17 Things Only GF People Will Understand

by Kirstin Carey, Owner of Nourish, Certified Holistic Nutritionist, & GF since 2007


When you are gluten free (or “GF” as the cool kids say), there are things you do, say, or have to endure that the non-gluten free people just wouldn’t understand.

Here’s a list of 17, though I’m sure you have a few of your own you could add to the list.

gluten free symbol

  • You have a fear of new restaurants.
  • You have a fear of restaurants you’ve been to before.
  • You have a fear of BBQs, buffets, and banquets.
  • You mistrust nearly all wait staff and even when the executive chef himself tells you you’re safe, you still aren’t sure.
  • You often use phrases like “cross contamination”, “dedicated kitchen” and “GF safe facility.”
  • You’ve given up on the concept of pizza. I mean really, what’s the point?
  • Even after learning you couldn’t have gluten, you still went through a period where you really believed you could eat gluten “sometimes.” Then cursed yourself later when you were suffering, because you knew better. “Why do I do this to myself?”
  • gluten free symbolYou’ve heard the words, “Oh, there was just a little bit of flour in that. I’m sure you’ll be ok, right?” after eating something that tasted just too good to be gluten free.
  • You’ve had people look at you like you were insane when you tried to explain to them that no, picking out the croutons from the salad or just taking the wheat bun off the burger after the fact just isn’t ok.
  • You have no problems bringing your own food to any event. Even a wedding.
  • You go everywhere just assuming that there will be nothing safe for you to eat.
  • You’ve been given a “vegan meal” or a “Kosher meal” at group events, because the caterer decided that vegan or Kosher must be close enough to gluten free, right?
  • You’ve explained at least 100 times that “Potatoes, corn, and rice are gluten free, but soy sauce, dressings, some lunchmeat, and even some icecream is not gluten free.” Sigh.
  • gluten free symbolYour mother still gets rattled when you come to dinner because she hasn’t quite wrapped her head around how easy it is to make food that doesn’t contain gluten.
  • You’re tired of people saying, “What DO you eat?” or “I could never do that!” or “How do you survive without bread?”
  • You’ve been known to travel with an extra suitcase to bring all your safe food with you.


  • And my ultimate favorite…  “We’ve been eating gluten for 100s of years. You’ll be fine.”


If you have things that should be added to this list, please add them in the comments below.

May you always have something safe and delicious to eat!

Kirstin Carey

Kirstin Carey

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