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Decoding Food Labels: A Quick and Easy Guide to Finding Gluten-Free Products

Updated: May 17

Your Step-by-Step Guide to Reading Food Labels for Celiac Disease


Have you ever found yourself staring at a food label, wondering if it's safe to eat with celiac disease? Follow this step-by-step guide to learn how to read and understand food labels to identify Gluten-Free items with confidence in under 1 minute!


By mastering the art of reading food labels quickly, you can confidently spot sources of gluten or cross-contamination, allowing you to enjoy a wide range of diverse, nutrient-rich foods while avoiding potential health risks and financial burdens.


3 simple steps to quickly and safely identifying gluten-free items

an infographic for 3 steps to follow to identify gluten free products

Step # 1 - Check for a Gluten-Free claim or logo


When you spot a gluten-free logo or claim on a product, it means that it has been tested for gluten levels less than 20ppm and is certified safe for people with celiac disease. Items with these claims are your safest bet and the gold-standard when it comes to celiac safety.


Step # 2 - Read the ingredients list


If there is no Gluten-free claim or logo (see step 1), scan the ingredient list to look for any gluten-containing ingredients (BROW+C: barley, rye, oats, wheat and corn). Oats and corn are naturally gluten-free, but need to be certified GF for celiacs due to the high cross-contamination risk during production. If you spot any gluten-containing ingredients, the product is not celiac-safe.


If there are no gluten-containing ingredients, move on to the warnings section (step 3)


Step # 3 - The warnings section


Look for "Contains" or "may contain" statements right after the ingredient list. If the product is not certified GF and has a warning statement for a gluten-containing ingredient, it is not celiac-safe.


If there are no gluten ingredients and no warnings for any gluten-containing ingredients. You're good to go!


Check out the flow chart below to see these steps in action:

gluten-free decision maker flow chart for reading food labels

Congratulations!


You're now on your way to mastering the art of selecting gluten-free foods like a seasoned pro and leveling up your gluten-free food game! Now you can dive into all sorts of yummy gluten-free goodies with confidence. Always remember to keep an eye on those labels (they do change from time to time without warning), pick what suits you best, and get ready to explore more delicious gluten-free options. So go ahead, savor every bite, and enjoy your gluten-free foodie journey to the fullest!


For more details and resources on reading food labels to identify gluten-free options, download my full label-reading guide here!



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