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Gluten-free shortbread cookies

Tuesday is National Celiac Awareness Day and The Atlantic takes the opportunity to examine what it calls the “disease du jour,” now affecting an estimated three million Americans—95 percent of whom remain undiagnosed—and counting.

According to a University of Maryland study, incidence of the digestive-system disease has doubled every 15 years since 1974. Yet, only recently have food manufacturers really started to cater to the celiac crowd.  From 2004 to 2009, gluten-free-product sales rose 74 percent, according to the Nielsen Company.

If you’re among those who can’t tolerate the pesky protein found in wheat and other grains, you’re in luck today: Roti Mediterranean Grill is offering $1 discounts off various gluten-free menu items at its five D.C. locations, with proceeds benefiting the Celiac Sprue Association, America’s largest non-profit celiac support group:

Customers can choose from the Sultan Sandwich, a Roti classic made with chicken roti, hummus, tomato & cucumber salad in a gluten-free pita with Zhug, the eatery’s spicy sauce. Other options are the Gluten-Free Salad with chicken or steak roti, mixed greens, roasted vegetables, red cabbage slaw and feta cheese tossed in red wine vinaigrette and served with gluten-free pita bread, or the Gluten-Free Platter with chicken or steak roti, Spanish eggplant, hummus, red cabbage slaw, choice of sauce and gluten-free pita bread.

Photo by Teresa Trimm/Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.0 Generic license