Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Label Reading 101

You will add a new skill to your lifestyle: label reading!

Gluten No, No’s: wheat (semolina, durham, spelt, etc.), rye, barley.

Casein No, No’s: milk, casein, caseinate, cream, butter, ice cream, sour cream, cheese, milk chocolate etc.

Thanks to the new FDA rules, you can scan the bottom of the ingredients and in bold it will list the allergens like: “Contains milk, soy, wheat etc.” Glance there first and if any “no, no’s” are listed, you have your answer. But if nothing is listed in bold, go a step further and read each ingredient.

Some things to remember: “lactose-free” is not the same as “casein-free.” Lactose-free “may” be casein-free too, but the label should explicitly say so.

Kosher is good. Anything certified as “Kosher pareve” is probably safe for GFCF’ers. Remember, “they answer to a higher authority!”

Vegan is good. Vegans do not consume anything that comes from an animal, not even milk or eggs. Vegan food products will be casein-free, though not necessarily gluten free.

GFCF Mommy’s Golden Rule: if you see an ingredient you can’t pronounce and you never heard of before, FORGET ABOUT IT!!! It is better to keep it simple.


Cynthianne said...

Thank you for all the tips - we are ready to begin our GFCF diet with our four year old autistic son!

Lynn said...

I keep kosher and I am concerned about the statement that "Anything certified as “Kosher pareve” is probably safe for GFCF’ers." NOT TRUE! Pareve simply means no meat or dairy ingredients. It DOES NOT mean "gluten free". This is great for someone concerned about DAIRY ingredients, but it is of no help for anyone concerned about gluten. PAREVE DOES NOT MEAN 'GLUTEN FREE'.

If you keep kosher, you do not mix meat + milk. Therefore, anything that might be eaten with meat must be milk free or "pareve" - even the bread. Which means I can't eat a hot dog or a hamburger on a bun that contains any dairy ingredients. However, please note these "pareve" buns do contain gluten.

Also, I recommend even if it says "Pareve" - READ THE INGREDIENTS! Unfortunately mistakes do happen. SO BE VERY, VERY CAREFUL!

GFCF Mommy said...

Thank you, Lynn, for making these important corrections to my post. I appreciate it. It is always best to read ingredients no matter what.