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TAMMY_TWOSTEP's Photo TAMMY_TWOSTEP SparkPoints: (874)
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7/27/11 5:02 P

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Wow! Thank you all so much! It makes me feel so good to hear of all of your successes. I know that with time it will get easier and the feeling of hurting other's feelings will get less. Practice makes perfect I guess.

Kate - I had no idea IHOP used pancake batter in their eggs. I think I need to ask more questions when at a restaurant without a GF menu. I love the cutting mat idea! I have some of those and will take them with me from now on.

Toaster bags? Who knew!

Thank you all for your support and great ideas!

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ELLYWIG's Photo ELLYWIG SparkPoints: (0)
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7/23/11 12:58 P

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I try to avoid restaurants as much as possible. You can print off allergy awareness cards to hand out when you order at restaurants. I haven't tried that yet, but I think it would work better than the word of mouth to the waiter/waitress.

Friends and family are another problem, as they all too often seem to think they know if something is gluten free or not. It gets frustrating. I tend to eat beforehand, and just tell them I'm not hungry.

Barbeques are easy: bring your own food in tin foil. Just put your sauce or flavorings on meat or veggies ahead of time, wrap in tin foil, and tell whoever is barbequing to not open it. I've had a few mess ups though where people have opened it anyway because they wanted to give the food grill lines! Keep an eye on them, or offer to bbq everything yourself.

HEALTHYBARB1's Photo HEALTHYBARB1 SparkPoints: (118,557)
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7/16/11 8:09 P

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Original question about whether to rely on someone who doesn't know what gluten is when you are not eating at home made me think of what I have learned to do whenever I eat away from home. If the place I am going has a web site I always look up the menu online and plan ahead, when going someplace new I double check before being seated that they have a list of what is in their food and explain my allergy. I guess I treat it like going to the grocery store...I read the labels and if I can't eat it, I don't buy it. Another summer time issue for me is attending barbecues with large groups where I can not guarantee what I can have. I try to contact the barbecue cook to see if I can get something made that I can have and if that is not possible then I bring my own food. I have found most people are very supportive of my needs. I think it is my responsibility to make sure what goes in my body is gluten free and if I can't verify gluten free then I can't eat. Barb

Smiles from Barb!!

"If you want something you've never had...you must do something you've never done!"

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JENCORINNE's Photo JENCORINNE Posts: 1,933
7/15/11 11:22 P

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Kate,
here's a link to Amazon with a few options www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_noss?url=
se
arch-alias%3Daps&field-keywords=toasR>ter+bags&x=0&y=0

the 1st 4 and the 6th listed are for toaster bags.

Hopes this helps

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TELLITFORWARD SparkPoints: (10,826)
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7/15/11 11:07 P

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Also, don't forget skin care/hair products. I got my haircut recently and the stylist who was new, insisted I should use a line of products. The shampoo was okay, but all the hiar gels had wheat. She tried to insist that it would not be a problem, but I didn't budge. She backed down, and looked further. I love the product she found, but it's in small packets, and pretty pricey.
My daughter and one of my bestest friends are GF, and several of our mutual friends are very aware. Because I am blind, and shop with friends, they have learned to read labels very well. Sometimes, if you look near the bottom of the label, it'll list allergy info. The GF labeling is not uniform. Some products will say it in big letters, and others list it as an afterthought.
I'm looking for the toaster bags I read about over a year ago. They fit a piece of bread, and are toaster safe. That way you can use a toaster when you are out somewhere. I think that at home it's easier to just have a 2nd toaster, and it can be a small one as GF bread is usually smaller. But, if you are travelling, as we are these days due to ailing parents, I thought the bags would be a good investment. We rent one of those by the week rooms at a place near my DH's folks. They have a toaster.
Kate

"It is only with the heart that one sees rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye."
Antoine de Saint Exupery: The Little Prince


"To the world you may be one person, but to one person you may be the world."
Heather Cortez
DJ4HEALTH's Photo DJ4HEALTH Posts: 40,943
7/15/11 10:43 P

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You just keep on trying and don't stop until they understand what it means and you can also use the web to help you get across what is happening to you if you eat wheat.

