By Tee Schneider
For reasons unknown, Jimmy Kimmel has taken aim at the fine, upstanding, clean living, gluten free folks of California. These unsuspecting, (and in some cases shirtless), victims were forced, (under duress of a video camera), to answer the question: What is gluten? The pressure clearly got to them. Not one of the substantial control group, (4), could answer satisfactorily. Kimmel will surely be remembered for his selfless dedication to uncovering this mother of all information gaps. Anyway, here’s the video:
I know what you’re thinking. There are a lot of health nuts and there are a lot of fad diets. Mostly there’s a lot of marketing. I’m not here to argue the finer points but Kimmel clearly has it out for people with intolerances. Admittedly, he finds them annoying-his word not mine. And this isn’t the first time he’s gluten-bashed either. Check out GlutenDude to see an earlier video where he and Rachael Ray gluten-free’er bash for real.
Well Kimmel, you might as well start rolling your eyes as per usual because I’m about to be annoying to the nth degree.
My daughter, now two-and-a-half was born with a host of food allergies and intolerances. She has the most severe form of peanut allergy for which she carries an EpiPen. She is also allergic to peas and lentils, she reacts to bananas, avocados, eggs and though she seems to be outgrowing it now, her first trip to the hospital in an ambulance was at the age of 6 months because she ate baby cereal containing milk protein. Last but not least, she can’t handle gluten. There’s a bunch of stuff we haven’t tried yet. Point being, she has a lot of allergies. As a result of going gluten free myself, (because it’s just easier than cooking multiple meals), I discovered that gluten’s been bashing me too.
***annoying alert ended***
So Kimmel, here are a few things you might consider the next time you get the hankering to pick on people with food allergies. Consider this a list of really good reasons why we’re annoying as hell but definitely not doing it for kicks.
1. People drop peanuts and kids are fast. A peanut to my daughter is like a loaded handgun to your daughter. You wouldn’t want me leaving one of those lying around if you were popping by would you? I mean, she probably wouldn’t get a hold of it and pull the trigger before we managed to wrench it out of her little hands and even if she did pull the trigger, medicine is really advanced these days so in all likelyhood, she’d be just fine.
2. Watching a swelling six-month-old baby strapped to a stretcher in an ambulance has it’s own special sense of adventure…especially when she’s yours. Wanna come for a ride?
3. Just a little bit of gluten can cause nights of crying, writhing, bloating, gas and eventually blood. I guess you’re a night owl though so you’d probably be OK with this. Drop by any time bro. We’ll feed her some noodle woodles and you can keep her company wompany. (She’s going through a rhyming phase right now which I imagine would be quite inventive at 4 AM).
4. Eggy weggys. Same thing.
5. I know, I know she’ll probably outgrow of most of these things, and I sure hope she does, but for right now we’re pretty much 127 Hours on this one.
6. This picture:
is a picture of my daughter’s back after her first allergy test. She gets to do it all again this month and then again before she starts school. You want to come and hold her down with me?
7. The minutia of every meal is accounted for, every label read and every unknown ingredient researched or we’re back at #3.
8. Number 7 is easier said than done. Here’s why: Buying A Bag Of Bread: The Most Important Decision Of Your Dang Life.
9. Infants who can’t tolerate gluten can sometimes have chalk white poop after consuming gluten containing foods. Have you ever seen and infant’s chalk white poop? It’s disconcerting.
10. You can’t imagine how many people say, “where have all these peanut allergies come from? When I was a kid, you never heard of a peanut allergy!”
See what I’m saying Kimmel? Nobody would would do this for fun.
You don’t need to know that gluten is a specific combination of proteins found in certain foods like bread, pasta, beer, soya sauce, french fries and baking, (you know, all the stuff people don’t mind giving up), to know that it causes you problems. You just need to know it causes you problems. I’m not saying it’s the way to go, I’m just saying it’s the truth.
Despite all this, Kimmel, you actually appear to be doing your part for the cause. I thought I’d check out a few stats just to see how a few gluten related search terms have been doing since you released your little video on May 6th. Lookie, lookie what we have here…
Starting on May 6th the search terms “gluten” and “what is gluten?” started to spike. The dashed line is Google Trend’s prediction. Good job Kimmel! If nothing else, you’ve shamed people into getting informed. Good on you.
Speaking of information- you’re here, I’m here, we might as well brush up a little.
- You’ve probably heard of Celiac Disease which affects a significant portion of the population, (approximately 1% at last check), but there is also something called Non-Celiac Gluten Sensitivity, which is different than a wheat allergy but as you can see there are significant symptomatic crossovers.
- Where did all these peanut allergies come from? Nobody really knows. People have attributed the rise to everything from breastfeeding to over-sanitization, vaccines to cultural exposure and geographic location. There is no conclusive theory at this point BUT there are hopeful advancements taking place in the form of immunotherapy right in our back yard. The Globe and Mail did an article about it earlier this year which you can check out here: Peanut Patch.
- Take a quick peek at these EpiPen use instructions.You could save a life.
- Check out my friend Ashley Gibson’s blog Dancing Through Life to learn a ton about gluten-free living and find some great recipes too.
- This one’s for you Kimmel: Quite being such a negative nelly about gluten free’ers but keep up the good work at raising awareness 😉
- PS. Your video was pretty funny. I forgive you.
Anything to add to the conversation? *protected email* would love to hear from you or just leave a comment below!
Haven’t signed up to the site yet? You really should, I’m fun and who knows, you might pick up a thing or two. It’s so easy, you can do it right here: