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Poppi

People With Large Families - How Do You Keep Your House Safe?

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So I have a big family. Myself, my husband, our 3 kids plus our two Vietnamese girls who are living with us for several years while they study in Canada. (Plus 4 chicks who currently live in a rubbermaid tub in the upstairs kitchen).

Right now I am discovering that I am quite sensitive to even small amounts of cross contamination. I grabbed the wrong peanut butter jar a couple weeks ago and was sick for a whole day when there weren't even visible crumbs.

We are lucky to have 2 kitchens so the upstairs kitchen is mostly gluten free and the downstairs kitchen (where the 3 teenagers live) is full of gluten foods. The only exception to this rule is cans of soup (no crumbs) and a couple of loaves of gluten bread in the upstairs chest freezer that my husband will use to make the little kids toast or sandwiches but he only uses the top of the freezer for that food prep and I don't put my food on that surface.

We have a toaster oven so I feel safe taking the rack out to wash before I toast my bread and my husband is pretty good about wiping it when he's done and dumping out the crumbs.

I can't afford to replace my pots but they aren't Teflon, They are Circulon which is a different type of non stick. I am hoping to replace them in August or September but not before then. So far I don't think they are bothering me though.

I try to avoid contact with gluten foods and crumbs but a certain level is inevitable while cleaning the dining room and emptying lunch boxes and such.

Anyone else with a large family of gluten eaters? How do you keep yourself healthy?

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I live alone but thought I would reply as keeping gluten-free is one of my major preoccupations. It seems to me you are aware of most of what you need to do and are doing it very well. Are you having some symptoms that you think are caused by gluten? If not, then from what I have read, occasional ingestion of very small amounts of gluten won't usually raise the autoimmune antibody levels for most people. But some people are much too sensitive to gluten to be able to tolerate even that small amount. Some people can work in bakeries while others cant even go inside.

Have you thought of having the genetic marker test done to see if you inherited a predisposition to develop Celiac Disease or non-celiac sprue? I had the test done at www.enterolab.com tho there are other online labs. Another test is the molecular serology test offered by Prometheus Labs. This tests the gliadin binding site which presents the gliadin fregment to the antibody making cells. No gluten diet necessary for these tests.

I don't stop by this forum often as people have objected to my emphasis on alternative methods of healing that have been very helpful. Put a message in my inbox.

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I am the only gluten-free one in a family of 5. I have 2 counters literally labelled 'gluten free' - signs on the wall. My toaster is there. I have the top shelf of the freezer, the fridge, & the pantry, and another cupboard. I have my own strainer, large utensil drawer, and fry pan...all my other pots are non stick.

I have a permanent marker that I label my stuff with. My peanut butter, margarine, mayo, etc. is labelled either 'gluten-free' or 'Mom'. The top shelf of the fridge has several jars containing all my flours, and the top shelf of the freezer has bags of my frozen baked stuff (all labelled of course !).

I bought an island on wheels, with drawers, for the gluten-y stuff. On it is their toaster and bread. In the drawers are their plastic storage containers (differnt type than mine) and large utensils (think slotted spoons, plastic measuring cups, etc.).

I'm the cook so I get the most space !

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I was just diagnosed and so I'm just getting started at de-glutening my home. I have a husband and 5 kids living at home right now that all are gluten eaters. The kids will all have to be tested, although none are symptomatic as of now. I am trying not to feel overwhelmed at figuring out what I need to separate and change. I found myself wiping crumbs off a countertop the other day and realized that I shouldn't even be touching them. It's hard to break old habits. I'm getting better at finding things to eat now, but the rest is a work in progress at the moment.

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Family of 5 here - the only gluten item we have is sandwich bread for lunches, and I make the sandwiches. Sometimes we have pretzels which are easy enough to monitor. It was too much worry to have gluten around. The youngest children are 4 & 6 - old enough to fix snacks but too young to keep things gluten-free. I started out trying to have a mixed kitchen, but then realized that I never knew for sure what had gone on while I wasn't watching. It was not a hard transition. I just tell them it makes mommy feel bad so we don't eat that at home anymore. They are very aware now and even search out gluten free items for me and are learning what is and what isn't safe. As a result we are all eating better these days - carrots are a much better snack than pretzels!

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