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Sue's Blog

Thursday, 08/28/14 - What to say when people ask those annoying questions about gluten free?

Be prepared because sometimes it can get pretty frustrating when people ask the same ridiculous questions over and over. They can't help that they're not educated in this area.  So let's help them understand!     This is not being written to offend people, it's to educate people about the real seriousness of this issue and it actually affects more people than you realize and there's research to prove it.   People just have to be willing to accept the facts. 

While it’s not your job to act as the Celiac police or for non Celiacs with gluten sensitivity (which in reality there are actually more people who are non Celiac who have issues with gluten so you may hear this one too.  “Only people with Celiac have issues with gluten.” This is totally false. Show them the research to back it up).  This will ready you with some great come backs to some of this stuff people will throw out at you -

“So what can you eat?” (boy have I heard this one more than a few times in the last five years!)

I’m a pretty patient person myself, but it’s hard not to roll your eyes when you hear this for like a million and one times. The best way to respond is with a gluten-free recipe or product that you feel really good about and you know it taste great and can prove it.   (I’ve got a bunch of good ones too right here on my website!) Can you say YUM???

Ready comeback: “As it turns out, there’s a whole lot of food I can eat. In addition to the wealth of gluten-free substitutes we have in this day and time, there are also many foods that are naturally and deliciously gluten-free. Just this weekend I tried a [insert one of my delicious gluten-free modified recipes here]. It was incredible! I’ll make it for you if you like, or bring it to our next pot luck!”

“A little bit won't kill you.”

What a dangerous misconception this one is. You don’t want to be crass, but make sure you’re assertive when you reply back with, yes, in fact a little bit can kill someone.  It won’t likely cause them to drop dead immediately, but the damage to the lower intestine can cause serious problems later on and besides that it has a cumulative effect.

Ready comeback :  “I know it may not seem like a big deal to you, but even a tiny amount of gluten can make me really sick and cause more serious health problems later on because of the cumulative effect it has.  When I eat gluten it usually takes about 5 months to get it out of my system.   I really don’t want to inconvenience you, but I really have to eat gluten-free.”

“Don’t you miss bread and stuff?”

This is a tough one, especially when your response is “Heck yea I really miss those cherry turn overs with phyllo dough I used to eat all the time! I would literally kill for one of those right now! The best thing is to be honest about your cravings and stay positive about lving the gluten-free lifestyle.

Ready comeback : “You know, I do miss some things at times. But I feel better than I have in years since eliminating gluten from my diet that I don’t worry too much about it. Besides, whenever I feel like indulging in such and such, I can usually find a gluten-free substitute that settles my craving.” And that way I don’t suffer after eating something with gluten in it.

“Gluten-free is just a fad diet right?”

This is the hot button response that makes individuals who are working to educate people with the real facts livid and it’s hard to blame them! When celebrities and dieters jump on the gluten-free bandwagon to try and shed some extra pounds, it can lead others to disconnect the gluten-free lifestyle from the serious health problems that prompts most people to eliminate gluten from their diet. Try not to go all balistic when your friends bring up someone like Kim Kardashian or a famous tennis player's recent diet change, and stay positive and cool as a cucumber (which by the way are Gluten Free!)  teehee! 

Ready comeback: “You know, I can’t speak for anyone else’s decision to go gluten free.  The reason I eat this way is mainly because I can become really sick when I don’t.”

Whatever other ridiculous questions have you answered? How did your response go over? Were you able to keep your cool?   Let me know in the comments!

Enjoy the Journey in happiness and best of health!

Sue Seward
Gluten Free Lady

"Someone is sitting in the shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago."

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