Traveling and living away from home for the first time can be particularly challenging and I asked Mayo Clinic gastroenterologist Dr. Joseph A. Murray, M.D., to share a few gluten-free strategies for frequent travelers and college students with Celiac’s disease or gluten sensitivities. With the guidance and experience of Dr. Murray, the newly released Mayo Clinic Going Gluten-Free presents reliable information to make authoritative, real choices.
Everyone is on the go these days, but just because you’re busy, doesn’t mean you should neglect your health. For most people, a lot of your life takes place outside of your home: at work, at your children’s activities, visiting family and friends, on road trips and cross-country flights, at business meetings, college and more.
For those with celiac disease and other gluten-related issues, eating away from home has challenges, but a gluten-free diet shouldn’t keep you away from any of these plans. Whether you’re toasting in a local restaurant, a friend’s home for Thanksgiving or a French bistro, you can celebrate in style and still stay committed to your gluten-free diet.
Your success depends on your ability to plan ahead, to communicate your dietary needs clearly, and to manage mistakes and mishaps.
At Restaurants: When selecting a particular menu item, ask your server about the
ingredients and preparation methods. Recipes vary from restaurant to restaurant so
always ask how a dish is prepared. Ask about all the ingredients, including
seasoning, if food was dusted with flour, specific fryer oils, and other questions I
include in the book.
Eating with Family and Friends During the Holidays: You may feel shy about
calling in advance for a gluten-free meal, but remember that it’s far less awkward
for your host to discover that soy sauce contains gluten before adding it to the
entire meal. It’s also perfectly acceptable to offer to bring gluten-free bread or a
dessert that you can indulge in. Surprising sources of gluten can be a real Scrooge
during the holidays, so do your best to make the evening go as smoothly as
Before You Go: Determine which airlines, hotels, tour groups or cruise lines are
good at catering to your dietary needs. There are several websites and agencies
that can help.
At the Airport: Plan for layovers and delays. Pack some snacks, but make sure
you understand requirements about what you may carry with you through security
checks. If you requested gluten-free travel meals in advance, double-check with
Once You Land: As much as possible, stick to your typical eating routine when
you travel. Check menus online or with a phone app, or purchase naturally gluten-
free foods from grocery stores and kiosks to have available as a backup.
Use Resources: If you’re traveling in a foreign country and don’t speak the
language, enlist the help of the hotel staff to communicate your dietary needs.
For College Living:
Become friendly with the dining hall staff: Your child should be prepared to
politely advocate for him- or herself with people preparing dining hall meals.
Encourage your child to speak up if he or she has questions or concerns about
unknown ingredients and food preparation.
Request a dorm with a kitchen: That way, your child can prepare gluten-free
meals and snacks when needed. Some larger schools may even offer dorms with
kitchens reserved specifically for students on special diets.
Bring small appliances: Ask what appliances are allowed in dorm room. Having
access to a microwave, small refrigerator and toaster can make eating gluten-free a
Communicate with roommates: Your child will need to educate roommates
about his or her condition and agree on a plan to avoid cross contamination.
Contact food services: Your child should speak to the person on campus that
handles food allergies. This may be the food services director, head chef or
dietitian. Encourage your child to ask a lot of questions. For instance, how is food
prepared and how is cross-contamination avoided? Are gluten-free foods labeled?
As much as possible, encourage your child’s involvement in the process.
Mayo Clinic Going Gluten-Free is designed to help consumers learn how to manage a gluten-free lifestyle and live healthy lives,the all-new, authoritative and approachable guide to gluten-free living by one of the world’s leading celiac disease authorities, Mayo Clinic gastroenterologist Joseph A. Murray, M.D., and a team of experts from Mayo Clinic. Mayo Clinic Going Gluten-Free, available nationwide today, November 11, wherever books are sold, offers important, science-based information in an extremely accessible way for those who think they may have celiac disease or a gluten sensitivity, and those already diagnosed.
“Mayo Clinic Going Gluten-Free is a “backpack for survival” for those who have celiac disease and other related conditions, empowering patients to live productive lives,” said Dr. Murray. “The book cuts through the gluten hype and misleading advice. It’s grounded in the latest science and clinical experience, but full of accessible information presented in an engaging style that helps consumers answer questions in order to make real choices.”
Grounded in the extensive research, science, and clinical experience of one of the world’s leading medical centers, Mayo Clinic Going Gluten-Free takes readers in three parts through the reliable process of identifying gluten-related health issues, understanding their complexities, and creating and maintaining a gluten-free lifestyle with simplicity and ease:
Part I: Celiac Disease – A thorough examination of celiac disease, a disease caused by the consumption of gluten. Readers will learn how to understand the disease, recognize symptoms, take stock of their situation, get the right diagnosis, come to terms with their condition and manage a gluten-free lifestyle, among other topics like:
- The different types of celiac disease and the terms doctors use to describe them, such as: classical, non-classical or atypical, asymptomatic, potential, and subclinical;
- Who is at risk and why the number of people being diagnosed is on the rise;
- The signs and symptoms of celiac disease including: digestive problems, pain and bloating and heartburn, skin and hair problems, oral and dental issues, bone and joint problems, hormone issues and even brain and nervous system disorders;
- Common myths about celiac disease and the challenges in making a diagnosis, as well as an in-depth overview of diagnostic processes, what it is comprised of and what to expect;
- Coming to terms with celiac disease and helpful advice on next steps, such as finding a dietitian, and what to expect when managing your condition.
Part II: Related Conditions – A look at other gluten- and wheat-related disorders, including non-celiac gluten sensitivity and wheat-related conditions. Learn what each disorder involves and develop a deeper understanding of each, such as:
- Non-celiac gluten sensitivity, sometimes referred to as “celiac-lite,” describes individuals who experience symptoms similar to celiac disease when consuming gluten, but do not test positive for celiac disease and do not have inflammation or damage to the small intestine;
- Wheat allergy, which differs from celiac disease and non-celiac gluten sensitivity, and therefore the body reacts differently and requires a separate course of treatment;
- Wheat-dependent, exercise-induced anaphylaxis (WDEIA) occurs in some people with a wheat allergy and occurs only when they exercise within a few hours of eating wheat;
- FODMAPs, an acronym for a group of carbohydrates found in certain foods, including wheat, that can create symptoms similar to celiac disease and related disorders;
- Baker’s asthma, an allergic reaction to certain proteins called ATIs in wheat flour, rye flour, and barley flour which is triggered by inhaling – not eating – flour, and more.
Part III: The Essential, Practical Guide – This section teaches readers how to live gluten-free and helps them discover new ways of eating well to feel their best. Learn and understand the basics of a gluten-free diet, including:
- Properly reading and understanding food labels;
- Nutrition strategies and best practices for grocery shopping and stocking the gluten-free kitchen to save time and money;
- A few recipes and meal ideas to jumpstart your gluten-free life;
- Managing a gluten-free lifestyle away from home, during travel, on-the-go and at college;
- Helping children go gluten-free and more.
Making such a big lifestyle change is not easy and Mayo Clinic Going Gluten-Free provides reliable information so you can make informed choices.
Disclosure: The information above was provided by Mayo Clinic gastroenterologist Joseph A. Murray, M.D., author of Mayo Clinic Going Gluten-Free and Time Home Entertainment Inc.