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Contamination Of Gluten Can You Explain That To Me


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#1 TiredofTums

 
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Posted 08 December 2008 - 03:42 AM

:huh: Hello again my new friends. There is a question that I am a bit confused about. I keep seeing and hearing about Cross Contamination of Gluten. What exactly does this mean. Right now I am in the process of getting diagnosed.
After going in my kitchen and looking at alot of things it seems my kitchen is a gluten poison. LOL! I have tons of gluten. Too much gluten in my kitchen. WOW!
Never reealized how much gluten was in a persons diet.
My question is! I have all these gluten products sitting beside other boxes of non gluten items. Does this mean that the food in my cabinets are now contaminated also with gluten. Meaning that the gluten spreads to other foods. Is it safe to touch these items when I have to get rid of these things.
And then there is another question since I am the cook in the house. My husband eats regular foods and many are with gluten. Will I be able to cook him a different food that has gluten if he wants to eat these things? Or will it make me sick.
That is going to be my problem if I have Celiac. He is going to demand his own kind of foods. And that is going to be hard the way he like to eat. He uses alot of Soy Sauce.
What about fresh produce like grocery store vegetables. Celery, Potatoes, Broccoli. This is going to be hard figuring out what things are gluten or not! Thanks for sharing with me. Looks like I will be having to buy those books we have in here but need to know a little bit first before buying anything just yet. And that is a proper diagnoses.
Have a great day everyone
Sincerely,
Linda
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#2 RiceGuy

 
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Posted 08 December 2008 - 05:05 AM

One way to think of cross contamination is "second hand gluten". Like when a smoker is filling the air with smoke, everyone else nearby is breathing it in.

An example of gluten CC might be when a sandwich shop also serves salads. Even if they don't bake their own bread, they will be cutting a lot of bread in order to make the sandwiches. This means bread crumbs - lots of it. So the chances of the salads getting gluten is very high. Suppose someone grabs a knife to cut a head of lettuce, and that knife was just used to cut bread? There's going to be gluten on that knife, thus the lettuce will be contaminated. If they bake the bread, then it's even worse, because flour dust particles always poof up into the air. There's basically no way to ensure that flour won't be landing on virtually everything in the kitchen.

This is basically why sandwich shops, pizza places, and so forth are no place for a Celiac to eat.

In your home, flour poofs up too, so you'd end up breathing it in if you try to make bread with it. Wheat based breads, cereals, crackers, etc can lead to CC, so I'd strongly suggest not having those in your home. Some people may be able to manage a "split kitchen", keeping all the gluten-containing stuff in one place. Others choose to put those items in another part of the house. Depending on your level of sensitivity, and the layout of your home, you may or may not be able to do that successfully.

However, if your husband eats a sandwich, then kisses you, you'll likely be getting glutened. Your body's reaction simply depends on your particular sensitivity. But consider that you didn't always notice how gluten effects you, so even if you don't notice a reaction from a glutening, it doesn't necessarily mean there wasn't any. It may still be doing damage to your insides. That is a cost only you can weigh.

When cleaning out a kitchen, it can be tricky to get all the gluten out of things like cabinets, where there are all sorts of crevices for it to hide in. Wiping everything down with a damp cloth seems like a good place to start. Things like cutting boards, wooden spoon, scratched teflon pans, etc, should all be tossed out or given away. If you intend to use the toaster or toaster oven, the usual advice is to buy a new one dedicated only for your gluten-free stuff. But, every toaster I've ever seen is a virtual bread crumb machine, leaking crumbs onto your counter all the time. I don't know how that could be managed safely.

The recommendation which always seems to be given, is to keep your gluten-free foods in a separate place. I would not put gluten items on a shelf above gluten-free ones, because dust and crumbs will probably filter down to the lower shelves. If a family member eats a bowl of gluten cereal, they need to wipe down the table afterwards, and rinse the bowl, spoon, and whatever else they used.

As for what foods contain gluten, that's easy. All foods made from wheat, barley, rye, and oats. Although oats are said to be safe for most whom are gluten intolerant, when processed in a gluten-free facility, most are contaminated because they are usually processed in the same facilities as wheat.

