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Artificial & Natural Flavoring

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I know natural flavoring was always considered questionable because it can be derived from wheat, since wheat is a naturally grown plant.

However, I was surprised when I noticed Artificial Flavoring on the Safe List. Last week at the grocery store I noticed dried fruit with the following ingredient:


So I guess artificial flavor can contain gluten.

My question is: Are natural & artificial flavorings typically gluten free? Or are they at least typically gluten free in certain kinds of products? Is there any way to know, or at least be reasonably certain, that the flavorings do not contain gluten?

I wonder the same about food colorings. Are colorings typically gluten free? Or are they typically gluten-free when used in certain types of foods, perhaps? I know caramel color is listed questionable, but is "likely gluten-free is manufactured in North America." However, colorings in general do not include the "likely gluten-free is manucatured in North America" clause. And by colorings, that means ingredients like Red 40, Yellow 5, Blue Lake etc., right?

My girlfriend has had celiac as long as I have known her. She is constantly sick with stomach aches & feels bloated. She becomes so discouraged sometimes, I cannot help but want to do everything possible to help her feel healthy. I would greatly appreciate any help. Thank you so much.


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Natural flavors can also have barley malt or malt flavoring in them and they do NOT have to be labeled by law. There is a list of companies that will not hide gluten (barley) in their products that I will post below. If you are unsure, you can always contact the company to verify for sure.

When a company says it will clearly list gluten, you might still see things

like "modified food starch" or "natural flavor." In this case, the suspect

ingredient does not have gluten if gluten is not plainly listed. I cannot

tell you about any policies regarding cross contamination.

Aunt Nelly's

Balance Oasis (Balance bars)

Baskin Robbins

Ben & Jerry

Betty Crocker

Blue Bunny



Cascadian Farms

Celestial Seasonings

Country Crock


General Mills

Good Humor

Green Giant

Haagen Daz






Kozy Shack




Martha White




Old El Paso






Russell Stover

Seneca Foods


Sunny Delight

T Marzetti







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From what I've read, in the US (not sure about other countries), the caramel color is made from corn (sodas, etc. are gluten free). And anything made from wheat has to say wheat somewhere in the label, but as wolfie said, barely and rye, malt, etc. do NOT have to be listed (although I think pretty much most modified food starch is either wheat or corn). It took me about 5-6 months being gluten-free before my intestinal issues got better (and still aren't great). She might have other food intollerances too - many of us can't handle corn, soy, and dairy.


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I understand why Natural Flavoring is questionable. I was just wondering what the likelihood of Natural Flavoring containing gluten is. Is there anyway to tell? For example, is it unlikely that Natural Flavoring would contain gluten if it were in a certain item, like a beverage?

And what about artificial color & colorings then? And "Color Added"?

And what about things like Yellow 5, Blue 40 etc.? (Are these the same things as food coloring, coloring, color added, etc.?)


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From my research (calling companies about the products). Generally Natural and Artificial flavorings is gluten-free. But I would never ever trust it. If you look at the FDA description of these two( I did at a library once, not just on Wikipedia) the definition can basically be interpreted as "Contains things to add flavor"

For both... at least the still must list wheat(in the US)


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    • I react to both wheat and barley.  I've opted to just go completely gluten free, for the sake of simplicity and my sanity.  I don't have a diagnosis of celiac disease, but I strongly suspect it.  Unfortunately, I'm not willing to endure the misery of staying on gluten long enough to pursue further testing.  I just know I need to avoid the gluten grains, so I do.  
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