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      Frequently Asked Questions About Celiac Disease   09/30/2015

      This Celiac.com FAQ on celiac disease will guide you to all of the basic information you will need to know about the disease, its diagnosis, testing methods, a gluten-free diet, etc.   Subscribe to FREE Celiac.com email alerts What are the major symptoms of celiac disease? Celiac Disease Symptoms What testing is available for celiac disease? - list blood tests, endo with biopsy, genetic test and enterolab (not diagnostic) Celiac Disease Screening Interpretation of Celiac Disease Blood Test Results Can I be tested even though I am eating gluten free? How long must gluten be taken for the serological tests to be meaningful? The Gluten-Free Diet 101 - A Beginner's Guide to Going Gluten-Free Is celiac inherited? Should my children be tested? Ten Facts About Celiac Disease Genetic Testing Is there a link between celiac and other autoimmune diseases? Celiac Disease Research: Associated Diseases and Disorders Is there a list of gluten foods to avoid? Unsafe Gluten-Free Food List (Unsafe Ingredients) Is there a list of gluten free foods? Safe Gluten-Free Food List (Safe Ingredients) Gluten-Free Alcoholic Beverages Distilled Spirits (Grain Alcohols) and Vinegar: Are they Gluten-Free? Where does gluten hide? Additional Things to Beware of to Maintain a 100% Gluten-Free Diet Free recipes: Gluten-Free Recipes Where can I buy gluten-free stuff? Support this site by shopping at The Celiac.com Store.

Chickfila?
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15 posts in this topic

I have a relative who works at our local chickfila. He explained to me that it would be a safe place for me to eat. He said that they fry their french fries seperately from their chicken, and that if you tell the cashier that you have an allergy then they would be extra careful. SO I felt pretty confident that it would be the one fast food place that I would be safe eating at.

 

Last night I ordered a medium french fry and a sweet tea. I told them I was extremely allergic to gluten ( I know celiac isn't an allergy, its just what I am going to start telling restraunts so that they will take me seriously). About the time I finished my fries I starting having what appeared to be a gluten reaction. My stomach started cramping, I got extremely bloated, I started having hot flashes, and overall I just felt extremely ill. Almost dizzy/ flu like.

 

I am really confised. What could have possibly had gluten? Could it have been the distilled vingear in the heinz ketchup?

 

I have only known that I have celiac for 2 weeks now, so I have no idea if I am going to be one of the extremely sensitive ones who has bad reaction to the tiniest amount of cc, or if I am going to be one of the ones who doesn't feel it as much as others.

 

Or is it possible that it wasn't the chickfila, but just my body still recovering. 2 weeks ago I was still eating a heavily glutened diet, so maybe it's possible that its from that...? Have yall had any bad experiences with chickfila? It really seems like thats what did it to me, since I started feeling sick immediately after I finished my fries. I am still ill today with a bloated/ crampy stomach and a headache. What do yall think?

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Eating out is always risky,.  Chik Fil A is one of the better fast food places for a Celiac to eat.

 

You are new to the diet and your gut is healing.  When I first started, anything vinegary hurt.  Heinz ketchup is gluten-free.  Not sure if the sweet tea is sugar or a diet sweetener?  Some of them give me the same bloating, etc as gluten.

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After only two weeks, you're going to get a lot of people saying that this early you simply need to let your body heal without taking unnecessary risks like eating out. You will find that your body may randomly and for no apparent reason whatsoever have wonky symptoms in the early stages. The symptoms you describe could be a result of eating a bunch of deep fried anything, a problem with potatoes, or a problem with the tea. There really is no way to know what bothered you.

 

ETA: on a side note, if you say "allergic to gluten" you're going to have people look at you like you have two heads because they have no clue what gluten is. Say allergic to wheat if you use the allergic route. Not only do people know what wheat is, but wheat allergy is a thing. If you do happen to be talking to someone with a clue and say gluten allergy their going to think you are a clueless fad dieter and not take you seriously since there is no such thing.

