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      Frequently Asked Questions About Celiac Disease   09/30/2015

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MindytheOrganist

Gluten Free In Germany

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Son-in-law is being stationed in Germany, in Grafenwoehr. My first grand-baby will be born there this coming August. Any suggestions/ideas on gluten-free options? We will probably have to stay in a hotel. I've already written down suggestions from the previous posting about long flights, but any new ideas would be appreciated. Husband is celiac, but shows no obvious symptoms, even after being accidentally severely glutened at a Biaggi's. I'm hoping daughter will be able to "scope out" the area for us, but, obviously, she will have other things on her mind :)

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I did not have to eat gluten free when I was in Germany, but your mention of Grafenwoehr brought back a whole host of memories, Mindy, since that was a first-line-of-defense town on the border of east and west in the cold war days :blink: I worked in the psychiatric clinic of a USAH and many's the time a young private would be brought in having cracked under the stress of the tensions back in that time. :unsure: Sad to say, I still think of all the wonderful breads (and wurst, of course) when I think of Bavaria. I am sure that things in Grafenwoehr are very different now from what they were then :)

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Congratulations on your grandchild! I am currently living in Bavaria myself as my husband is stationed at another (much smaller) Army base over here. Fortunately Graf is a very large post and has a sizable commissary, if you are able to get temporary access to post you can help go shopping for both yourself and your son's new family there and should be able to get whatever you are used to eating back home. If you are looking at German markets and are curious about a product "gluten frei" is the designation they use and any "bio markt" will have a variety of gluten free items. I will say it will be incredibly challenging since the traditional German breakfast a roll with meat or jam and at four they typically have coffee and cake. The majority of food in restaurants will come breaded or with gravies so either find items that will not have these or get comfortable being able to special order things. Again, Graf is a large instilation so the surrounding area is very good with English so if you aren't very comfortable conversing in German you shouldn't have too many problems :)

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In Germany there is a big drugstore chain called "DM". There you get a lot of different bread, rolls, cookies, snacks. Normally you find a DM-market in every town, even in the small ones.

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Thanks so much for all these tips!  I am traveling to Frankfurt and Heidelberg next week and will definitely need access to safe gluten-free snacks since I'm pregnant and can't take the chance of contamination. 

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Grafenwoehr is now a training facility, from what I understand from my son-in-law.  I remember most of the Cold War, the bomb drills and such.  I'm sure it's very different now.  It seems like the Army bends over backwards to help people transition from the US to Germany.

 

I did not have to eat gluten free when I was in Germany, but your mention of Grafenwoehr brought back a whole host of memories, Mindy, since that was a first-line-of-defense town on the border of east and west in the cold war days :blink: I worked in the psychiatric clinic of a USAH and many's the time a young private would be brought in having cracked under the stress of the tensions back in that time. :unsure: Sad to say, I still think of all the wonderful breads (and wurst, of course) when I think of Bavaria. I am sure that things in Grafenwoehr are very different now from what they were then :)

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We spent a month in Germany near Munich. It seemed really hard to eat out as everything is breaded and waiters. The other thing to watch out for was wheat syrup that they have in a lot of things we can normally eat here that are made with corn syrup like candy and yogurt. We cooked a lot. Train stations were especially hard as they were filled with baked goods and not much else. 

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I'm late to the party, but I did want to say if anyone needs anything re:Germany, feel free to ping me. I've been here for six years and gluten free the entire time. I'm in the west south of Frankfurt am Main if that helps any, but the availability of items and products are nationwide. :)

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Hi,

i am late too but maybe more people with Celiac Disease from the US want to travel to germany so i want to give you some more information. My Wife got her dignosis in 2008 and for now 5 years we are very familiar with celiac Disease.

 

As stated before meanwhile there are many shops, so called "supermarkets" which sell glutenfree Products:

The biggest and nationwide are:

- DM

- REWE

- Kaufland

- REAL

 

You get packed bread and cake for Travelling. Some products have to be baked before you can eat it.

 

Even in so called Discounters you get packed products with the gluten free sign (Gluten Frei) or the Text on it. (Mostly on the back of the product)

Just look for these Shops:

LIDL

ALDI

NORMA

PENNY

 

Even the restaurants get more celiac friendly in germany.

