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Market in Burbank helps those intolerant of gluten

October 12, 2011 12:00:00 AM PDT
Gluten-free is the new buzz word at groceries and restaurants.

Those intolerant of gluten, a protein found in many grains, know shopping can be scary and frustrating - until now. We found one market that's totally free of gluten.

Pam MacDonald, owner of Pam Mac D's Gluten Free Market, suffers from celiac disease, a condition where the body is intolerant of gluten.

"I was triggered by a hysterectomy. The stress of that triggered my celiac disease," said MacDonald.

MacDonald said gluten is a protein that's found in wheat, rye, barley and some oats.

She said many people have the disease for up to 11 years without knowing. The symptoms can vary from headaches, fatigue to stomach aches. Just a small amount of gluten can bring on immediate symptoms.

"It only takes 1/8 of a teaspoon for celiac to have reactions. Anywhere from gastrointestinal to just being bone dead tired," said MacDonald.

MacDonald opened Pam Mac D's Gluten Free Market in Burbank where everything in the store is gluten-free so those with the disease or gluten sensitivity can shop without challenge.

"I picked up today an Ethiopian dish that has a teff flour wrap. I know that in Ethiopian cuisine, they use teff, which is a form of millet and that's a gluten-free grain," said shopper Jack Cohen-Joppa.

Snack foods have been the obvious challenge, but soups, frozen foods, entrees and seasonings can be tricky as there are so many derivatives of these grains.

Malt, soy sauce and textured vegetable protein contain gluten, but how would you know? Seasonings can really be sneaky, especially with additives on chips and fries. But not at MacDonald's store.

Remember, just because you have a chronic stomach ache doesn't mean you're gluten intolerant.

Omitting gluten from your diet means you're going to be lacking a lot of vitamins and minerals. But a simple blood test from your doctor will ensure that you need to live a gluten-free life.

Pam MacD's Gluten Free Market
3516 W. Magnolia Blvd.
Burbank, CA 91505
(818) 843-5800

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