It’s been more than a decade since Anne Sarkisian ’64 found what has become her life’s work: educating people about the health risks of gluten intolerance. A few years ago, after too many hours of research to count, she finally wrote a book on the subject. "Toxic Staple: How Gluten May be Wrecking Your Health—and What You Can Do About it!" was published in 2013.
“My whole family is on the diet; no one eats gluten,” says Sarkisian, who was a psychology major at UNH. “When I first started investigating gluten, I found there was so little known about all the problems it can cause.”
Before a sick family member led her to learn everything she could about the problems that stem from celiac disease and gluten allergies, the New Hampshire resident was applying the same level of passion to her other interests. A fiber artist and jewelry designer, Sarkisian is a member of the Clever Hand Gallery artisan cooperative in Wellesley, Mass. Her creative talents extend to floral arrangement, and she exhibited at “Art in Bloom” at the Boston Museum of Fine Arts for more than 20 years. She also has won several awards at the New England Spring Flower Show and is a certified master flower show judge.
After graduating UNH, where she says rather than being a joiner she “rattled around in my own little barrel,” Sarkisian went on to teach school for five years before getting into the arts. The mother of three children and four grandchildren says life got busy after that. In 2014, Sarkisian returned to Durham for her 50th class reunion.
“There were so many changes; it had grown so much since I went here,” Sarkisian says. “It’s such a beautiful campus. It makes me proud to be a UNH grad.”
Originally published in UNH Magazine Spring 2017 Issue