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31 of 31 people found the following review helpful
A celiac's review
on January 1, 2008
The Complete Idiot's Guide to Gluten Free Eating is a very comprehensive resource for newly diagnosed celiacs. The beginning chapters discuss why celiacs cannot eat gluten and the diagnosis process without getting too technical or overwhelming the reader with obscure medical tidbits. The next chapter explains which foods are safe and not safe to eat and explains how to decipher food labels and eliminate potentially harmful ingredients. There are also alphabetized lists of foods that are safe and not safe to eat. I consider all of these lists as part of a gluten free encyclopedia, which is pretty neat and very useful. I find it so easy to just look up any food I'm unsure of here. And even though the unsafe food lists look long and scary, this book does a great job at reassuring celiacs that their lives as they know them are not over. There is even an entire chapter devoted to building the self-esteems of celiacs and dealing with family and friends who just don't seem to understand the gluten free diet.
The book also recommends gluten free packaged products that are favorites of celiacs everywhere. There is also an entire chapter devoted to the ins and outs of gluten free alcohol. There are also recipes for cookies, pancakes, breads, pasta dishes and an all purpose baking mix. The authors even map out a gluten free meal plan for an entire week that's full of healthy, low fat foods and has substitutions for vegetarians. The book ends with a crash course on eating out, taking out and staying healthy on the gluten free diet. Overall this book is very helpful to newly diagnosed celiacs and their families. It's very easy to follow and written in fun, simple English. It's also sprinkled with "Good for You" tips by Tricia Thompson and cute anecdotes from the "Fearless Eater". This book is even great for celiacs who need a confidence boost or people looking for more diet options and recipes.