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Celiac Disease and Oats: Are They Gluten-Free?

This category contains articles that cover the safety of oats in the gluten-free diet. It is now generally accepted that non-contaminated gluten-free oats are safe for a celiac disease diet, with the exception of a small minority of celiacs who may have an additional intolerance to Avenin.

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    Photo: CC--Matt Lavin

    The answer to the "oats questions" are becoming clearer. The long-asked question is "Can people with celiac disease or gluten sensitivity safely eat oats?" Some people are so sensitive, that even the tiniest bit of gluten makes them feel unwell. So this answer is important because people on a gluten-free diet should not restrict foods unnecessarily.

    Photo: Wikimedia Commons--Loadmaster

    Australian researchers recently showed that oats do trigger an adverse immune response in some people with celiac disease.


    Experts have decreed that pure oats are safe for people with celiac disease.  The definition of this disease is based on a very specific type of injury to the intestinal wall that heals following the removal of gluten from the diet.  This intestinal damage, called villous atrophy, is caused by the interaction between the immune system and certain proteins found in wheat, rye, and barley.

    New study indicates that the type of oats matters for celiacs.
    The safety of oats for patients with celiac disease depends on the variety of oat - some are more toxic than others. The method used to assess this can be applied to other foods to determine their toxicity as well.

    According to the latest European research, pure oats are safe for most people with celiac disease, and contamination is the main problem facing people with celiac disease who wish to eat oats.

    According to the results of a recent study, adults with diet-treated celiac disease show no elevation in anti-avenin IgA by oats, supporting the notion that most adult celiac disease patients can tolerate oats.

    There still isn’t any official definitive evidence one-way or the other as to just how safe oats are for folks on a gluten-free diet, though there are more studies of this nature being undertaken, and data collection and genetic mapping and testing help us to build a better picture. 05/30/2007 - The results of a study recently published in the Scandinavian Journal of G

    Thompson T. NEJM. 2004;351:2021-2022 (Nov. 4, 2004, Number 19) 11/09/2004 - While oats 10/28/2004 – The obvious problem with this study is that it is so small—onl

    Gut 2003;52:1649-1652 11/05/2003 - A study conducted by Norwegian researchers has foun

    Scand J Gastroenterol. 2003 Jul;38(7):742-6 08/25/2003 – A recent study publishe 3/14/2003 - After conducting an extensive review of the medical literature concerning t

    European Journal of Clinical Nutrition (2003) 57, 163-169. doi:10.1038/sj.ejcn.1601525 S Størsru

    GUT 2002;50:332-5 03/19/2002 - According to a long term study conducted by Dr Matti

    J Pediatr 2000;137:356-366 10/10/2000 - Dr. Hoffenberg and colleagues from the Univer

    Gut 2000;46:327-331. March 10, 2000 03/17/2000 - Finish researchers report that

    Gut. 2004 May;53(5):649-654 A multi-center Swedish study involving eight separate pediatric clin

    I am always amused by the argument that one grain or another is more likely to be contaminated

    I was reading with interest the postings on your board with respect to the above study and the fol

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