Hidden Sources of Gluten

Many people are deciding to eliminate gluten from their diet, whether it has been advised by their healthcare practitioner, or they have done the research and decided that eliminating gluten from their diet will benefit them.  Many sources of gluten are obvious – the bagels and muffins, the pasta and cookies.  Yet gluten hides in the sneakiest of places.  In order to be truly gluten free and reap the health benefits of a gluten free diet, it is critical to recognize and avoid not only the commonly known sources of gluten, but the hidden sources of gluten as well.

Here are the most commonly discussed sources of gluten.

  • Wheat products
  • Rye products
  • Barley products

Here are some not so obvious places where gluten is present.

  • Bran
  • Couscous
  • Durum
  • Farina
  • Farro
  • Graham flour
  • Malt, malt syrup, malt flavoring, malt vinegar, malt extract
  • Matzo
  • Oats, unless labeled gluten free
  • Orzo
  • Semolina
  • Spelt
  • Tabbouleh
  • Triticale

Here are some places where gluten may be present.  If you are unsure, contact the manufacturer or avoid the product altogether.

  • Artificial flavors and colors
  • Beer
  • Breading
  • Broth
  • Caramel color or caramel flavor
  • Cereals
  • Emulsifiers
  • Flavored coffee and tea
  • French fries
  • Hot dogs and sausages
  • Hydrolyzed proteins
  • Imitation fish or imitation bacon bits
  • Lunch meats
  • Medications
  • Modified food starch
  • Natural flavors or natural colors
  • Pie fillings
  • Rice mixes
  • Rice pilaf
  • Salad dressings
  • Sauces and marinades
  • Seasoning mixes
  • Smoke flavoring or liquid smoke
  • Soups
  • Soy sauce
  • Vegetarian meat substitutes
  • Worcestershire sauce


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