 

On the Site www.glutenfreeroads.com you may search on Shops and Restaurants which had a officially certificate. But always please ask what meals are glutenfree.

 

Besides this officially tested there are a lot more Restaurants spread over Germany.

 

We have founded a Facebook Group "Zöliakie Austuasch" with up to now 1100 people in it who share Tipps for Traveling and Eating Outside. Although this group is mainly german we answer english questions too.

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So glad to see this post.  I am teaching in Berlin for 5 weeks this summer. Unfortunately, we are staying in a hotel and I will only have access to a refrigerator- no microwave or stove for cooking my own food.  The prospect of essentially eating every meal out is starting to weigh heavily on me.  Unfortunately, I expect to be glutened often.  I have found a English blog about being gluten free in Berlin that has a guide on where to find gluten-free shops and restaurants, but I am wondering about the "safe" foods I can normally purchase in the US by checking labels.  I'm glad to be warned about the wheat syrup- seezee.  Is there translated word I can look for on the package?  Are cold cuts in Germany generally safe or are only certain brands?  I'm thinking yogurt, nuts, cold cuts, and cheese are going to be my staples along with whatever gluten-free products (crackers, bread, etc) I can round up at the specialty stores.

 

Mindy- the Berlin blog may be helpful to you as well because it reviews products sold there and he lists a couple of chain restaurants that label what foods are gluten-free naturally.  Maybe those chains would also be in the town you are staying in.   http://glutenfreiberlin.wordpress.com/ 

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There's actually a lot of places in Berlin that are Celiac friendly.

 

If you go to the shops mentioned in the post above yours, you should be able to easily find gluten-free prepackaged items in the freezer section and in the specialty foods sections.

 

It will really depend when it comes to coldcuts. You can get some gluten-free, I've found Gutfried to be a good company, but we're also avoiding pork, so that's probably why.  Youghurt for us is also case-by-case not only due to gluten but gelatin (pesky pork again).  Nuts are case by case. Some have wheat, some don't.

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Thank you- I will write down the brands you mentioned and check everything else.  Thank you for the warning about the nuts as well!

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Any advice on Heidelberg?  I may be going to a conference in November and need to find safe food for just a few days, within walking distance of the convention center.  The conference registration asked about dietary restrictions, but who knows whether they can accomodate gluten-free.

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Thanks for all the advice!  Daughter has been scoping out stores as well, and we are probably going to ship some food over before our visit.  I will definitely use the web sites because I hope we can do a lot of sight-seeing.  Especially to Leipzig, because as an organist, I'm a huge Bach fan!

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When I was in Germany there were health food stores named Reformhaus-or something close to that spelling. Do they still exist? I found them everywhere it seemed-in small towns and larger ones plus there was one in the Frankfurt International airport where I was able to pick up snacks for my trip home.

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When I was in Germany there were health food stores named Reformhaus-or something close to that spelling. Do they still exist? I found them everywhere it seemed-in small towns and larger ones plus there was one in the Frankfurt International airport where I was able to pick up snacks for my trip home.

Ohh---  That's so good to know that Frankfurt airport has a Reformhaus!  Thank you for the information.  I'll be connecting flights there both ways.  

 

Just FYI for travelers checking this thread out in the future:  I contacted the German Celiac society and they have a list of foods that are safe for purchase in the supermarket- updated yearly.  Unfortunately, you do have to pay for it (probably about $30-35), but the representative said it was 600 pages long so I guess they have to cover the cost of printing it at least.  It is worth it to me because I'll be there 5 weeks and must find food that I do not have to cook or microwave in addition to eating out.  Plus, I can't be trusted with labels in German, although I guess I'll still need to check (or at least try to) in order to be 100% sure since we all know products change.

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When I was in Germany there were health food stores named Reformhaus-or something close to that spelling. Do they still exist? I found them everywhere it seemed-in small towns and larger ones plus there was one in the Frankfurt International airport where I was able to pick up snacks for my trip home.

Yes, there are Reformhauses all over Germany, Austria, and Switzerland.  Those that carry food are a good source for gluten-free items, but some of them only have natural pharmaceuticals and cosmetics.

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