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Need some perspective help with being Celiac/Primal and traveling...

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  • Need some perspective help with being Celiac/Primal and traveling...

    Hi all,

    I guess I'm posting this to either find others in same situation, or get a good slap (snap out of it!). I was diagnosed Celiac a little over a yr ago, and have been sticking to Primal for about 4 months. I find that I'm closing myself off a bit, and stressing majorly over travel. To be out for the day in NYC can be really trying and I've stopped even attempting to eat out anywhere (which means I have to eat b4 leaving Brooklyn, and get back in time to eat again). If I were just Primal, it would be super easy...but to add the gluten issue in there just makes it all out impossible (or so I tell myself). Travel on a plane? Ugh. Really becoming stressful. I've got a 6yo to worry about, so it just ends up being a lot.

    I don't WANT to be one of those people with special dietary needs...and here I find myself. I'm doing pretty good with ignoring all the idiocy that surrounds people not understanding/scoffing at Celiac ("oh, come on, you can have just a little bite?" - "how about if I make you grilled portobello and rice with a veggie burger?"'s endless, no one can get this easily, and you end up frustrating people if you refuse their food). But it's mostly because I've just stopped attempting too many social situations that can turn bad. I haven't been out to eat in the city except for maybe 2 or 3 times in the 16 mos since finding out.

    I think I just need to find others dealing with this to hear stories about how someone else easily navigates this terrain....because there are days when it really just does me in. And I don't want it to affect my marriage or what kind of a mom I am (case in point: yesterday at Coney Island felt like I was in a marathon...brought my own lunch even, I don't know what's wrong with me!)

    Any words of wisdom would be truly you navigate city life and travelling if Celiac is in the mix.


  • #2
    Meh. I'm just openly and clearly one of those people with special food needs, and I refuse to be embarrassed about it (but I'm also not rude about it--I simply make sure to plan ahead). I've been living the celiac life for about six years now, so I'm pretty okay with just telling people outright what I can and can't have, ordering very specifically when I eat out, and making sure I always have something I can eat tucked into my purse or in my car on roadtrips. I make sure I tell the travel agent when I book my flight that I need a celiac meal, and I put food I can eat into my carry-on just in case. I stop at grocery stores and buy food I know is safe when I'm on the road, and I put a cooler in the back of my car for long trips. I've also learned which restaurants are good at accommodating and which ones to just avoid.

    If you were diabetic and couldn't have sugar, I'm assuming you'd be quite clear about it with people. Being celiac is no different, and it's important to your health to put your dietary needs ahead of your sense that you shouldn't make a fuss or be a bother.

    Also, in my priority list, eating gluten-free is more vital than eating primal-ish in any other way. I'll take a vegetarian chickpea curry that I know is gluten-free over a steak with questionable seasonings any day. Chickpeas might not be ideal, but they're not going to cause me immediate GI troubles, stomach pain, joint pain, and a dermatitis herpetiformis outbreak.
    “If I didn't define myself for myself, I would be crunched into other people's fantasies for me and eaten alive.” --Audre Lorde

    Owly's Journal


    • #3
      Four of us in my family are coeliacs - my OH, myself and two children. Planning is the key, and being unembarrassed and vocal about requirements is good, too (although being rude isn't - it's amazing how many people can be rude about it!). Always make sure you carry something, however small, that you can eat, and be prepared to check out several restaurants at a time if necessary. Once you've found places you like, use them! Be firm with your friends, and stick to gluten-free above all else - as Owly says, it's better to be non-primal than it is to eat gluten if it's an emergency.