Dorothy

If you tell God no because He won't explain the reason He wants you to do something, you are actually hindering His blessing. But when you say yes to Him, all of heaven opens to pour out His goodness and reward your obedience. What matters more than material blessings are the things He is teaching us in our spirit.
Charles Stanley



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CINDYTW Posts: 5,783
7/15/11 9:38 P

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With time I have learned to kind of spot the things that may be an issue and focus on inquiring about those, or avoiding them. Unfortunately everyone can get lax, even me! I just got glutened for the first time in a very long time because I was with people I take care of and was trying to attend to their needs and got distracted. I started eating my salad and didn't notice the croutons! I have a lot of restaurants around me with GF menus and that makes it a lot easier. When there isn't one, I usually stick to a salad or a meat/fish entree with no seasoning. I honestly don't even eat out much anymore and avoid it usually for general health as much as gluten! It is not very good for me anyway.

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GFREERUNNER's Photo GFREERUNNER Posts: 97
7/15/11 7:07 P

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I do not eat out at any places that do not have a certified g free menu. It stinks sometimes when we go out for lunch at work, but not worth the pain I may get from eating a supposedly "g free" meal.

My family is not willing to really educate themselves on celiac so I pretty much volunteer to being a couple of dishes that I make g free... that way, I know I at least have 2 choices :)

Book Club and Bunco are hard because someone "hosts" and never remembers my food restrictions. I have learned to eat before I go and just enjoy the company. When it is my turn to host, I make a g free feast to show that it isn't really that difficult!

I do have one friend that will ask me out to lunch or over for dinner, and even though she considers me her best friend, does not think about my celiac. It is frustrating!!

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7/15/11 6:21 P

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I feel like I've educated lots of people about gluten. Fortunately, I'm not as sensitive as many, and can tolerate some things. Interestingly, I'm better with spelt than things like "natural flavor", whatever that is. I also learned to stay away from modified food starch unless I know that it is from potato or nomGMO corn.
My daughter was with her kids at IHOP recently, and found that none of their salads were safe. The eggs aren't, as they add pancake batter to them to make them fluffy. Yuck! Even nonGF folks should know this when tracking! Anyway, the waitress told her the burgers were okay as the buns were made of Parmesan. :P
You'll have much better luck if you just bring something to share. I make both a main and dessert dish to share. That way I know I can eat something, and I don't bring home too much which I shouldn't keep eating. When going out, I check ahead of time. If you are going to stay somewhere, it's just better to bring things, and buy a set of those inexpensive cutting mats which you can offer to use when making salads. That way you know that they haven't been used for other things. People do learn, and mostly they are kind about it. They just don't know.
God bless.
Kate

"It is only with the heart that one sees rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye."
Antoine de Saint Exupery: The Little Prince


"To the world you may be one person, but to one person you may be the world."
Heather Cortez
AMANDA_A_725's Photo AMANDA_A_725 SparkPoints: (11,594)
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7/15/11 4:14 P

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It's hard to get to over the idea that we're not being "picky" or "difficult". This is our health and it's (eventually) life and death. Remember, when your friends try to accomodate, it's because they care about you and want to help you. If you don't tell them what they are doing right and wrong, they'll just keep doing the same things. I remember the first few times I went grocery store shopping, it took me hours. I had to compare items to this list I printed of GF items and read every label. Then, after I got home and started preparing items that I thought were safe but they weren't, I was so frustrated with having to throw half the stuff out because I got sick from it.

The first time (post GF) in a situation, is the worst... because I feel like everyone is staring at me. Now, every one is used to pulling out my box of crackers or not sharing at a potluck for fear of cross-contamination.
Keep with it...

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TAMMY_TWOSTEP's Photo TAMMY_TWOSTEP SparkPoints: (874)
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7/15/11 3:18 P

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That is great advice! I am working on the not worrying about other people's feelings still. Last Thanksgiving I got really sick because I didn't want to create a problem with my family. I swore to myself that I would not do that again. It is just not worth it.

When on vacation we went out to one place that the waitress had a GF sister and was able to tell me everything on the menu I could have. She also went the extra step to make sure no cross contamination happened in the kitchen. What a treat that was! I always had a bar with me that I could fall back on just in case.

Just this week I was meeting with a group of women at Mimi's Cafe. I cannot trust this restaurant so I ate before I went and just had water. We had the meeting and I didn't have to worry. It was a bit awkward and they felt bad that I was not eating but I knew I would feel better. So, slowly, I am making it.

It helps to hear of other people doing the same thing. This putting myself first thing is still very new to me, but I am making strides.

Thank you all!

