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mtnjen

Cheating On gluten-free Diet During Foreign Travel?

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I have been very strict with my gluten-free diet for 2 years even though I am not sure if I have Celiac. I do definitely have Ulcerative Colitis. I am wondering if anyone has been tempted to cheat on their gluten-free diet when visiting a foreign country. I really want to immerse myself in foreign cultures when traveling without having to worry about what I am eating. Is it that bad to cheat on a diet once every couple of years when leaving the country? Unfortunately, my doctors don

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im in a simular situation, my biopsy was completely normal, but my GI decided to try the deit anyway, and its working, but i still get some symptoms.(tiredness)

if i cheat i get rarely sick, and you may get a more servere reaction next time than you did last time. So i never cheat.

IMO, if you only get a mild reaction then the only thing stopping you cheating is will power and or your doctors, i am going on holiday in a few months and i would also like your opinions and advice on getting the culture without being ill.


"great works are performed not by strength but by perseverence"

 

Diagnosed coeliac - aged 14

                  Asthma

                 Osteopinia

                 High blood calcium

                 Crohn's disease -december 2012 

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It is possible to travel abroad and have a successful gluten-free trip.

The most important thing is to do your homework.

Find out what resources are available to you and use them. There are cruise lines and airlines that offer gluten-free meals.

When I traveled abroad this fall we ordered online from a company that was in-country and had gluten-free supplies delivered to the place that we were staying. We also brought some of our own in our luggage.

Get dining cards in the native language to bring with you.

Your dining out experience will depend on the culture you visit and how dependent they are on processed ingredients and products. Go with a knowlege of the cuisine, a clear plan and realistic expectations. Plan for times when you will be away from base without knowing where to get a meal. I packed a meal or a snack in the am and brought it with me when we were out and about for the day. Try not to get caught up in that fantasy vacation mode and make impulsive, emotional decisions that are detrimental to your health. We can enjoy our trips more if we are healthy. And (if our finances allow ;) ) we can take more trips!

I didn't get to enjoy the things that I used to, like the wonderful European style pastries and cakes(I still enjoy looking at it(and did) as an art form). Instead of focusing on what I was missing out on, I enjoyed other things like taking walks and exploring, different foliage, architecture, sounds, rhythm of life, daily hotbaths in DEEP tubs, efficient mass transit system, all the things that are part of life there that are different from my daily experience here. I still could enjoy many native fruits and veg., in their natural state or simply prepared, that aren't available here or are aren't as flavorful and fresh.

As I saw it, I had three choices: Don't go(I seriously considered this)

Go, take risks and get possibly get sick.(spending three days sick from CC out of two weeks after 18+ hrs. and thousands of dollars spent to get there)

Go, take no risks, and give up some things that I would love.(I chose this and it was worth it)


Me: GLUTEN-FREE 7/06, multiple food allergies, T2 DIABETES DX 8/08, LADA-Latent Autoimmune Diabetes in Adults, Who knew food allergies could trigger an autoimmune attack on the pancreas?! 1/11 Re-DX T1 DM, pos. DQ2 Celiac gene test 9/11

Son: ADHD '06,

neg. CELIAC PANEL 5/07

ALLERGY: "positive" blood and skin tests to wheat, which triggers his eczema '08

ENTEROLAB testing: elevated Fecal Anti-tissue Transglutaminase IgA Dec. '08

Gluten-free-Feb. '09

other food allergies

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going to a foreign country doesn't magically make your body treat gluten differently, so treat it the same as you would here - avoid it unless you want to deal with the consequences. it's always a choice; you can deal with the symptoms will cause and damage it may cause if the tradeoff is worth it to you. I wouldn't, given that you can eat gluten free in other places, and experience plenty of culture other ways; but that's me.


Tiffany aka "Have I Mentioned Chocolate Lately?"

Inconclusive Blood Tests, Positive Dietary Results, No Endoscopy

G.F. - September 2003; C.F. - July 2004

Hiker, Yoga Teacher, Engineer, Painter, Be-er of Me

Bellevue, WA

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It is possible to travel abroad and have a successful gluten-free trip.

The most important thing is to do your homework.

Find out what resources are available to you and use them. There are cruise lines and airlines that offer gluten-free meals.

When I traveled abroad this fall we ordered online from a company that was in-country and had gluten-free supplies delivered to the place that we were staying. We also brought some of our own in our luggage.

