AKA: My Grocery Store Meltdown: The Overwhelming Sadness of Cross-Contamination

Two years after I was diagnosed with celiac disease, I thought I had everything under control. I’d finally figured out how to find all the hidden gluten on ingredient and packaging labels, and I was well aware of cross-contamination risks of whole and processed foods.

Or so I thought, until one morning when I went grocery shopping for a brunch I had planned for friends. I’d done careful recipe planning and, list in hand, set off into the aisles. Picking up a bag of almonds, I checked the packaging (as I always do) to make sure they were safe for me to cook with, and I saw on the back of the bag: “Processed in a facility that also handles wheat, tree nuts, soy and dairy products.”

I sighed and tossed them back onto the shelf, wheeling my cart over to the deli section for the ham I needed. Then I saw that they’d used the same slicer to cut my ham that they had just used to slice a meat I knew had gluten in its casing. Scratch that. First no almonds, now no ham. Tears welled up immediately.

Not being able …read more

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