Bakers Journal

Celiac Canada publishes free gluten-free food service training guide

January 25, 2024
By Bakers Journal


Celiac Canada has created a free guide with downloadable tools that make it easy for bakery-café, food-service and restaurant managers to teach staff key points.

Celiac patients in hospitals and long-term care residents who cannot advocate for themselves are often served food containing gluten, which can lead to horrendous symptoms and even death if they’re fed unsafe food for long enough, Celiac Canada said in a news release. Tiny amounts of gluten can have severe consequences.

Many health-care workers and managers have not been trained in gluten-free food service and are unaware food they serve may make those in their care sicker. The guide solves a serious problem that could save lives.

One per cent of Canadians have celiac disease (CD), an auto-immune condition that triggers the body to attack itself after ingesting gluten from grains like barley, rye, and wheat. CD has 200-plus physical and neurological symptoms.

“Given pressures in health care, it’s challenging to meet the needs of a variety of diets, and many workers haven’t had the chance to get trained,” said lead author Doris Foster, who was a registered dietitian and director of nutrition services in hospitals for many years. “We did a global scan but found very few fully comprehensive, all-in-one training resources for gluten-free food service in healthcare.”

Celiac Canada created a free guide with downloadable tools that make it easy for managers to teach staff key points.

Food-service provider Sysco is sharing the guide with customers, at health-care and senior living events across the country and on LinkedIn. “It’s a great tool operators can use to learn how to support this growing dietary challenge,” said Sarah Emmerton, RD, vice-president of health care and senior living.

The number of people diagnosed with gluten disorders is growing. Celiac Canada plans future resources for the food-service sector to help people with CD eat safely when away from home.

The new guide may be downloaded here: Gluten-Free Food Service In Healthcare – Celiac Canada.


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