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Wendy Cohan, RN posted an article in Gluten-Free Grains and FloursCeliac.com 10/02/2008 - Whole grains are good sources of B-Vitamins and minerals such as calcium, iron, magnesium, and selenium, but one of their most important nutritional benefits is the fiber they bring to our diets. Whole grains such as wheat, brown rice, and oats include both soluble and insoluble fiber. Soluble fiber is easy to remember – it is water soluble, and as such can be assimilated into the body, where it plays an important role in blood sugar regulation and cholesterol balance. Soluble fiber also helps provide a sense of fullness or satiety. Insoluble fiber is - you guessed it - insoluble in water, and is not assimilated into the body, but passes through the digestive tract and is eliminated. That does not mean insoluble fiber has a less important nutritional role to play. Insoluble fiber is very important in keeping our digestive and elimination systems regular. Fiber aids the transit of toxic substances out of the body, and in doing so, helps to reduce the incidence of colon and rectal cancers. In eliminating gluten grains from your diet, have you wondered what you are missing nutritionally? Are you able to get adequate replacements for the nutrients in wheat, barley, rye, and oats, from the other nutritional components of your diet? The answer is a qualified yes. We know this on several levels. For tens of thousands of years, entire cultures have thrived without growing or consuming any of the gluten grains. We also know, from looking at what nutrients gluten grains provide, that there are more than adequate sources of these nutrients in alternative grains, and from vegetable sources. Fiber is something we do need to be aware of, though. Studies have shown that standard gluten-free diets are low in fiber, especially when baking with the “white” alternative products like white or sweet rice flour, tapioca starch, and potato starch. We can remedy this by eating alternative grains in whole, unprocessed states, and by including nuts, seeds, and other sources of fiber such as dried coconut and legumes in our diets. Wheat is an excellent source of Vitamin E, so those on gluten-free diets might want to supplement with a good brand of Vitamin E. Some commercial gluten-free flour blends seek to duplicate white flour, and are made primarily of white rice flour, tapioca starch, and potato starch (see the nutrition comparisons on the next page). These products are nearly devoid of nutrition and contain almost no fiber. Using these types of products result in baked goods that are the nutritional equivalent of wonder-bread. If you didn’t eat wonder-bread before going gluten-free, why should you attempt to duplicate it now? When making your flour blends, coming up with new recipes, and altering traditional wheat-flour recipes, try to include alternative grain products (and sometimes nut flours) that contain substantial amounts of fiber, protein, calcium, and iron, all nutrients found in whole grains, but in much smaller amounts in highly processed grains. Quinoa, sorghum, teff, amaranth, brown rice and millet flour are all good products to try. See the chart attached to this article (the link to it is in the "Attachments" section below) for the nutrient content of the many gluten-free alternative grains, starches, and nut flours. The highest levels of nutrients in each category are noted, and you can see what nutritional powerhouses grains like teff, quinoa, sorghum, and amaranth are compared to white rice flour, tapioca starch, and potato starch.
Jefferson Adams posted an article in Gluten-Free Diet, Celiac Disease & Codex Alimentarius Wheat StarchCeliac.com 10/16/2017 - In Europe many commercially available, nominally gluten-free foods use purified wheat starch as a base, but what's the best way to way to measure the gluten content of gluten-free foods, particularly those based on purified wheat starch? Currently, the only test for gluten quantitation certified by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) is based on the R5 monoclonal antibody (MAB) that recognizes gliadin, but not glutenin. A team of researchers recently set out to determine the best way to measure the gluten content of nominally gluten-free foods, particularly those based on purified wheat starch. The research team included HJ Ellis, U Selvarajah and PJ Ciclitira. They are affiliated with the Department of Gastroenterology, Division of Diabetes and Nutritional Sciences at Kings College London, St Thomas Hospital in London. Celiac disease is treated with a strict Gluten-Free Diet (GFD). Gluten is comprised of gliadin, Low (LMWG) and High (HMWG). To estimate gluten content of gluten-free foods, the R5 works by multiplying the R5 gliadin value by two to yield a gluten value. The research team raised a panel of monoclonal antibodies to celiac disease toxic motifs. They then assessed the gluten content of three wheat starches A, B, & C that are supplied as standards for the Transia gluten quantitation kit, which is based on a MAB to omega-gliadin. They used separate ELISAs to measure gliadin, Low (LMWG) and High Molecular Weight (HMWG) glutenins. They found that the gliadin levels in all three starches were always higher, as measured by one of the antibodies, than the levels measured with the other, and that the ratio between measurements made by the 2 MABs varied from 3.1 to 7.0 fold. The team noted significant differences in glutenin to gliadin ratios for different wheat starches. Based on their results, the team suggests that the best way to measure the gluten content of nominally gluten-free foods, especially those containing purified wheat starch, is to first measure gliadin and glutenin, and to then add the values together. This is because measurement of gliadin alone, followed by multiplication by two to yield a gluten content, appears to be inadequate for measuring total gluten in processed foods. Source: Int J Hepatol Gastroenterol. 2017;3(1): 046-049.
