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Going To Egypt And Jordan

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We have signed up for a trip to Egypt (Cairo, Luxor, and Aswan) and Jordan (Petra). I have done some research by googling but have not come up with much except 1 bakery in Cairo that will make you some gluten free bread (min 3 Loaves) if you order it one day in advance. So I plan on packing food but would rather buy in the local country.

Does anyone have any experience or advice for these countries? Is gluten-free food even available? In what stores?

Thanks in advance.

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We have signed up for a trip to Egypt (Cairo, Luxor, and Aswan) and Jordan (Petra). I have done some research by googling but have not come up with much except 1 bakery in Cairo that will make you some gluten free bread (min 3 Loaves) if you order it one day in advance. So I plan on packing food but would rather buy in the local country.

Does anyone have any experience or advice for these countries? Is gluten-free food even available? In what stores?

Thanks in advance.

I have traveled to the countries you mentioned. In my experience they probably would not understand "gluten-free." I travel quite a bit and because of the language barrier and the difficulty in understanding the message I am trying to convey I ahve learned to just try to eat safe, eat what you feel most sure of.....I eat alot of salads.

If you have never been to these countries I will give you a heads up to the vendors trying to pedal their goods. Do not pull out your wallet or any money. Keep all your important documents on your front somehow and only put small amounts of money in your pocket to use. Best bet is just to avoid eye contact and don't worry about trying to be polite. If you give them an inch of space they will take a mile. If you decide to buy from a vendor/hocker offer them a fraction of what they quote you for a price and if they don't tkae it, walk off. Do not make eye contact, it's a business deal and that's it. If children are with you, hold their hand at all times and never let them out of your sight.

It is an experince of a lifetime, one I think you will enjoy very much.

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I would just try to skip bread products all together. Stick to meat, veggies, rice, that sort of thing.

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And don't buy dry fruit dusted with white powder - it's flour.

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I was in Egypt on a 4 day overland with a private tour operator. I explained gluten free in advance and then to all my travel guides (we switched guides depending on what city we were in). I also had all the meals included so I had a guide at each one or at least at the beginning so that they could explain gluten free. I didn't get sick once and had some wonderful food. It has been a couple of years but I believe roasted meat or fish, veggie and rice dishes were common as well as good Indian food. Breakfast was usually at a hotel buffet and I had sliced meat, cheese, eggs and fruit. We stayed at the Sheraton Luxor Resort and the Mena House Oberoi in Cairo. I told the tour company that we wanted the price to include only eating at the best restaurants and not any buffet meals except the hotel breakfast. I wanted sit down restaurants that would make meals to order as I think buffets are too risky.

I found the Middle East and Mediterranean to be pretty good with gluten free. I think that cultures that make their meals from fresh ingredients rather than prepackaged like you get in the US tend to be pretty easy to work with.

I haven't been to Jordan but I had an easy time with gluten free in both Turkey (yummy vegetable salads in addition to meat kabobs) and Israel.

It is a good idea to bring prepackaged bars just in case. I always take Kind bars as a back-up in case I need to get something to eat and don't have a local gluten free option. If you are with a tour company tell them you must be able to order a meal and cannot have the buffet. Then involve your guide in ordering the meal so everything is conveyed properly.

When traveling I take Gluten Ease and Digest Gold digestive enzymes at the start of each meal. The last thing I want is to get glutened and have diarrhea while on a bus caught in a traffic jam.

I also use and carry probiotics to combat against bad bacteria. The one I used was one of the Pearls by Enzymatic but there are probably many that would do.

http://www.enzymatictherapy.com/Products/Digestion/Daily-Digestion-Support/04363-Pearls-IC.aspx

Here is an article on probiotics for travelers diarrhea.

http://www.thecaregrouppc.net/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=61:probiotics-for-travelers&catid=37:articles&Itemid=85

Have a great trip!

Michelle

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