Celiac Disease and Gluten-Free Diet Support
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- By Dr. Vikki Petersen D.C, C.C.N
- Published 10/5/2010
Our speakers are four national and international experts in the field of gluten sensitivity and celiac disease.
A new breakthrough in gluten laboratory testing will be presented by Dr Tom O’Bryan. The new tests will provide higher sensitivity as well as a window into which systems of the body are being affected by gluten.
Dr Rodney Ford, pediatric gastroenterologist and prolific author from New Zealand will be joining us to share his most recent research and insights. Dr Ford will be presenting some startling information on the true nature of gluten and whether, in fact, it should be consumed by anyone.
Cynthia Kupper, registered dietician and founder of the nationally known Gluten Intolerance Group, will be providing valuable information on how best eat a nutrition-filled and healthy gluten-free diet.
Yours truly will also be speaking and I am excited to share some of the latest research about how gluten affects hormonal balance and predisposes us to various chronic degenerative diseases, plus what exactly can be done about it.
We have a larger venue this year as we were filled to capacity last year, but I would encourage that you reserve your seats early. Tickets are $40 in advance, $50 at the door – you can reserve them at www.healthnowmedical.com. There is a discount for small groups so please call us at 408-733-0400 for more information.
This Forum is only presented annually so don’t miss it! We hope you will be able to join us.
- By Scott Adams
- Published 09/28/2010
Tell Congress to pass S. 3307, the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act TODAY!
- By Amy Leger
- Published 09/6/2010
You may not be enjoying the gluten-free food to it’s fullest at Target Field. The brand new home for the Minnesota Twins is complete with a gluten-free concession menu, but I’ve tracked down additional, more kid-friendly items that are gluten-free and — so far — aren’t on the list.
This list posted on my website has been about 5 months in the making. I actually started drafting this post with a different title and all back before the first pitch of the season, but when I saw the special concessions list on the Twins website, I had so many questions that it has taken this long to get most of my questions answered.
If you go to the Twins website, you’ll find this page with gluten-free and vegetarian food items listed. It is a very healthy list –with everything from fresh fruit to shrimp skewers and turkey legs. Great! It’s fantastic I am so glad there is something like this out there. But I had some questions. What about the junk? What about the fun? What about kid food? I sent an email off to Pia McDonough, Operations Manager of Delaware North Companies, the company that runs the concessions. I wrote in my email, that I was inquiring about
“kid-friendlier items — which are pretty important to parents trying to feed their kid gluten-free food — Mom and Dad probably like Shrimp Skewers but my 11-year-old celiac child would skip it.”
Here are my questions– with the answers:
Additional Gluten-Free Foods at Target Field
- Are the nacho chips and cheese sauce gluten-free? Yes. The chips are Old Dutch and the cheese sauce is gluten free as well. It is made by Gehls.
- Cracker Jacks are gluten-free. They should be on your list. And I gave her the FritoLay web address.
- Would it be possible to find one stand that can serve gluten-free french fries? A stand that doesn’t deep fry anything except for plain old fries? The answer on that one — NO. So the fries are NOT GLUTEN FREE. Hey — I gave it a shot!!
- What about your ice cream novelties, have those been investigated for their gluten-free status? A lot of ice cream is gluten-free if it doesn’t have cookies, malt or a cone. Confirmed the Push Up Fruit Bars and Premium Bars (vanilla ice cream on the inside, chocolate on the outside) are indeed gluten free. — DO NOT get any novelties on a cone or cookie sandwich.
- Kettle chips? Yes — they are gluten-free. Brand is Rachel’s
- North Shore Creamery, is that a company I should go through separately to ask about ice cream? Answer from McDonough: “The North shore creamery is a branded name for our ice cream stands. They sell Land O Lakes soft serve which is gluten free.”
- What about regular popcorn and cotton candy? (My popcorn-eater wouldn’t want Angie’s Kettle Corn). These two things she is still getting back to me on.
