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Irish Study of Gluten-Free Foods


Irish Study of Gluten-Free Breads

Celiac.com 06/10/2010 - New research is currently underway in Ireland, as researchers test "pseudo-cereals" to determine the quality of  replacements for glutenous grains such as, wheat, rye and barley. Many celiacs, especially those with delayed diagnosis', suffer from malabsorbtion and malnutrition. It is therefore more important for celiacs to ingest grains that are vitamin fortified than it is for non-celiacs. Researchers at Teagasc Food Research Ashtown are attempting to address the nutritional concerns for gluten-free products. They are working to  formulate gluten-free bread products that are tasty, and have higher nutritional properties.

Doctor Eimear Gallagher, of Teagasc Food Research Ashtown, is leading the current research project which primarily focuses on using “pseudo-cereals” such as amaranth, quinoa and buckwheat, to replace gluten containing grains,  also known as wheat, rye and barley. Dr. Gallagher suggests that the demand for new and improved gluten-free bread products is growing  rapidly due to greater public awareness of celiac disease, and the rise in positive celiac diagnoses'.

Celiac affects approximately 1 percent of the population. Which means that 1 percent of the population must look for alternatives to favored grain products such as bread, pizza and cereals to name a few. While there is a large variety of gluten-free products on the market, many gluten-free products are described as being crumbly, brittle, bland and often rendered  inedible. Gluten-free products are not only considered inferior in texture and taste to their wheat counterparts, but they are also criticized for having inferior nutritional value. Most mainstream breads and grains are vitamin fortified and therefore contain many essential nutrients, vitamins, and fiber. However, most gluten-free grains are typically made with starches and refined flours such as rice, corn and potato starches, which are low in nutrients and are not usually fortified.

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Dr. Gallagher and researchers are studying characteristics of pseudo-cereals to replace wheat in grain products. Amaranth, quinoa and buckwheat are naturally high in nutritional values with high levels of protein and dietary fiber, which make them excellent grain alternatives  for celiacs. Dr. Gallagher's findings showed that all of the pseudo-cereal breads revealed a significant increase in antioxidant and polyphenol activity, compared to the gluten-free control group.

Teagasc  food researchers are also working hard to create a dairy-based ingredient that can produce the same properties in bread as gluten does. So far researchers have discovered that casein aggregates and forms a protein network which can retain gas in gluten-free dough. The reactions are similar to gluten containing wheat dough, but this is a work in progress and more studies are needed.

Dr. Gallagher's studies have revealed significant information on ingredients, formulations and technologies used to make gluten-free products, which will help provide edible and healthy alternatives to gluten-free products.

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I was in the hospital once for six days and had nothing except the glucose in the iv solution- and I survived. Since it is only for two weeks I wouldn't worry about a balanced diet, or getting every nutrient every day. Some celiacs react to oats, but lots of steamed rice would be good for getting calories. If you took nuts that would add both fat and protein in a relatively small space per calorie. Then just add a gluten free multivitamin/mineral. Sounds like a great trip - hope you have a good and healthy time.

If you can get plain rice, go for it. Plain fish, meat, too. Maybe beef jerky and protein bars ? I wouldn't bother with the Nima- it is giving a lot of false positives

They are very highly refined and should not contain gluten. If you aren't ingesting it, it is safe. You could roll in wheat flour - if you could keep it out of your mouth. i stay away from stuff with obvious wheat -usually wheat germ oil. But I know Celiacs that very carefully use hair products with wheat germ oil for thier curly hair. I just tend to get shampoo in my mouth .

That's a very normal reaction believe it or not. I would always tell someone to stay on gluten before testing is done because it's a lot easier staying on it than it is reintroducing it. I felt worse on my challenge than I had before giving it up the first time. Whilst a definite diagnosis is the aim of many (I tried myself) and has benefits in terms of health monitoring etc there is no treatment other than the gluten-free diet so if you get negative or inconclusive results and can't face the further challenge you could choose to forgo it and just go gluten free. Either way there will be plenty of support for you here. all the best.