All veggies, fruits and such are naturally gluten-free. Where the gray area begins is with processed foods. Truly, you're better off without processed foods altogether, but if you do choose to eat them, you'll need to read labels carefully, and check with the company before you buy. Many are subject to CC, even when they don't actually have gluten or wheat on the label. Things like chips and other snacks are a common example.

About your husband insisting on continuing to eat all the same foods he's accustomed to, it is strongly advisable to try to get him to understand your needs, and make at least a few adjustments. In at least the way he eats, if not in some food choices. Your kitchen must remain safe for you. There is often resistance at first, so I won't suggest otherwise, but since gluten-free treats like cookies, muffins, cakes, sweetbreads, and much more are relatively easy to make, I'd suggest a few of those for softening him up. There are also a number of prepackaged gluten-free items which he may enjoy too, like Van's gluten-free waffles for example. And who know, he might find out that gluten-free foods make his tummy happier too. Don't be afraid of a few failed attempts at gluten-free baking at first. It happens to us all. But it can help to start with things which don't have to rise much, like cookies, brownies, etc. This board has loads of tried and true gluten-free recipes, such as the ones listed here.

I hope this helps, and I'm sure others will chime in with great advice and tips for you.
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#3 MELINE

 
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Posted 08 December 2008 - 05:09 AM

Hello

Cross contamination doesn't mean that gluten is spreading (though it is an interesting point of view the way you put it!!). It means that if your husband is eating bread and you ask him to give you your gluten free bread, if he touches it then he is contaminating it. Other example is f you all eat from the same marmelade jar and people put their glutened knifes in it, then marmelade gets glutened. In other words let no one touch your food. Keep your food separated and don't mix with any body's plate, knife, hands etc.

If you cook food for your husband you have one little problem. You can't taste it!! that means you can't see if it needs some more salt for example. I see no other problem, just don't put anything near your mouth, and wash your hands really good when you are done. The only "risky" thing is flour. There is a chance that you inhale floor (I have) and that means gluten. There are some people here that can't tolerate glutened air. But in my opinion, and of course I am not a doctor, this is not so regular.

watch out for glutened kisses. tell your DH, before you kiss him, to wash his mouth well after eating a gluten meal. and then he is all yours!!! :P


I hope that was some help for you. Please feel free to ask anything.




Meline
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#4 MELINE

 
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Posted 08 December 2008 - 05:11 AM

Ok I was posting exactly at the same time with Riceguy and I really don't know if I am repeating what he said.......I just posted and saw that someone else had some seconds earlier posted.
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#5 RiceGuy

 
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Posted 08 December 2008 - 05:25 AM

Ok I was posting exactly at the same time with Riceguy and I really don't know if I am repeating what he said.......I just posted and saw that someone else had some seconds earlier posted.

That's ok! You made a good point about the marmalade, and other things.
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#6 Lisa

 
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Posted 08 December 2008 - 06:02 AM

Linda,

The diet is very confusing in the beginning. Fear Not :D We can walk you through it step by step.

I don't know what I would have done when I was first diagnosed several years ago. It's great to have someone hold your hand.

Let us know Tuesday after your doctors appointment. And, don't let your doctor blow you off. Insist on the Celiac Blood Panel.

Good luck, Lisa
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#7 Tim-n-VA

 
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Posted 08 December 2008 - 06:11 AM

Cross contamination is simply gluten accidentally getting into foods that normally wouldn't have gluten. The above posts give examples of how it could happen.
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#8 Darn210

 
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Posted 08 December 2008 - 06:20 AM

Hi Linda. Welcome to the forum.

First of all, I just want to reiterate that you need to stay on your current gluten diet until ALL testing is done.

Speaking as someone who runs a "mixed" kitchen. I'll tell you that it can be done. Also, speaking as the chief cook, you'll want to convert your recipes to gluten free. It's just plain easier to cook one meal and most of your current recipes can be easily converted just by using the appropriate brand (for example, LaChoy soy sauce is gluten-free, use Tinkyada pasta, Great Value Brand AuGratin potatos, etc ).

