SILLY-YAK is a fun and silly children's picture book about giving young people with Coeliac Disease creative agency. 

Jack has Coeliac Disease an autoimmune condition that means he cannot eat gluten! Although it is hard he has to get used to all of his different foods!

Jack LOVES to be silly as he plays, dances and sings all day 

Through his wonderful imagination Jack finds a way to not feel silly because of what he can and cannot eat, so he can get back to being fun and silly like every other baby yak.


Written + Illustrated by Alexandra Rose Mangano

Thank you to Lake Macquarie City Council for working with us for our book launch!

What are Auto-Immune Diseases?

Everyone has an immune system made up from little soldiers that are designed to protect you from bad guys that enter into your body through cuts and colds. These bad guys are call micro-bodies and are usually no match for your powerful immune army! The army marches around you all day and night fighting off anything that they think could harm you.



We are so lucky to have these soldiers to protect us, but sometimes they work a little too hard and can get confused with who the bad guys are.  If they do this it can cause more bad than good. Our super awesome specially made organs can be mistaken for under cover spies and our immune army put all their power into taking these spies down.


Now your organs aren’t under cover spies working for the bad guys, they are very important pieces of what makes you who you are.  


They are worth protecting and there are ways to let your immune army know that they are going after the wrong things. It can take a while to get these soldiers to start using their strength to take down the real enemy and leave their buddies, your organs, in peace.

What is  Coeliac Disease?

Being a Coeliac is a type of auto immune disease. It can be confusing as it almost seems like you have a food allergy like some people do with peanuts, or dairy products or sea food. Being a Coeliac is much more than a food allergy because of the way your body reacts.


Remember the soldiers we talked about before? Well not only can they think that parts of your body are bad guys but they can think some foods are also. When you eat gluten your body reacts in a certain way, your immune system sees this food as a bad guy and starts to attack it. Your immune army tries to get rid of this bad guy before it can ‘harm’ you! But in doing this the soldiers are actually attacking your gut and damaging some very important (kind of funny looking) fingers. These fingers are called Villi and they are there to get all the goodness out of the food you eat to make you strong and healthy.

The villi them become fatter and flatter and means they cannot suck in all the goodies you need!