• Ads by Google:
     




    Get email alerts Subscribe to Celiac.com's FREE weekly eNewsletter

    Ads by Google:



       Get email alertsSubscribe to Celiac.com's FREE weekly eNewsletter

  • Announcements

    • admin

      Frequently Asked Questions About Celiac Disease   09/30/2015

      This Celiac.com FAQ on celiac disease will guide you to all of the basic information you will need to know about the disease, its diagnosis, testing methods, a gluten-free diet, etc.   Subscribe to Celiac.com's FREE weekly eNewsletter   What are the major symptoms of celiac disease? Celiac Disease Symptoms What testing is available for celiac disease? - list blood tests, endo with biopsy, genetic test and enterolab (not diagnostic) Celiac Disease Screening Interpretation of Celiac Disease Blood Test Results Can I be tested even though I am eating gluten free? How long must gluten be taken for the serological tests to be meaningful? The Gluten-Free Diet 101 - A Beginner's Guide to Going Gluten-Free Is celiac inherited? Should my children be tested? Ten Facts About Celiac Disease Genetic Testing Is there a link between celiac and other autoimmune diseases? Celiac Disease Research: Associated Diseases and Disorders Is there a list of gluten foods to avoid? Unsafe Gluten-Free Food List (Unsafe Ingredients) Is there a list of gluten free foods? Safe Gluten-Free Food List (Safe Ingredients) Gluten-Free Alcoholic Beverages Distilled Spirits (Grain Alcohols) and Vinegar: Are they Gluten-Free? Where does gluten hide? Additional Things to Beware of to Maintain a 100% Gluten-Free Diet What if my doctor won't listen to me? An Open Letter to Skeptical Health Care Practitioners Gluten-Free recipes: Gluten-Free Recipes

Coping With Co-workers Attitude While Dining Out
0

Rate this topic

19 posts in this topic

Recommended Posts

This is probably unusual for most of you, but my disease symptoms are mostly silent - I was diagnosed due to anemia - and when I eat out with certain people I get no respect for my need for gluten-free food. Usual question is, "so what will happen to you if you eat this?" and the truthful answer is that I probably won't have any immediate response (I had random low-grade IBS symptoms for years that have now resolved, but I haven't challenged my guts with any gluten since 9/04 so I don't know what would happen). I've been religious about maintaining a gluten-free diet since my diagnosis because I like not being anemic and not having IBS symptoms and not having horrible poisonous gas all the time, but since I can't claim I will get violently ill from eating gluten I feel bad about making any kind of fuss in a restaurant, especially since my boss's boss is the one showing no respect for this. If it's just me and my family I don't mind telling the server what I need ("wheat allergy" gets their attention) but I could use some suggestions for how to handle people who don't take you seriously. No, it's not like the guy on our team who goes anaphylactic after a whiff of shellfish, and it's not a lifestyle choice like a vegetarian, and I'm not going to get seriously ill within 20 minutes - I probably wouldn't know even if I did eat something forbidden (I feel the pain of those of you who do) - but I need a good comeback that explains succinctly why it is IMPORTANT not to deviate from this diet in spite of the lack of "punishment" for falling off the wagon. Most of my coworkers are sympathetic and used to me passing up the birthday cakes, the cookies and pizza at meetings and lunches, the homebaked goodies, but I think it's hard to take seriously if I don't show symptoms. At least I've set a really good example of what self-control is all about. Any ideas?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Ads by Google:
Ads by Google:


If you can do so without sounding pushy, I would say, "It's my body. If I get sick, I'm the one who will feel the effects. Even a crumb of gluten will severely damage my intestines and could, besides giving me short-term symptoms (whether you want to mention gas or not is up to you) can lead to anemia and a host of complications: diabetes, intestinal cancers, thyroid disorders, malabsorption, osteoporosis, kidney disease, etc." And there's nothing wrong with exaggerating on your symptoms so people will listen to you. That's sometimes what you need to do to make someone take you seriously.

Good luck!

-celiac3270

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest Viola

I find it helpful to have a restaurant card which explains that it IS a serious disease and let anyone around the table read it before or after it is sent into the kitchen with the waitress/waiter. Then you really don't have to explain much, unless they ask specific questions.