My pantry is completely filled with gluten free items. I have one cabinet (away from the pantry) which contains a few gluten items . . . bread, buns, cereal, crackers, cookies. We have two sets of butter (LABELLED!!!), two sets of cream cheese, two sets of peanut butter . . . you get the drift . . . one for the gluten eaters (with gluten bread crumbs) and one for the gluten free eaters (no gluten crumbs allowed).

ALL my baking is gluten free!!! There is no wheat flour (or wheat flour based cake mixes, etc) in my house. You just can't control the flour once it gets into the air.

We have two toasters. The gluten toaster is on a different cabinet than the gluten free toaster. My son (age 9) knows that this part of the counter top is the only place he is allowed to have his gluten items on. He also knows that if my daughter starts having problems, the items in the gluten cabinet will "go away". . . just to give him incentive to watch what he is doing.

It can be done . . . we've been doing it for a year and a half.

Let us know what recipes/items you need help with and you'll get all kinds of recommendations and advice.

Good Luck.
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#9 Lisa16

 
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Posted 08 December 2008 - 06:45 AM

Hi!

If you are going to do a mixed kitchen, it is useful to think of it like a kosher kitchen in a way. You are also going to need dedicatd (i.e. gluten free) items like a toaster, baking ware (cookie sheets, bread pans etc.), mixing bowls, rolling pin, pots, cutting boards, pizza stones.... anything where there is a chance the gluten may "stay with" the item and later deposit on something that is supposed to be gluten-free. Glass can be resued with careful washing, but certain surfaces (like a wooden cutting board, say) cannot. I replaced everything teflon and plastic. The gluten-free toaster is a must. Things like pizza stones and porous surfaces will contaminate.

It is also tough to clean up a gluten spill-- because I have a gluten-free kitchen I don't have to worry too much. But I hear that alcohol will only dillute it. Maybe somebody can give you tips on that. I think having a split kitchen would be nearly impossible for me.

Good luck!

In the beginning I survived on lots of packaged foods that were marked gluten-free. But that got expensive and most things weren't very good. So now I make most everything from scratch using naturally gluten-free ingredients. There is a steep learning curve to it, but if you spend a few hours browsing the forum you can get it. The time is a good investment.
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#10 RiceGuy

 
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Posted 08 December 2008 - 07:43 AM

The suggestion to convert recipes reminds me about a simple one - gravy. I was surprised to hear so many people use flour to thicken gravy, as I've always used cornstarch, even before going gluten-free. Aside from cornstarch and arrowroot, there are a number of gluten-free flours which would probably work just fine. Sweet white rice flour is one of them. I suppose millet or sorghum would work, though I've never tried. I think you'll find most recipes are actually gluten-free already.

Oh, another item that would need replacing is cast iron pans.

I do hope you get the right tests, and that they are accurate. Many end up with false negatives, even when the diet is proof positive. So don't let the doctor talk you out of the gluten-free diet if your body says otherwise!
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A spherical meteorite 10 km in diameter traveling at 20 km/s has the kinetic energy equal to the calories in 550,000,000,000,000,000 Twinkies.

#11 TiredofTums

 
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Posted 08 December 2008 - 12:31 PM

Thank-you so much for answering my questions on this. Very interesting and very useful! As of right now I am still on a regular diet and will be until the do the Endoscopy with a biopsy. So I have been told to stay on a normal diet. If I test positive then my mother and daughter and nephew will be to follow. My mother has been getting sick for years. She eats 1 slice of Wheat Toast every single morning for breakfast. Then she eats wheat toasted cheese sandwiches alot of Stouffers Dinners with Pasta. No wonder my mom is getting sick. She is being glutened to death! Me!
Well my diet too has been a strange one. Morning time I would normally eat a bowl of cereal and lunch would be a can of chicken noodle soup with crackers or a sandwich and dinner we always had pastas. All kinds of casseroles with pastas. No wonder I am bad off!

