Pie Sensations – Columbia, TN

We were excited to find a bakery in our hometown that knows how to bake gluten free! Pie Sensations, a bakery located at 26 Public Square, Columbia, TN routinely has a gluten free coconut cake on their menu. While Pie Sensations is not a gluten free bakery, they are well aware of cross contamination issues and take great care in making sure that anything they make gluten free is prepared in an environment to prevent cross contamination.

After buying 3 of their gluten free coconut cakes and not having any issues with them, it was time for a custom order. Wanda’s birthday request was for a gluten free birthday cake. Since we loved the taste of their previous cakes I called to see if they could make a gluten free birthday cake. They let me know they were not cake decorators and that was fine with me. I told them I just needed a white cake with white icing, all gluten free. They said that was not a problem.

I picked up the cake a few days later and was very surprised! The cake was huge and it tasted better than any other birthday cake I had tasted. If you are looking for gluten free baked goods anywhere near Columbia, TN, we recommend Pie Sensations. You can contact them at 931-223-5846.


Celiac Disease and Irritable Bowel Syndrome

There are many other complications that people with celiac disease will suffer from. Celiac Disease and Irritable Bowel Syndrome seem to go hand in hand. Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) affects many and had many of the same symptoms of celiac. I found some good overview information relating to IBS at Pain.com. Here is some of what I found:

Irritable bowel syndrome, or IBS, is a common condition that causes a  variety of chronic digestive symptoms. People with irritable bowel  syndrome may have digestive systems that are more sensitive to stress  and certain types of foods. The symptoms of IBS can be very similar to  the symptoms of some other gastointestinal diseases, such as celiac  disease, that may have serious complications, so it is worth seeking  medical attention for chronic digestive problems. IBS is diagnosed by  ruling out other conditions with similar symptoms. Fortunately, the  symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome can be managed and the condition  causes no permanent damage to the digestive system.

People with irritable bowel syndrome experience frequent diarrhea or  constipation. Some people with IBS even experience both problems in an  alternating cycle. Abdominal cramping and pain are also common symptoms  of irritable bowel syndrome. Gas and bloating may also occur in some  cases.

The symptoms of IBS vary in severity as well as how long they last.  In order for a diagnosis of irritable bowel syndrome, the symptoms have  to be present for at least three months and for more than three days per  month. Some people with IBS have symptoms that are basically present  all of the time, and others have symptoms that come and go. In some  cases, it may be possible to identify things that trigger the IBS  symptoms, like food and stress, and control these triggers to help  control the symptoms of IBS.

If you are following a strict gluten free diet and still have the symptoms that are described in this article, please discuss the possibility of IBS with your doctor.


How to Stay Updated on Gluten Free and Celiac News

The internet has become the lifeline for information for those with celiac disease or gluten issues. One of the most time consuming things each day for me is to try to read all the blog posts and news articles concerning the topic that I am interested in. If you want to know how to stay updated on gluten free and celiac news then follow this simple step.

Most everyone has a google account. If you do not have one, then get one. It’s free. In your google account go to your account settings and add Alerts to your list of products. Create an alert, based on the topic or keyword you want information about. I created two, one for celiac and one for gluten free. Choose how often you want the information, how many results you want and where you want the results delivered. I choose to get the email once a day with only the best results for the topic.

For the celiac topic I usually get around 15 results per day and for gluten free it returns about 35 per day. I do not read every result but the format the email is in lets you screen the title and a short description quickly.

You can create a folder on your email account to store these alerts and have your account automatically forward the alerts to the folder each time one comes in. This way they do not clutter your inbox and they are all in one place when you get a chance to read them.

If you have a need to stay gluten free then you need to stay updated on the latest information and this is one of many ways to do it. Information is the key to survival so make it easier on yourself and use this simple system.