Get dining cards in the native language to bring with you.

Your dining out experience will depend on the culture you visit and how dependent they are on processed ingredients and products. Go with a knowlege of the cuisine, a clear plan and realistic expectations. Plan for times when you will be away from base without knowing where to get a meal. I packed a meal or a snack in the am and brought it with me when we were out and about for the day. Try not to get caught up in that fantasy vacation mode and make impulsive, emotional decisions that are detrimental to your health. We can enjoy our trips more if we are healthy. And (if our finances allow ;) ) we can take more trips!

I didn't get to enjoy the things that I used to, like the wonderful European style pastries and cakes(I still enjoy looking at it(and did) as an art form). Instead of focusing on what I was missing out on, I enjoyed other things like taking walks and exploring, different foliage, architecture, sounds, rhythm of life, daily hotbaths in DEEP tubs, efficient mass transit system, all the things that are part of life there that are different from my daily experience here. I still could enjoy many native fruits and veg., in their natural state or simply prepared, that aren't available here or are aren't as flavorful and fresh.

As I saw it, I had three choices: Don't go(I seriously considered this)

Go, take risks and get possibly get sick.(spending three days sick from CC out of two weeks after 18+ hrs. and thousands of dollars spent to get there)

Go, take no risks, and give up some things that I would love.(I chose this and it was worth it)

Well said. I have just returned from a trip to Panama and had no trouble eating gluten free. The hardest part is the airline travel. Unless you are going overseas, or are in 1st class, they don't serve you food (therefore you can not tell them ahead of time that you are celiac) and all there is to buy is usually gluten type foods. Because I'm from Canada and was touching down in the USA I couldn't bring any fruit, vegies or meat on the plane and most airports have a plethora of fast food joints but very little that is nutritious and gluten free (sigh). I subsisted on nuts and dried fruit and water. When I arrived, and I was staying with friends, there was so much fresh fruit, vegies, eggs, etc.. that eating was easy and a pleasure. When I went to Malta last year, it was overseas, I was fed gluten free and we had an apartment that I could cook food in. I found it pretty easy eating in restaurants there, lots of fresh fish and salads on every menu. I was even found a store (very small like a corner store here) that had a gluten free section.

Small town car trips are another story. I always pack food with me and stop at store to stock up on fresh vegies and fruit. Small towns rarely have much that I can eat in them (although I have been proven wrong in some towns).

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You already have some great answers. I spend 2 to 3 months a year in various countries and dont cheat. If I get glutened accidently, it puts me out of commission a few days which is not fun in other countries. The last thing you want to do is get stuck in a hospital in some out of the way place. Having spent 58 days in one in Japan I can attest to that fact. You can still immerse yourself in the cultures without it revolving around food. Just find the foods that dont require you give up your diet.

Good luck

I have been very strict with my gluten-free diet for 2 years even though I am not sure if I have Celiac. I do definitely have Ulcerative Colitis. I am wondering if anyone has been tempted to cheat on their gluten-free diet when visiting a foreign country. I really want to immerse myself in foreign cultures when traveling without having to worry about what I am eating. Is it that bad to cheat on a diet once every couple of years when leaving the country? Unfortunately, my doctors don

"Ryo tatereba mi ga tatanu"

If we try to serve both sides, we cannot stand our own ground.

Japanese proverb

Celiac.com - Celiac Disease Board Moderator

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I don't have an official celiac diagnosis but I'm more strict about my diet while traveling than I am at home (and I'm pretty strict about it at home too). That way I can really enjoy the experience without dealing with horrible symptoms or worrying that I might be damaging my body.

Travel doesn't have much to do with food for me, but I still enjoy learning about the cuisine that others around me are enjoying, and there are plenty of other ways to experience the culture of the country that you're in.


"Let food be thy medicine, and let thy medicine be food." - Hippocrates

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Ditto what Phyllis said. If I'm going to go to the effort and expense of taking a vacation, I want to enjoy myself. Eating gluten is a good way to guarantee I'm not going to enjoy myself. I'm going to have to find other ways to immerse myself in the culture.


Gluten-Free since September 15, 2005.

Peanut-Free since July 2006.

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I'm going to have to find other ways to immerse myself in the culture.

I consider it a cultual experience to shop for food in a foreign country, figure out how to use the stove in the rented flat, and eat my gluten free sack lunch in the local parks.


Phyllis

Gluten Free - 30 years

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