Gluten-free rice cookies. Photo: Getty Images
Gluten-free rice cookies. Photo: Getty Images

If you’re gluten-free, going to the grocery store used to mean spending hours reading labels to avoid anything with wheat, barley or other grains. But with the rising number of people with celiac disease and gluten intolerance, more stores and restaurants are offering gluten-free foods. KQED’s Forum discusses the rise of gluten-free diets.
Original Broadcast: Fri, Dec 7, 2012 — 10:00 AM
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Host: Dave Iverson


  • Neilsen Fernandez-Becker, associate director of the Celiac Management Clinic at the Stanford School of Medicine
  • Jefferson Adams, writer at
  • Melinda Dennis, dietician and nutrition coordinator with the Celiac Center at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, sufferer from celiac disease, and co-author of “Real Life with Celiac Disease: Troubleshooting and Thriving Gluten-Free
  • Sadie Scheffer, owner and founder of, which delivers gluten-free breads around the city
KQED’s Forum: Going Gluten-Free 7 December,2012Wendy Goodfriend

  • ChotoCali

    I found this attention to the gluten free community a great use of public media.

    However, the wave of gluten free popularity is NOT based on the medical needs of people with Celiac Disease or autoimmune issues causing gluten intolerance. The market in the US continues to grow with our without standards, and this means that things are very difficult and confusing — far more time and illness than before the fad. Regulation in the US is so far behind the UK/EU, and most of the products and menus in the US at the moment would be illegal in other countries (for good reason). There appear to be more options, but there really are NOT at all. 95% of the things I see labeled “gluten free” on a menu or in the store are substandard and feel like a marketing fake out to many of us. **Those on the fad diet and those who choose to ignore a strict diet hurt the rest of us tremendously.**

    It’s not just about your GI. It’s also about asymptomatic cases and other problems like infertility, joint pain, mood disorder, migraine cognitive problems, lymphoma, etc. Please, add some information about iG testing and malformation indicator for less symptomatic and asymptomatic cases. I’d also like to see more coverage of slurs and hate crimes like poisoning as well as discrimination in the workplace — all of which I’ve personally experienced. is a great resource at times. Many of their stories are overly swayed by advertisers who lack standards and make us very, very ill. I’d advise to dismiss the information in their product spotlight articles, especially for companies that don’t meet European law.

  • ChotoCali

    I’d also like to add that many cannot tolerate xanthan and guar gums. Gummy Tummy is a huge problem.


Wendy Goodfriend

I am the Senior Interactive Producer for KQED Food. I have designed and produced food-related websites and blogs for KQED including Bay Area Bites; Check, Please! Bay Area;  Taste This; Jacques Pepin’s websites; Weir Cooking in the City and KQED Food. When I am not creating and managing food websites I am taking photos and video of Bay Area Life and designing online navigation systems. My professional education and training includes: clinical psychology, photography, commercial cooking, web design, information architecture and UX. You can find me engaged in social media on Twitter @bayareabites and on Facebook at Bay Area Bites. I can also be found photoblogging at look2remember.

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