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Anyone Been Glutened By Earl Grey Tea?


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27 replies to this topic

#16 psawyer

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Posted 08 March 2013 - 06:46 PM

So- I'm guessing there is something in the Bergamot oil that flavors the tea that is not compatible to a gluten free lifestyle.

There may be something with which you have an issue, but bergamot oranges are citrus fruits, not grains. Gluten is only found in grains, and not even in all of them. Bergamot oil is definitely gluten-free.
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Peter
Diagnosis by biopsy of practically non-existent villi; gluten-free since July 2000.
Type 1 (autoimmune) diabetes diagnosed in March 1986
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#17 dilettantesteph

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Posted 09 March 2013 - 04:39 AM

So I go to my favorite tea shop and share a pot of lovely Earl Grey with my friend. (I've only been gluten free for a couple months)

Less than 10 minutes after finishing my tea I'm hit with TERRIBLE nausea. Two hours later it's vomiting and diarrhea. This lasted for EIGHT HOURS!!! I'm recovering a bit slowly and can't believe I used to feel like this every day before going gluten free.

So- I'm guessing there is something in the Bergamot oil that flavors the tea that is not compatible to a gluten free lifestyle.

 

Does the tea shop also serve cakes and biscuits?  Cross contamination from that is a likely source of your problems.


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#18 alesusy

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Posted 09 March 2013 - 05:01 AM

this topic is extremely interesting. In the last couple of weeks I've been drinking for breakfast - at home - a tea of the brand KUSMI TEA (French), "Anastasia" wich has bergamot, orange and lemon flavourings. Approx, I've been having light diarroeha and stomach cramps for the same period. Notice that I've been gluten-free and lactose free three months now and I've being doing generally better although not GOOD and for the last couple of weeks I've been buttin my head against the wall to understand WHAT i've been having to make me feel sick.

I just checked the Kusmi Tea website, though, and they say in thei FAQs both that all their teas are gluten free, AND that their flavourings are natural not artificial. Well, I'm going to give it a try and steer clear from the Anastasia tea for a few days. We'll see!


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#19 Gemini

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Posted 09 March 2013 - 02:44 PM

this topic is extremely interesting. In the last couple of weeks I've been drinking for breakfast - at home - a tea of the brand KUSMI TEA (French), "Anastasia" wich has bergamot, orange and lemon flavourings. Approx, I've been having light diarroeha and stomach cramps for the same period. Notice that I've been gluten-free and lactose free three months now and I've being doing generally better although not GOOD and for the last couple of weeks I've been buttin my head against the wall to understand WHAT i've been having to make me feel sick.

I just checked the Kusmi Tea website, though, and they say in thei FAQs both that all their teas are gluten free, AND that their flavourings are natural not artificial. Well, I'm going to give it a try and steer clear from the Anastasia tea for a few days. We'll see!

 

Starbuck's Earl Grey is gluten-free and I drink it all the time.  Never had a problem in 8 years and I am one of those sensitive ones.  Three months is not long to be gluten-free and even those of us who are gluten-free forever can sometimes drink something that won't agree with us and you are left wondering what the hell happened! 

 

The only tea besides herbal tea that I have come across that contained gluten was when I was in Ireland and discovered that some teas are malted. I looked at the label on a packet of tea I had in my hotel room and thank God I did that before consuming because the tea was malted!  Never saw that before but it's something to think about when traveling oversea's.  But Earl Grey is an addiction for me and I have never been sick from that.


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#20 JNBunnie1

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Posted 09 March 2013 - 08:16 PM

Bergamot can be very abrasive to the digestive tract, I've read. I never liked the flavor,

so have no personal experience with it. Your body may also just not like black tea

right now, it has been known to happen.


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#21 Takala

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Posted 09 March 2013 - 11:04 PM

Starbucks serves Tazo tea in their tea bags selections.  Some of the Tazo Tea flavors did have gluten per the Tazo FAQ on the Tazo website.  The Tazo website has been massively overhauled since the last time I checked it.  I am seeing many herbal tea blends listed with the generic "natural flavorings" ingredient.   In the USA, a natural flavoring as of 2013 can still contain anything.  There is now no FAQ page on the Tazo website http://www.tazo.com    indicating which specific flavors contain gluten, if they do.  The "natural flavorings" is a huge dodge to get around responsible labeling.   Always check the labels and brands before consuming any flavored tea, or better yet, carry your own teabags to use with hot water. Do not assume any employee will be handing you the correct thing, double- check.

 

This thread. btw, started in year 2010, and it is now March 2013. 


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#22 psawyer

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Posted 10 March 2013 - 01:48 PM

In the USA, a natural flavoring as of 2013 can still contain anything.

Not completely true. If it contains a FALCPA allergen, that must be disclosed. It can be sort of hidden in natural flavor, but only if a "Contains:" statement on the same label discloses its presence. In practical terms, natural flavor is almost invariably gluten-free, to the point where I don't worry about it.


