I was recently interviewed by Annika Dhariwal, founder of Gluten Free Jio, for her webinar series featuring gluten-free and celiac experts from across the globe. I was very honored to share my experience of growing up with celiac disease with her audience and the history behind Gluten-Free Globetrotter. We talked about celiac disease as a child, traveling the world, and differences between India and the United States. It was a very interesting conversation.
Annika is a celiac teenager from India who is currently studying at boarding school in the United Kingdom. She shares my love of traveling and doesn’t let celiac disease stop her from seeing the world. When I asked Annika the meaning of her website name “Gluten Free Jio,” I just loved her explanation.
“Gluten Free Jio means to live gluten free. Jio in Hindi means to live. The idea behind this is to spread awareness about living a gluten free life in India and share my story and experiences of living in a boarding school and traveling as a celiac.”
Just in time for Amazon Prime Day, I have relaunched my Gluten-Free Globetrotter store on Amazon.com. In my storefront, I share some of my favorite gluten-free travel foods, gear to help transport your gluten-free food, items to use in a shared kitchen to keep your gluten-free food safer, and even gadgets to prepare food on the go. Anyone living with celiac disease or food allergies knows that you don’t leave home without your back-up kit. Now is the time to build yours!
What is one item you cannot leave home without when traveling gluten-free? Is it missing from my list? Let me know in the comments below!
NOTE: This post will be updated as I learn more information or other countries release updated statements. I suggest you click on the links below for the most up-to-date information.
This is not the post I was planning on for this week. I was planning on my yummy guide to Gluten-Free in San Diego. But then again, this is NOT a time any of us could plan for in anyway. This coronavirus/COVID-19 is totally uncharted terrority.
The thing we all need to do in this time is to stay educated, listen to local officials and top experts, and keep ourselves and loved ones safe. One thing not to do is panic or believe everything you read on the internet. Besides washing your hands and social distancing, arming yourself with truth is one of your best tools.
If you have celiac disease and are living a healthy, gluten-free life, you are NOT anymore at risk for coronavirus. I cannot repeat this enough times. I am linking to top experts in the celiac disease field from across the globe I encourage you to read these links, watch the videos, and do not panic.
Beyond Celiac (USA)
“People with celiac disease who are otherwise healthy are not immunocompromised and not at higher risk for coronavirus.”
Canadian Celiac Association (Canada)
“Patients with only celiac are not immunocompromised, unless they taking medications for other medical conditions which are immunosuppressive. Like everyone, they should exercise careful infection control practices, including washing hands with soap and water frequently, and avoid touching the eyes, nose and mouth.”
Coeliac disease and coronavirus – Update via Coeliac UK (UK) Updated 3/18/2020
“New government advice about at risk groups now includes criteria which includes people with coeliac disease. We should all be taking social distancing measures, but at risk groups should be especially stringent in following these. Social distancing aims to reduce social interaction between people. This is different to the advice for self-isolation for people with coronavirus symptoms such as a persistent cough or temperature.”
National Celiac Association (USA)
“At this time there is no evidence to suggest that someone with celiac disease would be more vulnerable to the coronavirus than the general population. Celiac disease is an autoimmune disease and, in and of itself, is not considered an immunocompromising condition.”
Associazione Italiana Celiachia/Italian Celiac Association (Italy)
“Le evidenze scientifiche disponibili non riportano nessun maggior rischio di contrarre infezione da nuovo Coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 per le persone con celiachia.” Translation: The available scientific evidence does not report any greater risk of acquiring a new Coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 infection for people with celiac disease.
Deutsche Zöliakie Gesellschaft/German Celiac Society (Germany)
Zur Risikobewertung von Zöliakiebetroffenen und Corona-Virusinfektionen gibt es bisher noch keine Daten. Translation: There is as yet no data on the risk assessment of people with celiac disease and corona virus infections.
Coronavirus (COVID-19) and Coeliac Disease via Coeliac Australia (Australia)
“The advice from our Medical Advisory Committee is that presently, there is no evidence that coeliac disease imparts a higher risk of serious illness to COVID-19, but there will be people with coeliac disease who do fall within categories of higher risk for serious infection (e.g. aged over 60).”
If you have specific questions regarding your celiac disease and your health, it is best to contact your physician directly. In these uncertain times, it is important to keep yourself healthy and educated.
When traveling with celiac disease, we are always on the hunt for celiac-friendly places to grab a meal. Whether you are in the next town over or on the other side of the globe, finding food that is gluten-free can sometimes be a challenge. I usually do as much research ahead of time, but there are also times you need to find something while on the go. There are some great tools which can help you navigate your way to a gluten-free meal when away from home.
My goal with Gluten-Free Globetrotter has always been to encourage others to travel with celiac disease. It is my hope that my posts give you confidence to take that first step to even day dreaming about a gluten-free trip. If I encourage you to book a flight, even better!