New CD diagnosis

What are some tips for beginning this GF diet? It’s 3 weeks until I can get in with the nutritionist and I’m trying to figure out this diet on my own until then. I truly don’t want to eat just plain meat and dry salad until then!

hi Annie,

Try some websites with gluten free recipes like and type in the keyword RECIPES. You can look for a bunch of websites that offer recipes for gluten free alternatives. I have never considered myself a good cook–I’m more of a “survival” cook…but since becoming gluten free (it’s 4 months now, and I’m 39 years old), I have found a whole new world of flavors with spices. (If you want, I can send you a list of which spices goes great with which dishes.)

I like Shepherd’s Pie and make it with spiced ground beef as the bottom layer, mixed vegetables as the middle layer and garlic mashed potatoes as the top layer. YUM!

I’ve been baking my own bread and banana nut muffins every Sunday for the week…again, if you want the recipes, let me know!

Eating out can be a challenge, and I still find it to be frustrating. I am very glad that my favorite items on the Wendy’s menu are all gluten free: chili with cheese (no crackers), baked potato with sour cream and chives and a side salad (no croutons).

The biggest challenge is going grocery shopping. My nutritionist (at Columbia U in NYC) gave me a little spiral bound book with a grocery list of things that we can buy so that is very helpful.

The first thing you have to do is clean out your kitchen cupboards and refrigerator of all gluten-laden stuff. I did this by telling a friend to come over with a shopping wagon. Together we discussed the ingredients and if I had any questions I would look up the ingredient online. Ultimately, my friend left with 6 bags worth of groceries.

Many people buy gluten free items in bulk and is a good place to find some good items. I ordered a case of gluten free cereal from them.

Beware of labels that say wheat free, for they may still contain gluten! Soy sauce contains gluten. Licorice contains gluten.*

*Many on-line gluten free stores sell these items as gluten-free, but they are likely more expensive than buying them at your local retailer.

There are gluten free protein bars, and Lara is a good brand for flavor variety, but not high in protein. A yummy high-protein bar is Organic food bar. I like their Belgium Chocolate Chip.

For chocolate milk: I just learned that Rich Chocolate Ovaltine (NOT any of the malt flavors, though) is gluten free!

Throw out your existing butter and peanut butter and jelly jars, for they have been contaminated by your knife hitting regular bread before going gluten free. Most people will tell you to get new cooking utensils too. When you’re ready for that, don’t forget to change your dish sponge!

Ice cream is mostly safe, but avoid the brownie and cookie dough flavors.

Above all, when in doubt, READ ALL INGREDIENTS. (Avoid wheat, rye and barley. Oats don’t contain the protein that has gluten in it, but it is highly likely they have been cross contaminated, so I avoid that as well.)

Feel free to write me if you have any questions…and best of luck to you!


Hi Annie (and Lisa)

I have had CD for eight months and am learning slowly. Some of the suggestions Lisa had were great. There are very few dishes I make from scratch, but there are some wonderful products that I use to make quick meals.

Ancient Harvest Quinoa Pasta, it comes in many shapes and sizes and is great for butter noodles or spaghetti.

Annie’s Rice Pasta & Cheddar (blue box) its the closest thing I have found to Mac & Cheese

Mrs. Leeper’s, this is a casserole mix and comes in Chicken Alfedro, Creamy Tuna, and Beef Lasagna

Organic Ville Salad Dressing, these I got at Costco in a two-pack: Sun Dried Tomato & Garlic and Olive Oil & Balsamic. They are both wonderful on a salad or on potatoes or rice. Beware of regular Balsamic vinegar, it always makes me very sick.

Chebe bread mixes are all very good, I used the one for cheese rolls to make cheddar biscuits and they were out of this world. I alos have cinnamon roll miox and Garlic & Onion breadstick mix, both also very good.

Lundberg Risotto comes in many flavors and is very good. My family that does not have CF will even it. Some of the flavors are cheddar broccoli, italian heb, tuscan, alfredo, florentine, and garlic primavera.

Silk Soy Milk, vanilla and chocolate flavors. This has saved my life!! Since being diagnosed with CD, I am also Lactose Intoleralant, which my doctor says will go away in time, but until then the Solk products are both lactose free and glutne-free.

Also, because I got tired only being able to have ketchup on stuff, I made my own Honey-Mustard sauce. I use Spectrum Naturals canola mayonnaise, Annie’s Naturals organic yellow mustard and Honey. Yo have to mix to taste, but it is a very nice change of pace.

I really hope this helps you. I still feel lost and very frustrated sometimes. If you need to talk, please feel free to email me.