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Gluten Free
Old 05-19-2015, 06:54 AM   #1
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Gluten Free

The subject came up when DW brought home some new (to us) foods, with the comment "Look... gluten free... and only a little bit more expensive than the regular foods that we buy."
"more expensive"... always makes me suspicious, as does the comment...
"well, it can't hurt to be safe".

The local HY-Vee market (equivalent to Whole Foods) now has a gluten free section that may be measured in several thousand square feet.

I try to keep an open mind on subjects like this, but when I found that my local Aldi's just introduced a new "gluten free" section, it was time to look harder at this new rapidly growing segment of the food business.

Skipping over the top Google sites about gluten free, I started out with Wikipedia... to see that the benefits of gluten free foods are for people with Celiac Disease... and further that those who have been diagnosed with Celiac Disease represent 1% of the popuation.

I followed up on this with visits to the major heallth clinic sites, to find that they basically disregard the instances of celiac disease but go to the benefits, never quite making any definitive connection between the claims made by the "wow" sites... that suggest cures for everything from old age to ingrown toenails.

This website seems to have a pretty good, balanced outlook.

Unraveling The Gluten-Free Trend - Food and Environment Reporting Network

I did a quick look here on ER, and found some older sites that did deal with celiac disease and gluten, but thought that given the rapid growth in the gluten free food market, the subject might benefit from a new look at the markting phenomenom.
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Old 05-19-2015, 06:59 AM   #2
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But, but......it's "Fashionable".
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Old 05-19-2015, 07:05 AM   #3
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Poor little glutens. I say stop eating them and set them all free, even if we have to pay a little bit more.
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Old 05-19-2015, 07:18 AM   #4
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Gluten free can (easily) be junk food in a 'healthy' wrapper.

Despite the protestation of the US Department of Agriculture, grains have never been a healthy food choice. Just eat real foods and avoid anything in a package that has an ingredients list.
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Old 05-19-2015, 07:37 AM   #5
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Yes, most packaged gluten-free foods are quite unhealthy, and gluten-free for most people isn't necessary at all. If you need gluten-free (as do my sister and I do) it's better to just eat naturally gluten free and minimize the processed food all together.

Though I do like being able to have bread or crackers once in a while so I do appreciate the increased availability of gluten-free products.

Most people do eat way too many carbs for their exercise levels. If only people would go sugar free, instead of gluten-free, I think that would help the health crisis more.
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Old 05-19-2015, 09:29 AM   #6
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Just another excuse/opportunity for the food/marketing industrial complex to shaft us.

For example, years ago we had food with real ingredients like sugar and natural flavor. The manufacturers, in our best interest, undoubtedly, "improved" their foods with high fructose corn syrup, artificial flavor, hydrogenated oils etc.

Did they charge us less? If so, I didn't notice.

When we finally complained and started wanting the real (or more real) food that we used to have, they raised their prices yet again (?) or shrunk package sizes.

I noticed the same excessive display in Aldi and I am wondering what they had to take off the shelf to accommodate this latest fashion trend for the 1%?
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Old 05-19-2015, 09:39 AM   #7
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Ford Motor had a billboard advertising one of their models here last fall.
At the bottom was the phrase "Gluten free"
Couldn't hurt, I guess.

My guess is it's just another fad for non-celiacs.
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Old 05-19-2015, 09:40 AM   #8
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There are some of us dealing with auto immune disease, and gluten can be a troublemaker.

I have been gluten free since Nov 2014 as instructed by my doctor. I face even more severe dietary restrictions once I return from my overseas trip as we try to nail down the culprits.

But I agree, gluten-free not necessary for most folks, and some food manufacturers are taking advantage of a fad - just like all those unhealthy fat-free and sugar-free foods.

But note that many natural whole foods are naturally gluten-free, and a manufacturer labels that on the packaging so that the folks who are severely gluten sensitive, like people suffering from celiac disease, can know it's OK to eat the product.

I appreciate the clear labeling.
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Old 05-19-2015, 09:44 AM   #9
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I bought pineapple juice at Haggen and they had a sign that said "Gluten Free"

People are so crazy now with marketing.


