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Top Tips for Eating Out Gluten Free

Do Your Research

research

When you suffer from any food related disorder or allergy you have to do your research before you decide to trust a caterer or a restaurant chef with your very delicate condition. As many coeliacs know, only a few crumbs of gluten can cause a few days of discomfort, so doing your research on an establishment is paramount. This is, of course, an added nuisance but it is something that you need to do to make sure you know exactly what is in what food and to know if where your eating is safe. Always check the restaurant or bars reviews online to see whether they've catered for people with food intolerance before and whether it's been a success.

Ring Ahead

call ahead

When planning eating out, make sure you ring and ask if they serve gluten free food before you book up. Also ask how varied the range of GF dishes are, so you aren’t disappointed when they present you with a solitary Caesar salad.

Don’t be Afraid to Communicate With Staff

Couple paying for meal in outdoor restaurant

We know how hard it is to try and find a friendly waiter or waitress when you don’t have a food allergy or condition, so trying to approach a member of staff that probably doesn’t know whether a meal contains an allergen or not can prove not to be the easiest of tasks. However it is now [law for all restaurants and bars to provide allergen information about there dishes][1]. So next time you feel uncomfortable about asking whether something contains an allergen, don’t be, as you’re well within your rights to do so.

Avoid Cross Contamination

cross contamination

Ask whether gluten free foods are at risk of being cross contaminated due to the way they are prepared. Sides and sauces like, fries and vinaigrette's can contain gluten and can also be gluten free, so make sure you double check before ordering. Normally, if the dish contains a sauce that does contain the protein then it will be stated as not suitable, however it is always best to double check.

Know Which Alcohol to Avoid

GF alcohol

Obviously, the most important part of a meal isn’t the food it’s the drinks that accompany it. Make sure that you know which alcoholic drinks are gluten free. Lager is a no –go unless the bar sells a gluten free variety, which is normally not on draft but in a bottle. Cider, wine, sherry, spirits and liqueurs are all safe to drink. Some fruit ciders however may contain some gluten so make sure you always read the label.

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