I used to get the "your just fussy" attitude until I started doing that. I believe Kaiti just posted an address for printing the cards recently.

Hope this helps.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I ignore stubborn ignorance. Those sorts get nothing beyond a "It'll make me sick," statement. If they go on with "well, not that I can tell", a little "but I can" is all I'd dignify it with. :-)

For other questions on "what happens", I go with the "let's just say intestinal symptoms..." to see if they really want to hear any details. (And I don't get that many symptoms.)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Tell them the truth. It destroys the villi in your intestines.

People generally are like "whoa" when you tell them that. If they ask "then what" you can say that a lot of different side effects can occur depending on what you eat.

This is a disease where you can have major reaction one time that you have never had before.

Oh, if you throw in that this is an auto-immune disorder then that gives it more wieght in their mind.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Ads by Google:


I agree with Kristina....I tell people when they ask that it tears up my intestines and cause many other problems. I also say it is an autoimmune disorder and it has seemed to work.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I explain that it is an allergy that disrupts the immune system and destroys the lining of the small intestine. It is not an allergy that will cause me to go into shock or drop dead but it is detrimental to my health. Usually they want to know more or have at least heard of it. For the idiots that usually shuts them up.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


Ads by Google:


If they cite the lack of severe immediate effect to encourage you to eat something you shouldn't, you can compare eating gluten to smoking.

Sarah

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If this happens when you eat with your boss and your boss's boss, I'd tell them something they can relate to -- the bottom line. If you eat glutens it may not affect you immediately, but it will make you ill for about 1 week or so and that you'll have to call in sick while recovering. When they realize that they influenced your decision to eat glutens, they may back off.

But I agree with the other postings. I sometimes tell people that its like eating poison, it'll slowly kill you. Or, it's like eating glass, which is how I feel for about a week or so after eating an extremely small amount of glutens.

At the end of the day, it's your body. Stand up for yourself and have the conversation with the waiter only, not the folks at the table. Or, I have also brought my own sandwich (if it's lunch) and ordered a cup of tea.

Just some thoughts.

Helen.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Wow, Helen. You are the first person I've read who stated that it can feel like you've eaten glass, which is exactly how I used to always feel. I would wonder if I'd gotten some glass in my food when I ate out. It was horrible. These days it seems even worse than that but I still remember how horrified I'd feel when I'd think maybe I had eaten some...

Blech! What we go through!

I stress the autoimmune part, too, and damage to my intestines just to get the point across. If you have a verified diagnosis, no matter how you actually react, you have every right to stand up to any kind of ridicule. I'm glad I don't get that from anyone I work for, I'd be really pissed!

Stephanie

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


Ads by Google:


How come some of the most clueless people are also bosses? (Any Dilbert fans out there?) I love your solution, Helen. I laughed out loud; someone like that would only care if the situation affected his self-interests.

My suggestion, firstly, would be to call it Celiac disease rather than gluten intolerance. Then, I would not only mention that it's an auto-immune disorder, but I'd add that it is a genetic problem. This makes it sound very medical and technical and by mentioning that it is genetic, it shows that you didn't just concoct your dietary requirements one day when you were bored...you have to observe your diet because you were born with the need to stay away from gluten. That boss must be a real delight to work for.

Paula

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I tell them that it causes sudden, uncontrollable, projectile vomiting - sometimes as far as across the table.

  • Upvote 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks, everyone. Lots of good ideas that I will keep in mind. There will always be people out there who urge the diabetic to have that piece of cake, and people who slip peanut butter to the kid with the allergy to "prove" it won't hurt them, and although I wouldn't wish a diagnosis of anything like that on them (or would I?) it would be informative for them to walk in our shoes. Since my co-workers and I are scientists I take it for granted that they can understand the implications of autoimmunity and its consequences, but looks like there's always room for more education. Thanks to all - eat safely!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

At my job suppliers and sales reps are always bring in donuts, cake and bagels by the truckloads. In the past it everyone would be like a hoard of ravenous bears sucking down every last crumb. Lately at the end of the day there will be quite a few left over. Many of my coworkers saw how much weight I lost and how much healthier I am now since I quit eating that crap. Some of them are starting to think twice about eating that stuff. So it is possible to change peoples point of view if you set a good example.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I really like the projectile vomiting! It was hard today because management provided pizza and brownies for lunch. But I did good eating my gluten-free lunch. It just made me kind of feel set apart from everybody.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


Ads by Google:


Sally, I know how that feels...it feels very awkward for me when I am in that position....