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MICHTOTMAN's Photo MICHTOTMAN Posts: 815
7/15/11 3:08 P

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All I can say is that it is really hard. REALLY hard. Most restaurants have lists of allergy information - but getting the person serving you to be able (or willing) to find it is another question! I have a few places that I know now are safe - and some that are not. Frankly, eating out just isn't worth the risk to me - as nice as it once was, it's just too stressful now.

As far as friends/family - it's a long education process, I think. My mom has been great, but she still comes up with stuff that has "natural flavor" (I'm about 50/50 on "natural flavor - sometimes it bothers me, sometimes not - so I avoid it altogether now). Any time you can let people know up front that gluten is probably in everything, and only fresh fruits/veggies are really safe, it's best. But even that is iffy --- if they cut a loaf of bread on that cutting board and just brushed the crumbs off before they cut that melon - you're doomed.

My latest line is "Thank you SO much for trying to accomadate me. I really appreciate all the work you went through. And it looks/smells delicious. But right now it's just not worth the risk for me to try that _____ (fill in the blank), becuase I get SO very sick at even the smallest amount of hidden gluten. I hope you understand." Sometimes I'll share a story of a place I found unexpected gluten by surprise and how it affected me. And then always, always have something with you that you CAN eat.

It's not easy. But I think I said that already...

The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.

NELSON MANDELA


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AMANDA_A_725's Photo AMANDA_A_725 SparkPoints: (11,594)
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7/15/11 3:06 P

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I'm lucky that my local grocery stores have a gluten-free aisle and that my family checks with me ahead of time if they have questions. I ended buying double of a lot of "staples" like GF flour, pasta, cake mixes, salad dressing, etc. and then gave them to my Mom. Once she knew what the box looked like, she would know what to buy next time.

When I'm traveling, I do research online about restaurants ahead of time and choose carefully! I've never been adventurous when I eat and usually order the same thing. Now that I'm GF, I'm even less "creative". I find one dish that I can eat at a particular restaurant and order it every time I go there. Also, if it's a long trip, I carry a mini pantry with me so that I always have GF food with me. I've even carried salad dressing with me and used in restaurant.

The key is to be patient with friends and family.... especially with the non-obvious items like sauces, condiments, spices, etc. Education takes time!


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TAMMY_TWOSTEP's Photo TAMMY_TWOSTEP SparkPoints: (874)
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7/15/11 2:37 P

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Oh! On the same trip I went to eat at a friend's parent's house and they made GF pasta. They were so proud to have found it and made if for me and I was happy that they made the effort. I asked to see the ingredients of the sauces (which, luckily were GF) and they didn't understand that there could be gluten in there. They mixed it ahead of time. I am happy that the sauce was GF but if it had not been, their efforts would have been for not.

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*AMBER512's Photo *AMBER512 SparkPoints: (201,191)
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7/15/11 2:36 P

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So far, I've only been through Thanksgiving and Christmas with knowing I need to eat gluten-free. I studied every spice and was sort of a nuisance in the kitchen as things were being cooked ticking off in my head what I couldn't eat. I brought my own dish which I knew was safe and I had eaten right before going to anyone's house so I wasn't actually hungry. It turned out to work well since there was not one single thing I could eat! (I don't eat meat, which just makes things even harder). Plus I also have other intolerances, so unless I make it or am at a restaurant that lists every ingredient, I pretty much have to stay away.

~Amber~

MUSCLE DOES NOT WEIGH MORE THAN FAT 5 lbs = 5 lbs

5 lbs of muscle simply takes up less space than 5 lbs of fat!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

If nothing tasted as good as being thin felt, no one would ever get fat!

FOOD TASTES GOOD
Let us eat it in moderation.


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TAMMY_TWOSTEP's Photo TAMMY_TWOSTEP SparkPoints: (874)
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7/15/11 2:33 P

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How do you deal with telling people what gluten is? I was at a farmer's market and a guy was sampling his vinegar. I asked him if they were gluten free. He said, "Oh, yes!" then, later on in the discussion, he asked me what gluten was!!! emoticon Of course I had checked the ingredients as I know not to rely on other people's knowledge or lack there of, but it made me mad! When eating out I have to rely on others to tell me what is in the food. When they ask what gluten is, a simple "wheat, barley and rye" does not cover it as we all know.

So, my questions is - how do you rely on others in your dietary intake (such as eating out and on vacations)? There are times when you have to.

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