What Are Some Unsafe Foods for Those on a Gluten-Free Diet?


Quick Answer

People on a gluten-free diet should avoid foods containing certain grains such as wheat, barley, rye and triticale, according to Mayo Clinic. Wheat products may be included on ingredients labels under a variety of names, including spelt, semolina, kamut, durum flour and farina. People with celiac disease should avoid baked goods, pastas, sauces, cereals and soups unless the label specifically indicates that they are gluten-free. Additionally, some vitamins and medications use gluten as a binding agent.

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Full Answer

Individuals following a gluten-free diet should also avoid restaurant-prepared foods unless it can provide gluten-free choices, notes Mayo Clinic. Many foods can be cross-contaminated when they are prepared on common surfaces and with shared utensils. Cross-contamination of foods also occurs during many manufacturing processes. Certain grains such as oats don't contain gluten; however, they can be contaminated with wheat during different stages of production.

As of 2015, many manufacturers choose to include a warning label that their products may contain traces of gluten, although it is not mandatory, states Mayo Clinic. Manufacturers may indicate a product is wheat-free; however, gluten may still be present through other sources, including additives such as food starch or malt flavoring. Gluten-free versions of pasta and bread are more commonly available in specialty markets, and dietitians can help individuals identify which foods to avoid and those that are safe for a well-balanced diet.

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