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We enjoy ChickFilA as a fast food restaurant once in a while. When we travel, and need a quick meal, we also eat there.  Our local ChickFilA does a great job.  We just explain Celiac and can not have gluten (our Local ChickFilA knows about Celiac - I guess their employees have been trained) and ask them to be extra careful and change their gloves.  We enjoy their salads (not all are gluten-free, you can check on their website) and fries, my kids like the grilled nuggets.  Although as someone else stated, sometimes saying "wheat allergy" if that is what you choose is better than "gluten allergy" since a lot of people don't know what gluten is. And btw, Heinz ketchup is fine for Celiacs. Good luck!

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  • First off (((hugs))). It will get better. I started thinking when I first went gluten-free that some of my random reoccurring symptoms might be were a fat cell with gluten in it got used, not sure if that is realistic or not though. You could have gotten Cross Contaminated there or else where.   This early in going gluten-free it's hard to say. I stopped eating out after 3 out 4 resturaunts meals made me sick. I went to PF Chang's twice because the 1st time was great the 2nd time however the waiter came to the table after I started eating and said, "We made a mistake, your meal does have gluten in it." That was 2 years ago and I only started eating out again last October. So far I have been super fortunate eating out.  

It is very tricky talking to people because as the others noted a lot of people have no clue what Gluten is. Many think it is Glucose in my experience and just think I can't have sugar. A lot of folks are clueless about Celiac disease, I know I was before I was diagnosed. But if you say wheat allergy you miss some of the other possible gluten offenders. Malt and Barley being two that I would think could hit hard at some resturaunts.

 

PS anyone know how I can get spell check back after switching to Windows 8? Apparently I can't spell anything right!!!

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i would skip the restaurant food at this early stage.   

 

i have a very definite gluten reaction:  first a headache and i am cranky, neck ache, pain at the bottom of my left side ribcage are early warnings for me.  within 2 days i have a full on reaction which will put me in bed and give me D/nausea for 14 days <hope that will become shorter as i continue!  but in the beginning, i had some kind of digestive issue with many things that weren't gluten that i thought contained gluten.  as some have said, acidic things like even 'safe' vinegar or extra greasy stuff might make your insides icky.   so, your chick-fila might be safe, but you may need to heal a little more.  

 

or, you totally got glutened  :o some people *think* they know how to keep food gluten-free but it really only takes one mistake.  hope you're feeling better!

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PS anyone know how I can get spell check back after switching to Windows 8? Apparently I can't spell anything right!!!

 

 

Firefox has a built in spell check, making it the only browser I will use. (Of course, it doesn't know the difference between a macaroon and a macaron making me look like a complete moron.)

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It is very tricky talking to people because as the others noted a lot of people have no clue what Gluten is. Many think it is Glucose in my experience and just think I can't have sugar. A lot of folks are clueless about Celiac disease, I know I was before I was diagnosed. But if you say wheat allergy you miss some of the other possible gluten offenders. Malt and Barley being two that I would think could hit hard at some resturaunts.

 

 

Also, imo when discussing fast food we are talking about the highest possible risk being wheat. Things like barley and rye are not going to be serious offenders here outside of the possibility of a specialty fast food place having malt vinegar for fries, with rare exception of course. We should also never be walking in uneducated without knowing exactly what to order and exactly what is in it. The risk the person we are speaking with needs to understand is CC, which in fast food is wheat.

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Thanks for the input. I agree with yall, it is just too early for me to be eating out. I am not going to eat out again for a very very long time. It is hard because we are always on the go, but I am just going to have to find a way to make it work. This disease is really a difficult thing to deal with. Its discouraging because its SO hard and just knowing that it is permanent is frustrating. Oh well. I am committing today to not eat out for a very long time in order to give my body time to heal. Thanks for all your support! I have been dealing with feelings of depression lately because the reality of my diagnoses has set in. Knowing that I will never go out for pizza again, and that I will never be able to eat at family get togethers, and that I will never have my favorite deep fried, breaded buffalo wings again, and that I will never be able to eat anything that anyone else cooks for me ever again, etc etc ( the list goes on and on) Is so discouraging! Oh well. I am just going to take it one day at a time knowing that it is not a choice, it is something I MUST do in order to have a healthy life. I am glad that all of you can relate to what I am feeling :)

 

I just realized how much I just rambled haha. Oh well. I say all this to say that I am NOT eating out for at least 4-5 months so that my body can heal....Thanks for all your input!!

