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Megan

Help!

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HI! I'm a twenty-one year old college student who was just recently put on a gluten free diet. I'm finding it nearly impossible to do. I'm putting off eating because I can't figure out how to eat what is right and when I do I feel absolutely miserable. My doctor gave me a sheet of all the "words" I can't eat but it's not helpful and trying to get him to help more is exhausting. I've been doing research, but I'm not getting anywhere. Is my only option to buy groceries off of the internet? I really just need help! I'm so excited and happy to have found you guys! I can't wait to hear some helpful tips so I can move on with my normal life instead of refusing to eat when I have to be around a group of people afterwards and hiding in enormous hoodies, etc. THANKS!!! Megan

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Welcome! That sucks that you're in college and got dx'ed. At least you can feel better! I just got dx'ed 2 months ago and I graduated in may, so I barely missed that bullet. Gluten free doesn't have to be horribly expensive, and you can do most of your shopping at your friendly neighborhood wal-mart or grocery store, depending on where you are. Lots of companies are good for celiacs in that they don't hide gluten.

I just borrowed this from another recent post:

Kraft isn't the only company that will clearly list gluten. Here's a list of some that will either list gluten or, in some cases, wheat. But it's my understanding that wheat is what we have to worry about in natural flavors. Some of these companies are actually Kraft subsidiaries.

Balance

Baskin Robbins

Ben & Jerry

Betty Crocker

Blue Bunny

Butterball *lists wheat only

Breyers

Campbells (wheat only, I think)

Cascadian Farms

Celestial Seasonings

ConAgra *lists wheat only

Country Crock

Edy's

General Mills

Good Humor

Green Giant

Hellman's

Hershey

Hormel

Hungry Jack

Kozy Shack

Kraft

Martha White

McCormick

Nabisco

Nestle

Old El Paso

Ortega

Pillsbury

Popsicle

Post

Progresso

Russell Stover (wheat only, I think)

Sunny Delight

T Marzetti

Tyson

Unilever

Wishbone

Yoplait

Zatarain's

richard

All of those companies clearly list gluten! I don't buy much at the health food stores and nothing online. Eating whole foods like meats, fruits, veggies, rice, potatoes, etc. will help. There are only some things you need, in my opinion, to buy specialty stuff. One is tinkyada pasta (made from rice), chebe pizza mix, and gluten-free cereal.

I buy A LOT of Kraft products like oscar meyer hot dogs and lunchmeat, cheeses, etc. Mission corn tortillas are gluten-free.

Read around, you'll find almost anything you need to know! :D


Alright, don't worry even if things end up a bit too heavy

We'll all float on, alright

Well we'll float on good news is on the way...

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Welcome Megan!

I thank god that I wasn't diagnosed utill after graduating college, because I know how hard it would be to follow this diet while on a college budget and with a college lifestyle! First off do you live in the dorms or do you have an appt.? If you live in the dorms, talk to the powers that be about campus food services helping you with your diet. I have heard from other people on this site that Universities are generally VERY helpful! Even if you live off campus many times you can buy food packages that allow you to eat at the dorms. If your university is willing to work with you, that may be really helpful! That way you could drop in between classes and have a bite to eat without worry. If you have an appartment and are able to cook for yourself, I would recommend visiting a health food store in your area and stocking up on some frozen meals. You can buy chicken nuggets, mexican entrees, frozen pizzas....all gluten-free! Thai Kitchen also makes a great version of an old college favorite....the ramen noodle! They come in little pre-packaged bags just like the original and they are CHEAP! You might even be able to find them at your regular grocery. For snacks you can always have a piece of fresh fruit (which is also portable to take to classes with you), cheese, yoplait yogurt....all of which can be bought at a regular store! I hope this helps some!

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Megan,

I was just diagnosed about a year ago, and have also only just recently found this website. I hope others will correct me if I give you information that is incorrect. One of my favorite cookbooks says, "Never leave home with a hungry celiac" and that is so true! If anything, instead of avoiding food, you need to be eating more, because you're cutting a lot out of your diet now. No matter where you go, always carry a ziploc bag with some snacks with you, because celiacs can't just stop anywhere to eat. I tend to eat a lot of meat, vegetables and fruit, and not many things anymore that come from a box. This is difficult, as I was the queen of box cooking! Rice and potatoes are great sources of carbs, and I find myself snacking on things like cashews, cheese (I am not lactose intollerant, but I know some are, so you may want to initially avoid dairy as well), gluten-free crackers, and M&Ms. Unfortunately, I have not found any candy bars or salad dressings that don't make me sick (including the gluten free ones), but I'm starting to suspect I have other allergies as well. Corn tortilla chips and salsa are a great snack (and sometimes a meal :( ) for me. Personally, for dining out, I've found that Wendy's and mexican restaurants are the easiest to navigate. Wendy's has their fruit bowl, chili and the potatoes that are gluten free . At Mexican restaurants, I get dishes that use corn tortillas rather than flour. If you're making tacos at home, McCormick's taco seasoning mix is gluten free. It's easier to shop for food if you live in a bigger city (I live in DC), but my mom lives in rural Iowa, and she is still able to find stores that carry gluten free products. Good luck, and don't be discouraged - you will be so much healthier!

