A really cool study came out this week that looks at how sending your celiac child to gluten-free camp may do more good than we ever knew!

Research by the University of California, San Francisco surveyed 104 children at the beginning of their gluten-free camp experience and then again at the end.  The study, published in WebMD, Monday said,

“‘All seemed to benefit from camp, no longer feeling different from other kids or feeling frustrated with a restricted diet,’ the researchers write. ‘Improvement was observed in each of the three categories of questions: well-being, self-perception and emotional outlook.'”

Most of the benefit happened for children who had been on the gluten-free diet less than 4 years.  In part because people who had been dealing with the diet longer already had a more positive perception of the gluten-free lifestyle.

“‘A gluten-free camp that provides an environment of unrestricted foods can at least temporarily alleviate stress and anxiety around food and social interactions,’ the researchers write… ‘Celiac camp enables children with [celiac disease] to enjoy the camp experience freely without concern for and preoccupation with the foods that they are eating or the stigma of their underlying disease,’ the researchers conclude.'”

I completely agree with this study. Here in Minnesota, I am so blessed that we have a great gluten-free camp so near by.  I love sending Emma to a camp that is so easy for me as a parent and now apparently is great for her self worth!  I guess I knew it was good for her, but it really is interesting that this research had to come out for me to recognize it.

I wrote about Gluten-Free Fun Camp and my daughter’s experience in a post last August. Not only did they have fabulous gluten-free food which included pizza, a chocolate fountain, and pancakes, but I believe it also helped with their esteem when they wrote a cool song about celiac disease.

Back then my daughter said she was definitely going back in 2010, “…for the food, activities and all my friends.” That she is, and she’s bringing her 8-year-old sister with her!

Tags: , , ,

One Response to “Research: Why Gluten-Free Camp Helps Young Celiacs”

  1. I was lucky enough to volunteer at Gluten Free Fun Camp in MN last summer where I helped several kids in the kitchen for a mini-cooking class. During this time, I overheard a conversation between the boys that sums it up. One of them said, “I love coming here. At my hockey camp, my mom has to pack me 5 coolers…one for each day of camp. HERE I just get to eat without thinking about it. I get to talk to my friends about normal things and not answer questions about why I am eating out of a cooler.” When my own daughter and I were leaving the day camp (for kids under age 8), she waved at the crowd of older campers and sighed, “I just can’t wait until I am old enough for camp. I just want to be with kids like me.” This year she will attend her first overnight experience and she is so excited!! I completely agree with the study. It’s one of the “benefits” of Celiac. From the words of my 7 year old with Celiac: “Mom, I sort of feel bad for kids without Celiac, beacasue they do not know how cool this camp is!”

Leave a Reply

You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>

Home | Advertise with us | About The Savvy Celiac | Contact Us
The Savvy Celiac is a registered trademark of Leger Interactive LLC.
Copyright © 2016 LegerInteractive LLC. All rights reserved.