Immediately upon diagnoses of celiac disease, there are precautions you must take.
You need to learn how to read labels. Watch for things like:
- Malt extract
- Malt syrup
- Malt vinegar
- Oat bran oats
- Spelt (dinkel)
- Wheat bran
- Wheat germ
- Wheat starch
You will also need to watch for gluten in:
- Beer, ale and lager
- Breading and stuffing
- Broth and soup bases
- Communion wafers
- Hydrolyzed plant proteins
- Hydrolyzed vegetable proteins
- Imitation bacon and seafood
- Modified food starch
- Sausages, hot dogs, and deli meats
- Sauces and seasonings
- Soy sauce
- Worcestershire sauce
Next you need to purge your kitchen of gluten.
Go through your pantry and your fridge, read labels and get rid of foods containing gluten. Any opened margarine containers, jam jars etc. need to be tossed. (Anything that could have come into contact with a knife or spoon that touched something with gluten in it) If you find something you are unsure of, get rid of it. My motto is “If in doubt, toss it out!”
Get rid of your wooden cutting boards, rolling pins etc.
Buy a new toaster. Your old one is contaminated. Same goes for your bread maker and your toaster oven.
If you must share your kitchen with someone who does not live gluten free, you will need to have separate margarine containers, jam jars, toasters, cutting boards etc. Be sure to have the gluten free items clearly marked “Gluten Free”
Sinks, counters and tables must be kept clean at all times.
At my house, there are no mistakes made. My margarine containers have a different coloured lid from my boyfriend’s and I have my own mayonnaise etc too.
Our pantry is actually a small bedroom off the kitchen that has been converted.
We each have our own set of shelves.
Everything on my shelves are marked “gluten free”
He has a toaster, I have a toaster oven.
We are both in the habit now of wiping down counters and tables etc. before and after preparing food.
My boyfriend generally eats what I eat, but when I work nights or go away for a weekend, he indulges himself with his gluten laden treats.
Some celiacs also suffer with dermatitis Herpetiformis and must use gluten free soaps, shampoos, hand creams etc. If you fall into this category, you will need to purge your bathroom as well. (I accidentally used the wrong shampoo a year or so ago and it took me months to get rid of the burning, itching spot on my head.)
After reading this you might feel a little overwhelmed. Take a deep breath and repeat after me “Once I get the house purged, it is easy to live gluten free”
You might have questions about all this. Here are some links to very helpful sites:
Take care of you!