Gluten-Free Heaven's Facebook page: "If you look under my pictures there is a current product list (the yellow one). Our website is in progress right now. Until then, you can call, email, FB message, or text me your order and I will send you a Paypal invoice and get it shipped off to you."
Please send us your thoughts!!!
We would love to hear from you about GF recipies, restaurants, GF products, etc.  Just send an e-mail to Anne aluther@comcast.net or make a comment on our Facebook page.
New Gluten-Free Products!
This summer, General Mills will be introducing Pillsbury's brand new gluten-free refrigerated pie and pastry dough, thin crust pizza dough, and chocolate chip cookie dough!  First the company reformulated many Chex cereals to be gluten free. Then GM introduced a line of Betty Crocker-branded gluten-free baking mixes.
Potato-Based Blue Ice Vodka First Spirit To Carry Gluten Free Package Labeling: Blue Ice Vodka, an American potato vodka produced at Distilled Resources, Inc. in Rigby, Idaho, announces a benchmark achievement among the spirits industry, earning distinction as the first spirit brand in the country to feature a "Gluten Free" designation on the package label.
Contact Info for Other GIG Groups
GIG of Harrison
Meetings are on the first Monday of each month in the Ginny Hammerschmidt Room in the Durand Center.
For more information contact:
Terrie Martindale  tmusicus@yahoo.com  (870) 741-7240.
GIG of Northeast Arkansas - Jonesboro
Meetings are on the second Saturday of each month at Mt. Carmel Methodist Church, 4000 Southwest Drive, in Jonesboro from 10am - noon.  Find them on Facebook. 
Barbara Feeser  barbfeeser@att.net  (870) 935-4515
Gale Pierce  agpierce@suddenlink.net   (870) 203-9068
GIG of Northwest Arkansas - Fayetteville
Contact Josie Upson gig.nwar@gmail.com to get on the e-mail list and for more information.  Find them on Facebook.
GIG of North America
The new website is up and running. Check it out at www.gluten.net.
Our Arkansas branch webpage can be found by going to GIG’s website and open the tab for “Local Branches,” or go to www.centralarkansasgig.org.
 Children's Corner
After helping in the nursery today, I (Sherri) now know there is a new food group for kids.  It's called Goldfish Crackers!  At snack time, all the children got a little cup and if they wanted seconds, it was refilled with Cheerios!  I was just a volunteer, so I kept my mouth closed.
Later I asked the director what they did for their gluten-free children.  She said their moms bring their snacks. I may have gone too far when I asked what the gluten-free volunteers could eat, but I couldn't resist!  So,  I came home, pulled out my box of gluten-free Say Cheese crackers by Van's and nibbled as I wrote Dr. Rodney Ford to say how much I wish this group could have heard his talk!  Maybe in 2014 they will!
(We have invited Dr. Ford to come and do another talk in 2014!)
 Recipe Corner
Chocolate Chip Cookies (Dairy Free/ Gluten Free)
submitted by LaDonna Brock
2 ½  cups blanched almond flour
½ teaspoon celtic sea salt
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ cup grapeseed oil (or coconut oil)
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
½ cup agave nectar (or honey)
1 cup chocolate drops (I used Enjoy Life Mega Chunks GF/DF)
1. Combine dry ingredients in a large bowl.
2. Stir together wet ingredients in a smaller bowl.
3. Mix wet ingredients into dry.
4. Form ½ to 1 inch balls and press onto parchment paper lined baking sheet.
5. Bake at 350F for 7-10 minutes.
6. Cool & serve.  (Makes 24 cookies.)
I liked this recipe because it doesn’t use eggs which I have an allergy to. This website (Elena's Pantry) has lots of good gluten-free recipes. I highly recommend it.
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Chocolate Haystacks
submitted by LaDonna Brock
Makes 12 servings. Prep time: 15 minutes
2/3 cup of cacao powder (I used Dagoba Organic Chocolate Cacao Powder)
½ cup maple syrup (or honey)
¼ cup coconut oil, warmed to liquid
½ vanilla bean, scraped or small pinch of vanilla powder
¼ teaspoon sea salt (optional) (I liked it better without the salt)
2 cups shredded coconut
Blend cacao powder, honey, coconut oil, vanilla, and salt in a blender or food processor until smooth.  In a bowl, hand mix shredded coconut with chocolate mixture. Line a plate with parchment paper. Use a spoon or melon scoop to form 12-14 individual haystacks on the parchment paper. Freeze for 30 minutes or until firm. Can be stored in the refrigerator or freezer for one month.
 Research, Books, Blogs, Webinars
Effects of Gluten on the Brain  
Dr. David Perlmutter is a neurologist who has written many articles about the brain including articles about the effects of gluten on the brain.  These articles appear in the Huffington Post: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dr-david-perlmutter-md/.
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Free Webinar
Date: Wednesday, May 8, 2013, at 7:30 pm Central Time.
Presented by the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness. To register, go to http://www.celiaccentral.org/webinars/.
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Intestinal Biopsy is Not Always Required to Diagnose Celiac Disease


Background: The objective of this study was to compare celiac disease (CD)– specific antibody tests to determine if they could replace jejunal biopsy in patients with a high pretest probability of CD.
Methods: This retrospective study included sera from 149 CD patients and 119 controls, all with intestinal biopsy. All samples were analyzed for IgA and IgG antibodies against native gliadin (ngli) and deamidated gliadin peptides (dpgli), as well as for IgA antibodies against tissue transglutaminase and endomysium.
Results: Tests for dpgli were superior to ngli for IgG antibody determination: 68% vs. 92% specificity and 79% vs. 85% sensitivity for ngli and dpgli, respectively. Positive (76% vs. 93%) and negative (72% vs. 83%) predictive values were also higher for dpgli than for ngli. Regarding IgA gliadin antibody determination, sensitivity improved from 61% to 78% with dpgli, while specificity and positive predictive value remained at 97% (P < 0.00001). A combination of four tests (IgA anti-dpgli, IgG anti-dpgli, IgA anti- tissue transglutaminase, and IgA anti-endomysium) yielded positive and negative predictive values of 99% and 100%, respectively and a likelihood ratio positive of 86 with a likelihood ratio negative of 0.00. Omitting the endomysium antibody determination still yielded positive and negative predictive values of 99% and 98%, respectively and a likelihood ratio positive of 87 with a likelihood ratio negative of 0.01.
Conclusion: Antibody tests for dpgli yielded superior results compared with ngli. A combination of three or four antibody tests (including IgA anti-tissue transglutaminase and/or IgA anti-endomysium) permitted diagnosis or exclusion of CD without intestinal biopsy in a high proportion of patients (78%). Jejunal biopsy would be necessary in patients with discordant antibody results (22%). With this two-step procedure, only patients with no CD-specific antibodies would be missed.
You can read the full article on Medscape. If you don’t already have an account, you can sign up for one for free (https://profreg.medscape.com/px/registration.do?src=ban_acq_new_stm12).
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What if Someone with a Gluten Allergy Chooses Not to Avoid Gluten? 

Dr. Wangen wrote “Can someone with a gluten allergy chooses not to avoid gluten? Of course they can! But they’ll continue to suffer the symptoms that the gluten allergy is causing.
The long term consequences however, are much more severe. People with celiac disease are known to be at higher risk for many conditions, including cancer of the digestive tract, thyroid problems, anemia, osteoporosis, and many autoimmune conditions.”
To read more from Dr. Wangen of the IBS Treatment Center, click http://ibstreatmentcenter.com/community/blog.
Gluten Intolerance Group of Central Arkansas (GIGCA)