If your family and friends are not familiar with a gluten free diet, you will need to take time to educate them. For some, it may be a difficult transition. It may not be easy explaining to Grandma that you can’t have her Sunday lasagna anymore, even though you have eaten it all your life.
Be gentle, but firm. Explain why you have made the decision to go gluten free and stick to your guns. You will need to explain what being gluten free entails. Be patient, they are probably not as familiar as you have become with what is and is not gluten free.
Help them, help you. Have gluten free food available to show them. Explain that meat, vegetables and fruit, that are free of seasonings and sauces, are naturally gluten free. Suggest our mobile app, Now Find Gluten Free, to determine what is safe to serve you.
We have compiled a list of naturally gluten free foods and a short explanation of what gluten is, that is available to print. Please feel free to print our list.
Through our experience we have found that there are generally three types of people: Some will go above and beyond to adapt to your new lifestyle. They will ask for recipes, brand names to buy, and how to make their food safe for you. There are others who will be supportive, but won’t actively help you. And there will always be those who either do not believe you or do not understand.
Don’t be a victim, be proactive about being gluten free. When you are hosting at your house, make everything gluten free. It is a great opportunity to show that gluten free food is delicious. If you are going to someone’s home, explain that you are gluten free, ask what is on the menu and if appropriate, offer to bring a dish. Have a snack before you go and have a backup plan. I always carry nuts and protein bars with me. Don’t be uncomfortable about explaining your situation. You have become gluten free for a reason and most hosts do not want to accidentally make anyone sick.
Most importantly, remember to breathe and maintain a sense of humor. People will ask you odd questions, and you will get the same question over and over again. Some will treat not being able to eat wheat pizza and pasta like it is the end of the world. Just keep it classy and use it as an opportunity to educate.