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shayre

Can Someone Give My Hubby Advice On Live gluten-free With Me

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Hi. Could the non-celiacs (and celiacs) give my husband advice on how to live with my celiac disease as a family. I have been the only one gluten-free. My hubby and 2 small kids are not. I am beginning to realize that constant cross-contamination might be the source of feeling bad all of the time, and making othe autoimmune diseases flare up more often. I don't expect everyone to go gluten-free, although it would be nice. I know it's huge to ask them to make so many changes for my health. I think that my husband, David, would appreciate any thoughts and advice for dealing with this situation as a non-celiac. Anything to also help him understand the situation better and to not feel alone. I know that it's frustrating for everyone, especially when I'm not feeling well most of the time. David is sweet and understanding, but I think that he needs to hear from others at this point.

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Hi David! It is very important that you help keep your wife safe by either drastically reducing the amount of gltuen in your house or eliminating it completely. Gluten is like a poison to your wife. Everytime you touch something with gluten and then your wife touches that thing after you it risks harming her/making her ill if she eats or touches her face after that. You cannot "kill" gluten with hand sanitizer like you can germs. It is a food protein and needs to be washed away with water and soap. You also can make your wife sick if you drink beer or eat a sandwhich and then kiss her. If you want to keep eating gluten AND help your wife stay healthy brush your teeth right after you eat gluten so you can safely kiss her.

Some ideas for keeping your wife safe if you plan to still have gluten in the house:

Choose one countertop or area of the kitchen that is the the gluten only zone. Prepare all gluteny food there and clean it well when you are done so your wife doesn't have to clean the gluteny crumbs.

When you wipe up some crumbs or wash a dish in the sink with a washcloth put that washcloth right into the dirty laundry pile or the washer so you wife does not use the same cloth on the gluten free countertops.

Flour and mixes that contain wheat flour (muffin, cake cookie) need to be banned from your home. Flour goes in the air and stays they for many hours afterward. The dust settles on everything and contaminates it. Airborne flour CAN make your wife sick.

You need to get new pans for gluten free cooking IF you have nonstick pans. The gluten settles in the scrathes of the pan and will continue to make your wife sick as long as she uses them to prepare gluten free food.

You also need to replace (get gluten-free dedicated) cutting boards, colander, plastic spatulas, wooden spoons and anything else that is plastic/has scrathes/or is made from a porous material like wood.

If youa re insistant on eating sandwiches and other gltueny food YOU need to make it yourself or your wife will need to wear gloves. While yes it is possible for her to make a sandwicha nd then wash her hands afterward it is NOT pratical and increases her risk of continuing to be ill dramatically.

You need to NOT share things that are gluten free. If you have a bag of chips and you are eating a sandwhich, as soon as you or one of the kids reaches their hand into that bag of chips, the chips are no longer safe for your wife to eat. You can deal with this in one of two ways--have her get her chips first and not take anymore after that and also mark the bag so she doesn't eat them later OR get her her own bag of chips and mark them "mom's chips ONLY" of something like that. This same principle also applies to all condiments in the house that your share. She needs her own butter, pb, mayo, cheese, lunch meat etc. Some members here with mixed households just put brightly colored ducktape on everythign that is for the gluten free eater.

You need to start feeding the kids mostly gltuen free (if not completely gluten free). There are many cereals out there that are kid friendly. There are also many normal meals that are naturally gluten free and don't require special bread, etc. If the kids are going to keep eating gluten, dad needs to feed it to them and dad needs to clean them up after they eat. They need to not kiss or touch mom until they have washed their faces, washed their hands and brushed their teeth.

So those are just the things off the top of my head....I'm sure there are many other things I forgot. Bottom line though is it is A LOT more work to keep a mixed household than it would be to just make everything in the house gluten free. In the end you may have to make your house gluten free in order for your wife to get healthy. My household is gluten free because my husband would not be able to do everything that is required to keep me safe and healthy. He works a full time job and he would forget too often. We have adapted just fine to having different meals. I don't think there is anything he misses that I used to make at home. He can eat whatever he wants when he is at work, out with friends or when we go out to eat. And the upside is we have discovered so many new meals that we love that we never would have tried if we were not forced to make the household gluten-free. I hope you will seriously consider making your home mostly gluten free and helping your wife to feel better. I posted in one of her other threads a little bit about all the different things that could happen to her healthwise if she does not get rid of the cc issues at home. Please take this seriously and help your wife be healthy!

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My husband voluntarily went gluten free at home after watching me get sick one too many times. At the time it really surprised me, but he says he does not miss gluten foods since he eats lunch out and can have it then, if he wants it. We use rice pasta for spaghetti or macaroni dishes, and he eats gluten free breakfast cereals now. Those have been the 2 major changes. I was baking before anyway, and now it's just different ingredients.

