Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Eating Gluten Free in College

The below video is really great, and shows that many young Celiacs don't have to worry about eating gluten free when making the transition to college.  I definitely applaud Syracuse University's efforts to make the transition an easy one as both a Celiac and a former "central" New Yorker.

Of course, that is just one college in the country.  However, my alma mater was also extremely helpful in my adjustment.  I was diagnosed with Celiac the summer after my freshman year.  During that summer I lived at another college in Boston and had a horrible, no good, rotten experience at the other college with eating gluten free; it made the initial adjustment very difficult.  When I went back to Tufts in the fall, I contacted the school's nutritionist who was eager to provide me with gluten free pasta, cereal, and cookies.  Just as importantly, she provided me with information about any hidden gluten in the dining hall.  She and the dining hall staff went to great lengths to welcome me as a Celiac.  Whenever I went behind the counters I was treated like a local celebrity, since the entire staff was aware of my gluten free needs.  They would also grill items and serve them to me without particular sauces which contained gluten.  If you have any concerns about eating gluten free in college, I definitely recommend meeting with your school's nutritionist, dietitian, or dining hall manager to see what options are available.

I also just found this great pamphlet that Tufts publishes for its students with food allergies, intolerances, and sensitivities.

I wholeheartedly echo Ruth Sullivan's comment that many students wish they could go back to the dining hall.  I know I do -- cooking for myself and doing the dishes is way too cumbersome!

Thanks to Gluten Free Optimist's original post for the video.  On her site (here), she also has an article about eating gluten free at the University of Maryland.


marylandceliac said...

It is great to hear about your positive experience at Tufts. Thanks for sharing it!

Unknown said...

This is so encouraging! I am in community college right now, so I live at home and cook my own food. I will be transferring after this year, and the whole thought of eating college food scares me. This article is so encouraging though. It's great you had a good experience at Tufts eating college food. =) Thanks for posting this.