Goodie Survival Guide

The road to healing from an Auto-Immune disease, an intolerance and even a lifestyle change takes time and patience.  Healing is a process and it is a journey. 

I have been where you are now, new to this diet, new to this lifestyle, new to navigating this world. I have done many elimination diets, Paleo, Sugar free, Yeast free and Dairy free diets.  I have been scared, frustrated, sad and mad all at the same time.  

But through this experience I have also gained a new outlook on life, happiness and a new way of living and thriving (this took some time ; )).  

When you are ready to take a stand with your health and you want to take charge of your new life and make it the best you can come on over to this page and get started!  It took me a long time to find these doctors that I have listed below, and I honestly trust them with my life!  Without them, I would not be where I am today!  I want you!  Yes, you who is reading this and feeling unsure-to tell "unsure" to take a back seat.  You will be okay.  You can do this.  It will get easier.  Trust me.  Trust this process.  Everything you are feeling is okay, but know you can lead a healthy and happy life gluten-free, Paleo, Dairy-free, Grain-free, Vegan, Sugar-free, Yeast-free and any other lifestyle diet you can think of. Trust me, and let me help you.  

All of your questions are valid and will be answered.  You will thrive.  You will be happy. You will enjoy this life with the lifestyle your body needs you to lead one step at a time. You will get the tools you need to lead your healthy, happy and thriving life.  Below is a list of fantastic doctors, wig makers, holistic healing and a ton of links and hidden gluten tips and tricks I learned while on my journey.  Because let's face it, I want you to have the best experience you can while going through this lifestyle change.  I want nothing but the best for all of you!  And I want all of you most importantly to be and feel fantastic!

Alternative Medical Resources:
  • Dr. Monica Peacocke-founder of Suffern's-Women's-Wellness Group-focuses on Bowel disorders, Endocrine disorders, Menopause, Internal Medicine, Gluten-Intolerance, IBS, disorders of the vulva and more. Two offices: New York City and a wellness center in Suffern, NY 
  • Appointments: (646) 672-0528/(845) 547-2161

  • Dr. Susan Thys-Jacobs-Alternative Endocrinologist-founder of Premcal4PMS. Works with Auto-Immune diseases, Gluten-Intolerance/Celiac, Premenstrual Syndrome. 
  • Appointments: (212) 506-0246

  • Picara Vassallo L.AC., founder of UtmostSource Acupuncture focuses on holistic Integrative approaches to Acupuncture. Picara focuses on Acupuncture, Chinese Herbs, Integrated Healing, Remote Healing and On Location Healing. Two locations: NYC and Greenville, Delaware. 
  • Appointments: (845) 855-3200 
    • Merria Dearman-Custom Wig and Halo Maker and Hair Stylist designed and styled by Merria herself. Merria comes from a background of theater production, hair styling, working with people who have Auto-Immune disease, Cancer and other disorders. Merria's focus in on personal attention and care surrounding all aspects of hair loss and the trauma accompanied with. Merria takes appointments only and is located on Manhattan's Upper East Side. 
    • Appointments: (646) 596-9611
    • Dr. Susan Blum-Integrative Functional Medical Doctor focuses on Auto-Immune Diseases.  Located in Rye Brook, New York (Westchester) 
    • Appointments: (914) 652-7800

    What is Functional Medicine?
    Functional, Integrative medicine focuses on prevention through nutrition, diet, and exercise; use of laboratory testing and other diagnostic techniques; and prescribed combinations of drugs and/or botanical medicines, supplements, therapeutic diets, detoxification programs, or stress-management techniques.  The Doctors I recommend are people that I trust with my LIFE and believe these wonderful sources can help you or your family members on your gluten-free journey.  For more questions about the people on above list, please send me an email to

    Gluten-Free Parent:

    Halloween Gluten-Free Candy Lists!!:
    (includes nut free, peanut free, kosher, kosher OUD, corn, soy and egg info in both ingredients and manufacturing plant)
    Celiac Resources:

    Gluten-Free Cooking and Wellness In The City:
    Gluten Free Travel:
     (Dining cards in every language for your travel needs)!

