I read an interesting article entitled “5 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Gluten,” and I must admit that I, as a person with legitimate Celiac Disease, was intruiged by some of the topics discussed.
The first point is that “gluten may not be the only culprit in Celiac disease,” when Celiac Disease which is defined by the Mayo clinic as “an immune reaction to eating gluten, a protein found in wheat, barley, and rye.” In many Celiac patients, there are other immune responses to various grains or allergens (common ones being dairy, soy, corn, nuts, & eggs).
Secondly, the article makes the point that “Gluten-Free Labels are Now Standardized.” This can be considered a blessing or a curse to the Celiac community. While the FDA now requires labeling with a “low” rating of 20ppm to use the term “gluten-free” when labeling food products, 20ppm is perceived as “generally safe” for someone with Celiac disease to consume per day. However, many Celiac’s are much more sensitive, and if consuming more than one product at 20ppm a day, the majority of those with this autoimmune disorder can develop very undesirable symptoms.
Next, the article addresses the obvious: “Gluten Free Fast-Food May Not Be Safe for People With Celiac.” Really?? Of course, there is a HUGE risk in oprdering that “gluten-free” pizza from Domino’s or Pizza Hut. There is a huge risk for consuming anything that comes into contact with gluten (gluten particles can hang around in the air at a bakery or other establishments, so it is best to ONLY purchase items that are made in a DEDICATED GLUTEN-FREE FACILITY (i.e. Our amazing bakery) if you don’t want to become cross contaminated.
The next point addresses Gluten-Free junk foods being accessible everywhere. This is a god-send for those of us that haven’t been able to have a real cupcake in years, but it really comes down to the food choices we make on a daily basis. It is okay to eat healthily 95% of the time and allow yourself to splurge on a cookies every once in awhile. The key in finding a facility that make delicious and dedicated gluten-free treats! It’s not worth it to cheat.
The last discussion topic in the article discusses upcoming food sensors that can detect minute quantities of gluten in the food you’re planning to eat. This would be invaluable, assuming they’re made inexpensively and are accessible to the general public.
What do you think about this article? How do you feel about the FDA laws on gluten-free labeling? Do you feel safe in what you consume?