The Gluten Free Living Show 2020, supported by SuperValu, runs from 12th-16th October
People who have to adopt a gluten free diet for medical reasons often fail to get the support they need deal with the psychological challenges they face.
Around 450,000 people in Ireland have some form of gluten intolerance in some form, including approximately 50,000 people who have coeliac disease, for which the only treatment is a strict gluten free diet.
The Coeliac Society of Ireland says that when someone is diagnosed with coeliac disease or gluten intolerance and told they have to start living gluten free, they often experience emotions including anger and denial, and feelings of loss, helplessness, anxiety, depression, and isolation.
Gill Brennan CEO, Coeliac Society of Ireland, says people need support to cope with these emotions, especially with Covid-19 restrictions likely to be a part of life through winter and into next year.
“Being diagnosed with a debilitating, incurable disease such as coeliac disease can turn your world upside down. Having to adapt to a strict gluten free diet involves learning about ingredients and new food products, and also carefully planning your shopping and food preparation to ensure there is no contamination of your food with gluten.
“It can be very daunting for recently diagnosed patients and that can have a significant impact on their mental health. Amongst our members we have witnessed different reactions from anger and denial, non-compliance with diets and lifestyle changes, withdrawing from social activities and so on.
“In some cases, this can leave a person overwhelmed by feelings of helplessness, hopelessness, powerlessness, confusion, anxiety, depression, and isolation.
“None of these feelings need to take over your life and with the right support and guidance, they can be managed alongside the disease.”
A comprehensive programme of talks providing information, advice and guidance to help those diagnosed with coeliac disease or as gluten intolerant will be on offer at the Gluten Free Living Show 2020 – which this year is a virtual event running from 12th-16th October.
Jane Negrych, managing director of The Sanctuary, will lead a talk on mindfulness and how it help maintain a healthy state of mind as you navigate through your diagnosis and the changes it brings. There will also be an opportunity to try mindfulness through meditation.
Jane Negrych said: “Mindfulness can have numerous benefits, such as decrease in stress and sadness and increased levels of focus and happiness. The session at the Gluten Free Living Show will focus on how it be used in our everyday lives, and help support people who have been diagnosed with coeliac disease or chronic gluten intolerance.”
The Gluten Free Living Show, supported by SuperValu, promises to be an informative and fun week for all who attend.
There will be cooking demonstrations from leading chefs, educational seminars, dietetic clinics, fitness advice, mindfulness talks, a kids fun day and much more.
Full details at www.glutenfreelivingshow.ie