Gluten-free diets are the primary treatment for celiac disease, as gluten tends to cause inflammation within the small intestines and can lead to serious complications. Gluten can be found in a number of things, including various foods. In addition, some medications contain certain levels of gluten. You don't have to stop taking these medications, as there are alternative options for you, but this will be touched on later. For now, here are a few foods that contain gluten that you may not immediately think of:
1. Soy Sauce
It often comes as a total surprise to people who need to follow a gluten-free diet that soy sauce contains gluten, especially those who like to hover over the buffet at their local Chinese restaurant. Luckily, you do have alternatives. Tamari soy sauce is a wheat-free sauce that often tastes better than the traditional stuff and won't harm your body. In other words, you can still enjoy your Chinese buffet, but you may have to talk to the owner and see if you can bring your own soy sauce into the building.
2. Ice Cream
Under most circumstances, ice cream does not contain gluten. So, it is extremely easy to get overly excited about being able to indulge in ice cream, which may be chocolate fudge brownie. This particular type of ice cream contains wheat because of the brownies, which means that this ice cream flavor is strictly off-limits. For that reason, it is imperative that you take the time to thoroughly check the label before picking up any tub of ice cream to make sure that it does not contain any type of gluten - even if you don't think that it does. Ultimately, you may be better off making homemade ice cream so that you know 100 percent what's in it.
3. Salad Dressing
If you're following a strictly gluten-free diet, you may find it difficult to find a dressing for your salad that does not contain gluten. Many dressings use gluten to thicken the dressing. Luckily, there are some brands that have gluten-free dressings. Like with the ice cream, though, you will find yourself in a better situation if you make your own.
Realizing that these foods contain gluten may help you understand that gluten can be found in anything, and these three food items are just the tip of the iceberg. Speaking to your doctor and checking ingredient labels are imperative to avoiding these foods. Further, if you take certain medications, many are made with gluten products, so it is crucial that you speak to your physician about any medications that you are taking. If you have a prescription for a medication that you must have, a compounding pharmacy may be able to take the gluten out of the medication so that you can still take it while you are trying to manage your celiac disease.
For more information, contact Hightstown Medical Associates or a similar organization.