getting easier to "go gluten-free" when dining out
because more restaurants are offering dishes designed for
customers with celiac disease or a gluten sensitivity.
According to Mintel, a marketing research company, mentions of
gluten-free options on restaurant menus increased by 275
percent between 2009 and 2012. Whether itís a menu listing
for alternatives such as gluten-free bread and gluten-free
beer, or a notation that certain dishes can be made without
croutons or breadcrumbs, restaurants are helping to make it
easier for these diners.
is a protein found in wheat, barley, rye and possible oats.
Oats do not contain gluten but are often milled in a facility
that processes gluten-containing grains.
been designated Celiac Awareness Month. Celiac disease is an
immune reaction to gluten that damages the lining of the small
intestine and affects an estimated 3 million (one in 133)
people in the United States.
18 million Americans ó six times as many as in the celiac
group ó are classified as having non-celiac gluten
sensitivity. Add to that folks who may not be diagnosed with a
gluten intolerance but just want to avoid it, and the number
of Americans who want to reduce or eliminate gluten from their
diets in 2013 swells to one in three, according to the NPD
Group, a consumer market research company.
Lagasse Swanson and Jillian Lagasse, daughters of famed New
Orleans chef Emeril Lagasse, both follow a gluten-free diet
and co-authored "The Gluten Free Table" cookbook.
said dining out can be a challenge, but she has learned to ask
a lot of questions about ingredients.
takes persistence and perseverance, but after a while it
becomes second nature to you."
itís great that increased demand has led to a wider choice
of better-tasting gluten-free products, but that doesnít
make them a healthier choice.
foods, like gluten-free boxed cookies, can still be really
high in fat and calories," Swanson said.
folks with allergies to certain foods such as nuts or
shellfish have to be vigilant about avoiding offending
ingredients, those with celiac disease or gluten sensitivity
have to become diet detectives when dining out. Donít assume
that anything is gluten-free. The chef may have added a
"secret ingredient," so always let your server know
you canít have gluten-containing products. For instance,
fries or potato skins might be dusted with flour to make them
Gratin: topping of bread crumbs.
coating contains wheat flour.
sauce: thickened with wheat flour.
soup often thickened with flour.
encased in breadcrumbs.
stew usually thickened with flour.
may contain soy sauce or condiments with gluten.
paste of fat and flour to thicken sauces.
dressings: can be thickened with wheat-containing ingredients.
made from flour, butter, sugar and spices.
sauce: contains soy sauce.
fried in a flour-based batter.