    Gluten-Free Medications:

    Additional 'Go-To' Gluten-Free Websites:



    Gluten-Free Safe Flours, Grains and Starches:
    Soy (flour, soybeans)
    Rice (flour, brown rice, white rice, wild rice, rice bran)
    Tapioca (pearls, flour, starch)
    Potato (flour, starch)
    Chickpea Flour 
    Garbanzo Flour
    Coconut Flour
    Buckwheat Flour 
    Teff Flour
    Amaranth Flour
    Quinoa Flour
    Almond Flour
    Corn (popcorn, grits, cornmeal, corn flour, cornstarch)
    Bean Flour
    Millet Flour
    Montina Flour
    Nut Flour
    Arrowroot Flour
    Mesquite Flour
    Sorghum Flour
    All Purpose Gluten-Free Flour
    Flax Seed
    Oats (gluten-free only)

    Unsafe Toxic Flours:

    Wheat (kamut, semolina, spelt and triticale)
    Contaminated Oat flour or oats
    Barley (including Malt)

    Gluten-Free Oats Vs. Non Gluten-Free Oats:

    Most oats are unsafe for a person with Celiac Disease or an Intolerance because of the cross contamination, however there are some Oats out there that are gluten-free.  You just have to check the label. Bob's Red Mill makes great gluten-free Rolled Oats and  ArrowHead Mills makes a great Steel Cut Oat.  Many brands make gluten-free oats. Just make sure you don't ingest the toxic ones.  It's tricky, so make sure you read the label.

    Safe Gluten-Free Additives:

    Baking powder
    Baking Soda
    Citric Acid
    Hydrolyzed Soy Protein
    Mono and diglycerides
    Monosodium glutamate (MSG)*
    Natural color and flavor (ex. Pure Vanilla Extract)
    Soy, soy protein
    Soy lecithin
    Apple Cider Vinegar (not Malt Vinegar)
    Artificial color and flavor-unless it has caramel coloring in it
    Distilled Vodkas (Be careful, this varies Celiac to Celiac.)
    Potato Vodkas 
    *MSG in the U.S. is often ok, but if traveling overseas to Asia, it might contain Wheat.  Always check the ingredients.

    The listed additives above are generally safe, but only if it is manufactured in North America. If it is manufactured elsewhere, it is best to call and find out or steer clear.

    Toxic Un-Safe Additives:
    Dextrin* (can contain barely or wheat starch, however are predominately corn, but it's best to check with the manufacturer)
    Caramel Coloring*
    Glucose Syrup*
    Herbal supplements
    Hydrolyzed vegetable protein (HVP)
    Hydrolyzed plant protein (HPP)
    Licorice (unless gluten-free, try CandyTree and Orgran Molasses Licorice)
    Make-up (Certain brands are ok, and some are not)
    Malt flavoring
    Modified Food Starch*
    Prepared cake frosting: most processed frostings contain wheat starch or wheat or a gluten filled syrup!  I found this out the hard way, and it was not pretty.  Lucky for you, Betty Crocker has come out with a line of gluten-free frostings!! yeah!  Betty Crocker Whipped Frostings are gluten-free and so are Betty Crocker Rich and Creamy frostings.
    Soy Sauce (unless gluten-free)
    Whiskey (through the distillation process sometimes not all gluten is extracted.  Be careful.  Not all celiacs can tolerate whiskey and neither can I)
    Irish Cream (Bailey's)-has caramel coloring in it
    Kahua-has caramel coloring in it
    Flavored Vodkas-Has Caramel coloring in them

    Ingredients with an asterisk may contain gluten. 

    The Skinny on Caramel coloring (not to be confused with actual Caramel)-According to the Gluten-Free Guidelines in the U.S. a certified gluten-free product can have up to 20 PPM (parts per million) and anywhere from 5-20ppm of gluten. That means many of those processed gluten-free products you are eating contain a small amount of gluten. With that said, you must follow your gut and determine how much processed your body can tolerate. Caramel coloring is one of those additives that has up to or under 20PPM of gluten. Caramel coloring is found in flavored coffee's like the ones you get at Dunkin Donuts and Starbucks), to soda like Coke, Pepsi, Dr. Pepper, Root Beer, Cream Soda, to candy to chips and more. Caramel coloring is an additive. Caramel candy is different. So if you are 100 percent gluten-free and you are still not feeling well, then it is possible hidden gluten is lurking in your food.  Always read labels.

    Gluten-Free Cheat Sheet-Where hidden gluten lurks:

    1. Bailey's Irish Cream liquor is not gluten-free.  Bailey's has barley and malt in it.  Bailey's also has caramel coloring.

    2. Caramel coloring is labeled gluten-free because it has under 20ppm of gluten.  Products that contain under a certain amount of gluten are considered gluten-free, but in fact are not. There is gluten in caramel coloring.  Some can tolerate this and some cannot. I can't. Caramel coloring is found in sodas like coke and rootbeer, Starbucks coffee syrups such as Vanilla, Gingerbread, Eggnog and more.

    3. Caramel coloring is not the same as caramel. Do not confuse this. Many caramels are gluten-free depending on the brand.

    4. Kahlua is considered gluten-free because it has under 20 ppm of gluten, and is therefore labeled gluten-free.  But it does have gluten in it.  Some people can digest this small amount and some cannot.

    5. Beer is not gluten free (unless you buy gluten-free beer, which is sold at specialty stores, and is actually really good)!

