The best way to be 100% sure your food is gluten free is to buy it fresh and make it yourself.
Rule #1: Check the label! Any product containing “wheat,” “rye,” or “barley” is not gluten-free. Also, oats don’t naturally contain gluten, but are often contaminated with small amounts of it, so many gluten-intolerant people avoid them. Other, seemingly innocent additives, like alcohol, blue cheese, extracts, modified food starch, coloring, malt vinegar and hydrolyzed plant or vegetable protein also are not likely to be gluten-free.
Rule #2: If you’re not sure, find out! Call the manufacturers customer service numbers they will be able to answer any questions about products or ingredients. Until you’re sure a product is gluten-free, it’s better not to use it. Accidentally ingesting gluten can be very harmful to people with celiac disease and gluten intolerance.
Rule #3: Shop the perimeter of the store. Fortunately, many nutritious foods that are naturally gluten-free are found on the perimeter of the store. Meats, fish and chicken are always gluten free unless they are pre-processed, breaded or fried with breadcrumbs. Avoid gravy as most gravy has gluten in it. Fruits and vegetables are free of gluten in their natural states. Also, nuts and seeds, low-fat unflavored dairy products are all safe bets.
Rule #4: Try to avoid prepackaged foods including those in a can, unless you are sure they are gluten free. Also, be careful with frozen foods as many of them contain preservatives and gluten hidden within the ingredients. Generally if its prepackaged you should avoid it.
Rule #5: Look for the Gluten-Free Certification Organization (GFCO) Certified Gluten-Free seal. Many food manufacturers are now making healthy and delicious gluten-free products. This seal indicates that the manufacturing facility was inspected and the product contains less than 10 ppm of gluten.
For more information about dining gluten free, contact us.