Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Gluten-Free Goodness; Gluten-Free Choices Are Getting Better - but There's Still a Way to Go, Says Phil Vickery. the TV Chef Tells KATE WHITING Why He's on a Mission to Make Free-From Cooking Mainstream

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Gluten-Free Goodness; Gluten-Free Choices Are Getting Better - but There's Still a Way to Go, Says Phil Vickery. the TV Chef Tells KATE WHITING Why He's on a Mission to Make Free-From Cooking Mainstream

Article excerpt

COELIAC disease is not new - the word itself is translation of the Greek 'koiliakos' meaning 'abdominal', and linked to ancient Greek physician, Aretaeus of Cappadocia. But it's only in the last decade that modern-day supermarkets have caught up and started catering to those with the autoimmune illness, which affects around 1% of the UK population.

A disease - rather than an allergy or intolerance - when people with coeliac eat gluten, their immune system mistakes it as a threat and attacks healthy tissues. Symptoms include bloating, diarrhoea, nausea, wind, constipation, tiredness, anaemia and sudden or unexpected weight loss - which can be very similar to symptoms caused by an intolerance.

However, with coeliac, cutting out gluten completely is absolutely essential for avoiding, possibly serious, long-term damage and complications.

Coeliac UK notes that up to half a million people are believed to be living with coeliac disease undiagnosed, and it can take up to 13 years for a diagnosis.

It's no wonder the free-from sections are starting to take up more of the supermarket aisles, and brands like PizzaExpress, Young's Fish Fingers and Nestle Cereals are all introducing gluten-free alternatives into their product ranges.

Mintel research reckons the free-from market is worth around PS365 million, and predicts it will grow another 50% by 2019.

a One man who has watched the free-from rise with interest is Coeliac UK ambassador and TV chef Phil Vickery. He published his first gluten-free cookbook, Seriously Good! Gluten-free Cooking in 2009 - which has sold more than 250,000 copies to date, with a revised edition out this year - and his latest, Phil Vickery's Essential Gluten-free, came out this week.

The This Morning regular and his family - wife Fern Britton and four children (the couple have one daughter together, and three are from Britton's first marriage) - don't have any need to stick to a gluten-free diet at home. …

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