After seeing that, I tricked my wife by pointing to the bottled water and saying "wow, gluten free water"!
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Old 05-19-2015, 10:03 AM   #10
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There are some of us dealing with auto immune disease, and gluten can be a troublemaker.

I have been gluten free since Nov 2014 as instructed by my doctor. I face even more severe dietary restrictions once I return from my overseas trip as we try to nail down the culprits.

But I agree, gluten-free not necessary for most folks, and some food manufacturers are taking advantage of a fad - just like all those unhealthy fat-free and sugar-free foods.

But note that many natural whole foods are naturally gluten-free, and a manufacturer labels that on the packaging so that the folks who are severely gluten sensitive, like people suffering from celiac disease, can know it's OK to eat the product.

I appreciate the clear labeling.
For celiacs, the deep, dark jungle filled with landmines is the average restaurant. Wheat gets into everything, even soy sauce...
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Old 05-19-2015, 10:05 AM   #11
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Steak is gluten free!

I see so much weird "science" on Facebook: gluten this, GMO that, "natural" the other, anti-sugar but replaced with chemically identical sugars, "OMG, five foods to NEVER eat"...

There's a worldwide conspiracy to poison us, often brought to you by the same people who don't believe we landed on the moon...
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Old 05-19-2015, 10:18 AM   #12
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Right up there with "Fat-Free Food!" on the bag of Peppermint Patties, and "Naturally Gluten Free!" on bottled water. (I am not making these up). Gosh, you could put anything on water: sugar-free, fat-free, allergen-free, nitrogen-free....and "naturally" is the adverb of the moment.

I know a couple of people with celiac disorder. Gluten is poison to them. They love the anti-gluten fad because it's greatly expanded their food choices.

Last but not least: I love her dearly, and she's otherwise intelligent, but a friend is driving me up the wall with coconut this-and-that. Coconut oil prevents and cures Alzheimers, no less! Replace flour with coconut flour, and sugar with coconut sugar! The Philippines must be going nuts planting coconut palms these days. Why is the nostrum-du-jour always an oil, and a tropical one at that?
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Old 05-19-2015, 10:21 AM   #13
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Naturally...

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Old 05-19-2015, 10:30 AM   #14
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Rice and beans.

If it's good enough for Kung Fu masters and Lord Buddha, it's good enough for me.
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Old 05-19-2015, 11:00 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by bld999 View Post
For celiacs, the deep, dark jungle filled with landmines is the average restaurant. Wheat gets into everything, even soy sauce...
Wheat has been part of classically brewed soy sauce for at roughly 1000 years.

Ha
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Old 05-19-2015, 11:16 AM   #16
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What about bacon?
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Old 05-19-2015, 11:24 AM   #17
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What about bacon?
Bacon is gluten-free!!

Just don't bread it to deep fry it.
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Old 05-19-2015, 11:40 AM   #18
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Wheat has been part of classically brewed soy sauce for at roughly 1000 years.

Ha
No doubt, just a bit surprising when you first notice it. Soy sauce it says, not wheat sauce...
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Old 05-19-2015, 11:42 AM   #19
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For celiacs, the deep, dark jungle filled with landmines is the average restaurant. Wheat gets into everything, even soy sauce...
No - they simply can't eat out. Cross contamination is a real problem, even if the food items you order are naturally gluten-free.

We use Tamari at home - soy sauce without any wheat.

Most foods warn about soy, eggs, tree nuts, peanuts, wheat, and some other foods on their labels. They even note if the food was manufactured in a facility and might have trace amounts of those things. This is really important for people with severe food allergies.
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Old 05-19-2015, 11:49 AM   #20
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No - they simply can't eat out. Cross contamination is a real problem, even if the food items you order are naturally gluten-free.

We use Tamari at home - soy sauce without any wheat.

Most foods warn about soy, eggs, tree nuts, peanuts, wheat, and some other foods on their labels. They even note if the food was manufactured in a facility and might have trace amounts of those things. This is really important for people with severe food allergies.
Mexican is pretty safe.
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