May is Celiac Awareness Month and the Canadian Celiac Association (CCA) is setting the record straight for Canadians suffering with celiac disease.
An increase in the popularity of gluten free and gluten-reduced diets has driven accelerated product demand and availability, but it has also decreased general awareness of the severity of the disease and overall empathy towards those who suffer from it. This May, the CCA and partner Promise Gluten Free will set the record straight by launching a compelling video about 8 year-old Sadie.
“I have a disease. It’s not that rare, either. But it’s a disease other people pretend to have. They tell their friends and coworkers they have it. Some even really think they have it. But they don’t feel like I do. They don’t experience the pain that goes along with it. The weakness. The malnourishment. Their growth isn’t stunted like mine. And doctors didn’t lead them into believing it’s something else. And the more people who pretend to have it, the more people think I’m just pretending. Can you guess what it is?” – Sadie Thiffault, 8 years old, Canadian living with celiac disease.
The CCA is encouraging Canadians to visit ItsNotPretend.ca and learn more about the signs and symptoms of celiac disease. “We encourage those who believe they may have an issue with gluten to try the symptom checklist and then have a discussion with your doctor,” says CCA National Executive Director Melissa Secord.
Throughout the month of May, the CCA is offering cooking demos, educational webinars, daily recipes, and more to celebrate Celiac Disease Awareness Month. On Sunday, May 16, the international celiac community is coming together to #ShineALightOnCeliac. Iconic buildings and destinations across North America including Toronto’s CN Tower, Niagara Falls, Montreal’s Olympic Stadium and Vancouver’s Science World will be just some of the locations illuminated with green to raise awareness for Celiac Disease Awareness.
To learn more about Celiac Awareness Month and the Shine a Light initiatives, visit ItsNotPretend.ca.