Is your local library gluten-free?

No, I’m not talking about the potential risks of gnawing on the encyclopedias. And, if you’re one of those lucky people whose local library has a café inside – I’m not talking about the muffins on offer, either.

If you bought five pounds of buckwheat flour on a whim, or you’re new to the gluten-free lifestyle, or just tired of searching for recipes online, a trip to the library might be in order. Whether you go to your library weekly, or never, when’s the last time you searched a new section? And have you ever done a search for gluten-free books?

Woody and Librarian

I was expecting to find very little about the gluten-free lifestyle on my library’s shelves. When I checked the website, I learned I was wrong on two counts:

  • there were a handful of cookbooks and dietary guides from the past 2 years, ready and waiting for me on the shelf
  • a scan of the digital catalog brought up another few dozen books in the countywide system, which I could request for pickup at my local branch

Jackpot!

There were also quite a few older books, some published nearly ten years ago. It’s doubtful those books had anything dangerous in them, but a few were probably overly restrictive (I’m thinking of restrictions around vinegar or oats, for example). So, just like gluten-free resources online, the library’s information needs to be processed with some extra care.

If you haven’t checked your library’s catalogs, you might be surprised at what you find. And, whether you find a lot or a little, you might want to talk to your local librarians about stocking your favorite gluten-free books and resources (gluten-free grocery guide and restaurant guide, anybody?).

If you’ve found the books helpful, chances are good that other people will too. And if your librarian doesn’t know much about being gluten-free, who better to provide some ideas?