G-Free Summertime Fun

Summertime fun, Cheerios chat & Alexandria office relocation

For many people, summertime is filled with picnics, outdoor adventures and travel. With a little planning, you can make sure to have fun and take care of your health, too.

Picnics and cookouts tend to work well for a gluten-free diet. Most grilled foods, like 100% beef or turkey burgers, hot dogs, chicken breasts, etc. are gluten-free in the regular grocery store, so you can coOLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAordinate with your host and ask about any marinades, or just bring your own food to grill. For vegetarians, grilled Portabella mushrooms, red peppers (my favorite) and veggie skewers work well. If your host is grilling buns, marinated meat, or anything else ‘glutenous’ in the same area, bring along aluminum foil to wrap your food and keep it safe from cross contamination. Just bring along your own bun, or in a pinch, use a lettuce leaf as a wrapper. It helps to carry a few little packets of condiments, in case there aren’t squeeze bottles of mayo or mustard. Green salads, fruit salads and watermelon are usually on the menu, and don’t forget grilled corn on the cob as a yummy treat!  Quinoa salads are wonderful in this weather, and are getting more popular. Ice cream, popsicles and frozen fruit bars are usually gluten-free, though it’s important to check the label because there are exceptions. Since these events are often potlucks, it’s easy to bring along a safe dish that you’ll enjoy.

Or, if you’re at home or entertaining, experiment with grilled fruit, like grilled mango, peaches or pineapple for a gourmet and simply elegant gluten-free treat!


Cheerios has announced their cereals are now gluten-free…but before you get too excited, dig a little deeper. For the past few years, certified gluten-free oats have been available though a variety of companies. They are grown on special fields and batch tested. But Cheerios have opted NOT to use certified g-free oats, instead using a patented sorting process to separate out the *ahem* wheat from the chaff.

But but but…Gluten-Free Watchdog went to the facility and observed the processes and the testing. Some of the batches are well below the 20ppm limit to label as gluten-free, but a few were above, and one was way above. Also, the sampling is done on pooled samples (a large group) vs individual boxes, which makes it more likely to miss small patches of gluten contamination.

Of course, there are also a small group of people with Celiac that can’t eat oats, even certified gluten-free oats.

Long story short, at this point in time, I don’t feel comfortable recommending Cheerios to anyone with Celiac until they improve their testing system. A big company can and should be doing a better job.

Alexandria office relocation:Kingstowne office map

Time flies, and I’ve been seeing clients in Alexandria since 2007. Because of recent changes at that office and an upcoming remodel, I’ve moved my office space a few miles away to 5680 King Centre Drive, which is right off S Van Dorn in the Kingstowne area. I’m still also seeing clients in Fairfax, too.

Wishing you a beautiful and restful summer!

Harris Whole Health offers individual sessions and group classes to help people eat healthier and feel better! Cheryl works with people to feel and look their best with a range of specialties, including Celiac Disease, food allergies, pregnancy, breastfeeding, vegetarian and vegan diets, promoting great health and “whole foods” eating. Let’s get you on your way to achieving your goals. For an appointment with Cheryl Harris, Registered Dietitian and Nutritionist, please click here, email or call 571-271-8742.

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