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What's The Scoop On Maltodextrin?
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When I was learning about the gluten-free diet, I was instructed to avoid foods that contain maltodextrin unless its origin was specifically listed as a gluten-free origin, such as 'corn maltodextrin'.

I recently read an article in a magazine that's dedicated to living with celiac disease. That article asserts that there's absolutely no reason for Celiacs to avoid maltodextrin, even if it originates from gliadin-containing grains. They claim that maltodextrin is processed to such a degree that no gliadin remains...or that if some does, it's such an infinitesimally small amount that it can't cause reactions.

Does anyone know what the "official" ruling is on the safety of maltodextrin for Celiacs?

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I've heard that in Canada and the US it is always corn if not otherwise stated. I'm still hesitant to eat anything with maltodextrin in it if it isn't clearly labeled though, but I might just be paranoid..I'm interested to see other replies.

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Yup, Maltodextrin in the US and Canada is derived from corn.

It is confusing ....malt is bad, but maltodextrin is ok. Check out the safe and forbidden ingredients on the home page here.

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of course, if you are corn sensitive then you should probably still avoid it

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taszoo, I am not familiar with the label laws in OZ. But in Canada and the US, maltodextrin is definitely safe--if wheat is the source it must be explicitly declared on the label.

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Yep, we Down Under folks have to be a lot more careful than statesiders :rolleyes:

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It's safe from everything I've read. I eat it with no problems and I'm pretty sensitive.

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I read what I considered the best advice on this topic on a gluten free blog a few weeks back (sorry, I can't remember which one!)

They said the following:

1. scientifically, maltodextrin is processed so much that it has less than 20ppm of gluten, which is the best our equipment and methods can detect, and that seems to be less than does damage to celiacs.

2. People who have gluten issues have still periodically reported having problems with gluten derived maltodextrin.

3. So, in their opinion (and they checked with a few industry folk on this, to see if they were approaching it right) the thing to think about is contamination. If we are eating something that is derived from gluten, that means gluten is being used in that processing room, in that factory, all day long. How much does that up the odds that something might be contaminated by gluten AFTER it's been processed?

I figure it means that most of the time, the maltodextrin is safe, but every once in a while, you may get some that's contaminated. If you're really sensitive, you'll probably react to it.

To add to that: I'm a person who is REALLY sensitive, and I have tried medication that had gluten derived ingredients that were 'processed so there was no gluten left' and I reacted really badly. So now I stay away from anything gluten derived. But I figure it's everyone's call to make, yeah?

When I was learning about the gluten-free diet, I was instructed to avoid foods that contain maltodextrin unless its origin was specifically listed as a gluten-free origin, such as 'corn maltodextrin'.

I recently read an article in a magazine that's dedicated to living with celiac disease. That article asserts that there's absolutely no reason for Celiacs to avoid maltodextrin, even if it originates from gliadin-containing grains. They claim that maltodextrin is processed to such a degree that no gliadin remains...or that if some does, it's such an infinitesimally small amount that it can't cause reactions.

Does anyone know what the "official" ruling is on the safety of maltodextrin for Celiacs?

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taszoo, I am not familiar with the label laws in OZ. But in Canada and the US, maltodextrin is definitely safe--if wheat is the source it must be explicitly declared on the label.

The foods in question are from a company called Thai Kitchen. I checked their website and, like their packaging, the website proudly proclaims which items they consider to be gluten-free and which aren't. They also note that they do not add any MSG to their foods.

One thing I am seeing on the packaging is that it clearly states on the BACK of the package, "PRODUCT OF CHINA". In the small print at the bottom they note that the foods are distributed in this country (USA) by a company in Berkeley, California. Where the food items are a product of China and only distributed here by a US company, do the US labeling laws about explicitly declaring wheat/gluten sources still apply?

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Where the food items are a product of China and only distributed here by a US company, do the US labeling laws about explicitly declaring wheat/gluten sources still apply?

Yes. Any product sold at retail in the US must conform to US labeling laws. This is also true in Canada, and I would imagine in every jurisdiction.

In the US, wheat must be declared, but not other sources of gluten. But I have never heard of maltodextrin being made from rye or barley.

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last year in this forum I read that malodextrin in the US was "usually" corn but that market prices and deamnd for things like ethanol was making other ingredients cheaper to use.

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last year in this forum I read that malodextrin in the US was "usually" corn but that market prices and deamnd for things like ethanol was making other ingredients cheaper to use.

You are free to believe that if you wish to do so. Just about every piece of celiac misinformation has been posted here at some time. Again, in the US, wheat as a source must, by law, be declared.

