4 July 2019

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 July 4, 2019
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Gluten Free Mike Celebrates 10 Years

It is hard to believe that a decade ago I decided to start GlutenFreeMike.com which I affectionately refer to as my gluten-free alter-ego. My first site was pretty basic but got the job done and has continued to evolve to what you see today. It has been a passion project for me and always done on my own dime – no sponsored posts here thank you very much. My goal has always been to share my experiences, the good and the sometimes bad, with my readers.

My celiac diagnosis (coupled with a shellfish allergy), more than twenty years ago, came at a time when resources were scarce and I was pretty much on my own trying to navigate my new normal.  After more than ten years of finding my way, I decided to document my journey and share my learnings and experiences with those who might have been in the same place I once was.  I have always embraced my diagnosis and continue to view it as the best thing that ever happened to me.  Was it always easy?  Absolutely not, but it quite literally gave me my life back and I remain truly grateful for that.

While celiac can be initially daunting, it is something that does not need to define you.  Oh, and it ain’t rocket science either.  The prescription is pretty clear, so ignore all those muppets experts that faux-advocate for cheating, forget about taking magic potions to cure yourself, or that sourdough bread and Cheerios are safe, skip the magic sensing devices that are not scientifically proven or sound, avoid the holistic quacks doctors who think they are medically qualified to comment, it doesn’t matter how hot you get the oil in a shared fryer — it’s does not render gluten inactive, and lastly you cannot pray away the celiac (I tried it with the gay and it definitely does not work 🙂 ).  Perhaps most importantly, be thankful.  In the broad scheme of truly awful things that can happen in life, a celiac diagnosis is really just a manageable bump in the road.

Many have asked where I have been over the past few months since posting has taken a back seat. Well, I have been super-busy with my day job and life in general. I was also a bit fed-up with the state of the gluten-free landscape feeling extremely disheartened and let down by advocacy organizations, regulatory bodies, brands, and armchair social media experts that have completely lost the plot. The amount of misinformation and clear decision of choosing the almighty dollar over raising actual awareness and safety standards for those of us with celiac disease finally became a bit too much.

So, after a bit of reflection, I decided to keep doing what I do – living my celiac life on my terms. I am blocking out the bullshit noise and carrying on sharing my gluten-free journeys and experiences. Postings here will happen when time permits but you can always find me real-time on my social media channels.

Thank you for all of your comments and recommendations over the years, and most importantly for coming along on my journey – it’s been a fabulous decade.

I’ll wax nostalgic and leave you with (some of my) ten favorite experiences over the past ten years – in no particular order:

  1. Le Fer Rouge Restaurant: Gluten-Free in La Chapelle d’Abondance (France)
  2. SWISS Business Class: Always a Solid Experience.  Next Flight September 2019.
  3. Fairmont Le Montreux Palace: 5-Star GF Luxury in Switzerland
  4. Village Pantry Restaurant: When Your Family Lives in the Middle of the Atlantic (Bermuda)
  5. Bistango at the Kimberly Hotel: My Go-To Italian in NYC Year-After-Year
  6. The Four Seasons Restaurant: A Cherished Icon that Is Sadly No More
  7. Turkish Airlines Business Class: Taking the Long Way to Switzerland
  8. GF in Buenos Aires: The City that Stole My Heart (and Stomach)
  9. Golden Wok Too: My Favorite GF Chinese in Westchester County (NY)
  10. Swiss McDonald’s GF Burger: My First Real Fast Food Burger Since My Celiac Diagnosis

 


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