Editor's NoteFeb/Mar 2012 Issue

Blessings in Disguise

Alicia Woodward, Editor

Several months back, I broke my leg in a hiking accident. I’m off the crutches now but the effects of the injury continue to ripple in what I call my “leg lessons.” Sure, it was painful, frightening and frustrating to fracture bones—but the incapacitation and forced slow-down were ultimately beneficial. In fact, they were eye opening.

So it can be with a diagnosis of food allergy or sensitivity. The initial surprise, fear and frustration of serious dietary issues can give way in time to unexpected benefits. As a new lifestyle unfolds, you may find that not only do you feel better without the troublesome ingredients, but that you’ve accumulated nutritional know-how and gained special insight into your own wellness. Perhaps you’ve branched out into exciting culinary territory, enjoying foods you’d never heard of just a short time back. And perhaps you’ve discovered a network of new friends, like-minded souls who are traveling a similar path.

As “bad” news is reframed into good news, a world of opportunity can unfold. Food coach Sueson Vess is one example of this. Like many of our contributors, Sueson transformed her dietary challenges into a gratifying vocation of helping others with similar needs.  She generously shares her own hard-won wisdom, gleaned from a recent health crisis.

This issue covers other topics that are keenly important for those living without. Pharmacist Steve Plogsted, founder of glutenfreedrugs.com, provides insights into gluten-free pharmaceuticals and helps you locate safe medications. With a nod to Valentine’s Day, we provide tips for successfully navigating the dating scene. And for those dealing with anaphylaxis, we bring you expert views and advice on recognizing and managing the spectrum of allergic reaction.

And we don’t leave you hungry. These pages are packed with mouthwatering recipes the whole family will enjoy. We focus on two all-time favorites—chocolate dishes (both sweet and savory), and pizza. We also satisfy pasta longings with guidance on how to find and prepare gluten-free Asian-style noodles.

These days, I’m back on my feet, walking more deliberately, more consciously and a bit wiser from lessons learned.

Let Living Without help you navigate the uneven terrain of your special diet. Working together and learning from each other, there’ll be no more limping—just a full-forward sprint.

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