Packing Gluten-Free Lunches

September 4, 2013 Updated Sep 4, 2013 at 6:26 AM EDT

By WKBW News

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September 4, 2013 Updated Sep 4, 2013 at 6:26 AM EDT

Cleveland Clinic (WKBW) – If packing a healthy school lunch wasn’t hard enough, finding gluten-free options are even more challenging. Many parents do this by choice, for others it is a must because their child has Celiac Disease.

There are many gluten-free options in stores today. Many of the grocery stores even have gluten-free sections to make it easier.

Experts said the best choices for all kids, including those with Celiac Disease, are fruits and vegetables. Those are all gluten-free. They also say granola and cereal bars that are labeled “gluten-free” are also great choices for kids. There is also gluten-free bread if you want to make a sandwich for your child.

If you child has Celiac Disease, experts suggest to be extra careful. A child’s food should be put in a separate plastic container. Also you should advise your child to keep their food away from other food, even crumbs that contain gluten. The slightest amount of gluten can cause a severe reaction in some children.

“I've heard kids tell me that they get a sensation of something being stuck in their throat if they have Celiac Disease and they are accidentally exposed to something that has gluten in it,” Cleveland Clinic Dr. Laurie Tsilianidis said.

Experts said kids should also use plastic containers as their plates so their food does not touch a table or anything else that may contain left over food with gluten.

Exposure to gluten in a child that is intolerant can lead to cramping and abdominal pain. They said although the pain does subside, it might temporarily cause enough discomfort that the child is unable to go back to class once they are finished with their meal.

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