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Diagnosis by biopsy of practically non-existent villi; gluten-free since July 2000.
Type 1 (autoimmune) diabetes diagnosed in March 1986
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#23 K-Dawg

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Posted 10 March 2013 - 02:49 PM

I have been glutened at tea shops. I think, perhaps, it is due to cross contamination as earl grey is safe. Most of the shops I have been in serve scones and other products and it's pretty easy in a non-dedicated shop to have an issue with cross-contamination. I've seen scoops used in multiple mediums. BUT I don't think you should be scared of tea...it is gluten free and the bags are safe. You had an unfortunate incident. Perhaps avoid that tea shop or make your own :)

 

 

KDawg


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#24 tarnalberry

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Posted 10 March 2013 - 03:48 PM

Don't forget that earl grey is (almost universally) a caffeinated tea.  Caffeine can cause diahhrea.


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#25 Gemini

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Posted 10 March 2013 - 04:33 PM

Starbucks serves Tazo tea in their tea bags selections.  Some of the Tazo Tea flavors did have gluten per the Tazo FAQ on the Tazo website.  The Tazo website has been massively overhauled since the last time I checked it.  I am seeing many herbal tea blends listed with the generic "natural flavorings" ingredient.   In the USA, a natural flavoring as of 2013 can still contain anything.  There is now no FAQ page on the Tazo website http://www.tazo.com    indicating which specific flavors contain gluten, if they do.  The "natural flavorings" is a huge dodge to get around responsible labeling.   Always check the labels and brands before consuming any flavored tea, or better yet, carry your own teabags to use with hot water. Do not assume any employee will be handing you the correct thing, double- check.
 
This thread. btw, started in year 2010, and it is now March 2013.

  The tea's in the Tazo line that are questionable are some of the the herbal tea, which I don't drink.  Earl Grey is a black tea that is flavored with bergamot, which is citrus.....it's derived from a type of lemon. No problems with gluten.
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#26 JNBunnie1

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Posted 10 March 2013 - 09:05 PM

Not completely true. If it contains a FALCPA allergen, that must be disclosed. It can be sort of hidden in natural flavor, but only if a "Contains:" statement on the same label discloses its presence. In practical terms, natural flavor is almost invariably gluten-free, to the point where I don't worry about it.

Well, FALCPA doesn't cover barley/rye/oats, right? Generally the concern with tea is barley, I would think.

 

(I tried to read it but my eyes went like this :wacko: )


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#27 psawyer

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Posted 10 March 2013 - 09:44 PM

Yes, FALCPA does not cover rye, oats or barley. Rye and oats are never hidden in flavors.

The possible source would be barley malt, and that is a relatively expensive ingredient, so it is usually explicitly declared as "malt flavor."

Shelley Case on flavorings:

It would be rare to find a "natural or artificial flavoring" containing gluten (a) because hydrolyzed wheat protein cannot be hidden under the term "flavor." and (b) barley malt extract is almost always declared as "barley malt extract" or "barley malt flavoring." For this reason, most experts do not restrict natural and artificial flavorings in the gluten-free diet.

Gluten-Free Diet - A Comprehensive Resource Guide, published 2008, page 46


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Peter
Diagnosis by biopsy of practically non-existent villi; gluten-free since July 2000.
Type 1 (autoimmune) diabetes diagnosed in March 1986
Markham, Ontario (borders on Toronto)

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#28 cavernio

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Posted 11 March 2013 - 07:57 AM

The Tim Horton's I once worked at had steeped tea and then different teabags. Possibly sources of CC at my specific store would be the green tea bags which were a giant box (100 or more) of individual bags that the lid was torn off for ease of use. There used to be bagel crumbs in them all the time (or at least the sesame and poppyseeds off the bagels) because it was under the bagel rack. However they also sold the individually wrapped green tea. They did sell Earl Grey, and I suppose it would be possible for the person handling the individual teabag straight from the individual packet may have glommed their hand all over it before pouring the hot water on it, right after getting someone a muffin and didn't use the waxy properly when picking up the muffin. I would call that unlikely though.

There was also a very small chance of getting CC from the filters because they are kept open in a stack, not folded, and crumbs or whatnot could potentially fall in. The store I was at was so busy this would be highly unlikely to happen with a coffee filter. The tea filter for the steeped tea would be more likely for that to happen with since it was a different filter and the tea is never as popular. Still seems highly unlikely. All food besides the bagels were kept in a glass display case in front of the rest of the work area.

The cups I would not worry about CC from since they were stored sideway under the counter in a dispenser.

 

In any case, I don't worry about cc from Tim Horton's with the exception of the green tea. If I wanted some green tea from them I'd ask for the teabag on the side in which case they'd give me a wrapped one and hot water. I would understand always wanting to have the teabag on the side at one of these places though, since pretty much all of them serve gluteny treats too.


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