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I was wondering what the popular opinion is on the safety of gluten free cheerios? I know they have a controversial process to get the gluten out of the oats, and I know they had a slip up about a year ago where they put wheat flour in some batches. I'm assuming after all the bad press that General Mills is testing the heck out of the product to ensure safety. But does anyone have any recent information or personal experience? Lucky Charms are made by the same company using the same process, and no one seems to be protesting or warning against the safety of those. I'm somewhat worried about giving them the cereal, not seeing any outward sign of damage, but having damage done to the intestines. We are fairly recent to celiac and gluten free. My three year old is the only one with celiac, but my husband and seven year old have the gene. As far as I know, my son has not been glutened since we went gluten free 8 months ago, but I'm worried about his ability to articulate if he is feeling glutened and we don't' recognize the signs. I'd like to be able to give my kids Cheerios again, but I'd never compromise their safety if there's any doubt. Any suggestions would be great as most of the info floating around the internet is months or more old. Thanks!

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I stand with Trisha Thompson of the Gluten Free Watchdog (kind of like Consumer Reports for gluten).  She does not recommend them, nor does the Canadian Celiac Organization.  Scroll down to the comments that are from 2016.  Folks are still reporting  they are getting sick.  It seems to be a bit of Russion Roulette.  Personally, we do not eat them.  My downtime is about three months.  No non-certified gluten-free cereal is worth the risk for me!  

https://www.glutenfreewatchdog.org/news/gluten-free-cheerios-take-two/

Anyway, at six months after diagnosis, your son should be re-tested to see if his antibodies are normal or at least going down.  That is standard care for celiacs.  

https://www.cureceliacdisease.org/wp-content/uploads/341_CDCFactSheets7_PostDiagnosis.pdf

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46 minutes ago, cyclinglady said:

I stand with Trisha Thompson of the Gluten Free Watchdog (kind of like Consumer Reports for gluten).  She does not recommend them, nor does the Canadian Celiac Organization.  Scroll down to the comments that are from 2016.  Folks are still reporting  they are getting sick.  It seems to be a bit of Russion Roulette.  Personally, we do not eat them.  My downtime is about three months.  No non-certified gluten-free cereal is worth the risk for me!  

https://www.glutenfreewatchdog.org/news/gluten-free-cheerios-take-two/

Anyway, at six months after diagnosis, your son should be re-tested to see if his antibodies are normal or at least going down.  That is standard care for celiacs.  

https://www.cureceliacdisease.org/wp-content/uploads/341_CDCFactSheets7_PostDiagnosis.pdf

Thanks for the link to the recent comments! Do you know anything about the Lucky Charms? I'm thinking the process is similar to the Cheerios. My son was retested after 6 months and his antibodies had dropped from 300 to 71. We are having him retested after 6 more months instead of a year hoping his levels will have reached normal. That's part of why I'm so hesitant to try any food that is not guaranteed as safe as possible; he is still recovering and doing so well. Thanks!

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I don't know if this would help, I've been eating Nature's Path Whole O's which are certified gluten free.  They don't taste or crunch like cheerios (they are harder) but they are the same shape.  They don't contain oats.  They are also a lot more expensive than Cheerios.

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I can not specifically speak for Lucky Charms, but if it's made from oats (think it is), I would treat it the same as the Cheerios.  Some celiacs (about 10%) react to oats regardless if they are certified or not.  Certified gluten-free oats must not be grown in fields that once had wheat for four years.   Each batch is tested.  The problem  with GM's oats is their mechanical sorting method and they way the test batches of the final product.  What it comes down to is that some of the boxes could have gluten above 20 ppm.  Some might be less than 20 ppm.

I follow Jane Anderson on VeryWell.  She's a very conservative celiac as she has DH (celiac rash).  This is what she says about oats and Cheerios:

https://www.verywell.com/should-you-eat-gluten-free-cheerios-562827 

Again, some folks are wiling to risk it.  Personally, it's just cereal and I think there are better things to eat for breakfast.  Congratulations on working hard to get your son's antibodies to come down so rapidly!  He's too little to thank you now, but someday he will!  

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I have eaten Cheerios 4 different times, enjoyed the taste, but had a reaction every time.  I gave them the benefit of doubt hoping that they were perfecting their gluten removal process.   Unfortunately, I will not be trying Cheerios again in the future as I do not want to deal with the reaction.  I will continue to pay for and eat certified gluten free oats and not have a reaction.

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We have multiple children who have gluten sensitivities and one 9-year old celiac. The household is entirely gluten free for practical purposes so naturally, all were excited to see gluten free Cheerios! We had them in the house for two weeks during November 2016 and my celiac daughter had at least one handful daily.  I started noticing a return of some of her symptoms. Bubble belly, inability to focus, speech difficulties, exhaustion, diarrhea. I could not figure out the source and made a list of everything out of the ordinary. Cheerios was the only thing that was different and in spite of that gluten-free label, we stopped buying them immediately. Her symptoms began improving within a week. Not worth the risk to us. 

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"The Canadian Celiac Association (CCA) recommends that people with celiac disease or gluten sensitivity DO NOT consume the gluten-free labeled Cheerios products at this time because of concerns about the potential levels of gluten in boxes of these cereals...Based on the information provided to date, our scientific advisors are not convinced that the testing procedures described by General Mills are sufficient to detect these contamination “hot spots” in the oats and oat flour or in the boxes of cereal that may contain those contaminated oats." 

That was posted on their website earlier last year and to the best of my knowledge, nothing has changed. Some people are eating them and doing fine but I guess it has to due with these "hot spots". If you want to roll the dice I guess it's no different than eating out but I got really sick when I ate the Cheerios in September 2016. Good luck if you give it a go.

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