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Ok maybe I'm confused or maybe my crappy doctor gave me a crappy list <_<

I ran and looked at my Kraft macaroni, I wouldn't have eaten them because the word wheat was listed...but not gluten, is that what you meant by not hiding gluten?

lunchmeats and hot dogs are on my list of do not eat...

I just ran and looked at my Oscar hot dogs and I would have not eaten them according to my "list"

I guess now I'm just confused as to what exactly I'm looking for on these labels...

here's what my list tells me for the most part...

no wheat, barley, oats, ...

no lunch meat, hot dogs

no processed cheese...

only gelatin for dessert...

no salad dressings unless it's pure mayonaise...

coffee and cappacino are ok...

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I guess now I'm just confused as to what exactly I'm looking for on these labels...

here's what my list tells me for the most part...

no wheat, barley, oats, ...

no lunch meat, hot dogs

no processed cheese...

only gelatin for dessert...

no salad dressings unless it's pure mayonaise...

coffee and cappacino are ok...

Unless there is another reason to keep your diet so limited, some of those things are ok. Generally, with processed foods, you have to read the label.

Absolutely no wheat, barley, rye, oats, spelt, or trictale. No question.

Wheat and barley (and oats I guess) are most commonly found in processed foods.

True, some lunchmeat and hot dogs have gluten in them as a filler. Regular Oscar Meyer hot dogs do not. Oscar Meyer hot dogs are fine, and if there was a gluten-containing ingredient, it's a Kraft product and would be listed (it will say wheat, barley, rye, or oats). Same goes for their lunchmeat. Buy the pre-packaged stuff, don't go to the store's deli (the slicers can be contaminated).

An example of Kraft labelling is: NATURAL FLAVORINGS (WHEAT)

Unless stated otherwise, their modified food starch is corn.

As far as processed cheese, velveeta, kraft singles, and cheez wiz are gluten-free. I think they're all kraft products, anyway.

Jello is gluten-free, but so are many puddings, including jello puddings. Many ice creams are gluten-free, and sorbets.

Salad dressings are suspect usually because of vinegar and natural flavorings, and if the vinegar is distilled (and not malt vinegar), you're good to go no matter the grain source (unless you have problems with yeast). Annie's dressings are mostly gluten-free, as is Kraft ranch dressing and others.

Be careful with flavored coffee, because some brands use gluten as a binder.

Label reading will become second nature! We're all here to help...


Alright, don't worry even if things end up a bit too heavy

We'll all float on, alright

Well we'll float on good news is on the way...

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You should really ask your Dr. for a referal to a nutritionist. He obvioulsy hasn't given you any direction regarding your diet. Just be prepared....this (the first few months after diagnosis) is the hardest time you will have to face. Trust me, over time you will become accustomed to what you can and can't have and it will be second nature. In the mean time....what we meant by "listing gluten" is that those companies don't "hide" gluten under ussuspecting names. Many companies will have ingredients that are listed as modified food starch, natural flavors, or spices that actually contain gluten. Those companies that were listed earlier will clearly mark that there is wheat, rye, and barley on their ingredient list. In the meantime if there is a product that you want that is not by that list of manufacturers and lists any of the questionable items, you can call the company and most companies are very helpful and will have answers for you.

P.S. not all coffee and capaccino is ok...many flavored coffees are not gluten-free

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Megan--The list your doctor gave you is hopelessly outdated. I got a similar one from mine :D . Like Chelsea said, there are many things that you can have. Kraft is a wonderful company and will clearly list any gluten ingredients. All you have to do is read their labels. Con Agra Foods and Nestle will do the same. As will Hershey. It used to be thought that Celiacs could not eat vinegar. Except for the malt and an apple cider FLAVORED vinegar that is out there, they are generally safe. Heinz Regular ketchup is fine. Their Organic Ketchup is not. You need to read every label, and if there is an ingredient you are suspicious of like natural flavoring, it's always best to call the company and ask what is in it. It seems daunting at first, but I promise you, it will get easier. :)


Patti

"Life is what happens while you're busy making other plans"

"When people show you who they are, believe them"--Maya Angelou

"Bloom where you are planted"--Bev

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Ok maybe I'm confused or maybe my crappy doctor gave me a crappy list <_<

I ran and looked at my Kraft macaroni, I wouldn't have eaten them because the word wheat was listed...but not gluten, is that what you meant by not hiding gluten?

lunchmeats and hot dogs are on my list of do not eat...

I just ran and looked at my Oscar hot dogs and I would have not eaten them according to my "list"

I guess now I'm just confused as to what exactly I'm looking for on these labels...

here's what my list tells me for the most part...

no wheat, barley, oats, ...

no lunch meat, hot dogs

no processed cheese...

only gelatin for dessert...

no salad dressings unless it's pure mayonaise...

coffee and cappacino are ok...

