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The Daily Cardinal Est. 1892
Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Gluten-free and loving it

“You’re gluten-free? Oh that sucks!” Many people often hear these comments when they tell friends of their dietary needs. Yet, little do these friends know, there are now gluten-free options in almost every restaurant.

This trendy diet is mandatory for some and voluntary for others. Those with celiac disease (an auto-immune disorder in which gluten products cause damage to the small intestine) have to follow a strictly gluten-free diet so they do not damage their intestine. Gluten-free includes not eating any wheat products such as rye, barley, malt, or oats.

However, no matter if you strictly follow a gluten-free diet or not, your body will be healthier by removing the wheat and you will never find yourself at a loss for food.

In Madison, there is a wide range of gluten-free opportunities. Downtown, many restaurants, including Italian style ones such as Tutto's Pasta and Francesca’s, offer gluten-free options. These options are not just the typical salad many gluten-less eaters resort to at every meal after giving up on finding gluten-free items on the menu. The options at many restaurants in Madison include foods you will regularly want to indulge in.

To add to these local options, Silly Yak Bakery makes delicious breads, cookies, muffins and more on a weekly basis that are made in a separate facility so they do not risk cross-contamination. These baked goods are not your regular crumbly gluten-free carbs. All these items have the same texture and consistency you expect from their comparable gluten filled items. Not to mention, Silly Yak regularly attends the Farmers Market located in downtown Madison every Saturday.

Not only are there many restaurants in Madison that offer delicious gluten-free options, but on campus many dining hall facilities and the Union South offer gluten-free foods for students as well. You can check out the UW website each day for gluten-free menu options. This way, you don’t have to leave your dorm in the cold to learn about the gluten-free menu that day.

As a girl diagnosed with celiac disease three days after her 18th birthday, I understand the struggle of finding gluten-free foods that taste good as well. But, I can assure you, the food is out there! And in Madison, you don’t have to look very far to find it.

Whether it is Zooey Deschanel, Jessica Alba or your best friend, many women and men are becoming gluten-free or being diagnosed with celiac or gluten intolerance. By embracing the gluten-free opportunities Madison presents, there will be no disappointment.

You can attend the same restaurants as your friends for dinner without having to worry about what to eat in advance. It’s a happy solution for your stomach and your social life.

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