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  • Jefferson Adams

    Gluten in Medicine Disclosure Bill Hits the Senate

    Jefferson Adams
    6 6
    Reviewed and edited by a celiac disease expert.

      A bill that requires drug makers to label medications intended for human use with the list of ingredients, their source, and whether gluten is present hits the US Senate.


    Soon we may finally know what's in our medications. Image: CC BY-SA 2.0--javYliz
    Caption: Soon we may finally know what's in our medications. Image: CC BY-SA 2.0--javYliz

    Celiac.com 01/29/2020 - After a long time in the making, and much effort, a bill that will require drug makers to label gluten in drugs is now officially in the lap the United States Senate. Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) recently introduced S.3021: Gluten in Medicine Disclosure Act of 2019 to the Senate. 

    The proposed law makes it easier to identify gluten in prescription drugs. We've written over the years about gluten in prescription drugs, and how to find out if your drugs or medicines contains gluten.

    Under the Proposed Law



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    Drug manufacturers would be required to label medications intended for human use with the list of ingredients, their source, and whether gluten is present. Sorry, but there is no coverage for pet medicines just yet.

    A gluten-containing drug that does not meet these requirements would be misbranded under Section 502 of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act.

    This new labeling will help consumers to know, for example, if the starch in their prescription drug comes from wheat or corn, a small but important distinction. Currently, it is nearly impossible to know if there's any gluten in prescription medicine.

    Current FDA Law

    Current FDA rules require that packaged foods label wheat and 7 other allergens, but unfortunately rye and barley are not included. More alarmingly, medications are not covered, so there's no good way to figure out if prescriptions might contain gluten.

    Celiac disease is a serious autoimmune condition, and accidental ingestion of gluten triggers an immune response that could interfere with absorption of the medication. In many cases people must take drugs every day. People with gluten sensitivity due to celiac disease or other medical issues need to know that their medicines contain safe ingredients.

    Get Involved

    Celiac Disease Foundation CEO Marilyn G. Geller and the Celiac Disease Foundation have been major supporters of efforts to advance what became House version, HR 2074: Gluten in Medicine Disclosure Act of 2019, which garnered 47 cosponsors. Thanks are due to the CDF, the numerous supporters in the celiac community, and to Senator Blumenthal (D-CT), Congressman Tim Ryan (D-OH), and Congressman Tom Cole (R-OK).

    The foundation will now turn to securing cosponsors for the Senate version of this important legislation that will "make it easier and safer for individuals with celiac disease or gluten sensitivity to make informed purchases of needed medications."

    Get involved by going to celiac.org, and using the link to email your Senators to urge them to become a cosponsor, and to ask that you email your Representatives to continue to rally House support. The Foundation makes it easy. Their software handles everything, including a pre-populated message with the ability for you to personalize it, and email delivery to your Senators and Representatives.

    Edited by Jefferson Adams

    6 6

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    It would be great if it passes.  I've spent countless hours over the past few years trying to find out if my meds are gluten-free. 

    However, Big Pharma is fighting this so it is absolutely critical that each of us contact our US Senators to inform them of the importance of passing this legislation.  Please do so

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    You are attempting to have the mfgs divulge what has been a deep mystery; however, I believe you will end up with “just if there is gluten” and not the rest of the ingredients. They will be very leary to do this. That said, if you do succeed, they will have to list them on the insert sheet for each medicine, and this could have ramifications in the Big Farma World. There are so many toxins, plus aborted fetal tissue, DNA from monkeys, aluminium and thimerisol (mercury) in vaccines, and the list goes on. Good Luck in your endeavour.

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    I am 81 years old and have refused all prescription drugs because I had a doctor tell me that they put Gluten in prescription drugs shortly after I was diagnosed about 12 years ago.  So far I have been able to find a Natural Remedy for my medical problems.   After being diagnosed with AFIB, I started taking Magnesium, Co-Enzyme Q-10, Krill oil.  It took a couple of weeks but my heart calmed down and no further problem.  I continue to take my Natural  Meds. daily.  I am also careful when purchasing Natural Meds.  Some of them may contain Gluten.  Now Foods  was the first one to go Gluten free.  Other's have followed suit.

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    I am gluten- and lactose intolerant and I have arthritis too. Not so long ago I could not find Plaquenil without lactose, so I had to buy them in the States and have my daughter send them to me. I was ridiculed because they thouht that a little lactose never could do me any harm! Same with my diabetes. I was taken to the hospital because of low sugar coma and they gave me a glucogen shot in the ambulance. It made me very sick, because this contains gluten!  I could not go to the bathroom for days, so they advised me to take Movicolon, which contains more gluten! So now I have tokeep my suger level high, to avoid getting into a coma again!

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    Guest Sounds good!

    Posted

    But...

    There is a very big push (and I'm not getting political here) from current Democrat candidates for allowing non-US pharmaceuticals into the US. Since most of the rest of the world, particularly where socialized healthcare is the norm, does not have the same requirements US labelers do, would such legislation be all that effective? Seems this would require US pharmas who import all classes of pharmaceuticals to sample every batch they receive to ensure proper labeling. OR, a simple statement saying something like "This has not been tested to US standards for gluten ingredients or contamination."

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    8 hours ago, Elisabeth Gerritsen said:

    I am gluten- and lactose intolerant and I have arthritis too. Not so long ago I could not find Plaquenil without lactose, so I had to buy them in the States and have my daughter send them to me. I was ridiculed because they thouht that a little lactose never could do me any harm! Same with my diabetes. I was taken to the hospital because of low sugar coma and they gave me a glucogen shot in the ambulance. It made me very sick, because this contains gluten!  I could not go to the bathroom for days, so they advised me to take Movicolon, which contains more gluten! So now I have tokeep my suger level high, to avoid getting into a coma again!

     Go to https://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2015/08/09/rheumatoid-arthritis-remission.aspx  You should pull up an article that was written by Dr. mercola that might give you some good information.  I know that Ashwagandha, Vitamin D, and Fermented foods also help.  I personally cannot have a B.M with out help, and the only thing that I have found that has helped me for the past 11 years is (Deturge...by Energique)  I order this online.  

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    What makes you think that Pharmaceutical Medicines in the U.S. are Gluten free?  I have Celiac and I refuse to take any prescription because it probably has Gluten in it.  One of my doctors told me that they put Gluten in prescription drugs some 11 years ago, when I was first diagnosed.  I have talked with other Celiac's who have been glutened and gotten sick after taking prescription drugs.  A law needs to be passed that would require drug companies to state this on their meds.

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  • About Me

    Jefferson Adams is Celiac.com's senior writer and Digital Content Director. He earned his B.A. and M.F.A. at Arizona State University, and has authored more than 2,500 articles on celiac disease. His coursework includes studies in science, scientific methodology, biology, anatomy, medicine, logic, and advanced research. He previously served as SF Health News Examiner for Examiner.com, and devised health and medical content for Sharecare.com. Jefferson has spoken about celiac disease to the media, including an appearance on the KQED radio show Forum, and is the editor of the book "Cereal Killers" by Scott Adams and Ron Hoggan, Ed.D.


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