Sunday, September 06, 2009

Illawarra Gluten Free

A directory of Gluten free products,
stores and online shopping catering
to people from the Illawarra.

Who am I?
My name is Vanessa Pike-Russell and I started this blog after realising that my IBD symptoms all stemmed from being intolerant of wheat and gluten. I was born with an under-developed pituitary gland (hypo-pituitism) and recently learned that it is common for the stomach to not develop fully and thus unable to process gluten properly. I would suffer from stomach pains, bloating, cramps and lethagy until I went on a low-carb diet in 2002.

When it was suggested that I might be sensitive to wheat I did some research and since then I have all but removed the symptoms unless I eat the wrong foods. It is hard to remember that there is so much wheat and gluten in all manner of products and not just breads and pasta.

I started researching gluten-free products and culling wheat-laden foods from my diet. When I slip up I pay for it - literally. Pretty soon I had an extensive library of recipes and links to online resources and decided that with all the research I was doing it would be best if I archived it and shared with others in the same plight.

I am no stranger to keeping a foodie blog, starting 2002 and active in the Livejournal Food communities before moving to Illawarra Food Reviews on Blogger in 2005.  I come from a long line of foodies and wanted to journal as much of my travels around Tasmania as possible share with friends and family. I decided to continue the tradition of photographing and journalling my gastronomic journeys when returning to live in Wollongong in 2002. In the past few years I had noticed a significant cause and effect between foods eaten and symptoms labeled as IBS which have now almost disappeared once I cut wheat and gluten out of my diet.  You can read my story about discovering my wheat sensitivity here.

I have provided an index of directories: books, flours, product outlets, recipes etc to get you started.

Why Illawarra Gluten Free?
I chose to focus on the Illawarra area because that is where I live - between the Mountains and the sea. From South of Sydney down to Far South Coast of New South Wales. The definition of the Illawarra differs depending on the sources you read but in general it consists of three cities:

Wollongong, Shellharbour, Kiama and also loosely includes the 'South Coast' including areas such as Berry, Nowra and Kangaroo Valley


  1. I've found this I Di hope you are still writing on this blog

    1. I live in Queensland now but I share online shopping sources and recipes now and then.


Welcome to Illawarra Gluten Free


Illawarra Gluten Free Map

View Illawarra Gluten-Free in a larger map