Dining Out Tips For People With Celiac Disease

271618_8495The National Institute of Health (NIH) estimates that some 2 million people in the U.S. suffer from the gluten-related autoimmune disorder known as celiac disease (roughly 1 in 122). Many people with the disease prefer to cook and prepare meals from the comfort of their own home, fearing that dining out could result in a severe allergic attack. By cooking and preparing food themselves, they know exactly what ingredients their dishes contain.

But the 2 million plus people suffering from celiac disease shouldn’t be forced to eat all of their meals at home. Dining out is a fun and socially rewarding experience that everyone should have the freedom to do, regardless of whether or not they suffer from gluten allergies.

Of course, there’s an inherit risk anytime a person with celiac disease chooses to dine out. If the restaurant prepares his or her dish with gluten — even small, trace amounts of gluten — it could lead to a severe allergic reaction in which the person’s own autoimmune system attacks their small intestines. To reduce the risk of occurrences such as this, it’s recommended that people with celiac disease follow the tips below:

Dining Out Tip For People With Celiac Disease:

  • Choose your restaurants carefully. If you are unfamiliar with a particular establishment, get online to view past customer reviews.
  • When you first arrive at the restaurant, let your server know that you suffer from celiac disease, and that any and all food prepared must not contain any gluten-based ingredients.
  • Ask your server for a gluten-free menu. Many restaurants now have menus designed specifically for people with celiac disease and other forms of gluten sensitivity.
  • Avoid ordering foods that contain large amounts of breading. Even if the server confirms that it’s gluten free, it’s best to err on the side of caution.

People with celiac disease must take a few additional steps when dining out to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience. However, following the tips mentioned here will greatly reduce the risk of a gluten-related allergy attack, allowing you to enjoy dining out with friends, family and/or business associates. Just remember to choose restaurants that openly cater to people with celiac disease, inform your server about your condition, and request a gluten-free menu. These simple tasks will allow you to dine out without fear of experiencing an allergy attack.

Have any other tips you’d like to share with our readers? Be sure to leave them in the comments section below!

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