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Start Your New Year Off Right if You Avoid Gluten


Updated December 26, 2013

As we all know, New Year's provides a time of reflection and resolutions for the days ahead. If you have celiac disease or non-celiac gluten sensitivity, it offers us a chance to celebrate our good health and resolve to make the diet work better for us in the new year. Here are some options you can consider to improve your health and your life while sticking resolutely to the gluten-free diet.

1. Host an Amazing New Year's Eve Party

Getty Images/Tom Grill

One of the best ways to make sure you stay gluten-free at a New Year's Eve party is to host it yourself. Fortunately, there are plenty of options for New Year's Eve-friendly gluten-free snack foods and menu items.

Try some of these recipes and impress your guests, or simply put out some gluten-free pretzels and dip and watch the ball drop on TV — either way, you can relax and have a great time.

2. Resolve Not to Cheat, Even If You Don't Get Symptoms

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Although many people with celiac disease or gluten intolerance get a nasty resumption of symptoms when they accidentally ingest gluten, some people experience no symptoms at all ... which makes it easy to talk themselves into cheating on their diet.

However, you face some potentially serious long-term side effects if you've been diagnosed celiac and you continually cheat. A little bit is not okay. Make a New Year's resolution to avoid gluten completely and improve your health in the bargain.

3. Remember to Think Positively, Even When It's Tough

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Following the gluten-free diet can be a real challenge, and it's sometimes easy to become depressed over what you can't eat and how much work it takes to find food you can eat (believe me, I know). It also takes a ridiculous amount of planning.

But if you can remember how much it's helping your health and resolve to think positively, it can help you plan ahead and cope with the inevitable glutenings and setbacks.

4. Treat Yourself To A Gluten-Free Bread You Enjoy

© King Arthur Flour

Sometimes it seems as if gluten-free bread is the Holy Grail of gluten-free cooking — most of us ate bread every day before diagnosis, and if you miss it, it's hard to give up the search for a version that's both good and safe for those who are celiac or gluten-sensitive.

Store-bought versions used to be notoriously bad, but they really are getting better. Home-baked gluten-free bread, meanwhile, can taste remarkably like the gluten-filled bread you remember, even if it comes from a mix. If you miss the taste of really excellent bread, try one of these mixes — creating bread you actually like should brighten your new year considerably.

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