    6. Guinness beer is not gluten-free.  It is only Wheat-Free.  Guinness is made with Sorghum but it is not gluten-free according to their website.

    7.  Nigerian Guinness is not gluten-free

    8. Cold Cuts and Cheeses from the Deli: This is a bit tricky.  While most cold cuts are gluten-free like Boar's Head and others, the slicer that the cold cuts are cut on is not.  There are also many brands of cold cuts that are NOT gluten-free.  Slicing both the gluten with the gluten-free can serve you up one huge sour stomach of CROSS CONTAMINATION. Cross Contamination is tricky and sneaky, obviously friends with Gluten, Cross Contamination can bring back your symptoms like a familiar song just as fast as eating actual gluten can. The idea is to ask the deli server to clean the slicer before he/she cuts your meat or call ahead in the a.m. when the deli opens and have them cut your meat first before the slicer has been used. Gluten hides in cold cuts by way of fillers, additives and thickeners. You have to know your brands and do your research before you hit the deli.  Boar's Head cold cuts and cheeses are 100% gluten-free and do not use any fillers or thickeners in their products. This info comes from Boar's Head themselves after contacting me regarding this very section.

    9. Whiskey is labeled gluten-free, because it is distilled, but many sensitive celiacs cannot digest or tolerate even that slight small amount, because even in it's distilled form, it can still hold stubborn Gluten from its distillation process.

    10.  Processed Meat: not all processed meat is gluten-free!  Whether it be bacon, roast beef, sausage, a burger (veggie, turkey or beef) or others-always check the package for hidden fillers.  Hidden fillers lurk everywhere and anywhere. In restaurants chefs use fillers like wheat, bread crumbs and thickeners to bind burgers or patties together. It needs to hold with something right? Make sure you check with the manager at restaurants to make sure you are not ingesting any hidden gluten. 

    11. French fries, hash browns, onion rings, zucchini chips, mozzarella sticks, fish sticks, potato skins, breakfast potato's, mashed potato's, spinach dip and meatballs and any other bar foods are not gluten-free (unless otherwise specified) (**see details)

    11A. French fries are usually dipped in the same fryer as other gluten foods and therefore Cross Contamination is messing with you, and you will get sick!!  Always check with your server to see if they use a separate fryer for their fries and then are therefore generally safe.

    11B. Spinach dip or any 'dip' for that matter uses thickening agents or flour and are therefore not gluten-free (unless otherwise specified)

    11C. Hash browns and breakfast potato's often are made with flour and thickeners.  Hash browns have thickening agents in the batter and therefore are not gluten-free. **Ask your server if either of theses two are dusted with flour or if any gluten has been used.  If so steer clear!!

    11D.  Breakfast potato's are often dusted with flour.  **Always Ask (see 11c)

    11E.  Mashed potato's often have thickeners and flour in the mix.  Always ask the chef if they are homemade, and if they have thickeners added. Most that are made from the box do, and steer clear.

    11F. Mozzarella sticks, fish sticks, onion rings, zucchini fries, chickpea fries, avocado fries, fried fish, fish and chips, fried crap, fried calamari, fried 'anything' all have gluten and in many forms.  Cross contamination occurs when all of these goodies are dipped in the same fryer as each other, whether gluten-free or not. By mixing them in the same fryer you are risking major cross contamination.

    12.  Sauces: unless you know where that sauce has come from steer clear.  Sauces are tricky, you have to know that in sauces lurks flours, additives and thickeners, thickening agents, malt, soy sauce, wheat, barley, dextrose, mustards, additives, bbq sauces, teriyaki sauces, asian marinades, bottled sauces that are not gluten-free, gravy, malt vinegar and more all lurking in your sauce.  When dining out say NO to sauce, or ask your server to explain to you every ingredient that is in your sauce. If your server doesn't know, then steer clear.

    13.  Bloody Mary's-A favorite past time cocktail on a sunday afternoon. I hate to break it to you, but not all bloody mary mixes are gluten-free. Read the ingredients.

    14. Soy Sauce is not gluten-free (unless you buy wheat-free, then it is safe). Teriyaki sauce, wosteshire sauce, hoisen sauce, marinades, gravy, bbq sauce are not gluten-free or wheat-free unless you buy a special brand that has gluten-free options.  Try San-J

    15. Flavored Syrups: many flavored syrups are not gluten-free, especially the ones at Starbucks. Many of them have caramel coloring in them. That means no gingerbread, vanilla, egg nog, mocha, pumpkin spice and all those other syrups you love so much.  Definitely not the sugar free ones either. Opt for a plain latte or frap.

    16.  Grocery products: Always Check the Ingredients!! Whether it be a bottle of pickles or a tub of hummus.  A bag of tortilla chips or a bottle of salad dressing.  Prepared turkey or prepared pork.  Always check.