McDonough also confirmed the hot dogs are gluten-free without the bun, but THE HAMBURGER PATTIES ARE NOT GLUTEN FREE! I write that in caps because I often think that is so basic it should be gluten free, but McDonough says the ingredient label says “less than 2% wheat flour”.
As soon as I hear more about the popcorn and cotton candy I will update this post. I really hope I hear soon.
The Gluten-Free Baseball Trend
The Gluten-Free food accommodations at ballparks is growing. This spring the Sports Business Journal talked about the need to accommodate gluten-free diets at the Nation’s ballparks. The high-profile gluten-free menus at Coors Field in Denver, Citi Field (home of the NY Mets), are done by the Aramark food service company. You can see more about this company’s effort to make gluten free accommodations here. Aramark even includes gluten-free buns with their gf hot dogs! Now that’s nice.
Delaware North Companies doesn’t appear to tout its gluten-free concessions as much. I’ve had to go to each team’s individual website to learn more. And there wasn’t much out there. While I didn’t ask McDonough about anything other than Target Field, I did do a separate email to Delaware North back in the spring and never heard back about the company’s gluten-free reach in other ballparks.
The gluten-free trend at ballparks and other major event venues is fantastic. My only suggestion– When you’re researching and publishing your list, look more closely at things like popcorn, Cracker Jacks and other treats. They may be easier than you think to confirm as gluten-free.*Keep in mind these gluten-free food items in the above list could change. If in doubt contact to the Twins or Delaware North. Be sure you allow enough time for a response.
- By Scott Adams
- Published 08/24/2010
Scott Adams and Ron Hoggan will once again be on the live radio program "Love By Intuition Show" with host Deborah Beauvais (Dreamvisions 7 Radio Network) this Saturday (8/28/2010) at 8AM Pacific. The focus of this show will be our new book "Cereal Killers: Celiac Disease and Gluten-Free A to Z," and especially the areas that cover the psychiatric effects of gluten, and the obesity and gluten sensitivity connection.
To listen to the show live via the Internet go to:
http://dreamvisions7radio.com/hosts.htm - Saturday (8/28/2010) at 8AM Pacific
The show is broadcast live from Boston, MA on 1510 AM Revolution Boston, a progressive 50,000-watt station reaching 5 states locally, and on Energy Talk Radio in San Francisco, and it reaches over 1,000,000 listeners. The show will be re-broadcast several times and will hopefully reach many more listeners.
Dreamvisions 7 Radio Network is holistic healing radio network with an eclectic group of radio hosts all with the common goal to help humankind by offering different modalities or programs combined with tools to bring awareness, joy and love to their listeners. Their vision is to continue to syndicate the Network of shows by having additional affiliates both terrestrial and Internet.
More information about them can be found on their Web sites:
Bay Valley Foods Issues Allergy Alert on Undeclared Egg and Wheat in Cans of Mislabeled Chef's Cupboard Chicken with Rice Soup
Hill & Knowlton, Inc.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - July 28, 2010 - Westchester, Ill. - Bay Valley Foods is voluntarily recalling 10.5 oz cans of Chef's Cupboard Chicken with Rice Soup because some cans are mislabeled and may contain Vegetarian Vegetable Soup. The mislabeled product contains undeclared egg and wheat. People who have an allergy or severe sensitivity to eggs or wheat run the risk of serious or life-threatening allergic reaction if they consume this product.
No adverse reactions have been reported to date. In addition to working in cooperation with the FDA, Bay Valley Foods is issuing an alert through the Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Network. The recall was initiated after receipt of a consumer complaint.
The recalled product labeled as Chef's Cupboard Chicken with Rice Soup is marked with "BEST BY 01 05 12" that can be found on the bottom of the can. Product affected by this recall may have been distributed to Aldi stores nationwide. No other products or brands are affected by this recall.
