The holiday season is a time to celebrate with family and friends. Unfortunately, it also becomes a time when you need to be extra careful to avoid cross-contamination of gluten. Here are some tips that will help you have a healthy, gluten-free holiday season.

  1. Survey party buffets before filling your plate. Look for foods that are breaded or marinated with gluten- containing ingredients. For example, vegetables might have been stir -fried in soy sauce or chicken could have a light breading.


  1. Wheat flour will also most likely make its way into the potato latkes at Hanukkah dinner. If you are making the latkes or your host is willing, it’s easy to substitute gluten-free flour or cornstarch in that favorite family recipe.
  1. Don’t be afraid to tell the host of a party you will be attending about your gluten intolerance.


  1. If you have a gluten-free child make sure you bring plenty of gluten-free options to a party in someone else’s home. It can be especially hard for kids to pass on breads and desserts.


  1. Avoid dips. Even if you think you are OK by dipping raw veggies into guacamole or hummus it can be very unsafe! Someone else might have just dipped their gluten-containing chip into that same dip leaving crumbs that you could accidentally ingest!
  1. If you are going to a restaurant, call ahead to ask if they can prepare food to accommodate your needs. I find that some restaurants are more understanding than others and will modify their recipes to meet your dietary restrictions.
  1. If you are asked to bring something to a potluck party make sure to bring food that you can eat. Find out what others are bringing so you know if you need to bring an entrée or a dessert that will work for you. You don’t want to be in a situation where you don’t have enough gluten- free food to satisfy your hunger. It is especially important that there is a healthy choice for your entrée.