Gluten Free Hersheys Kisses

Here is another great article from Jane Anderson of About.com in which she talks about gluten free Hershey’s Kisses. The last bag of them at our house were the carmel filled kisses and now I see they are not gluten free. Thankfully I ate all of them and my spouse didn’t get a chance to poison herself with them. Here is an excerpt from the article:

Plain milk chocolate Hershey’s kisses are considered gluten-free to 20 parts per million, according to Hershey’s.That includes the traditional silver-wrapped Hershey’s kisses, plus the plain milk chocolate kisses wrapped in colored foil that are sold for holidays such as Valentine’s Day, Halloween and Christmas. It also includes the plain milk chocolate Hershey’s kisses sold in plastic candy canes at holiday time.

However, none of the other Hershey’s kisses products are gluten-free. That includes milk chocolate kisses with almonds, milk chocolate kisses filled with caramel, dark chocolate kisses (either plain or filled with mint truffle), pumpkin spice kisses, AirDelight kisses, Hugs kisses (the striped varieties), candy cane-flavored kisses, and kisses filled with cherry cordial cream. Also, the large Hershey’s kiss products — the 7 oz., 5 oz. and 1.45 oz. kisses — are not considered gluten-free either, according to the company.

This is another lesson for us. READ the labels on everything, even if you have read it before. Ingredients change from time to time and gluten appears in foods that you would never suspect. One example that I found is Wal-Mart frozen corn. We love the gluten free Hershey’s Kisses but need to pay better attention to the flavors.

See’s Candies | Gluten Free Candy

See's Candies, Inc.If you are looking for a special occasion gift such as a birthday or valentine’s day gift for that special someone who has to eat gluten free, then See’s Candies is the first place to look. Their candy box gifts are some of the best on the market and the majority of their candies are gluten free.

You can find them in many candy stores or you can order them online. Sometimes you can get them online at a reduced cost by using coupons or finding online specials on their website.

To help you find the right gluten free candy, please check out their allergen page. They list the products they have that do contain gluten so you can rule those out. As you can see, not many of their candies contain gluten. One thing to keep in mind is there is no statement about cross contamination here but we have not had any issues with them. They do list their tool free number and a statement that they will be glad to answer any questions.

From their website, sees.com, they tell the story of how See’s became to be one of the best candy makers of all time:

See’s Famous Old Time Candies® are well known and loved throughout the West where the company was founded in 1921. If you were to visit a See’s Candy store, you would find a sparkling clean black and white shop where your candies would be packed to order as you made your candy selection. See’s reputation for friendly old-fashioned service remains unrivaled.

To produce the best possible boxed chocolates, we at See’s acquire the choicest and finest grade raw ingredients from all over the world. Making over 100 varieties of candies, we have maintained our reputation for excellence by strict adherence to See’s “Quality Without Compromise®” motto.

See’s is headquartered in South San Francisco, California with kitchens located in both Los Angeles and South San Francisco delivering fresh chocolates and candies to over 200 See’s shops in the West where See’s Candies are a “Happy Habit®”.

They have many selections that are priced under $10 and their packaging is great for all those special occasions were candy makes the greatest gift. So if you are looking for gluten free candy, Sees.com is the place to start.

See's Candies, Inc.

Gluten Free Valentine’s Candy

Every Valentine’s Day we get asked what the best ready-to-eat gluten free Valentine’s Day candy is. I don’t have a favorite, I like them all! Candy is a weakness of mine so here is a list of some of the best and most popular gluten free Valentine’s Day candy. Remember to check the label before you buy to make sure the candy is safe for you.

• Sweethearts candy hearts from Necco (New England Confectionery Company)
• Hershey’s Kisses, only in plain milk chocolate (not the flavored or striped ones)
• Jelly Belly jelly beans, all flavors
• Dove Heart Promises
• Smarties Valentine Hearts
• M&Ms Valentine Candies, all except for any pretzel-based varieties
• Tootsie Roll Valentine Candies
• Peeps Valentine marshmallow-based treats
• Pez Valentine’s Day candies
• Tootsie Pops Valentine’s lollipops
• Wonka Laffy Taffy, special Valentine’s Day edition
• Charms Valentine Pops

Thanks to celiadisease.com for this info. We wish all of our readers a gluten free happy Valentine’s Day!

See's Candies, Inc.