Consumers who have purchased the recalled Chef's Cupboard Chicken with Rice Soup can return it to an Aldi store for a full refund. Consumers with questions may contact Bay Valley Foods Consumer Response Department at (1-800-236-1119) between the hours 9:00 am and 5:00 p.m. (EDT).
DeBoles Nutritional Foods, Inc. Voluntarily Recalls One Lot Code of DeBoles Kids Only! Gluten Free Tubettini Corn Pasta Due to the Presence of an Undeclared Allergen
- By Destiny Stone
- Published 07/24/2010
DeBoles Nutritional Foods, Inc. Voluntarily Recalls One Lot Code of DeBoles Kids Only! Gluten Free Tubettini Corn Pasta Due to the Presence of an Undeclared Allergen, Lot Code 30JUN11D1
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - July 21, 2010 - DeBoles Nutritional Foods, Inc. announced that it is recalling one lot code of DeBoles® Kids Only! Gluten Free Tubettini Corn Pasta because it may contain undeclared whole wheat alphabet pasta. People who are allergic to wheat run the risk of an allergic reaction, which may be serious or life-threatening if they consume the recalled product.
The recalled lot was distributed to stores nationwide and through internet orders.
The product comes in a cardboard box, 8.5 ounce, with a clear plastic window. The expiration lot code is on the top of the box and the UPC Code 087336638305 appears on the bottom of the box. No other lot codes are affected. This recall only affects:
Deboles kids only! gluten free tubettini corn pasta
Lot code: 30JUN11D1
No illnesses have been reported in connection with this product. It appears that certain product boxes in lot code 30JUN11D1 may contain whole wheat alphabet pasta mixed with the gluten-free tubettini corn pasta in packaging that did not declare wheat as an allergen and, as a result, the product is being recalled. The alphabet pasta is clearly visible and is a darker color and characteristic alphabet shape compared to the yellow corn small-tube pasta.
Consumers who have purchased 8.5 ounce packages of DeBoles® Kids Only Gluten Free Tubettini Corn Pasta with Lot Number 30JUN11D1 are urged to return such packages to their place of purchase for a full refund. Consumers with questions may contact the company at 1-800-434-4246 during extended hours from Monday to Friday 9 am to 9 pm EDT, and on Saturday and Sunday from 10 am to 6 pm
A few days later it came back again, this time it lasted about 20 minutes. I had been taking it easy as I figured it was a pulled muscle.
After about a week of this on and off, I decided to go and get it check out at the hospital. I am not the sort of person to visit the doctors very often, I think it was about 5 years since I had seen one, after all I was a healthy male aged 30.
The visit to the hospital was rather quick, I went in, said I was having chest pains, they rushed me out back and hooked me up for a heart scan, there was nothing. My heart was very well by all accounts. The doctors agreed it was a pulled muscle and told me to go home, take it easy and it should ease within a few weeks...
It has taken me over a year to finally start feeling remotely “normal” and it has been a very long and often lonely road. However, there are so many wonderful, caring people out there and thanks to celiac.com, I feel fortunate to be blessed with insights from many of those caring people. Over the course of a year I have found out more about gluten sensitivities than most doctors know! I have learned the hard way for many things, but I have also picked up some wonderful tips and tricks for dealing with severe gluten intolerance. It would be selfish of me not to share these tips with others, so here they are and I hope they help you as much as they have helped me.
- Paper Towels – It is my opinion that paper towels are the most undervalued accessory you can have in your house as a person suffering from food sensitivities. While it may not be the most Eco-friendly product, it can be a real lifesaver! I use paper towels for just about everything. In my daily use, I use paper towels to dry off silverware, cups and plates after I rinse them. Even if the dishes I am rinsing are already clean, I rinse them again. I do not live in a gluten-free household, so I choose not to take any chances with gluten crumbs contaminating my dishes. I use paper towels to dry my hands after I wash them 5 million times a day, because using a cloth towel in a gluten household can take a bad turn if the towel was used by a gluten loving person toweling their hands after handling gluten. If I am at a friends house and I am not sure how clean their house is, I use paper towels to open doors, microwaves and even to cover a cutting board before preparing my food. If I have to touch something with gluten for any reason, I pull off a trusty paper towel and use that as a buffer between me and the gluten. Paper towels are my new best friend and I buy them in bulk.
