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Nutrition Snippet


     Gluten is a type of protein found in common grains such as wheat, barley and rye, as well as foods made from these grains.  Consuming even the smallest amounts can damage the intestines of someone with celiac disease.  Because of this, individuals with celiac disease must follow a strict gluten-free diet.  Others eat gluten-free out of choice.


     Build Your Grocery List:  Grains and flours that are gluten-free and considered “safe” to eat include rice, wild rice, corn (maize), sago, soy, potato, tapioca, beans sorghum, quinoa, millet, buckwheat, arrowroot, amaranth, teff, Indian ricegrass and uncontaminated oats (labeled as gluten-free oats). 


     Other naturally gluten-free foods include milk, non-fat dry milk, 100-percent fruit or vegetable juices, vinegars (except for malt vinegar), and fresh fruits and vegetables.  Also OK are single ingredient foods—such as butter, eggs, lentils, peanuts, seeds, tree nuts, fresh fish and shellfish, honey and water.  When it comes to alcoholic beverages, choose vodka and gin, wines and gluten-free beers.  Oats are, by nature, gluten-free.  However, they nearly always become contaminated during processing or distribution with other gluten-containing grains.  If tolerated, up to about a 1/2 cup of dry gluten-free oats per day may be included in the diet.


     Keep It Off the List:  Gluten-containing foods include wheat (einkorn, durum, farro, graham, Kamut, semolina, spelt), rye, barley and triticale.  Malt products such as malt, malt flavoring and malt vinegar are generally made from barley and, thus, contain gluten.  Other foods to avoid include beers, ales and lagers that are made from gluten-containing grains and commercial oats not specifically labeled gluten-free. 


     Be sure to read food panels carefully.  Start by looking for the words gluten-free.  Under the FDA rule, a food can be labeled gluten-free when the unavoidable presence of gluten in the food is less than 20 parts per million of gluten.  If you have severe gluten sensitivity, do not eat foods containing wheat starch that are not labeled gluten-free.  Read all product labels each time you purchase a product as the manufacturer may change an ingredient.