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Usda Labeling For 'starch'
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I was NOT aware of this at all. Sigh.

glutenfreedietician.com

The basics of the article are this:

1) Foods regulated by FSIS (under the USDA) have different regulatory rules re: allergens.

2) Under these rules, 'starch' can be derived from either corn or wheat, although in the US, it is usually derived from corn (but not always - and this is per an interview with the USDA. See above link).

3) Under FSIS regulations ingredients must be listed by their common or usual name, which may or may not indicate the source of the ingredient. Allergen labeling is not mandatory under FSIS, although "at this time, the FSIS believes they have widespread voluntary compliance (approximately 80 to 90 percent) with allergen labeling among their manufacturers."

So, what risk exists would be very limited in scope, I imagine. Probably more of concern for those who have more severe reactions to gluten and need to be sure of gluten free status.

So what products does this involve? "...The USDA regulates meat products, poultry products, egg products (meaning any dried, frozen, or liquid eggs, with or without added ingredients), and mixed food products that generally contain more than 3 percent raw meat or 2 percent or more cooked meat or poultry meat."

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I was NOT aware of this at all. Sigh.

glutenfreedietician.com

The basics of the article are this:

1) Foods regulated by FSIS (under the USDA) have different regulatory rules re: allergens.

2) Under these rules, 'starch' can be derived from either corn or wheat, although in the US, it is usually derived from corn (but not always - and this is per an interview with the USDA. See above link).

3) Under FSIS regulations ingredients must be listed by their common or usual name, which may or may not indicate the source of the ingredient. Allergen labeling is not mandatory under FSIS, although "at this time, the FSIS believes they have widespread voluntary compliance (approximately 80 to 90 percent) with allergen labeling among their manufacturers."

So, what risk exists would be very limited in scope, I imagine. Probably more of concern for those who have more severe reactions to gluten and need to be sure of gluten free status.

So what products does this involve? "...The USDA regulates meat products, poultry products, egg products (meaning any dried, frozen, or liquid eggs, with or without added ingredients), and mixed food products that generally contain more than 3 percent raw meat or 2 percent or more cooked meat or poultry meat."

Unless you are eating processed meats, etc., this shouldn't be an issue for Celiacs. Fresh meats, eggs, etc. are naturally gluten free.

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Unless you are eating processed meats, etc., this shouldn't be an issue for Celiacs. Fresh meats, eggs, etc. are naturally gluten free.

For the most part, yeah. But I was really surprised about how LITTLE meat had to be in a food for it to be under the USDA auspices ( "...mixed food products that generally contain more than 3 percent raw meat or 2 percent or more cooked meat or poultry meat.") That could involve a lot of items in the freezer section, for example, that I would have automatically assumed were FDA regulated. Like, say, corn tortilla taquitos. At least that's what I'm understanding this to mean.

Even if it's simply the raw meat, however, like I have always thought previously, some of the companies that provide raw poultry are injecting broth into some of their poultry, so this could be an issue for that if the broth contained starch, I imagine. Or perhaps glazes included with spiral hams, that seem to be gluten free aside from the starch.

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For the most part, yeah. But I was really surprised about how LITTLE meat had to be in a food for it to be under the USDA auspices ( "...mixed food products that generally contain more than 3 percent raw meat or 2 percent or more cooked meat or poultry meat.") That could involve a lot of items in the freezer section, for example, that I would have automatically assumed were FDA regulated. Like, say, corn tortilla taquitos. At least that's what I'm understanding this to mean.

Even if it's simply the raw meat, however, like I have always thought previously, some of the companies that provide raw poultry are injecting broth into some of their poultry, so this could be an issue for that if the broth contained starch, I imagine. Or perhaps glazes included with spiral hams, that seem to be gluten free aside from the starch.

I think if you stick with a reputable company or eat organic, this won't be a problem. There are many poultry suppliers that do not inject their poultry with solution and that can be easily found out by asking. I have to admit I don't eat much in the way of processed frozen stuff, except those made specifically to be gluten free by a gluten-free company. So far, I haven't had any problems. You may have to call a company but should be able to find out it's gluten-free status.

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    • Hi everyone, I've been reading this forum sporadically and have some questions of my own. I'm in my 40s and was diagnosed with celiac last December by biopsy and blood work after months of tests by my primary and then a gastro. My husband, around the same age as me, was dx'd with stage 4 cancer a month later, so admittedly it's took me longer than I'd have liked to learn about celiac. Now I feel pretty on top of my diet. I mostly make my own food - proteins and veggies, with some certified gluten-free snacks in the mix - and am pretty strict about what I will/won't eat at friend's houses or in restaurants (I prefer to go to dedicated gluten-free kitchens whenever possible). I'm doing okay on the diet, but still getting glutened every so often, usually when I let me guard down outside the home. I also periodically see my primary and a naturopath (who happens to have celiac!), but still, I have many questions if anyone would care to answer:

      -FATIGUE. I'm still so tired, fatigued so much of the time. My doctors blame this on the stress of my husband's diagnosis and my periodic trouble sleeping. But even during weeks where I'm sleeping enough (8-10 hrs a day), eating right, exercising as I can, trying to keep stress at bay, I'm still so bleeping tired. Maybe not when I wake up, but by late afternoon. Often my legs even feel weak/wooden. Has anyone else experienced greater fatigue early on after being diagnosed? This will pass, yes? I know I could cut out the sweets and that could help, but also, being a caregiver is hard and sometimes it's nice to eat your feelings between therapy sessions.  

      -SYMPTOMS CAUSED BY FATIGUE? Sometimes I'll have other "feels like I've been glutened" symptoms if I haven't gotten enough sleep, though I'm trying so hard to sleep at least 8 hours a night these days. Hasn't happened in a while thankfully, but there was a point this summer where my insomnia was bad and my arms were achy and I had some crazy flank/back pain I'd never experienced before. For weeks. Doctor ordered me to sleep sleep sleep, taking Benedryl if needed. I did, and the symptoms went away, but weird, yes? Has this happened to you? I ask because I want to make sure I'm getting all strange pains tested to the full extent if there's a chance it's something other than celiac. I do sometimes still feel that strange side stitch after a CC incident.

      -SKIN PROBLEMS. I have had a smidge of eczema since I was a teen and it - and the dermatitis herpetiformis I've acquired with my dx - are out of control right now. I recognize the connection with stress, but also, has anyone found any great natural remedies for DH to stop the itching? I've tried so many useless ointments and medicated creams, a number of them given to my by a dermo months ago. I see my naturopath this week, but thought I'd ask here too.

      -MOSTLY gluten-free KITCHEN GOOD ENOUGH? My husband is supportive of my diet and mostly eats gluten free meals with me, but we still keep a gluten-y toaster for him and the gluten-y dog food in a corner of the kitchen and he still makes the occasional meal with gluten for himself on his own cookware (ravioli, pizza, mac n cheese, etc). Or sometimes I make eggs/toast and the like for him when he's too sick to move. Otherwise, we're militant about how we cook, which cookware we use, etc. He even has a kitchen nook off our den where he makes sandwiches. But sometimes I wonder if having two separate sponges in our shared-ish main kitchen is enough and I should just banish all gluten whatsoever from the kitchen. I can't be the only one with a mixed kitchen, right? How do you do it if you have a mixed-eating family?

      Thank you so much!  
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