- Beans and Rice – Rinsing my dry beans, rice, and other such dry goods, before preparing them reduces my chances of getting contaminated by gluten. Even though rice and beans are naturally gluten-free, I was getting sick from them repeatedly prior to realizing that beans and rice can be harvested and/or manufactured alongside wheat, rye and/or barley. Rinsing and soaking your beans (even the canned beans) will minimize the possibility of getting glutened from your gluten-free food.
- Stamps/Envelopes – Stamps and envelopes are another source of gluten-contamination. The glue used in stamps and envelopes often contains gluten ingredients. I learned this the hard way after licking some envelopes and getting very sick. Now I use the no-lick stamps and the no lick envelopes; they are a bit more expensive, but to me it's very worth it.
- Produce Stickers – Produce stickers, like stamps and envelopes are also said to have gluten containing ingredients in them. To avoid the chance of gluten contamination, I try to find produce without the stickers on them. If the sticker is unavoidable and the produce has a peel, I remove the sticker, and peel and wash my produce. If the produce does not have a peel, I remove the sticker and wash very well with my produce scrub brush.
- Ice-Trays – Ice trays are one of those things that most people never consider when thinking about gluten. However, I have gone to houses where it is common practice to keep food in or near the ice tray, especially ice trays within the automatic refrigerator ice dispensers. I have seen people put everything from ice-cream and bread, to alcohol in their ice tray's to get it really cold. Ice trays are very exposed and it is just too easy for crumbs to fall into them unknowingly so, I usually avoid ice in my drinks when I go out or go to a friends.
- Door Handles – Everyone knows that door handles spread germs. But does anyone ever think about door handles spreading gluten? I keep my handles as clean as possible at home, but what about public places? Consider this: a person eats a gluten pizza, does not wash their hands and then opens the door and leaves the restaurant. If I open the door after that person, I run the risk of getting contaminated by gluten and becoming very sick. Short of wearing gloves everywhere I go, (which isn't a bad idea) I do take precautions and I use my sleeve and/or immediately wash my hands after spending time in any public place, or at a friends. The same holds true for other public things including light switches, public phones, and even video rentals. Think of all the pizza loving hands covered in gluten that have held movie rentals before you rent them. Considering most people watch movies while eating, I wash my hands after handling any movie rental, and especially before I touch anything else. Time permitting, I try to wipe down my video rentals with disinfectant as soon as I get them.
- Silverware Tray - Believe it or not, silverware trays are a major source of possible gluten contamination, especially if you are not living in a gluten-free household. Crumbs fall from the counter into the silverware tray and until you clean it, there it will remain. I wash my silverware tray frequently and I rinse and dry my silverware with a paper-towel before each use-just to be safe.
- Glass Containers – Plastic containers are a source of contamination because they often maintain a residue from the food you store in them. Therefore if you store gluten containing food in a plastic container, then there is a likelihood that your gluten-free food will get contaminated the next time you store gluten-free food in it. Additionally, things like soaking your plastic containers in dishwater with gluten contaminated dishes can also contaminate your plastic containers. Scratches in the plastic can also create a new haven for gluten residue. That is why I don't use plastic to store my food any longer. All the plastic containers in my house are dedicated to the gluten eating people and I bought all new glass storage containers for my food. They have plastic lids, but I don't cook with them on and my food rarely touches the lids anyway.
