When In Doubt Always Look For The Gluten
The gluten-free label can be found on packaged foods is helpful to assure its safe to eat for those with Celiac disease or gluten-sensitivity.
The Food and Drug Administration , who regulates packaged foods, allows the gluten-free label on foods that meet certain requirements.
These requirements say that food must be made to be free of gluten or by nature is free of gluten. It is also required that the food not be made from gluten-derived grains and contains less than 20 ppm of gluten.
Manufacturers are not required to test the starting ingredients or the finished product of their food items. However, they are required to back up their claims if tested/inspected by the FDA.
This labeling is voluntary, meaning companies can choose to bear the label on their foods, but are not required to. There are foods on the market that are gluten-free, but dont have the gluten-free label.
Below is a complete list of gluten-free foods, available in a printable PDF here.
There’s So Much More To Enjoy
Along with wine, potatoes, and rice, there are even more delicious foods and drinks that are safe to enjoy on a gluten-free diet, such as eggs, fish, meat, fruits, vegetables, and milk products.
A small note: When using frozen or canned fruits and vegetables, check for additives that might contain gluten. The same goes for processed cheese spreads and flavored yogurts.
Why Do I Need To Avoid Gluten If I Have Coeliac Disease
Coeliac disease is an autoimmune condition that means you react to a protein called gluten. Eating gluten causes damage in your gut , often linked to not absorbing vitamins and minerals properly, including low blood iron levels and weak bones . Taking the gluten out of your diet lets your gut recover. If you are diagnosed with coeliac disease, the treatment is to follow a gluten-free diet, even if you don’t have any symptoms. Unfortunately, coeliac disease cant be cured and is a life-long condition. Ask your GP to refer you to a dietitian to help you change to a gluten-free diet.If you keep eating gluten, damage to your gut will still be happening, even if your symptoms have gone away.
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Foods To Avoid With A Gluten Intolerance
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Many people avoid gluten, a group of proteins found in grains like wheat, barley, and rye, due to personal preference or a medical condition .
Celiac disease, wheat allergy, and non-celiac gluten sensitivity all involve an adverse reaction to gluten and are treated with a gluten-free diet. These conditions are considered forms of gluten intolerance .
While both celiac disease and NCGS may lead to intestinal damage and cause symptoms like diarrhea, gas, and bloating, celiac is an autoimmune condition linked to other serious health effects, such as anemia, stunted growth, and neurological effects .
Wheat allergy refers to an allergic reaction to wheat proteins, the symptoms of which may be life threatening. This condition is treated with a wheat-free diet, not necessarily a gluten-free diet .
Although people with wheat allergies must avoid wheat, most are able to eat other grains, including gluten-containing ones like barley and rye.
Meanwhile, people with celiac disease and NCGS must avoid all gluten-containing foods to control symptoms. Notably, many healthy foods are naturally gluten-free, and quite a few companies make scrumptious gluten-free products.
Here are 8 foods to avoid if you have a gluten intolerance, as well as 7 you can safely eat.
Who Can’t Eat Gluten
It’s a common myth that a gluten free diet is healthier than a diet containing gluten. This isn’t true, both can be healthy.
A gluten free diet is only vital for people diagnosed with coeliac disease or dermatitis herpetiformis, they need to follow a lifelong gluten-free diet to treat these conditions.
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The Secret Tasty Keys: Gf Condiments Spices & Sauces
Watch out! This category is by far the most overlooked.
I mean, what harm does a little sauce n seasoning do? Well, quite a bit, if its loaded with wheat flour, maltodextrin, modified food starch, and malt.
No all condiments, spices, and sauces are created equal, though. So there is hope! Just be a little more vigilant when picking your fav dressings and such.
Foods Naturally Free From Gluten
If foods are being excluded from the diet, it is important to ensure you are still having a balanced diet to obtain all the nutrients you need. Foods naturally free from gluten include fruit, vegetables, meat, fish, rice, potatoes, beans, pulses, nuts, eggs, milk and dairy. Sticking to a gluten-free diet can be difficult, so including plenty of these in the diet will make it easier.
Vinegar is gluten-free. Barley malt vinegar is produced from barley. However, the processing involved removes barley protein and therefore removes the gluten from the final product. These products will still be labelled as containing barley in the ingredients list.
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Who Benefits From The Gluten
The people that benefit the most from the gluten-free diet are those afflicted with celiac disease, as the diet is specifically designed for them to not eat foods that have gluten. As the diets name suggests, the gluten-free diet is completely void of gluten, and there arent any side effects to not consuming gluten since it doesnt have nutritional value, according to research.
