Tampa Area Celiacs a Support Group- Janet Heitler


There are many ways we with celiac or gluten intolerance can help others. One way is to head a group. Jane is an exceptional woman with her story and running a group for many years now. Here is her story and a link to a news article about her and her experiences. Really worth reading. Janet has recently attended my GF taste testing party to assist in my Reviews. She is FUN!

Janet Heitler joined a pre-existing group (Tampa Bay celiac Support Group) in 1995 two weeks after she was discharged from the hospital with her celiac diagnosis. She had a long time of misdiagnosis and no diagnosis. Things did not look good up to that final day of being correctly diagnosed.

Two women initially founded the group and Janet ended up in the group after they resigned from being Co-chairs. A husband and wife team took it over and I wanted to contribute because everyone was so wonderful – so Janet said she would be the Treasurer, easy to do. Everything was fine until two months into their “reign” I got a call that they were moving to Nevada.  Bam – she got in 1998 and I has had it ever since.

The meeting calendar was all over the chart and the first thing she did was announce to meet on the second Saturday of every other month – Feb/Apr/Jun/Aug/Oct and Dec.  We meet at 10am – 12 noon at the Jimmy Keel Library on Bears Avenue in Tampa, unless a luncheon is arranged.

They have done 2 GF Beer and Pizza Parties, when Pei Wei first opened they had a luncheon, and a luncheon at Trang’s Viet-Nam Cuisine — 90% of the menu is GF – it is not a GF restaurant it just works out like that, she says.

There are 200 people on her mailing list, but the most she has ever had at meeting (Beer/Pizza luncheon) was 70 people yet normally there are 20-25 people attending.

According to Janet, a lot of times newbie’s come once and think they know everything there is then fall aside. Then she gets a call and they talk as they are in trouble. She reminds them of the meetings and she tells them the new things that are out there and having the emails has helped people to reconnect and stay connected.

Janet’s email –  jchtbc42@tampabay.rr.com

Janet’s latest article: http://www2.newsadvance.com/lna/lifestyles/food_cooking/article/sifting_through_the_options/4033/

Thank you Janet!       Tina Turbin


From our home to yours, Tina Turbin
If you have any questions or suggestions just email me at info (at) GlutenFreeHelp.info.

About Us

I'm a cookbook-collecting, recipe-developing paleo junkie, and I live in the kitchen. I'm hooked on farmers' markets, traveling, eating healthy, and hiking until my legs scream at me. There's nothing better than hanging out with family and good friends. I have fun and sleeping is just plain boring. Read more About Tina Turbin.

6 thoughts on “Tampa Area Celiacs a Support Group- Janet Heitler

  1. My wife’s co-worker reached out to me for support with food sensitivities on newly dx celiac disease. I am a registered dietitian and am looking for resources i.e. support groups and safe dining locations in the Tampa Bay area (Hillsborough, Manatee, and Pinnellas County). Would love to hear back. Thank you.

  2. Do you have support group here in Tampa?
    I would like to know some safe places to eat in Wesley Chapel and New Tampa for someone who has celiac.
    Thank you

  3. I am the COO geefree foods. We make wonderful tasting gluten free, corn free, soy free, antibiotic, hormone and nitrate free food. Go to geefree.com. I would love to come to a meeting and cook up some tasty treats for everyone. Let me know what you think

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