- Stay Connected – It is easy to get depressed about being on a restricted diet. Especially if you are (like me) surrounded by friends and family that don't take your gluten intolerance seriously, or simply don't understand. That's why it is so important to stay connected with other celiacs and gluten sensitive individuals. Join a support group, take a weekly walk with a celiac friend, talk to someone who understands you, all of the above. It might take time to find a support network that works for you, but it is worth the energy you spend. You will find that most people in your boat are more than happy to help you. There is nothing worse than feeling alone, so don't do it. Like the old phone commercials used to say, 'reach out and touch somebody'.
- When in Doubt, Do Without - Many of you have probably heard this saying already, but it is very true. Anytime I feel myself second guess the food I am about to consume, I immediately think to myself, ' when in doubt, do without,' and I do without. Prior to realizing my gluten-sensitivity, if I was preparing a meal and a piece of food dropped on the counter I would wash it and put it back with the rest of the food. Now, I don't think twice, I throw it away. I don't care if I just cleaned my counters, I do not take any chances. If my rice toast accidentally touches something else in my kitchen, I tear off the piece that was contaminated. I don't wait to find out the hard way if my food has been contaminated with gluten, I assume it has been and act accordingly. This may sound wasteful, and it does go against everything I believe in, but my health and well-being are more important to me than wasting a piece of bread or throwing out something because it may have gluten on it. Likewise, if I am out and about and come across seemingly gluten-free food that is not labeled as gluten-free, I will not eat it until I contact the manufacturer.
Celiac Disease Foundation is pleased to announce that UCLA (University of California Los Angeles) is now offering a Celiac Clinic.
Adult gastroenterologists, Eric Esrailian MD and Shannon Lewis MD will see patients on Tuesday mornings at 100 UCLA Medical Plaza, Suite 700, Los Angeles CA.
The UCLA Celiac Clinic will serve anyone who requires testing, is seeking a diagnosis or who is already diagnosed and needs follow-up care or a referral to another specialist.
For more info: http://gastro.ucla.edu/celiac
So I was absolutely delighted when I found a new product on the shelves of my local Giant: "Crisp Onions" made by Seneca Farms. They smell and taste much like Durkee's french fried onions, but just don't have flour on them. Here is the list of ingredients for "Crisp Onions": "Onions, Canola, Sunflower and/or Safflower Oil, Maltodextrin, Sea Salt."
My only question was whether the maltodextrin was free of gluten, so I wrote an email to the company asking. And here was the reply of Jan Stouch at their company:
"I have verified with the supplier of the maltodextrin that it is wheat/gluten free. Seneca Foods Consumer Affairs"
I also know that Progresso now also makes a gluten-free Creamy Mushshroom Soup. Or I may use Classico's new gluten free "Mushroom Alfredo Sauce." Decisions, decisions! :) It's going to be broccoli casserole tonight, and quick and easy as it used to be! Yum! Can't wait.
- By Destiny Stone
- Published 07/9/2010
Michigan Firm Recalls Beef Jerky Products Due to Mislabeling and Undeclared Allergen
CLASS II RECALL
HEALTH RISK: LOW
Congressional and Public Affairs
WASHINGTON, July 6, 2010 - M&K II Co., a Macomb, Mich., establishment, is recalling approximately 8,000 pounds of beef jerky products because they contain undeclared allergens, wheat and soy, the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced today.
The products subject to recall include: [View Labels]
1-ounce and 3-ounce packages of "FIREHOUSE JERKY MILD BEEF JERKY SMOKE FLAVOR ADDED." "Sell By" dates ranging between 06/16/11 and 11/14/11 are ink jetted on the back of each package.
1-ounce and 3-ounce packages of "FIREHOUSE JERKY PEPPER BEEF JERKY SMOKE FLAVOR ADDED." "Sell By" dates ranging between 06/12/11 and 11/25/2011 are ink jetted on the back of each package.
Each package bears the establishment number "EST. 6935" or "EST. 10002" inside the USDA mark of inspection. The code number "6935" is ink jetted on the back of each package. These products were produced on various dates from January 28, 2010, through May 21, 2010, and were sent to Firehouse Foods, Inc., a distributor in Alsip, Ill., for further Internet and retail sales.
