Is your child showing symptoms of gluten intolerance? Or someone else you know? If they are diagnosed with coeliac or gluten sensitivity, it’s not a life sentence for hardship or loneliness. There’s no need to panic or worry about the future and how they will cope in life. In this article I have five things you should do if you suspect your child may have gluten intolerance.
01. Get a test.
A blood test or other test done can confirm the symptoms are being caused by gluten intolerance and not something else. There are different levels of gluten intolerance with coeliac being the most serious but gluten sensitivity also causes symptoms and can damage the gut if left long term.
02. Seek support.
There are many support groups you can join to meet like-minded people or parents of children who are also gluten intolerant. These include facebook groups, meetup groups and other online communities. You’re not alone. Find support and advice from like-minded individuals.
03. Be informed.
Do your own research to understand gluten intolerance, what foods are gluten-free and where you can buy them. Equip yourself with all the knowledge you can find. More understanding you have about gluten will prepare you as a parent to care for your child. Also spread the knowledge to your family and friends. Educate them about the condition, consequences and what to do when a reaction triggers.
04. Experiment with creative cooking
Being gluten intolerant can mean cooking more at home and trying new recipes which can encourage you to be healthier. Try different grains like amaranth, quinoa and rice. There are many gluten-free products and recipes available these days. Make eating and cooking a family activity. Many wholesome dishes can be made gluten-free for the whole family without compromising on taste which helps your child to not feel left out if everyone eats the same thing. Sense of inclusion is an important thing for a growing mind.
Remember you’re not alone. We are here for you!