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Exit Strategy - Eating Out

Celiacs Need An Exit Strategy.

Eating is a very social activity. It plays an important role in cultures word wide. Did you know that Polynesians are more private about dining than about sex?

Last week I listened to one of those provocative obnoxious radio talk show hosts that demonized those who have special diet requirements. He said we should just eat what's being served or stay at home. I let the station manager know how I felt about that!
We will not allow our Celiac diagnosis to turn us into  anti-social stay-at-home solitary diners suffused with self-pity  The success of managing a diet effectively depends on resourceful strategies for eating out especially if your diet is like mine and demands fanatical adherence.

I find coping with eating out less complicated than studying  new dance steps or learning to skate backwards. Sure, it takes practice. Once you master the technique  you will be the one  giving the dinner orders giving meal orders that ensure you will dodge the bullet in the belly from "illegal" foods.

Catered events: I have always been able to phone ahead, explain my restriction
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requirements and get cooperation from the chef. Besides, everyone is on some kind of special diet these days. It's more fashionable than questionable.

Restaurants: Many have websites with menus enabling planning ahead, narrowing down to a few choices and phoning ahead to check ingredients and request adjustments

Invited to friends or family?  It's amazing that they can be less cooperative than the professionals. For all the friendly hosts there is always a sprinkling of saboteurs.

We have options:  Explain this is a health issue and if necessary you can bring some food of your own. I like to bring one large tasty dish  made for my diet to share with everyone. It's usually a big hit.

You can eat something at home before or after and just move the unsuitable food around on your plate

Try not to talk about your disease and diet. Others may seem fascinated, but you will eventually tire of this as a way of connecting or getting attention and start staying home with a boxed TV series on DVD. 

Whether it's a wedding, Christening, Bar Mitzvah, barbecue, shower, brunch or dinner with the Tasmanian Ambassador, learn the drill, take heart, get out--eat smart!


As always, welcomes your comments (see below).

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In's Forum Now:

Yes, I would ask for the rest of the celiac panel (including the IgA deficiency test). Discuss this with your child's GI. He/She may be able to order for you. Share the CBC results too with him/her. I would want to know for sure before giving up gluten to support my child, but you need to det...

I am sorry too. I did not mean to imply that you have a sugar issue (though it may contribute to our obesity problem, but that is another debate). I do not think that is the cause of your symptoms. I brought it up because the American Academy of Pediatrics just issued this on juice for infants...

Hi and welcome You've found a great community full of wise people who have experience successfully negotiating just the things you're going through. So that's some good news to start. Course there's people like me here too... Take heart from the fact its very early days and you will hav...

Sorry it probably did read like that but I was just rambling! Ignore me