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Having had CFS for decades and along with it, MANY MANY food sensitivities, I've had to develop a list of ingredients to AVOID if I don't want to suffer incredible side-effects like heart arrythmias, intense head/eye pain, increased glaucoma (ocular hypertension) and high blood pressure, puffy eyes, water retention, etc. etc.

Some of the no-no items very HIGH on my list are;

maltodextrin

gelatin

MSG (in its many insidious forms)

carrageenan

aspartame

whey

pectin

hydrolyzed vegetable protein

modified food starch--

and the list goes on...

Does anybody recognize any of the above substances as possibly containing GLUTEN?

(Am beginning to suspect that at least some of these ingredients DO contain GLUTEN and that could account for the reactions experienced when ingesting them.)

P.S. Found this link that discusses maltodextrin and Celiac disease:

http://gluten.lovetoknow.com/Why_Is_Maltodextrin_Bad

and this page discussing MSG and Celiac:

http://www.msgtruth.org/msgand2.htm

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Having had CFS for decades and along with it, MANY MANY food sensitivities, I've had to develop a list of ingredients to AVOID if I don't want to suffer incredible side-effects like heart arrythmias, intense head/eye pain, increased glaucoma (ocular hypertension) and high blood pressure, puffy eyes, water retention, etc. etc.

Some of the no-no items very HIGH on my list are;

maltodextrin

gelatin

MSG (in its many insidious forms)

carrageenan

aspartame

whey

pectin

hydrolyzed vegetable protein

modified food starch--

and the list goes on...

Does anybody recognize any of the above substances as possibly containing GLUTEN?

(Am beginning to suspect that at least some of these ingredients DO contain GLUTEN and that could account for the reactions experienced when ingesting them.)

P.S. Found this link that discusses maltodextrin and Celiac disease:

http://gluten.lovetoknow.com/Why_Is_Maltodextrin_Bad

and this page discussing MSG and Celiac:

http://www.msgtruth.org/msgand2.htm

I am incredibly sensitive to gluten, even react to distilled gluten which most don't. I have never had an issue with any item that contains maltodextrin. Whether it is good for you or not that I can't say.

As to MSG, there are foods that contain it naturally. I avoid it when it is added as an ingredient but not because of a gluten issue with it. There are also many who have reactions to MSG but that is an independant issue.

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Maltodextrin is not made from malt, but from starch plus citric acid.

Just look it up in wikipedia.

Then look up citric acid.

It is made from mold.

I have high IgG antibodies to yeast and react to mold, also I react to traces of gluten. Citric acid may be derived from moldy wheat or any starch. Anyway, my butt hurts from some citric acid, and not so from others. Some citric acid is cleaner than others, some is made from citrus.

I do react to maltodextrin, but not always.

Nora

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I just checked the lovetoknow website someone linked to in this thread, and it is very inaccurate.

Maltodextrin is not naturally derived from barley (they assume it is made from malt, which is not true)

Gluten is not in other grains, like teff, as the name rules have changed several decades ago, and they perpetuate inaccuracies. What was formerly called gluten in the grains that are not wheat, barley, rye and oats, are called prolamines. Only the toxic prolamines are called gluten.

Who knows what else is inaccurate on that website.

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Both of those sites that Tidings posted are just flat-out wrong.

richard

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To Richard and nora_n,

The post carrying those two links did not "recommend" or consider them either "right" or "flat-out wrong." My post was listing ingredients that I personally have negative reactions to, and was asking if anybody knew whether there might be a GLUTEN connection with any or some of them. Then the post said, "Found some links..." It is up to the reader to determine whether internet content rings with truth or seems wrong. (I myself am still in the research phase of many of these things.)

By the way, also found some items on my list of items that cause a HIGHLY ALLERGIC REACTION IN MYSELF discussed in "Dangerous Wheats," a book by Braly and Hoggan, including: Gelatin, Maltodextrin and Whey, which they listed under "Safe Sources and Ingredients in Flour, Caveat: Always double-check for risk of contamination)." They went on to list items that "may" contain gluten and acronyms that might spell HIDDEN GLUTEN, which included: HPP: HYDROLYZED VEG PROTEIN, MSG: MONOSODIUM GLUTAMATE, TVP: TEXTURED VEG PROTEIN.