However, people need to have plenty of grains in their diet, as grains are rich in carbohydrates, which are considered one of the most important nutrients that our body should have. Without carbohydrates, we wouldnt be able to supply our bodies with energy. Energy is also needed by numerous organs and systems in our body in order for them to operate properly.
For many years, people with celiac disease would not consume grains, and as such, they would often feel lethargic or less energetic than normal. Fortunately, food manufacturers have already come up with different ways to produce gluten-free food. So, you would often find plenty of gluten-free products in grocery stores nowadays. People with celiac disease will now be able to follow a gluten-free diet while also getting plenty of carbohydrates from gluten-free grains and other foods.
Our Beginners Guide To Gluten
Going gluten-free? Well show you what to eat, what to avoid and more to help you navigate this diet.
Youre about to try a gluten-free diet, but youre not sure where to start. What is gluten, anyway? And what can you eat? Worry not were here to help with resources that will set you up for success.
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An Overview Of The Gluten
Robert Burakoff, MD, MPH, is board-certified in gastroentrology. He is the vice chair for ambulatory services for the department of medicine at Weill Cornell Medical College in New York, where he is also a professor. He was the founding editor and co-editor in chief of Inflammatory Bowel Diseases.
After a diagnosis of celiac disease, you will need to go on a gluten-free diet. Gluten,the main protein in kernels of wheat, rye, and barley grainsis what triggers the immune system to attack the lining of the small intestine in this condition, so it must be avoided to manage symptoms.
Gluten is in many foods and it’s extremely difficult to avoid. In fact, the learning curve on a gluten-free diet is equal to or greater than the learning curves on almost any other type of diet. You will get the hang of it eventually, but you’ll learn more about food labeling and ingredient names than you ever thought you would need to know in the process.
You’ll also make mistakes as you learn how to eat gluten-free and may even experience them decades into following the diet.
Do your best to educate yourself about gluten-containing foods to set your gluten-free diet up for success.
Verywell / Brianna Gilmartin
Risk Of A Nutritional Deficiency
People who have celiac disease are at risk of several nutritional deficiencies.
These include deficiencies in fiber, iron, calcium, vitamin B12, folate, zinc, vitamins A, D, E and K and more (
If you experience constipation on a gluten-free diet, aim to eat more fiber-rich fruits and vegetables, such as broccoli, beans, lentils, Brussels sprouts and berries.
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Several Processed Foods And Other Items
Many processed foods and other popular items may also harbor gluten. These include:
- meat substitutes, such as veggie burgers and hot dogs
- prepared lunch meats
- canned soups and soup mixes
- puddings and instant dessert mixes
- certain ice creams
- french fries and other fried foods
- flavored tofu
Foods that contain gluten include breads, pastas, crackers, baked goods, many grains, and several beverages and processed items.
Though it may seem as if most foods are off-limits when youre intolerant to gluten, many delicious and healthy foods are naturally gluten-free. Plus, quality gluten-free breads, pastas, and crackers are available in most grocery stores.
If youre gluten intolerant, you can enjoy the following foods.
Sauces Spices And Condiments That Need A Second Look:
- Ketchup and Worcestershire sauce: Both of these condiments can be made using malt vinegar, which is not gluten-free. Double-check the ingredients.
- Barbecue sauce: Avoid BBQ sauces made with barley-based beer, soy sauce, malt vinegar, barley malt flour and possibly bourbon , as these typically contain gluten.
- Soy sauce: Soy sauce is traditionally made with wheat, so it usually is not gluten-free unless otherwise marked.
- Malt vinegar: Malt vinegar isn’t just a French-fry dipper. It’s also found in some salad dressings and sauces and it’s not gluten-free. However, white vinegar, distilled vinegar and apple-cider vinegar are all gluten-free.
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Who Misses The Breading
You don’t need to hide the succulent charms of fresh chicken, fish, and beef under a bunch of bread. Go for lean meat without any additives and you’ll be eating right for a gluten-free diet. Do keep in mind that hot dogs and deli meats are processed, so check the ingredients for additives that might contain gluten.
What Is The Gluten
Many believe that the gluten-free diet is simply a quick way to lose weight. This, however, is not true. The gluten-free diet is currently the only treatment for people with celiac disease. People living with non-celiac gluten sensitivity also benefit from eating gluten-free. Since there are no pills or therapies available, the only way to manage celiac disease is through a strict, 100% gluten-free diet.
