Peggy Wagener: Living Without


Peggy Wagener has celiac disease, a gluten intolerance illness that can be very serious, because it interferes with the absorption of nutrients. (See Health Flashes for more information on gluten intolerance.) Ten years ago she started a new publication, Living Without, to address her health concerns and those of three million other Americans who suffer from gluten intolerance, and often dairy intolerance as well. Her passion to help others with similar health problems was her main motivation for starting the magazine, which to me, is a perfect example of one person making a difference.

Then, last year, when Peggy was diagnosed with cancer, she suspended publication of Living Without. But letters from readers poured in and supported her through the darkest hours of her new illness, cancer. She writes in her Publisher’s Notes of the April/May 2008 issue how touched she was by this support, and decided to put the magazine back in circulation. Here are her powerful words and commitment to her passion:

“Words from people I’ve never met. Words that meant the world to me. It made me realize that the magazine had served a purpose and that it should continue. And so should I.

A new company, Belvoir Media Group, has purchased the magazine and Peggy is back in business, for which her readers are very grateful, as am I. In reading through the latest issue of Living Without, I realize that it covers a wide range of health problems that goes beyond gluten intolerance. Here is a sampling of the articles in the April/May 2008 issue:

1. When the Bee Stings- Help for those allergic to bees
2. Disney Rules -How the Magic Kingdom accommodates those with special dietary needs
3. Muffin Time!- Gluten-free, dairy-free muffin recipes
4. Clean & Simple- Natural household ingredients for a healthier home (This is one I definitely plan to try. ES)

When my friend Molly and I experimented with gluten-free baking in the late 1970s, this magazine would have really come in handy! Perhaps our quick breads would have been less like quick bricks! But now everyone who has health issues surrounding gluten intolerance, dairy sensitivities, or other problems under the general heading of sensitivities to foods or chemicals in the environment, will benefit from Living Without. You may find that living without leads to living with better health. And good health is priceless!

Subscriptions are available online at: or via phone at: 800-474-8614. The magazine is published six times a year.


Azalea bush from the lovely Azalea Garden at the Biltmore Estate in Chattanooga, TN

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