There is a book in here that I would not mind buying and it's the grocery shopping guide. Is is worth buying and does it give you great ideas at the supermarket. And the worst part is that I have a bag of flour sitting on my kitchen counter. Throwing that sucker out! LOL!
You know! I was a little afraid to eat anything this morning and did the usual gluten eating and right after I ate I started feeling bad! Going to watch this pattern until my biopsy and blood work and see all the foods I have here trigger me to be sick! Seems like everyday I have been sick. Because my everyday diet has been gluten!
What really upsets me the most. I saw 3 different neurologist, an endrocrine doctor, switched regular doctors twice and even then ended up in the ER 8 times this year and nothing! Then the last doctor I see checks me out and after telling him my symptoms, and my medical records he thinks I have Celiac. I fit all the symptoms and he tells me that the damage I have has been going on a long time and I have some permanent damage now like the B-12 and Vitamin D anemia's.
I never heard of Celiac until he mentioned it! But when I looked it up it sure does fit me to the T!
Thanks for answering my question!

So glad there is a site like this that helps people.
Thank-you so much!
Sincerely
Linda That Is Tired of Tums :D

The suggestion to convert recipes reminds me about a simple one - gravy. I was surprised to hear so many people use flour to thicken gravy, as I've always used cornstarch, even before going gluten-free. Aside from cornstarch and arrowroot, there are a number of gluten-free flours which would probably work just fine. Sweet white rice flour is one of them. I suppose millet or sorghum would work, though I've never tried. I think you'll find most recipes are actually gluten-free already.

Oh, another item that would need replacing is cast iron pans.

I do hope you get the right tests, and that they are accurate. Many end up with false negatives, even when the diet is proof positive. So don't let the doctor talk you out of the gluten-free diet if your body says otherwise!


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#12 Belinda

 
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Posted 08 December 2008 - 04:32 PM

Linda,

Welcome aboard.....

If you are the "MIAN COOK" do what I did if he wants to eat that no good food then he can eat out!
Other wise for soy sauce he can still have it just get the Great Value one at Wal Mart there is no differance, except safe for you if you are not soy sensative.
Like alot have already posted the flours are the biggest problem so switch them to brown rice is the best for baking like pizza's, muffins and so on as far as thickning for gravy I use Tapioca flour or corn startch.
And if he has just eaten some gluten traced foods make sure he brushes his teeth and washes his face before you kiss him!
If he converted over slowly he wouldn't even miss his old yucky foods lol my hubby couldn't even tell his pasta was dif lol
If you don't tell them they have no clue !
Except for bread there is no comparision found yet, but if he eats it he makes it.
Good Luck with all and keep us posted / if you need some recp's I have some good ones too he won't be able to even tell!
God Bless
Belinda
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#13 Swimmy

 
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Posted 28 December 2008 - 03:25 PM

I have a question about cross contamination while cooking regular gluten containing pasta. If I cook gluten free pasta in a pot that is right next to a pot cooking regular gluten pasta, is it possible that my gluten free pasta will be glutened by the gluten pasta? That is, does the steam and air coming off of the regular pasta contain gluten and could it travel to make me sick? Thank you!
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#14 Mother of Jibril

 
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Posted 28 December 2008 - 06:47 PM

I have a question about cross contamination while cooking regular gluten containing pasta. If I cook gluten free pasta in a pot that is right next to a pot cooking regular gluten pasta, is it possible that my gluten free pasta will be glutened by the gluten pasta? That is, does the steam and air coming off of the regular pasta contain gluten and could it travel to make me sick? Thank you!


I sometimes make regular pasta for my husband while I'm making gluten-free pasta for myself. I wouldn't worry about the steam (splashing might be a concern), because steam is 100% pure water... but I would be VERY cautious about the spoons. Keep them on separate plates on different sides of the stove! It would be so easy to forget and contaminate your gluten-free pasta <_< Use separate colanders too... and serving bowls/utensils. I wish my husband would just decide that the rice pasta is OK. Tinkyada has a very good texture.
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Extensive family history of autoimmune disorders and related symptoms

#15 lizard00

 
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Posted 28 December 2008 - 07:09 PM

I wish my husband would just decide that the rice pasta is OK. Tinkyada has a very good texture.


Have you ever just given it to him? :ph34r: It has a slighly different texture, but most people can't tell the different once the sauce and everything is on it. I've fed it to many people and they had no clue.
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