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Sound Focus

Gluten Free Girl, Salish Fishing Practice, and the Legacy of Betty MacDonald

Megan Sukys
09/11/2008

When you have a slice of toast, a cupcake, or a beer, you're consuming gluten. But for 1 in 133 people, gluten triggers a severe illness, celiac disease. Today, Shauna James Ahern tells us how her gluten–free needs have inspired her to embrace all of her life's challenges.

At 2:05 p.m. – Russel Barsh – Salmon and the Coastal Salish

The Salish people of the San Juan Islands had a complex system for fishing salmon. It enabled them to live off salmon for years without depleting the fish's numbers. Today, a thriving commercial fishing industry is putting the salmon population at risk. Russel Barsh is the Director of the Center for the Study of Coast Salish Environments on Lopez Island. He's working to bring back some of those old fishing practices because he's seen what happens when fisheries collapse. He tells Jeannie Yandel what he has seen in this archived conversation.

At 2:20 p.m. – Paula Becker on Betty MacDonald

Betty MacDonald was born 100 years ago. She is famous for her beloved "Mrs. Piggle Wiggle" books and quasi–autobiographical works like "The Egg and I" for adult readers. All of these books are based in the Northwest. They paint a vivid picture of the wonderful and eccentric character of Puget Sound in the first half of the 20th century. Paula Becker writes for HistoryLink and has done extensive research on Betty MacDonald. Paula is intrigued by Betty's book, "The Plague and I." It was one of the only accounts of being in a sanitarium with tuberculosis written from the patient's point of view.

At 2:40 p.m. – Sounds Familiar

Amanda Wilde, host of The Swing Years and Beyond, shares another familiar song we didn't know we knew so well.

At 2:50 p.m. – Gluten–Free Girl

Whenver you have a slice of toast, a cupcake, or a beer, you're consuming gluten. Gluten is a protein composite found all forms of wheat, barley, rye, and a lot of processed foods. But for 1 in 133 people, gluten triggers a severe illness known as celiac disease. Seattle writer Shauna James Ahern is the author of the book "Gluten–free Girl." Beyond health and food, the gluten–free approach has inspired Shauna to embrace all of her life's challenges. Before Shauna was diagnosed with celiac, she thought she might never feel well again.

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