Since I get the same terrible reactions to ALL the above ingredients listed in my initial post, I avoid them, whether the allergen is GLUTEN or GLUTAMATES or SOMETHING ELSE. Not everything is yet known about how these allergic reactions interact and how substances may be contaminated with or related to the protein(s) in gluten that cause such havoc for some of us. (It may simply be that Celiac disease causes damage that gets further exacerbated by other allergens, like whey, pectin, carrageenan, MSG, etc.) The best guide is to avoid what we recognize as a problem substance, which of course is not always easy to do when ingredients disguise themselves with names like "flavorings" and "seasonings," etc.

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By the way, also found some items on my list of items that cause a HIGHLY ALLERGIC REACTION IN MYSELF discussed in "Dangerous Wheats," a book by Braly and Hoggan, including: Gelatin, Maltodextrin and Whey, which they listed under "Safe Sources and Ingredients in Flour, Caveat: Always double-check for risk of contamination)." They went on to list items that "may" contain gluten and acronyms that might spell HIDDEN GLUTEN, which included: HPP: HYDROLYZED VEG PROTEIN, MSG: MONOSODIUM GLUTAMATE, TVP: TEXTURED VEG PROTEIN.

That book was published in 2002, prior to the enactment of the Food Allergy Labelling and Consumer Protection Act (FALCPA). Prior to FALCPA taking effect on January 1, 2006, wheat could hide in many things, including "vegetable protein." That is not true today. Wheat (and soy) must be clearly and explicitly disclosed.

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That book was published in 2002, prior to the enactment of the Food Allergy Labelling and Consumer Protection Act (FALCPA). Prior to FALCPA taking effect on January 1, 2006, wheat could hide in many things, including "vegetable protein." That is not true today. Wheat (and soy) must be clearly and explicitly disclosed.

Hi Peter,

Thanks for the info. What is puzzling is how or why companies are still permitted to simply state "NATURAL FLAVORINGS" or "SPICES" and similar nondescript terms on their list of product ingredients. All too often, vague terms like "FLAVORINGS" or "SPICES" can really mean "MONOSODIUM GLUTAMATE" and MSG-derivatives, which can provoke serious allergic reactions for MANY people. Guess the FDA still has not taken MSG-allergy seriously...?

By the way, getting back to Maltodextrin, wikipedia defines it as:

"Maltodextrin is a short chained starch sugar, gelatin hybrid base, (dextrin), that is used as a food additive. It is produced also by enzymatic hydrolysis from gelatinated starch and is usually found as a creamy-white hygroscopic spraydried powder."

Anyone know WHAT STARCH they are using to create this "gelatinated starch" (hopefully it's corn starch, and not from a gluten-containing grain)? --And BTW, seeing the word GELATIN (also on my No-No list!) makes me start to understand why I react to Maltodextrin, whether it has gluten or not.

P.S. A partial answer to my question:

According to glutenfreeliving.com, "Maltodextrin is gluten free. It can be made from a variety of starches, including corn, potato, rice or wheat. However the source does not matter because maltodextrin is such a highly processed ingredient that the protein is removed, rendering it gluten free. If wheat is used to make maltodextrin, "wheat" will be [sic] appear on the label. Even in this case, the maltodextrin would be gluten free."

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Hi Tidings, I do react to glucose from wheat, even though it may test as gluten free, and maltodextrin, even though it is made from supposedly purified starch.

The swedes have tested glucose form wheat starch, and foudn various concentrations of gluten in it , down to no detection.

(maltodextrin is made from starch plus citric acid and I react to citric acid)

So I hear you and believe you.

Some of us react to citric acid, MSG, gelatin, etc.

Many celiacs here tolerate gluten-free wheat starch 50-200ppm, and a minority tolerate way below 20ppm, maybe under 1 ppm??

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taszoo, I am not familiar with the label laws in OZ. But in Canada and the US, maltodextrin is definitely safe--if wheat is the source it must be explicitly declared on the label.

PSAWYER, according to the following website maltodextrin is not necessary safe: http://www.glutenfre...r/maltodextrin/ The labeling requirements appear more complex than what you mention.
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PSAWYER, according to the following website maltodextrin is not necessary safe: http://www.glutenfre...r/maltodextrin/ The labeling requirements appear more complex than what you mention.

I think what was meant here is that in the USA and Canada, maltodextrin will have wheat listed beside it if it is not safe.

I personally am in Canada, and maltodextrin always has corn or wheat listed with it if it came from one of those sources since our labelling laws changed in August.

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The Canadian Celiac Association, among other sources, lists maltodextrin as safe, without qualification as to origin. That is quite sufficient for me to consider it safe.

In Europe, maltodextrin is exempt from allergen disclosure, because it is so highly refined.

It is just not a concern, although some people try to make one out of it.

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