He is unusual as he also can and does shop and cook, and this way it's easier for him if we have this set shopping list of things that he knows are safe - he pretty much leaves the baking part and shopping for the gluten free flours or the nuts that I process into nutmeals to me. He's never been a big junk food eater anyway, and tends to want to eat more vegetables and grilled meats, baked chicken, or fish than a lot of people.

Funny story. I had heard all this stuff about the Udi's, and decided to get a loaf so he could taste it (it has one ingredient I don't like, and it's white bread anyway, so I was more curious about his reaction and comparison to regular bread, than my having any intention of eating it.) It must have taken 4 months for the stuff to get used up out of the freezer. He said it wasn't bad, but it was just sort of "there," like white bread, not freshly baked. I'm like, don't you want bread, and he's like, no, if it's something fast I need, just let me put the peanut butter on a rice cake or a tortilla.

With kids, it might be a slightly larger adjustment at first, because if you "ban" something that tends to make them want it more. You'd also have to be good at finding or making yummy substitutes for their favorite snacks, if they are gluten filled. This isn't a biggie if you treat it as an exploration or an exciting new journey, and not as a punitive sentence. You will end up eating much healthier than other families who do not cook from scratch as often. One of the most charming videos I have seen on youtube was for a recipe for some sort of simple gluten free sponge cake, and it was a British lady that was teaching her small child how to make it while describing it for the camera. If children think that cooking gluten free is not a big deal, it won't be a big deal.

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With kids, it might be a slightly larger adjustment at first, because if you "ban" something that tends to make them want it more. You'd also have to be good at finding or making yummy substitutes for their favorite snacks, if they are gluten filled. This isn't a biggie if you treat it as an exploration or an exciting new journey, and not as a punitive sentence. You will end up eating much healthier than other families who do not cook from scratch as often. One of the most charming videos I have seen on youtube was for a recipe for some sort of simple gluten free sponge cake, and it was a British lady that was teaching her small child how to make it while describing it for the camera. If children think that cooking gluten free is not a big deal, it won't be a big deal.

My 4 year old daughter ended up loving gluten free eating as soon as I made her favorite food...pizza, except I used a potato and rice crust. After that it was so easy to get her to eat gluten free and my husband decided to do it for our health (my baby and I have celiac and the doctors suspect that the 4 year old may also).

To the original poster:

I think it is important for your husband to know that difference that it will make in your life. If you keep getting sick you won't be able to do as much as a family, but if you stay healthy you can spend more time together. I had my husband do research on what could happen so that he really knew the importance of the "diet". Good Luck.

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I can pass on words of wisdom from my hubby, at least. :-)

First, this last Christmas at his mother's house, my hubby was talking about what we do to stay safe, how careful we are, what we can and can't eat/touch/and so on. His mother is very skeptical that we need to be THAT careful.

His reply was this: sometimes, I might not always feel like it's reasonable to be that careful, that maybe they don't have to worry about the cross contamination as much as they do. but at the same time, I'm not the one who is going to feel terrible or in pain if I'm wrong. And since I'm her husband, I'm going to support her in her trying to stay healthy, even if I don't understand it all.

Second thing from hubby. He came up with a way to describe gluten cc that I thought made sense and was easy to think about: gluten is rather like raw meat. Separate cutting boards for both. If you touch both, you wash your hands before you are touching other food you would eat. If you use utensils on both, you wash them before they are allowed to touch other food you would eat. If you touch both and then touch something else, then you wash your hands AND the thing you touched. If either of these things spills onto a surface, you wash it well afterwards.

The only major difference is that with raw meat, you can cook it and it'll be fine. Not the case with gluten, so any pans that have gluten cc need a thorough washing and scrubbing. Think about how high a heat is used to cook bread, and for how long, and the gluten is still there, happy and read to make us sick. This stuff is really, really hard to destroy. Soap and water and scrubbing if necessary, yes. Sterilizing techniques like steam and sanitizer - nope, doesn't do a thing.

Hope that helps a little. Good luck in finding a good compromise that works for you and your family. :-)

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This post just about made me cry - I am dealing with the exact same issue right now - non gluten husband & 2 kids. As I read your post, it sounded word for word what I have been saying in my mind for the last month as I struggle with being sick constantly. I also don't have the heart to ask everyone in my family to go gluten free, but it seems to be the only way that I will feel better.

So, thank you so much for putting into words what I have wanted to say, and for the EXCELLENT replies that are so helpful - I hadn't even thought of kissing as a means of cc!!! I am going to have my husband read this thread so he understands how serious this all is.

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