The problem was discovered by FSIS during a labeling review at the establishment. FSIS has received no reports of adverse reactions due to consumption of these products. Anyone concerned about an allergic reaction should contact a physician.
FSIS routinely conducts recall effectiveness checks to verify recalling firms notify their customers of the recall and that steps are taken to make certain that the product is no longer available to consumers.
Consumer and media inquiries regarding the recall should be directed to Terry Amerson, QA Manager, at (586) 677-3018.
Consumers with food safety questions can "Ask Karen," the FSIS virtual representative available 24 hours a day at www.AskKaren.gov. "Ask Karen" live chat services are available Monday through Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. ET. The toll-free USDA Meat and Poultry Hotline 1-888-MPHotline (1-888-674-6854) is available in English and Spanish and can be reached from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. ET Monday through Friday. Recorded food safety messages are available 24 hours a day.
The one thing I really miss about being normal, is going into a restaurant and ordering the new pasta dish on the menu and not worrying about it causing you three days of severe pain--perhaps just a few pounds of extra weight. So I find myself eating at home a lot. Being in the restaurant business I get a chance to really search for some new restaurant choices in gluten-free foods.
I love Italian and this is my biggest challenge, but so far I have actually found two very good choices in noodles. And my friends laugh because they know if I can't find something to eat I end up with grits and bacon. I would actually die if bacon was off limits. And candy--can you imagine being a kid with the crazy disease and not being allowed to eat candy, that would be suicidal.
The one problem I have with dinning out is trying to determine how serious the kitchen staff really take the cross contamination issue. Do they think that we are just over-paranoid morons? How many times have you gone home and had horrible stomach cramps for days and days after eating out and wondering just what did they do or better yet not do?
But I continue the battle along with the hundreds of others out there just like me who look for a healthy way to eat out that is not expensive, tastes good, and leaves me pain free.
Until next time happy cooking!
When it comes to this the label is a fable, because there is rarely public notification on the part of the product producer. One example is Applegate Foods which has made a number of changes in their hot dogs and deli meat over time making it sometimes suitable and sometimes not. What we do to validate ingredients is request a hard copy signed letter on company letterhead listing ingredients. If there are spices, we need a declaration that no anti-clumping or anti-caking agents have been added (I call them agent provocateurs). Larabar, which was taken over by General Mills, has long been a bar of contention and happily supplied us with detailed information both in both email hard copy. It remains a personal responsibility to periodically check with the companies supplying foods we find acceptable to see if anything has been changed because these recalls are wild!
- By Destiny Stone
- Published 06/29/2010
Pure Base Distrbution Issues Allergy Alert on Undeclared Milk and Wheat in "Pure Base Garlic Spread - Concentrate" and "Pure Base Garlic Spread - Ready to Spread"
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE - June 25, 2010 - Pure Base Distribution, LLC of Ontario, CA is recalling its 4 ounce bottles of “Pure Base Garlic Spread - Concentrate” and 7 ounce bottles of “Pure Base Garlic Spread - Ready to Spread” items because they may contain undeclared milk and wheat. People who have allergies to milk and/or wheat run the risk of serious or life-threatening allergic reaction if they consume these products. If you or a member of your household is allergic to milk or wheat products, do not consume these products, but return them to your retailer for a full refund.
"Pure Base Garlic Spread - Concentrate" and "Pure Base Garlic Spread – Ready to Spread" were distributed nationwide in online and traditional retail stores.
