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I'm Not Celiac, But..

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Please bare with me!

I am a 23 year old female college student. Last October I had a severe allergy that led me to the ER. I had a lobster ravioli and we (my family, friends, co-workers) assumed that it was a shellfish allergy, although I have never had problems with it before.

I went to the allergist, got blood work done, got the results, no shellfish allergy. The results listed my allergy as a "food mix". On a scale of 1-6 being highest...

Milk - 1

Egg whites - 1

Wheat - 2

Canola seed - 1

My allergist told me to continue eating as normal. I get excruciating headaches from eating wheat/dairy, which makes me sick to my stomach. I feel terrible for days after I eat it.

I am devasted to say the least. I know this isn't Celiac Disease, although I haven't been tested, but I feel so in the dark. I started sublingual immunotherapy for my allergies (three drops under my tongue of the foods I'm allergic to, three times a day for three to five years) and my doctor says I may be able to reintroduce small amounts of wheat and dairy by Christmas, with full recovery in three to five years!!! :(

I have been reading this forum religiously everyday and have learned so much from all of you. My main questions are:

1. If it's manufactured in a facility that contains wheat, do yall still eat it? I love swedish fish, and although wheat isn't listed in the ingredients, it still says "manufactored", blah blah..

2. Does anyone have any ideas to pack quick, easy lunches? I am so burnt out on lunch meat, hormel pepperonies, jello, pistachios.. I literally eat the same thing every day. I am not much of a baker either.

I know this is long, and I apologize. I feel like I have no one else to turn to. I feel like even my parents think this is all in my head!

But -- I also wanted to share with ya'll. I have worked at Carrabba's for over 6 years, which my allergist says is the reason I "desensitized" myself from being around the bread all these years. (I still host there, but if I get around the bread, my eyes water, nose won't stop running.) But I wanted to let ya'll know that our MANAGER cooks our gluten free dishes. As soon as the ticket goes in red, he cleans the grill, uses fresh gloves, different mixing bowls for salads, different tongs, ect. And if you bring in your own rice pasta, he will happily cook it for you. I don't know if the other Carrabbas do the same, but just wanted ya'll to know that not all restaurant employees are idiots like the guy I read on here a few weeks ago and his facebook status..

Anyways, any advice is needed. Food, support, advice.. For Easter I had Oscar Myer hot dogs while my family ate everything in sight.. sigh..

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Hello and welcome:

How about green salad with hard boiled egg and fresh veggies; rice salad; pasta salad. Devilled egg sandwich made with Udi's bread. Toss in some fresh fruit, a Larabar, some corn chips, almonds, dried fruits like apricots, popcorn.... You just have to get out of your rut :)

Everyone has to make their own decisions about shared facilities/lines. It depends on your level of sensitivity and is a matter of trial and error. Some have hard and fast rules for themselves, others if it doesn't bother them they will eat it.

For eating out (with family or at functions) we generally learn to take food with us or eat beforehand or both. You cannot rely on other people to provide for you, and even if they did you could not necessarily trust what they provided unless you supervised its production. :P

Nice to hear that about Carrabbas.

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No, I do not eat things that "may contain wheat" or are "manufactured in a facility that processes wheat". It's just not worth it.

I understand you on the food restrictions, it's hard. I ate out for the first time in a month yesterday and it was kind of scary instead of being the carefree experience it used to be.

As far as lunches/dinners/family occasions may I suggest:

Tabouleh made with quinoa (I make a huge bowl of this once a week and I'm lucky if my husband doesn't eat it all before I get to it)

Any kind of sandwich on Udi's rice bread (my favourite bread so far)

Pizzas on kinnnikinnick pizza crusts (super good, you'd never guess they're gluten free)

Burgers on kinnikinnick hamburger buns

Fried or scrambled egg, ham and cheese on a toasted kinnikinnick english muffin

Gluten free pantry and Pamela's both make great brownie mixes and you can make them even better by adding almonds - eat them warm with ice cream. YUM!

Learn how to make a good flourless chocolate cake and take it to your next family gathering with fresh fruit and whipping cream - eeveryone will love it

A big salad with grilled chicken, steak or salmon and a balsamic dressing

Rice noodles with a thai coconut curry sauce

Make or buy some BBQ kabobs and keep them in the freezer so you can grab one for a family BBQ or a lunch with salad and a baked potato

Spaghetti and meatballs with corn or rice pasta

My biggest suggestion would be to make a list of all the foods you love and either find a gluten free version or learn to adapt the recipe yourself. This is a great time to become a good cook.

Duh. I just noticed you said no dairy as well ... sorry.

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My daughter is allergic to wheat and other things. We will buy things made in a facility with her allergens but we will not buy may contain items or made on shared lines.

She usually brings a quick lunch because there is not much time at school. Often it is a hummus cup from Costco along with some gluten-free pretzels, carrots or apple slices. Sometimes she brings a teff wrap. The wrap, with margarine, turkey or chicken and shredded lettuce. Sometimes she brings an allergen free bar. In past years she would bring leftovers in a thermos or a salad. Sometimes now she does bring a salad but one from the grocery store because she doesn't like to haul a container that she has to bring back home. Sometimes she brings some cereal like Rice Chex. She just eats it dry.

Another option would be trail mix. You can do your own with nuts, seeds, dried fruit, coconut and maybe some chocolate chips (Enjoy Life are dairy free) or other small candies.

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