Friday 18 November 2011

I'm That Girl Too

It's hard enough being a coeliac in the comfort of your own home sometimes (gluten free foods not actually being gluten free at all!), so eating out and being That Girl who gets called a fussy eater is a familiar one.

You know what really gets me though, those people who dive into your food, are you familiar with them too? The kinds of people who will just reach into the packet of crisps you're eating and take one. It's not because I'm a greedy, selfish cow, it's because of the obvious cross contamination that could and probably would occur.

I'll never forget the day that I was in an out of home environment where I had managed to find some Mrs Crimbles crackers in a nearby supermarket. It was late afternoon and I hadn't eaten all day so I was really hungry, I was eating the crackers when a family member (not that close thankfully) arrived and no sooner had she sat down, she asked what I was eating and went to grab a cracker from the pack that I was holding.

Instinctively, I grabbed her wrist and said NO. I was on the other side of London and it was going to take me two hours by bus to get home, being glutened was not an option. To be honest though, had she been in my home and done the same I would have reacted the same, being glutened is never an option.

I said to her that if she was to touch my gluten free food she would have to wash her hands. To which she replied "I think you need to see a head doctor". She's in her 50's by the way, mature huh? Explaining to her about coeliac disease and what would happen to me if I got glutened and how long it would take me to recover made no difference at all. She seriously thought and probably still thinks - thankfully I haven't seen her since then - that I'm a head case.

That video rocks.


  1. Excellent post! I think this video definitely sums up (in reality) what many of us go through as coeliacs on an everyday basis. What's worse, is that I find some folk with other food allergies to sometimes be the worst. E.g. I recently was at a social gathering with a girl who was allergic to bananas. When I was ordering I told the waiter that I had to be gluten free. Another person asked me if I had coeliac disease. While I was telling her that I had had it for a long time, the banana-allergic girl said she thought it's a bit of a mind thing and that I should stop going on about it 'just because I can't have it'...

    I really don't know what gets into people sometimes. To make matters worse, I ended up being glutenned by the restaurant because they used soy sauce in my meal. On receiving my meal, I enquired as to whether it was safe. They assured me that 'everything is fine'. I ate my meal, but at the end I had a bit of an 'odd feeling' in my stomach. I asked them the restaurant if the soy sauce they used was definitely gluten free. They then brought out a statement from their file from the manufacturer of the soy sauce that they use (which DOES contain wheat - and was NATURALLY BREWED ON TOP OF IT!), stating that the fermentation 'breaks down the proteins' and that no detectable gluten or soy protein is present in the product!

    I'd like to talk more about this sometime in the future, with regard to hydrolysation and malting and the concerns with inaccurate information coming out from companies in regard to this matter.

    Meanwhile, I have had some of the worst cases of reflux over the last couple of days (was even contemplating the doctor earlier this evening as it hurts to drink). All from this one incident! The restaurant did not know the brand name but said they'd find out and let me know.

    No apology or service was received. The banana-allergic lady 'made remarks' as I discussed my concerns with the waitstaff afterwards. I refused to pay.

    Ugh! Hope everything's well for you, anyhow. All the best :)

  2. That's appalling Kelly, an absolute disgrace. I've kind of resigned myself to the fact that I can't eat out safely, you can't trust people in this situation. It's not fair but I'd rather stay safe.

    I had a similar experience in a Pho restaurant as I wrote about on here, no matter how many times you check and check again to see if something is safe and keep getting told that it is, turns out it isn't.

    I hope you feel better soon, I know how you must be feeling. It makes me so mad to think that restaurants are getting away with doing this to people like us. I wonder if anyone has ever sued? Or if it is even possible? I remember something about a bakery in the States who had to go to court for selling regular bread as gluten free but of course, that's different.

    I hope banana woman gets jumped on by a monkey.

    Anyway, really hope you feel better soon. Thanks for taking the time to comment. All the best to you too, get well! :)


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