Newly Gluten Free: Meet The Wheatleys
Ironically enough, we are the Wheatley family from Lexington, KY. After 10 years of chronic stomach issues, and being very pushy with a receptive pediatrician, our oldest was diagnosed with celiac disease. After she tested positive, we tested our other 3 children due to the hereditary nature of the disease. The other three were found to be positive as well. Talk about rolling with the punches! This diagnosis came as a shock to our family. Of course, our oldest was thankful that there was hope for her to feel normal. Immediately I worried about everything…How will they cope? What will they eat? How can we go anywhere? How can I put a positive spin on this? How receptive will family and friends be? The questions went on and on.
Luckily our children have been patient and very open to learning about the disease. They have been receptive to trying new foods and brands in order to find the right Gluten free products for them. With companies like Udi’s, which take the time and care to create great/safe products, there is so much more for them to pick from on the market. Finding the best bread search ended finally when we discovered Udi’s whole grain bread. Our kids don’t care a lot for pasta but they love their bread…and Udi’s saved the day!!
My husband and I have always been firm believers in ‘everything happens for a reason’. The spin we have put on the disease for our kids is that getting the diagnosis early in life will prevent them from possibly developing multiple diseases later in life. With the help of testing, doctors, family, friends, research and innovative companies like Udi’s our children are going to grow up happier and healthier and that is something that we cannot put a price tag on.
We asked Becky Wheatley to provide some tips on dining out with gluten free kids. Here is what she recommends.
Tips For Dining Out With Gluten Free Kids
- First and foremost, we are always very open and up front about our children’s diagnosis to the manager and waiter/waitress. We have found that doing so helps them understand the situation better.
- Another important thing is calling ahead when possible and talking to the manager, preferably the one who will be there when you plan to go. We have had several places fire up grills that are never used and cut potatoes to make fresh oven baked french fries just for the safety of our children.
- Taking extra food/bread/condiments to the restaurant is a good idea, just in case the menu is more limited than we expected.
- The biggest key is remaining calm/patient and never underestimating the power of informing people as you go. We can all educate over time and get gluten free knowledge out there!!
About the Wheatleys
Becky Wheatley-NICU RN
David Wheatley-Tax Manager
Abby-11 years old
Gunnar-9 years old
Cameron-7 years old
Lindsey-7 years old
Gluten Free for 1 year now!! Follow-up testing on Abby has shown complete healing of her small intestines…a completely normal Endoscopy!! Thanks Udi’s!!