Imagine you go out to a fancy restaurant for dinner with your significant other. You research the menu ahead of time, you avoid the delicious fresh bread that is being passed from table to table and you grill the waiter about the ingredients in the dish you have selected. You order the perfect Gluten free meal. Your stomach is grumbling and your mouth is watering. When they place your meal in front of you, its exactly like the description in the menu. It smells wonderful, it looks wonderful and the only thing left to do is taste it. Just as promised, it is delicious! With the meal over, sit back and let it digest as you wait for the bill. Your stomach begins to rumble and bloat, maybe a rash appears on your arm and fatigue sets in. No matter how careful you are at selecting your meal or how persistent you are about explaining your food allergy, you are never safe when eating in public.
Cutting out gluten from your diet may seem like a difficult task. At home, it becomes a habit that is easy to follow with an abundance of naturally gluten-free foods. You learn which foods to avoid and how to create your favourite meals using gluten free substitutes and life becomes routine. When you step out of your house, eating gluten free becomes a nightmare. The control and care you put into your meal prep at home, goes out the window when you entrust it to someone else. Whether you are at restaurant, a friend’s house or (shudder!) a buffet, there is always the chance of lack of knowledge, cross contamination or hidden gluten that they don’t catch, but your belly sure will!
When I know that I will be eating outside the home, I always try plan ahead. I am aware that eating outside of the house (except my mom’s who is GF as well!) I am rolling the dice to determine whether or not I’ll be glutified. It may not be an immediate death situation like other food allergies, such as peanuts and eggs, but each time a person with celiac disease ingests gluten they are killing off the important villi that absorb the vital nutrients our body needs to survive.
Here are some tips for eating outside the house with a food allergy:
- Have a good understanding what a gluten free diet includes. (here is a great list!)
- When in doubt pack a snack. By taking your own snack, you have control over what you are ingesting.
- Call the restaurant during its non-busy hours to discuss your meal options
- Ask to see labels. I have been in many restaurants where the waitress has brought me the original packaging so I can inspect the ingredient list.
- Educate, educate, educate!! The more you share, the more they will know. Be polite but don’t be afraid to question things!
- Avoid buffets. Buffets mean cross contamination.
- Choose a restaurant that offers gluten free options
- Pre-eat before you leave. This ensures that you won’t go hungry if there aren’t any safe options available.
- Avoid foods that are thick, creamy and contain gravy. Since most thickening agents contain flour, you are more like to ingest gluten!
- Bring along you trusted friend, Food Intolerance by Orange Naturals in case you ingest gluten.
Food intolerance or sensitivity is a more common problem and can be the cause to many seemingly unrelated health issues such as nasal congestion, gas, heartburn, bloating, abdominal pain, constipation or diarrhea to even distant symptoms such as a headaches and skin reactions. Orange Naturals Food Intolerance formula contains gentle homeopathic remedies that will help reduce symptoms of food sensitivity.
- Reduces intolerance to common food sensitivities such as dairy and wheat
- Helps to relieve stomach pains, bloating, diarrhea and constipation related to food
- Soothes itchy skin related to food intolerances
This product has been a life saver on many occasion. I was recently at a Yoga retreat. The only options all weekend was a buffet style meal. I question the chef, avoided foods that looked like they had been cross contaminated and stayed away from anything that had gluten or looked like it did. I did pretty well all weekend, until Saturday night. By the end of the delicious meal, I had what I call a “Gluten baby”( My stomach bloats out and I look like I’m 6 months pregnant!). I’m stuck in the middle of nowhere, surrounded by people I didn’t know. Luckily I had my Orange Naturals Food Intolerance formula on me. After several doses, the cramps disappeared and I was able to continue on with my evening!