    17.  Sticky Rice is not gluten-free.  What is sticky rice?  It's sushi rice.  Next time you get sushi either get just sashimi or get sushi wrapped in cucumber with no rice, or ask for brown rice. There is not gluten in white rice, but there is a gluten agent in the processing to make that white rice sticky.

    18. Wheat in all of its form, including kamut, semolina, spelt and triticale, barely, including malt and rye are not gluten-free.

    19. Malt beverages, wine coolers, or hard lemonade often contain gluten in forms of malt barley-always check the ingredients.

    20. Some Rice Krispies are not gluten-free. More recently the brand that manufactures Rice Krispes became gluten-free. However, many supermarket shelves still sell the old gluten boxes. Make sure you check the labels on the box.

    21. Corn pops are not gluten-free.

    22. Vitamin E and wheat germ oil contain wheat or gluten. Vit. E oil is often found in popcorn mixes and other places.  Beware!

    23. Stabilizers, binders, fillers should be avoided. This is another term for hidden gluten.

    24. Blue Cheese and other cheese from the blue cheese family can contain hidden gluten by the way the cheese is processed.

    25. Bourbon, Scotch, Grain Vodka's and ale contain hidden gluten.

    26. Reduced fat products can contain hidden gluten.

    27. The more processed an item is the more hidden gluten may lurk.  "sugar free, reduced fat, low fat."

    28. Puddings, custards and pie fillings can contain hidden gluten.

    29. Herbal tea's-Some herbal teas contain hidden gluten and obvious gluten.  One would never think to check the label on tea, but you'd be surprised!  Herbal tea's like holiday tea's have roasted barley and malt in them.  Tea flavors to stay away from (depending on brand) are sugar cookie, hazelnut, gingerbread and others. Always check the ingredients!

    30. Candy Canes-are not gluten-free. It's not the ingredients that contains the gluten, but the packaging. How do you think that clear plastic wrap gets onto that candy cane without sticking? FLOUR. And wheat flour. Try Spanglers for gluten-free candy canes. (they make dum dum lolly pops and those are gluten-free too).

    31.  Dum Dum lolly pops are gluten-free.

    32.  Just because it's vegan doesn't mean it's gluten-free.

    33.  Whole Wheat Pasta and cous cous are not gluten-free.

    34.  Wheat free does not mean gluten-free.  

    35. Granola is not all gluten-free. There are gluten-free granola versions. Those are safe.

    36.  Oatmeal is not always gluten-free.

    37. Throat suckers are not all gluten-free. In fact! Many of these have gluten in them.    Try ZAND.

    38. PAM cooking spray-All PAM cooking sprays are gluten-free EXCEPT PAM baking spray.  Their baking spray clearly indicates in the ingredients that wheat flour is used.

    39. Cooking wine-Many cooking wines are not gluten-free. Always check the label.  Holland House cooking wines (all of them) are 100% gluten-free.

    40. Tortilla chips-Most gluten-free books with guide you and tell you that generally mexican restaurants are gluten-free, especially the tortilla chips, but BEWARE and ask. If the tortilla chips are not made in-house and are made outside of the restaurant facility the chips may be made or contaminated with wheat flour!  There is that chance that flour was used. There is also the possibility of cross contamination. It is a myth that all tortilla chips are gluten free.

    41. Soy products are considered unsafe for Celiacs because of its harvesting. Soy is harvested on wheat plantations and therefore is not suggested for Celiacs.

    42. Sticky Sushi Rice is not gluten-free!  White rice is fine, brown and wild rices are fine, but have you ever wondered how they get the sticky coated to the rice at Asian restaurants?  Gluten. So instead opt for sushi wrapped in cucumber or stick with Sashimi.  Brown rice at Asian restaurants also often use gluten, so always check with the manager. 

    43. Pita, bread and rolls are not gluten-free (unless used with gluten-free flours)

    44. Make-up, toothpaste and medications. Not all make-up, toothpaste and medications are created equally, and surprisingly many, many brands use gluten or some form of gluten in their ingredients.  Read labels.

    Gluten-Free and Makeup:
    Toxic Unsafe Hidden Gluten Ingredients found in make-up:

    Avena oats, avena stiva flour, starch or protein oatmeal derivative of oats
    Horedeum, barley, barley extract, barley seed flour, horedeum vulgare-derivative of barely
    Secale, secale cereale extract or flour-derivative of rye
    Gliadin, grain, grain flour-derivative of various grains
    Triticum, wheat, Hydrolyzed wheat gluten, protein or starch, wheat amino acids, triticum vulgare bran, triticum vulgare germ oil, flour, extract or protein wheat germ-derivative of wheat.

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    xx Julie

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