Being Gluten and Dairy Free in College
Neither the dairy free diet nor the gluten free one is easy. Studying in college usually makes both of those even harder. Though, what does it mean to be gluten and dairy free? It means that you cannot eat any product that contains dairy or gluten.
What are dairy and gluten?
Dairy is any product, which contains or is made of milk. Gluten is a substance, contained in cereals, mostly in wheat, which is responsible for the elasticity of the dough.
Why are some people intolerant of gluten and dairy?
The worst thing about being dairy and gluten free is cross-contamination. This is a process by which bacteria and other microorganisms are accidentally transferred from one substance or object to another, having a harmful effect.
Many people cannot even tolerate traces of gluten left on cooking utensils, dishes, forks. Even if they touch gluten with their hands, they can feel sick. However, it does not mean that every person with an allergy or dairy and gluten intolerance should worry about this. Not all of such people are extremely affected by it. But, for some, it makes a huge difference, and their lives become much harder.
How to survive in the dining hall?
Fortunately, the kitchen staff in my school prepares meals for me separately and even put those meals on dishes that only get used for my food. They were very benevolent to me when I brought the list of allergies and products that I can and cannot eat. However, this does not mean that misunderstandings never happen. There was a situation when I got an upset stomach because of eating something that had some dairy in it by mistake. But the following problem was fixed immediately after a short conversation.
I cannot tell you that if you have strict dietary needs, going to college will be non-stressful because actually, it is stressful. However, you can solve numerous problems by simply talking to your chef. I used to feel sick to my stomach when I thought about eating meals at school, and to tell the truth, I sometimes still am. But I cannot neglect the fact that the kitchen staff in my school is very benevolent and patient to me and always considers my needs.
Always have a snack with you
The best advice I can give to you is always having some kind of snack with you. As for me, I always have some fruits. Besides, while living on campus, I keep hummus and nuts in my room, but it is not always possible to get to my room between classes, so fruits are the best and healthiest solution for me.
Remember that you are not the only person who is gluten and dairy free. The kitchen staff is there to help you. You may think they are not willing to do so, but they actually have to consider it. Besides, having a snack with you will always help you refresh your inner man.