So what is gluten anyway? Gluten is a protein found in wheat, barley, rye and the derivatives of these grains, including malt and brewers yeast.
A gluten-free diet excludes all products containing these ingredients. Those who are gluten-free can still enjoy a healthy diet filled with fruits, vegetables, meats, poultry, fish, beans, legumes and most dairy products. Such ingredients are naturally gluten-free, and safe for individuals who do not have allergies to these respective food groups.
- Unexplained infertility and other reproductive health problems
- Weight gain or weight loss
Three million Americans have celiac disease, and an estimated 18 million Americans have non-celiac gluten sensitivity . Unfortunately, most live unaware and remain undiagnosed or misdiagnosed.
Think you may have celiac disease? Complete our Celiac Disease Symptoms Checklist and share the results with your doctor.
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What About Eating Out
- Consult the Coeliac Australia restaurant finder.
- Have realistic expectations. Not everything on the menu will be gluten-free.
- Research ahead of time if you know where you are going to be eating out. For example, check if their menu is online, and if they dont have gluten-free options listed then give them a call to discuss your needs.
- If you havent called ahead of time, tell the waiter that you require gluten-free food as soon as you arrive and ask if they can cater for you. If they cant, you may need to find another restaurant.
- Be prepared to pay more because providing gluten-free foods for their customers often costs restaurants more.
- If it doesnt seem right, dont assume its gluten free. For example, if bread is served as an accompaniment to soup then check that the bread is also gluten-free.
- Exercise common sense and patience.
Unexpected sources of gluten when youre eating out can be stocks and sauces, soy milk, icing sugar or dusting chocolate, salad dressings, chicken salt, dusting or coating flour and oil used for other purposes such as frying foods with a batter that contains wheat flour.
Watch Out For Hidden Gluten
Some people with coeliac disease show no improvement on the gluten-free diet. The most common reason for this is because you are still eating small amounts of gluten. Hidden sources of gluten include additives such as modified food starch, preservatives and stabilisers made with wheat.
Hidden sources of gluten may also come from cross-contamination from gluten-containing foods, eg, breadcrumbs in the toaster.
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Pop The Champagne For Gf Grains
For the longest time I had no idea grains could be gluten-free. I mean, come on, it sounds like a total contradiction.
But but but!
There are some grains that are naturally gluten-free…who wouldve thought?
Of course, its always a great idea to double check labels when purchasing grains, as they can be processed in the same facility as typical gluten grains.
Balanced Eating While Gluten
A gluten-free diet is healthier than other diets.
Well, not exactly. If you have celiac disease or any other of the toxic relationships to gluten, then yes, a gluten-free diet is healthier for you. However, for those who dont struggle with gluten, going GF isnt the main determining factor of a healthy diet.
Your overall food choices are!
So, this means if you go gluten-free and stick to whole, nourishing foods, like most of the naturally gluten-free ones listed above, your diet is probably healthier! But if you mostly eat processed gluten-free foods, its not considered as healthy, because theyre lower in nutrients.
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What Foods Do You Avoid On A Gluten Free Diet
Avoid all gluten-containing foods such as bagels, breads, cakes, candy, cereals, crackers, cookies, dressing, flour tortillas, gravy, ice cream cones, licorice, malts, rolls, pretzels, pasta, pizza, pancakes, sauces, stuffing, soy sauce, veggie burgers, vegetarian bacon/vegetarian chicken patties (many vegetarian meat
Who Should Avoid Gluten
Gluten is a protein in wheat, barley, rye, and hybrids of those grains. Food companies add gluten to many processed foods to:
- Increase protein
- Bind ingredients together
- Add flavor
Many people believe that gluten-free foods are healthy choices for everyone, but whole grains that contain gluten are highly nutritious. Unless you have certain health conditions, there is no reason to avoid gluten.
Most people who should avoid grains with gluten have one of two conditions: celiac disease or gluten sensitivity.
Celiac disease. This autoimmune disorder affects about 1% of the population, although many people are undiagnosed or wrongly diagnosed. The body sees gluten as a toxin and attacks it in the small intestine. Avoiding gluten is the main treatment.
Gluten sensitivity. Some people do not have celiac disease but feel sick after eating gluten. Symptoms include:
There is no test for gluten sensitivity. If you think gluten might cause your symptoms, you can try an elimination diet. This involves removing many foods from your diet, including those with gluten. You then add them back into your diet one at a time and watch for symptoms.
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