Kraft will list words that you should know are gluten containing... such as wheat, rye, barley, malt... NOT just the word GLUTEN. :) So, for instance, if a product contains "modified food starch"....... WHAT IS THAT????? WHAT is the SOURCE of the starch????? Kraft is kind enough to put in parenthesis (wheat) or (corn) or (potato)..... so that you know the source. Corn and potato would be Celiac Safe. Wheat, Semolina, Rye, Barley... would be BAD.

If you like Mac and Cheese, Go find the TINKYADA brand of pasta at a health food store.... Though, some regular stores are carrying it now. You can ask your local regular store to get it for you. Mine did! Ok. Tinkyada pastas are the best gluten free pastas out there. Get VELVEETA. Velveeta is GLUTEN FREE! Make mac and cheese that way. It's great.

Your list of what to eat and what not to eat is too broad. Every food product is on a case by case basis. Nathan's Famous Franks CONTAIN GLUTEN. Almost all other brands of hot dogs are gluten free, though. But you still need to check each time. Don't freak out. It becomes second nature. Imagine if you'd never brushed your teeth in your entire life, then someone told you it had to be done at least twice a day for the rest of your life.... It would seem overwhelming because it was new to you, inconvenient and you'd done fine without it your entire life so far.... But hey, you'd get used to it. :D

Lots of lunch meats are safe. All Boar's Head brands are gluten free. They're company rid the entire line of deli meats and cheeses of gluten this past year to make our lives easier. Columbus brands are all gluten-free. Hormel makes lots that are gluten free. The salami, pepperoni are gluten-free. I'd be willing to bet most all cold cuts are gluten free. Just aske the deli clerk to allow you to read the label. Then ask very nicely that she wipe down the slicer to prevent any possible cross contamination for you. (oh, they love doing that!) Kraft singles are gluten free, mozzerella is gluten free.

There are lots of salad dressings that are gluten free. You need to read the lable. Kraft, again, is the easiest to decipher. Or just use oil and vinegar if you're too exhausted to read labels. Also, search this site, there are so many pre-done shopping lists here where people, including me, have already taken the time to type out long lists of what's available in a regular shopping store...

some things are

All Classico Alfredo sauces. (even the white, creamy alfredo sauce! Sure looks like it has gluten...but it doesn't!)

Bushe's baked beans

Manwich sloppy joe sauce

Prego spaghetti sauce (most spaghetti sauces, actually, are gluten-free)

Velveeta blocks of cheese

Post Fruity and Cocoa Pebbles are GLUTEN FREE!

Most bacons are gluten free

***WARNING*** some ham contains gluten . read your hams

www.kinnikinnick.com

I hope your parents can help out with the $$. Kinnkinnick has the best breads, donuts, bagels, muffins, pizza crusts, buns out there.

A good section to check out here at celiac.com is the parents of kids with Celiac.... Because many times a parent comes here all new to celiac with a child at home that needs to eat NOW. There are lots of helpful food lists that have been posted there.


I believe in God.

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Fritos corn chips

Tostitos nachos

Taco shells

Old el Paso taco sauce in a jar

Old el Paso salsa

Thai Kitchen products, read for red words "GLUTEN FREE" below ingredients

Hunt's puddings, read labels for the gluten free ones

Some Pilsbury frostings

Eggs

Bacon

Deli products (lots are gluten free) Have deli clerk wipe down slicer

Apple sauce

raisins

nuts (on everything *vague* like this, read labels)

Popcorn

Lays Stax potato chips read for GLUTEN free on label

peanut butter

jelly

cream cheese

rice puddings (cozy shack brand says gluten free on label)

Corn tortilla wraps. Make great breakfast burritos with bacon egg and cheese.

HINT on the corn tortilla wraps.... heat with a pat of butter on each side. Softens them to a consistency of flour tortillas.

Lots of yogurts are gluten free. Ask us here to confirm your favorite, or check on line at the website or call the company's 1800 number to verify. This is a common question for a food company. They almost always can give you the answer immediately.

Outback steakhouse has a gluten free menu that is GOOOOOOD.

PF Chang's has a gluten free menu, as well.

McDonald's french fries, hash browns, shakes, sodas are gluten free. I know there's been some controvery, but we eat the hash browns and no one has a problem. It's up to you to decide. The main doctor for Celiac research in Balitimore says they're safe.


I believe in God.

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Guest mvaught

Megan - you also have to be sure that there is no gluten in your beauty products, especially toothpaste and lipstick. wheat and oat protein is in a lot beauty products. if you search this cite, you can find some stuff that is safe- a lot of the neutrogena products do not contain gluten (both make - up and face stuff), i use Tom's toothpaste. also, thermasilk shampoo and conditioner doesn't have gluten. i know it is a lot to have to figure out at first, but it gets easier. it is more than a diet change - it is a lifestyle change. you have to get used to looking at labels. you'll be okay though - it isn't as impossible as it seems and you will feel SOOO much better!! (oh and i know it is pricey, but if you are ever craving pizza - whole foods sells a rice pizza crust that you can top yourself - it is super easy and you can put whatever you like on it - it is the best for final exam crunch cravings).

-michelle

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