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Hip, Hip Horray for NFCA!

Today, as part of Celiac Awareness Month,  I am honored to be featured as the “Blogger a Day” for the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness {NFCA}.

Early this year, I was thrilled to be asked by NFCA to join their team of registered dietitians, Rachel Begun, Melinda Dennis, and Nancy Dickens, and serve as one of the experts on their weekly “Ask the Dietitian” feature.

After joining the team, I quickly got caught up to speed on all the excellent resources NFCA provides to the celiac and gluten-free community.

I only had one complaint…

That I hadn’t discovered NFCA when I first started researching celiac disease and the gluten-free lifestyle!

So, today, I’d like to get you all up to speed on all the fabulous resources NFCA offers, along with all the activities they’ve got going for the month of May and beyond.

First, a little background…

The NFCA was founded in 2003 by Alice Bast as a not-for-profit organization, dedicated to raising awareness of celiac disease among the general public and the healthcare community, and to promote research to better understand the causes, and treatments of celiac disease.  In 2006 , NFCA launched a national celiac public awareness campaign that continues today with a renewed focus on education of physicians, nurses, dietitians, and the pharmaceutical industry on the most current information on celiac disease and the gluten-free diet.

There are so many wonderful resources available on the NFCA website, that it’s hard to know where to start.

Here is just a peek at a few of my favorites:

  • Patient Information sheets.  These include a printable Celiac Symptoms Checklist for you to take to your physician if you think you may have symptoms of celiac disease, and numerous Celiac Resources including a “Getting Started to a Gluten-Free Diet” guide; gluten-free food and recipes; and links to celiac and gluten-free bloggers.
  • Celiac Disease and Gluten-Free Education and Awareness Training for Healthcare Professionals. Did you know that celiac disease effects one of every 133 people in the United States and that 95 percent of the 3 million people estimated to be afflicted with celiac disease are undiagnosed?  This is where the GREAT Healthcare online medical education program comes in to play. GREAT goals include improving the rate of celiac diagnosis, and promoting support, follow-up services and implementation of the gluten-free diet.  In addition, there is a GREAT Foodservice program that offers a comprehensive system for delivering safe and tasty gluten-free foods to the community.
  • NFCA Newsletters.  The monthly newsletter is a great way to stay up-to-date on all the latest celiac and gluten-free living news.  Sign up here for your monthly delivery.
  • Ask the Dietitian.  Submit your gluten-free nutrition questions to the NFCA team of registered dietitians each week, then check back each Tuesday for helpful hints and advice on staying healthy and happy on a gluten-free diet.  In addition, for the remaining Tuesdays in May, join Rachael Begun, MS, RD and myself as we lead Twitter chats on various gluten-free nutrition topics.  Click here to find out more about the topics and learn how to submit your questions for the chats.

These are only a few of the great resources the NFCA has to offer, but I encourage you to get involved with NFCA and help promote celiac awareness.

You can do this in numerous ways…

  • Check out the NFCA website today to learn more.
  • Follow NFCA on Facebook and Twitter to stay up-to-date on all the great gluten-free programs they are offering.
  • Donate. Volunteer. Advocate.  Share your Story.  Your support is critical to the visions of NFCA.  Click here to become part of the NFCA community today.

Finally, I hope you will check out all of the other great gluten-free “Bloggers of the Day” this May.  And, as a dietitian and gluten-free blogger myself, I would like to personally thank NFCA for all their outstanding support of myself and others in the gluten-free community.

Happy Celiac Awareness Month!

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