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Newly Diagnosed . . . What To Avoid On Food Labeling?
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Hi.  Newly diagnosed Celiac here, male, 48 years old . . . just looking for direction.  The diagnosis came very fast - in December.  I saw my new PCP, he ordered blood tests, I had a TTGiGA blood confirmation, and a subsequent GI appt / upper endo intestinal biopsy (and colonoscopy) done and a confirmation of Celiac - all in the space of about 4 weeks!  My head has been spinning ever since.  My biopsy showed marsh 3, villous atrophy.  I’m still just trying to let this diagnosis settle in my brain.  I just got the confirmation on Jan 8th.  I never even knew what Celiac was, but given my symptoms, I should have known.  I knew something wasn’t right for sure.   What I’m concerned about now is eating the right foods, and trying to figure out how to work the maze of all the “gluten-free” food out there . . . and what actually still has trace amounts of gluten!!  I know for people dieting it’s no big deal to have trace amounts of gluten, but for me, that’s no good.  Right?  And, I guess, what ingredients do you need to steer clear of when reading packaging? :unsure: 

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Hi and Welcome to the Forum!

 

Many newbies find the Newbie 101 thread to be very helpful (in the "Coping With" section).  You are correct in that trace amounts of gluten are no good for you.  In fact, they are poison.  That may sound extreme to you right now... but once you've been gluten-free for awhile and start to feel better I think you'll see what I mean.  After that, the first time you accidentally get glutened (it happens to all of us) you'll be convinced.  :)

 

For the first few months it is best to avoid processed food.  In my opinion, processed food isn't really healthy and it doesn't get any healthier just because it is gluten-free.  In fact, some gluten-free products are even less healthy because of all the extra additives they have to add to get it to stick together and not taste like cardboard or sawdust.. and a lot of it does anyhow.  Try to stick with whole food... meat, veggies, simple starches.  They are naturally gluten-free, don't require label analysis, and will allow your body to heal.

 

If you do go for processed food - or any food that requires a label - here's a gluten-free additive list:  http://zenfullydelicious.com/gluten-free-101/list-of-gluten-free-ingredients-additives/

Make sure you also check any vitamins/supplements/medications that you take.

When in doubt Google it - a simple "does ketchup have gluten?" or "is modified food starch gluten free?" Google search will answer 99% of your questions.

A good probiotic and a good digestive enzyme usually help a lot too while you're healing and restoring your good gut bacteria.

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The obvious things to look for, and avoid, are wheat, rye, barley and oats.

In Canada and the US, wheat must be clearly disclosed on the label, either in the ingredients list, or in a "contains" statement. In Canada, all gluten sources must be clearly disclosed.

Rye and oats don't hide, but barley can in the US. Look for the word "malt" and assume it is barley malt unless stated otherwise. Ingredients starting with M-A-L-T as the first letters (maltodextrin, for example) are not gluten.

Many companies have a policy that they will clearly disclose any gluten source, whether required by law or not.

Here's a list.

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The obvious things to look for, and avoid, are wheat, rye, barley and oats.

In Canada and the US, wheat must be clearly disclosed on the label, either in the ingredients list, or in a "contains" statement. In Canada, all gluten sources must be clearly disclosed.

Rye and oats don't hide, but barley can in the US. Look for the word "malt" and assume it is barley malt unless stated otherwise. Ingredients starting with M-A-L-T as the first letters (maltodextrin, for example) are not gluten.

Many companies have a policy that they will clearly disclose any gluten source, whether required by law or not.

Here's a list.

 

 

This is a nice concise version of what I would say!  

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Welcome to the forum Justneguy! :)

 

Peter got it right, wheat, rye, barley, oats.  Oats are very often contaminated with other gluten grains in processing.  Some celiacs react to them the same way as they react to wheat, rye and barley though, even if they are not contaminated.  So to be on the safe side and give yourself the best chance of healing, it is best to stay away from them for a while.

 

Eating whole foods is a good way to start the gluten-free diet.  It saves lots of time reading labels in the grocery store.  You often can find whole foods around the outside perimeter of the grocery stores.  Frozen foods are ok if they are simple single items like frozen peas etc.  Usually if there are 3 or fewer ingredients on the package you are ok.  As long as they aren't gluten of course.

 

Some starting the gluten-free diet tips for the first 6 months:

Get tested before starting the gluten-free diet.
Get your vitamin/mineral levels tested also.
Don't eat in restaurants
Eat only whole foods not processed foods.
Eat only food you cook yourself, think simple foods, not gourmet meals.
Take probiotics.
Take gluten-free vitamins.
Take digestive enzymes.
Avoid dairy if it causes symptoms.
Avoid sugars and starchy foods.
Avoid alcohol.
Watch out for cross contamination.

Helpful threads:

FAQ Celiac com
http://www.celiac.com/gluten-free/forum-7/announcement-3-frequently-asked-questions-about-celiac-disease/

Newbie Info 101
http://www.celiac.com/gluten-free/topic/91878-newbie-info-101/

 

What's For Breakfast Today?
http://www.celiac.com/gluten-free/topic/81858-whats-for-breakfast-today/

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Thank you all for the information. I really appreciate it!! This is certainly a major undertaking so I appreciate the advice.

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So I'm a newbie here as well and my GI doctor suggested the website: fooducate.com and it's very useful. I'm in the same boat as you learning by trial and error. My shopping trips take longer and it's hard when you have a 2yr old impatient boy to boot.

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