Jefferson Adams posted an article in Additional Celiac Disease ConcernsCeliac.com 12/02/2013 - There really hasn't been too much research into gluten levels of products labeled and sold as 'gluten-free in the U.S. A team of researchers recently set out to try to get an idea of gluten levels in food being labeled and sold as 'gluten-free.' The good news is that that vast majority of gluten-free foods sampled in their small study were, in fact, gluten-free, and many registered detectable gluten levels far below the 20 ppm allowed by law. The research team tested three different samples of 112 separate products, for a total of 336 packages tested. They tested each sample twice, for a total of 672 extractions. Of the 112 products tested, 36 products (32%) were certified gluten-free by either the Gluten Free Certification Organization (32 products) or the Celiac Sprue Association (4 products). Only four products (i.e., bread, hot cereal, tortilla, cookie) from three manufacturers tested at or above 20 ppm gluten. Three of these products were not certified gluten-free; one product was certified gluten-free. While 9.4% of extractions contained quantifiable gluten, the vast majority of manufacturers are in compliance with the Food and Drug Administration’s gluten-free labeling rule. Overall, 97.5 percent of extractions tested below 20 ppm gluten. Of the extractions in compliance, 93% tested below 5 ppm gluten, which is the lower limit of quantification for the assay used. Based on the findings of this evaluation, many manufacturers are currently producing food that tests below the 20ppm threshold level of gluten that is currently allowed by the FDA. Gluten-free consumers can take comfort in the knowledge that the vast majority of manufacturers who are designating food as gluten-free are complying with the FDA’s labeling rule. Source: www.medicine.virginia.edu
Jefferson Adams posted an article in Celiac Disease Diagnosis, Testing & TreatmentCeliac.com 09/25/2008 - Mucosal inflammation of the small intestine, coupled with damage to intestinal villi, is a classic indication of celiac disease. Recently, doctors have begun to embrace the idea that some patients with positive celiac blood tests may have mucosal lesions that are too small to appear on routine histopathological analysis. In the first study of its kind, a team of researchers based in Ireland set out to analyze enterocyte morphology and cytoskeletal structures using a high content analysis technology. The research team was made up of doctors Bashir M. Mohamed, Conleth Feighery, Yvonne Williams, Anthony Davies, Dermot Kelleher, Yuri Volkov, Jacinta Kelly and Mohamed Abuzakouk. The team examined duodenal biopsies from 14 untreated and 10 treated celiac patients and from 20 non-celiac control subjects. They also investigated tissue sections from six study group subjects before and after the development of gluten-sensitive enteropathy. The research team used an anti-Î±-tubulin antibody to conduct immunohistochemical studies on paraffin-embedded tissue sections. They found important differences in enterocyte morphology and intracellular cytoskeletal structures in the patients with proven celiac disease and those in the study group. Moreover, the team observed that these changes existed in the study group prior to any indication of enteropathy, as determined by standard microscopy. This is the first time researchers have used high content analysis to show specific details of enterocyte morphology. Such an approach permits doctors to quantitatively analyze enterocyte intracellular structure from standard biopsy samples and allows for detection of minute changes that develop before the classic histological lesion. This process could become important for improving the diagnosis of celiac disease. If doctors can spot celiac-related intestinal lesions before they develop, they can begin to prevent celiac disease before it develops and thereby save lives. Central European Journal of Biology Volume 3, Number 3 / September, 2008