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Going to College Gluten-Free


COLLEGE. It’s an exciting time in anyone’s life, but it can be a frustrating experience for students who need to follow a gluten-free diet. Living on campus means you have limited access to food. Gluten-free options aren’t always available, and the dining hall staff may not know the best ways to keep students with celiac disease and non-celiac gluten sensitivity ('gluten sensitivity') safe.

Going to college gluten-free is getting easier, but having the right tools, advice and inspiration can make a big difference. NFCA has gathered these resources to help you navigate the gluten-free life at college…and beyond. (And parents, there’s something for you, too.)

Gluten-Free College Student ToolkitNFCA College Student Toolkit Preview

Prepping for college can be stressful enough, even without a gluten-free diet thrown in the mix.  NFCA compiled resources for new and current students, both newly diagnosed and gluten-free diet pros, to give students a one-stop-shop to make the transition easier.  (Parents, this information will be helpful for you, too!)

Download the Toolkit

 Blue Diamond Logo

Special thanks to Blue Diamond for making this toolkit possible!


GREAT Schools, Colleges & CampsGREAT Kitchens logo

Did you know NFCA has a gluten-free training program specifically for dining services staff? Encourage your gluten-free child’s college to learn proper gluten-free safety and protocols through this quick, clear and affordable course.

Infographic - Gluten-Free Dining Options at Colleges and Universities

Infographic: America's Universities Receive Poor Grades on the Subject of Gluten-Free

A recent survey from the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness shows the majority of colleges and universities provide limited access to gluten-free dining options, posing a health threat to students. NFCA surveyed nearly 1,000 gluten-free students throughout the country.


Food Allergies May Be Disabilitiy Under Law

Associated Press


Read the article: "Gov't: Food Allergies May Be Disability Under Law"


Free NFCA Webinars

Webinar Archive: Live Q&A with Gluten-Free Students and Grads

The 2014 college webinar featured a new format – a live panel discussion featuring the gluten-free experiences and opinions of young adults who have walked unique paths on their journeys of celiac disease management. This new format allowed for viewer driven content during a live question and answer period. Attendees benefited from access to key resources and learned about common concerns faced by the college population.

Download the slides or presentation recording in the webinar archive.

Webinar Archive: GREAT U Special: Navigating the Gluten-Free Social Scene at College

NFCA's second Webinar of its special kid and teen series identified how gluten-free college students can overcome any obstacle while away from home. This open discussion provided attendees with tips on how to stay gluten-free in the dining hall, dating do’s and don’ts, preparing the “Celiac disease is…” elevator speech and more. This lively presentation featured panelists Rebecca Panzer, MA, RD, LDN and Sam Master, a third-year medical student living with celiac disease.

Download the slides or presentation recording in the webinar archive.


Introducing NFCA’s brand new resource: GREAT U. This special publication is designed specifically for prospective and current gluten-free college students. It is presented in a digital format, so you can flip through page after page of stories, tips and photos just as you would a magazine. Made possible with support from Udi's Gluten Free Foods.

Gluten-Free in College: Downloadable Guides & ArticlesGluten-Free Guide to College cover

From what questions to ask on campus tours, to tips for explaining celiac disease to your roommate, to advice on kissing a gluten eater, the Gluten-Free Guide to College will prepare you for move-in day and help you survive those confusing moments throughout the semester.


Gluten-Free in College: Blog Series Part 1Gluten-free college students

NFCA enlisted 8 bloggers to share their experiences as gluten-free college students (and one recent graduate). They each have a different story and perspective, but in one way or another, they’re all making do. Click to read mistakes made, lessons learned and missions accomplished, with plenty of personality to boot.

Gluten-Free in College: Blog Series Part 2college students

The second college blog series features new students and new challenges to tackle.  The students and stories are fresh, but one thing remains the same; these students are making it work, regardless of their gluten-free diet. 

Gluten-Free in College: Parenting AdviceWendy Gregory Kaho

Letting your kid leave the nest is tough enough. Worrying about their health adds a whole other level of stress. Hear from a parent of two gluten-free college students who learned how to recognize warning signs and when to step in.

Gluten Free College Reviews
GF College logo

GlutenFreeTravelSite recently launched an important initiative to get colleges around the country reviewed for their degree of “gluten-free friendliness.” They encourage all gluten-free college students to take a few minutes to submit a dining review of their college to help prospective students who are gluten-free. It’s their goal to get all colleges and universities reviewed so students beginning the college search process will receive valuable first-hand feedback from other gluten-free students already in attendance.




  • Have you or your family members been diagnosed?
    Complete our celiac disease symptoms checklist today to find out if you are at risk of having celiac disease or non-celiac gluten sensitivity ('gluten sensitivity').  We can help improve your quality of life!
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