The "Pure Base Garlic Spread - Concentrate" product comes in 4 ounce clear plastic bottles and "Pure Base Garlic Spread - Ready to Spread" comes in 7 ounce clear plastic bottles. Both items have lot numbers and Best By Date stamped at the top of their red cap. Affected Lot Numbers with their Best By Dates are as follows:
Pure Base Garlic Spread Concentrate:
92221, Best By 8/10/2010
92391, Best By 8/27/2010
92661, Best By 9/23/2010
92921, Best By 10/19/2010
93291, Best By 11/25/2010
100341, Best By 2/3/2011
100971, Best By 4/7/2011
101181, Best By 4/28/2011
Pure Base Garlic Spread Ready to Spread:
92641, Best By 9/21/2010
93021, Best By 10/29/2010
93291, Best By 11/25/2010
100391, Best By 2/8/2011
101181, Best By 4/28/2011
No illnesses have been reported to date in connection with this problem. Anyone concerned about an allergic reaction should contact a physician.
The recall was initiated after it was discovered that the milk- and wheat-containing products were distributed in packaging that did not reveal the presence of milk and wheat on the label. Subsequent investigation indicates the problem was caused by a temporary breakdown in the company's production and packaging processes.
Distribution of the products has been suspended until the FDA and the company are certain that the products are properly labeled.
Consumers who have purchased 4 ounce bottles of "Pure Base Garlic Spread - Concentrate" and 7 ounce bottles of "Pure Base Garlic Spread - Ready to Spread" items are urged to return them to the place of purchase for a full refund. Consumers with questions may contact the company at 1-888-980-7474, ext 105, Monday through Friday 9 AM – 4 PM Pacific Standard Time.
- By Jennifer Arrington
- Published 06/23/2010
Polaner All-Fruit Jam with Fiber: Is it really Gluten and Sugar Free?
How many of us find a trusted brand and happily spend the extra money to get that brand of that product so we don’t have to decipher labels each and every time we go to the grocery store? I think of these products as “clean” – there is nothing in them that makes me sick and I can consume them without concern.
For years I have purchased and consumed Polaner All-Fruit Jam. With all their delicious fruit varieties, it has been my one “comfort” in the midst of the myriad of sweet sucrose-containing foods I cannot eat. I put it on my gluten-free waffles and pancakes and sometimes even heat it up to make a fruit syrup.
Last Sunday I noticed my stomach was “blown-up” and cramping – the tell-tale sign that I’ve consumed gluten. My husband had made brownies the night before, so I went through my kitchen, checking which utensils he had used, and asking him if he had possibly contaminated something I wasn’t aware of. Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday I endured more stomach cramping, headaches, fatigue, and mental confusion. Friday, I woke up and thought I was better. I decided I must have inadvertently eaten gluten from an outside source, and that I had recovered. Then, I ate breakfast, and within the hour, the symptoms had returned. All day long I worried about what my new intolerance was, how I was to find it, and how much more refined one person could make their diet.
Friday night, while making my daughter a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, I got out the Strawberry Polaner All- Fruit and noticed for the first time that the words “with Fiber” had been added to the label. I immediately checked the ingredients and was astounded to see “maltodextrin” as an ingredient. Just to the right of the ingredients, however, I saw the words “gluten-free.” And therein lies the problem: sometimes maltodextrin makes me sick, sometimes it doesn’t. According to the celiac.com website, it depends on the source, and obviously Polaner’s source or manufacturing practices aren’t clean enough for me. Maybe they don’t test their maltodextrin every time, maybe the maltodextrin comes from “shared equipment”, but whatever the reason, this product now makes me sick and I am thoroughly disappointed.
It is frustrating that a company has to take a pure product such as an all-fruit jam and add something unnatural in order to tout some health benefit. I know it’s marketing hype, but, for goodness sake, we’re talking about jam—let people get their fiber naturally and on their own terms.
Don’t get me wrong, I am relieved to have found the culprit, but once again reminded how very careful those of us with celiac disease/gluten intolerance have to live our lives. Snatching a favorite product off the shelves without checking labels each and every time just isn’t an option, especially when it takes someone like me up to a week to find that culprit!
