After a friend of mine recently revealed to me that doctors believe she may be a celiac, I though I’d post up my learnings about gluten free living since I am now married to a celiac. Now, I realize that celiac disease affects people differently, so I’m just sticking to what I know. It may be slightly different in many situations. I am also not saying any of the “celiac life” is made easier by this list..I wouldn’t begin to imagine how hard it must be..but I am saying this is what I have personally learned along the way.
Here we go..
Things to avoid:
Oats (even GF oats can affect some celiacs)
Wheat (this includes buckwheat)
Malt and Malt Flavoring
Modified food starch (though modified CORN and modified potato starch is okay for many)
Things to look out for:
“Made in a facility that also uses wheat (oat, barley, rye, etc.,) ingredients”
“Made on machinery that also processes wheat (oat, rye, etc.,) ingredients”
“No gluten ingredients used” (This one is tricky because it simply states no ingredients have gluten, but it leaves an open possibility of cross contamination if it’s processed on or around something containing gluten.
Corn cereals (even though Corn Flakes and other corn based cereal may say “corn cereal”, almost all of them contain wheat or malt. check below for my cereal list)
Chili/Taco/Gravy/Stew spice packs. Many have wheat or gluten ingredients as thickeners. Just be patient and look until you find a safe one.
Things to inquire about at a restaurant:
Is your ____ (gluten free menu item) prepared in a safe area to avoid cross contamination? If the server can’t answer, ask her to ask the kitchen. If any staff member brushes of the question and says something like, “Well, we clean the grill well before putting the gluten free stuff on it”, or “the fryer gets super hot so that gets rid of gluten”, don’t eat it.
Do you have gluten free soy sauce?
Can you cook my ____ (gluten free meat dish) on foil to avoid cross contamination?
Do you have a gluten free fryer?
Does your bloody mix have wheat in it? (MANY do).
Restaurants that have given us good experiences here in MN and IA (you should still state you’re a celiac and take precautions):
Pizza Luce (awesome)
Mad Jacks (one issue, but was resolved)
Chiang Mai Thai
Foods to try that make GF life easier (recipes change so always check the box):
Cinnamon, Chocolate, Apple, or Honey Nut Chex
Pillsbury Pizza Dough
Pillsbury Cookie Dough
Canyon Bakehouse (Udi’s and Rudi’s bread sucks compared to this brand)
Bittersweet Bakery in Eagan, MN (entirely GF…and awesome).
French Meadow Bakery brownies (YUM)
Udi’s pizza crust
Taste of Thai rice noodles
Angry Orchard Cider
Wolf Creek Cider
New Grist Beer
New Planet Beer
Johnsonville Brats (regular)
most Doritos (weren’t once…now they are)
Almost all peanut butters
Dymatize Whey Protein
Muscle Pharm’s “Arnold” line of Whey Protein
Most yogurts, assuming they don’t have a “dump in” component
Barnana banana snacks (review coming soon..I LOVE these!)
Places to Shop around here in MN:
Tailor Made Nutrition in Woodbury, MN
Many Super Targets
Many Rainbow Foods (Cub is really hit or miss, as is Lund’s and Byerly’s)
Valley Natural Foods
Whole Foods (though not much, and it’s way more expensive)
That’s it for now. I check labels on everything I buy (and I am learning to re-check the safe foods too). I am sure there is a ton of info people will have to add to this list, so feel free to leave a comment and I’ll get them posted when I can.