Ian, I do think what we do affects others because I know people that have never been tuned into the health food and now that I have been on it and doing good and have not only seen a difference in me but in my family as well, now they are trying it too...sometimes people actually listen even when you think they are not.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Actually I think actions speak louder than words. Losing 80lbs makes people stand up and take notice. I work with a woman who lost well over 100lbs on a low carb diet and she won't eat pizza either on pizza day even though she isn't gluten intolerant. When I went from being overweight and sick to healthy I just lost my appetite for pizza and donuts. I much prefer my gluten-free lunch.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Actions definitely do speak louder than words...quite a few people have started making changes in their eating habits because of what they saw in my family...

I do think talking helps to a point though...people I got so frustrated with came up to me recently and started asking more questions and where to get these foods and so forth and I was apalled because I thought I was wasting my breath.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I agree with whoever said it makes you feel set apart when others bring in treats at work. Also, until I got this I didn't realize how much people talk about food and describe the taste. Anyway, I don't really have symptoms either and I never know if I accidentally eat gluten. I tell people it is like smoking--it doesn't appear to do anything to me on the outside but it is damaging me internally--and that seems to satisfy them.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

0

  • Forum Statistics

    • Total Topics
      108,169
    • Total Posts
      940,051
  • Member Statistics

    • Total Members
      66,151
    • Most Online
      3,093

    Newest Member
    Redfern16
    Joined
  • Popular Now

  • Topics

  • Posts

    • Look at carreggenan. I am a super sensitive Celiac and have the same auto immune reaction to anything made with seaweed, “the wheat of the sea”, such as MSG, carrageenan, agar and sodium alginate. The food industry is putting it in everything, even so called Misbranded gluten free foods. Even some coconut milk brands now are using it as are nut milks. It is a cheap emulsifier, so we do not have to shake things up! How about shaking up my whole body from it! You may have an iron defiency anemia not being treated or tested. Cookbook doctors treat numbers not patients clinical presentation. I have fired five doctors in eight years for stupidity and dangerous lack of clinical acumen which could have killed me. Do not be afraid to ask questions and confront doctors, you are after all the customer paying for their services.  Eat clean, meaning preparing your own foods. Stay out of restaurants! Gluten free is a joke in most restaurants if you are a celiac. And will cost you weeks of illness. Hang in there. Make bone broth, it has super vitamins and minerals and loaded with pre and probiotics. Go to Dr. Axe’s site. I only do chicken made with feet. I am allergic to beef since being bitten by a deer tick in 2011 and getting Chronic Lyme disease. The chicken feet bone broth is also loaded with calcium and is yummy. Takes a little work, but is well worth it. 😊  
    • Go to the coping section & pinned at the top is the Newbie 101 which will tell you how to prevent cc. Sorry, that's all I have for tonight as it's been a long, long day for me & I am more than ready to turn in. I'll respond further tomorrow. I'm sooooooooo glad to hear you finally have an answer!!!!! 
    • You can buy some Glutino chocolate covered wafer cookies to help with that Kit Kit addiction.
    • Thanks, I appreciate the insight. I will just play it safe and stop eating that type of granola bar. If you have any other advice or comments I would love to hear it.  Thanks so much!
    • Some of that brand are gluten-free ,  but they will say they are.  Some of their  bars are not gluten-free because they do not use gluten-free oats.     If you are eating non- gluten-free oats or products made  with them, there is a possibility that some are actually gluten-free and some aren't.  So maybe a small amount of gluten has built up until it bothered you?  Or you got lucky until recently?  For a Celiac, some people don't feel a response until  their antibodies have built up from repeated gluten exposures.     Maybe it has nothing to do with gluten...
  • Upcoming Events