Going Gluten Free at the University: Progress has been made, but more choices are needed.

As of 2010, one in 133 Americans have learned that they must follow a gluten-free diet. This includes those with celiac disease, gluten intolerances, wheat allergies and more. With the number of intolerances rising a new challenge arises as well. What can these people eat?
Suddenly going out to restaurants, parties, and family gatherings becomes a challenge. Gluten is the protein found in barley, rye, oats and wheat (easily remembered with the acronym BROW). This means that things like bread, pasta and baked goods are not edible to those on a gluten-free diet. When the average American is faced with this reality and realizes they have to continue to live and eat in a wheat-driven society it can be very daunting.
The Students for Gluten Free Awareness at the University of Minnesota (formerly named the Gluten Free Club) have been working for the past year to implement gluten-free products on campus. Currently Pioneer Hall has introduced gluten-free pizza crusts at lunch. In addition, Pioneer Hall and Commissary in the Regis Center for the Arts School Building on West Bank have UdiâÄôs bread available for sandwiches, and the M Deli in Coffman Union offers gluten-free sprouted wraps. There are also various gluten-free products in the convenience stores on campus.
While we are very happy with our efforts these implementations are only temporary. As time goes on the University needs to see the necessity for these products. Once the University sees these products being used it can start to purchase more and maybe even try new and better products.
If you would like more information or to help us continue to bring more gluten-free products to campus come to our meeting at 5 p.m., today, in Coffman Union, where we will have free food and plenty of UdiâÄôs products to sample. Otherwise e-mail us at [email protected] or find us on Facebook.