I contacted the company with the following statement:
“Why ruin a wonderfully pure product – Polaner All-Fruit - by adding maltodextrin to it? I have been sick all week and finally realized the Polaner All- Fruit with Fiber new formulation is the culprit. Maltodextrin, even when proclaimed "gluten-free," can cause problems for those with celiac disease/gluten intolerance. I am so disappointed - yours was the jam I trusted and now I can no longer have it. Let people get their fiber naturally on their own terms! In my opinion, you have taken an outstanding "clean" product and ruined it.”
Within two days I received this cordial and informative response:
Dear Ms. Arrington,
Thank you for your correspondence regarding our Polaner All Fruit brand. So sorry to learn that you were not feeling well after eating our newly reformulated All Fruit.
In speaking with Polaner All Fruit users in 2008 and 2009, many told us they are not getting enough fiber in their diets. The response among these current All Fruit users to the concept of taking Polaner All Fruit and adding natural dietary fiber to the recipe was positive. The majority told us that if the taste and texture could remain the same, they’d prefer a new version that provides a good source of fiber in every spoonful. We often heard – “you can’t get enough fiber.”
The maltodextrin we use in Polaner All Fruit with Fiber is a soluble fiber produced under the brand name Fibersol-2. Derived from nature, it is a concentrated form of soluble dietary fiber and remains undigested by enzymes of the human digestive system.
Fibersol-2 is produced from cornstarch, a completely natural product, using a method that results in a digestion-resistant maltodextrin. This non-digestible portion of the maltodextrin is tasteless and odorless. It is extracted and then added to Polaner All Fruit to provide the fiber benefit.
Fibersol-2 contains a very small portion of sugar (<0.5 g total sugar per serving) making it perfect for sugar modified foods including true sugar free foods. Based on FDA regulation, any product using this type of maltodextrin is considered sugar free.
We regret that you did not share the positive response to our reformulated All Fruit we’ve seen from others.
We appreciate your comments. They will be shared with management.
I wish you well.
After reading this I began to wonder if my problem was more with the <0.5g sugar content then possible gluten contamination. If their maltodextrin is derived from cornstarch and is not produced on “shared equipment,” then it should be gluten free. (I could buy a home ELISA kit and test it myself!) I did appreciate their prompt and detailed response, but the knowledge that companies can label a product sugar free even when there are tiny amounts of sugar frustrated me even further.
Regardless of the cause, now that the product contains maltodextrin, I can no longer consume it. I went to the store and scrounged around until I found one lonely prior-to-fiber jar on the shelf. It was a jar of Polaner Grape and maybe I can make it last long enough until they revert back to their old pure product or at least offer it as an option.
If this new product is also causing you problems, I suggest you go to http://www.polanerallfruit.com/polaner/index.html and let them know. For now, I am in the market for a new, pure, all-fruit jam!
However, I had stopped digesting food, particularly carbohydrates. My weight started dropping until I was 15% less than I had been. At a 20% loss, I was finally referred to a dietician. Not only did she give me advice on what I could try to eat, but she put me on a supplement called Florastor:
This product literally saved my life. Initially I started with 4 capsules per day and within 4 days it had kicked that yeast out of my digestive tract. Whew! Nearly 3 years later, I need only take an occasional dose if I am having any digestive problems but this product will always been on hand.
The building’s sprinkler system contained the fire and the East Hartford fire department responded with exceptional speed and professionalism to put out the fire. The Bakery On Main team escaped without injury.
There was some damage to the building and electrical equipment, and while it is too early to estimate the time required to repair the damage, the company expects there will be enough stock left untouched by the fire in addition to distributor stock to keep store shelves full until production can begin again.
Bakery On Main Founder and President Michael Smulders says that Bakery On Main hopes to be back in business very soon. “We all appreciate the numerous calls of support and offers of help,” said Smulders. “We truly have the best customers and friends.”
For more information, please contact Sara Lefebvre at (860) 895-6622, extension 305 or email at SaraL@BakeryOnMain.com.