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eblue, it does all seem really hard and depressing right now, I know. We've all been there. Give yourself time. You will find that there are safe places to eat out; some friends will be extremely careful and cook things you can eat; uncoated wings are also good; feeling good trumps a whole lot of inconvenience.<br /><br />I live a pretty normal life and I have been gluten free for six years. You will learn how to get around obstacles. Example: I take a gluten-free bun and go to my favorite barbeque joint. They know me and serve the meat and slaw so I can make my own sandwhich. More and more restaurants are getting on the gluten free train. Take it easy until you heal up a bit and begin to get brave slowly.<br /><br />Hang out here a lot. There is a wealth of knowledge and experience that can make you adjustment easier.

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I got my daughter the grilled nuggets and fries, and she got sick.  Tried again, this time told them to have the person handling her food change gloves... it was a rookie mistake I forgot to ask the first time.  Success!  

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Thanks for the input. I agree with yall, it is just too early for me to be eating out. I am not going to eat out again for a very very long time. It is hard because we are always on the go, but I am just going to have to find a way to make it work. This disease is really a difficult thing to deal with. Its discouraging because its SO hard and just knowing that it is permanent is frustrating. Oh well. I am committing today to not eat out for a very long time in order to give my body time to heal. Thanks for all your support! I have been dealing with feelings of depression lately because the reality of my diagnoses has set in. Knowing that I will never go out for pizza again, and that I will never be able to eat at family get togethers, and that I will never have my favorite deep fried, breaded buffalo wings again, and that I will never be able to eat anything that anyone else cooks for me ever again, etc etc ( the list goes on and on) Is so discouraging! Oh well. I am just going to take it one day at a time knowing that it is not a choice, it is something I MUST do in order to have a healthy life. I am glad that all of you can relate to what I am feeling :)

I just realized how much I just rambled haha. Oh well. I say all this to say that I am NOT eating out for at least 4-5 months so that my body can heal....Thanks for all your input!!

It can be difficult in the beginning. I ate out, conservatively....in the beginning. You CAN eat out, just not reliably. You could try to eat out at a "safer bet" place - a place you've heard from other local gluten-free'ers is reliable. I've never put fast food in the "reliable" category...well, maybe specific In n Outs and one Chipotle.

My point is that you can try it. Just don't read too much into it. And the more you try it, and "practice" screening gluten-free and asking questions at restaurants the better you'll get at it. There is a learning curve.

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As a heads up to anyone here that is dairy intolerant - Chik-Fil-A soaks their chicken in milk before breading and cooking. So if you're trying to avoid casein, this will be somewhat problematic. 

 

As everyone else said - the beginning of this is rocky. My nutritionist said that I'd have ups and downs until every bit of gluten was out of my system, which can take a few months. Just keep doing what you can, learn from mistakes, and keep going! Find local support if need be. 

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This is my only support group. Three years in and I have only met one person who is actually a gluten free Celiac. I've met several people who say they are gluten intolerant and one diagnosed Celiac all of whom still eat gluten. We have a local meet-up for Celiacs but there is usually only the guy who runs it listed as attending. I hope you have a more active community.

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I've been very impressed with Chik-fil-a in general. They seem to really care about customer service for all of their customers.

 

We've been stopping by there for the past few weeks after my son's swim lesson as a treat.  My local CFA knows my name, and knows that I'm avoiding gluten.  The same guy (manager, I think), greets me by name, and reassures me that they'll take extra care with my order.  (I get the grilled chicken sandwich with no bun, side of fruit, and lemonade.)  

 

Do they? No idea... but it definitely gives me confidence.

 

I do think they train their staff... and they also have a gluten-free menu. http://www.chick-fil-a.com/media/pdf/glutenfreeitemslist.pdf

 

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