What foods should I avoid if I have celiac disease?


Individuals with celiac disease can’t tolerate specific proteins, collectively called “gluten” that are found in the grains, wheat, barley, rye, and triticale (a cross between wheat and rye). When these individuals consume gluten, it triggers an inflammatory response in their bodies that damages the lining of the small intestine and interferes with the digestion and absorption of the nutrients in food.

Gluten can also be added to foods, such as soup, cold cuts, seasoned frozen vegetables, and even products such as vitamins and lipstick. Consequently, reading ingredients labels when shopping and dining out are mandatory to avoid even a morsel of gluten.

If you need to avoid gluten in your diet, you may want to consult with a registered dietitian who can help you plan a healthy, well-balanced, gluten-free diet. You can find a registered dietitian at:  www.eatright.org.


Sari Greaves
Nutrition & Dietetics
If you have been diagnosed with celiac disease or gluten intolerance, you should follow a gluten-free diet. Gluten-free food contains no barley, rye or wheat. Code names for wheat include semolina, durum, graham, and enriched flour. Consumers should also know that the malt in most beer is made from barley and foods like bouillon cubes, cold cuts, hot dogs, sausage, gravy, rice mixes, soups, and soy sauce may have hidden gluten ingredients such as vegetable protein and wheat starch.
Robynne K. Chutkan, MD
The goal for all of us should be to avoid packaged, processed foods and ingredients, not to swap one for another. If you have celiac disease, you should be avoiding cookies and bagels, not eating the gluten-free version. Just like if you have diabetes, I'd recommend avoiding candy instead of eating sugar-free sweets on a regular basis.

There's nothing wrong with trying a gluten-free diet, but if you think you may actually have celiac disease it's important to get evaluated by a gastroenterologist.
Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease)

If you do have Celiac disease, a gluten-free diet is the key to relief because currently there is no cure. The main foods to avoid are:

  • Bread, crackers
  • Cereal
  • Pasta
  • Cookies, cakes and pies
  • Gravies/sauces with flour

Certain types of grains, such as amaranth, buckwheat and quinoa are gluten-free: but be sure the label says gluten-free because cross-contamination can easily occur if these products are manufactured in the same factories or settings as gluten grains.

This content originally appeared on doctoroz.com

Continue Learning about Celiac Disease

Celiac Disease

Celiac Disease

Celiac disease is an inherited, auto-immune disease affecting the lining of your small intestine. If you have celiac disease, it means that your body cannot process gluten, which is found in any food containing wheat, barley or ry...

e. While symptoms vary from person to person, many patients will complain of gastrointestinal problems. Anemia is also a very common presenting symptom of celiac disease. A life-long gluten free diet is the standard of care for treating celiac disease.

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.