Sunday, April 25, 2010

Gluten Free Colleges

AAAHHH!!! Searching for a college with a good gluten-free meal plan can be extremely frustrating. With some thorough research, however, it's not as tough as it seems. I recently traveled around the east coast to look at colleges I might be interested in attending. Most of the school chefs said that if I ended up attending the school, they would sit down with me at the beginning of each week to plan out my meals. Most seemed very accommodating. Some even had gluten-free or allergen-free sections of the cafeteria designated for kids with food allergies. Here are my suggestions for finding a good gluten-free college:
  1. Check it out: You won't truly know about the school's meal plan until you visit for yourself. Go to the cafeteria and see how many choices you have for gluten-free food, and how difficult it is to find something to eat.
  2. Make contact: Ask for the contact information of the dietitian at the school. They will be able to tell you anything you need to know about the school's food.
  3. Talk to the students: Roughly one in a hundred people have Celiac disease, so there will likely be several students already attending the school who have gluten-free diets. See if you can talk to one of these students in person or ask for his or her email address. They will have had firsthand experience with the meals there.
  4. Where is it?: If the university is in a college-friendly town or a big city it will probably be relatively easy to find things to eat off-campus. If not, it might be more of a challenge .
  5. Be Patient: It will take a lot of work to find a college with a good gluten-free meal plan. Remember, you'll be there for four full years of your life, so you want it to be a place where you can conveniently get safe and nutritious food.

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