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Changing Gluten Free Levels in Food

May 27, 2013

You may have seen around social media that there are requests to make the gluten level in food products to 20 parts per million in order to declare them gluten free. In Australia they are currently at 5 parts per million (which to me is still too much).

Gluten Free food should be exactly that. GLUTEN FREE.

A coeliac has to eat a gluten free diet for life. Some parties say that once there food contains less than 20 ppm it will not affect a coeliac.

My body would like to tell them they are wrong. I have eaten food that is declared gluten free and has had lower than 5 ppm in it. I got sick. Kept eating. Kept getting sicker. My gastroenterologist told me to stop eating these foods. I did and what a surprise I got better.

I am fortunate is one sense in that I get sick when I have a crumb of wheat or gluten. I get sick when I eat glucose syrup from wheat, I get sick from cross contamination  I am fortunate because my body is telling me when I am eating something that will make me ill.

Some coeliacs are not so fortunate. They do not get symptoms all the time. They could be ingesting gluten and not get ill straight away. Trouble is they are doing internal damage. Their insides could be getting weaker and it may not be discovered until it’s too late.

These are the people that need protecting from the new proposed level of gluten in foods before being made gluten free.

Yes I do know that us coeliac’s have different levels of tolerance. Some of you can eat glucose syrup from wheat, some of you can have the Arnott’s rice cookies. Some of you will be able to eat food that contain ‘may contain traces of wheat or gluten’ on the packet.

My question is… can you really?

One of the ‘reasons’ reported for changing the levels is so they come in line with the UK and European levels. Seriously? If they all jumped off a cliff, would we?

If the levels get changed, we are going to see higher rate of illness and goodness knows what else in the future.

If you are like me and think that the levels should not be changed. Then please sign the change.org petition here.

Thank you!

  1. Mary Preston
    May 28, 2013 at 10:29 am

    This is madness. If anything the UK & Europe should be in line with us.

    I agree, Gluten Free must be just that.

    • nellbe
      May 29, 2013 at 7:53 pm

      Yes they sure should be in line with us, makes much more sense!

  2. May 29, 2013 at 7:56 pm

    Agree and am horrified by this. I will not be able to eat packaged food of any kind if this comes in, unless made in a dedicated g free facility (ie only a few specialty and highly $$ brands). I don’t react to 5ppm as you do, Nellbe, but I certainly do at 20ppm, as experience has shown me.

    Yes, I can live a healthy life eating only fruit, veg, rice, pulses, meat and fish. Of course I can and I’m still waaaay more privileged than the 30% of the world who struggles to eat at all. But I can’t deny it feels very marginalising and alienating.

    • nellbe
      June 2, 2013 at 12:39 pm

      It does feel alientaing for sure, the thing that upsets me is that Coeliac Aust (and states) are agreeing with the relaxing of the 5ppm. They really should be on our side. Many coeliac’s have other intolerance’s so it may further alienate them too.

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