For consumers with gluten allergies, determining which foods could trigger a reaction can be a pain.
However, as dietician Pam Cureton recently told Family Practice News, labels can be key factors in determining which foods will fit a gluten-free lifestyle. Even if product labels don't necessarily say the food is gluten-free, there are six telltale ingredients consumers should look out for: wheat, barley, malt, rye, oats and brewer's yeast.
"This is the good news. All that you have to teach your patients are six words ... to identify whether a product that is not labeled gluten-free is a gluten-containing item," advised Cureton. "Teach your patients those six words and they are good to go."
Fortunately, if food contains other agents that could cause a reaction, the Consumer Protection Act of 2004 requires the use of artificial and modified ingredients to be disclosed. This makes it even easier to determine which foods are actually gluten-free.
Gluten-free labels can be somewhat misleading, as the Food & Drug Administration standards allow for trace amounts of the protein.