DS (18) has recently been diagnosed with coeliac disease. He has moved onto a gluten-free diet although as he is in the middle of A-levels we have been advised we don't need to be rigid about this yet (in terms of contamination etc). However, we've been pretty thorough.
After exams he's off to Greece for a week with his friends. Aside from sending him with a suitcase full of GF bread & cereal, how's he going to manage there? Can you buy GF food in the supermarkets there? Restaurants? I guess he won't be able to find GF beer.
Teach him to say it in Greek. Don't count on everyone being able to read. I made that mistake as a privileged / sheltered 18 year old. Things might be better now, or I may have just been unlucky in who I tried to show my Greek phrase book to?
Who the heck said not to be rigid and why? I am coeliac and have to be absolutely saintly otherwise I'm sick as a grumpy dog.
As others have said, get his needs written on a laminate card and make sure he checks all food that either doesn't have a label or he doesn't prepare himself. I always keep a stash of Trek bars (gluten free oat bars) as snacks as I often cannot find something. Schar do a good range of bread products that I often take on holiday also.
Even chips can be difficult if they are deep fried - the oil Ian often used to cook breaded products and therefore you can get cross-contamination. Such an annoying detail but once I figured it out made a huge difference.
GingerHanna we only got the diagnosis just over a week ago. We are due to see a dietician soon but haven't had the appointment through yet. I am sure she will tell us all about cross contamination etc. (I've already researched it myself.)
As DS is literally in the middle of his A level exams, and he is asymptomatic, the consultant said he should take a pragmatic approach initially. So far we have bought GF foods, separate toaster, and I have given his food a separate shelf in the food cupboard, fridge and larder. That's what I meant by not being rigid.
Great suggestions on checking how you say it Greek.
Has anyone on a GF diet actually been to Greece & knows what they have?
We went to Kefalonia a couple of years ago and had no problem eating out. We actually found it easier than here. Lots of dishes are meat/fish/veg/ potato based and everywhere we went all food was prepared from fresh by the cooks. They didn't use deep fat fryers so when making things like chips, they were fried in a pan with fresh oil ( the staff always looked aghast when I asked if the frying oil had been used to cook anything else). We had some translations on our phone, but most of the waiting staff were very knowledgeable. Breakfast was the most difficult meal for my DC, but there was always lots of yogurt and fresh fruit. Desserts were also more limited, but no one went hungry.