If you or your child has celiac disease or gluten sensitivity, not to fear! The world of gluten free can be wide and exciting. Talk to your physician and a registered dietitian to learn how to read food labels and stay gluten free. Many great products are emerging including gluten free pasta, bread, and cookies. Also be sure to include naturally gluten free foods like potatoes, rice, corn, fruits, vegetables, and beans into your healthy diet. Have a nutrition adventure by trying a variety of gluten free grains like quinoa, amaranth, and buckwheat.
There are loads of gluten-free blogs and resources on the internet that you may find helpful if you are newly navigating a gluten-free diet. Here are just a few to investigate:
- Celiac Disease Foundation – Check out the “kids korner” for book recommendations, back-to-school ideas, support groups. Even find information on a gluten free summer camp, Camp Nawakwa.
- Celiac Disease Center at Columbia University - Use the “kids corner” to find kid-friendly recipes, learn ways to empower teachers to help your child stay gluten free, and hear kids speak out on what it’s like to be gluten free.
- Gluten Free Girl and the Chef - Find tons of beautiful recipes and cooking demonstration videos using gluten free ingredients
- No Gluten, No Problem – Read gluten free product reviews and more great gluten free recipes
- Celiac Center at Beth Israel Hospital - Find book recommendations, gluten-free definitions, and the basics of a gluten free diet
In addition, there are a number of restaurants adding gluten free menu items, including some national chains like Outback Steakhouse and Carrabba’s Italian Grill. The Gluten Intolerance Group (GIG) has a database of gluten free restaurants on their website. It is always important to alert your server and the chef at restaurants to your special dietary needs to avoid cross contamination, even in restaurants with gluten free options. Ask questions like “does this chicken come breaded?,” and “is this sauce made with flour?,” to stay safe. With these great resources and a healthy sense of culinary adventure, going gluten free can be fun and bring relief to kids and families suffering from gluten sensitivity or celiac disease.
Please share any other gluten free tips on the comment section. Thank you!
Emily Funcik is a registered dietitian in Charleston, SC. After graduating from Clemson University in 2010, Emily moved to Charleston to complete her dietetic internship at the Medical University of South Carolina. Currently she sees patients with many different nutritional needs including cardiac rehabilitation, diabetes treatment, weight management, and food allergies and intolerances. With a background as a dance instructor, Emily has a passion for children and instilling healthy habits at and early age.