Q: Help!! I am supposed to be gluten free because I am sensitive to it but I keep getting exposed when I eat out. What am I doing wrong and where can I eat?
A: You are not the only one that has found maneuvering any food sensitivity difficult when eating out or at home for that matter. The key is in knowing what to say to the servers. This is such a BIG topic that I am going to do some facebook posts addressing the following so be sure and head over to Facebook and like my page so you will get this information.
- What gluten is and why it is a problem for so many people
- How to eat out being gluten free
- Restaurant suggestions in OKC that have gluten free friendly items
For now, here are a few quick tips to avoid exposures to gluten when eating out:
- Always ask if something is marinated. Many chains buy pre-marinated fish and chicken and these often contain soy sauce which has gluten.
- If you are eating french fries, ask if they are cooked in their own fryer or with other breaded items. You may or may not be this sensitive but it’s good to consider.
- I tell my servers I am allergic to gluten which is all things that have flour and soy sauce. Most servers have no idea that soy sauce is not gluten free so I just throw that in so they know. I might ask about barley, malt and rye depending on the dish I am considering.
- If the dish comes with a creamy type of sauce then there is a good chance it has flour as a thickener so leave the sauce off or on the side.
To help decrease the severity of your reaction you might consider trying our Exposure Packs just before eating your meal.
Because we have so many patients with food sensitivities we created our own Exposure Packs. Keep one with you at all times and when you are facing a meal that you aren’t sure if it has an allergen, take the entire packet at the beginning of the meal. You WILL still react so it’s not a ticket to eat what ever you want but might help decrease the severity or length of symptoms. Our key ingredient is glutathione which helps your body clear the food allergen and special enzymes to help you break food down. Ideally it would be best to avoid the food all together but sometimes you are just stuck and these may help.