It’s day one on the gluten free diet and you’re stunned, dismayed, and overwhelmed. You’ve just been diagnosed with Celiac Disease and you don’t know what to do next. What to eat next. Well, worry no longer. Triumph Dining is only one of several excellent resources available to you as you begin on your gluten free journey. Everywhere you turn you will find a helping hand. Here are some of our tips to help you get started on your new, healthier life.
- Find a local support group. You are not alone! One percent of the world has Celiac Disease. The odds are that there are people nearby who have gone through what you’re going through. They know the ins and outs of living in your area with Celiac Disease; they know what you need and how to get it. To find a support group near you, try the Gluten Intolerance Group, the Celiac Sprue Association, and the Celiac Disease Foundation.
- Clean out your kitchen. If the whole family is going gluten free, give away all your non-gluten-free food. If it’s only part of your family, get out some labels and start marking what is gluten free.
- Start learning how to read labels. Did you know that malt contains gluten? So does some soy sauce. Check out Triumph Dining’s page on which ingredients are safe, which aren’t, and which require further inspection. You will need to educate yourself to avoid hidden sources of gluten in processed food.
- Figure out what groceries you can buy. Start off with plain rice and fresh produce; then carefully work your way into less obvious territory. Look for gluten-free certification and closely read labels. To give yourself a head start, you can refer to Triumph Dining’s page on our Top Ten kitchen staples, or you can buy our detailed, thoroughly researched Grocery Guide. As always, when in doubt over a product, you should contact the manufacturers.
- Start reading…a lot. Make sure you understand what Celiac Disease is all about—you are your own first, best line of defense. Then start collecting books, magazines, and blogs with appealing recipes and gluten free product reviews. We currently recommend you begin with large, feedback-heavy sites like Gluten Free Goddess, Book of Yum, Aprovechar, Gluten A Go Go, or Gluten Free [Cooking School]. The Triumph Dining Blog updates several times a week with gluten free news, tips, opportunities, and links to GF blog posts of note.