How to get gluten free in Australia?
How to avoid getting gluten from your food sources article Food and drink source ABC News (AU) title Are you gluten intolerant?
article Are you experiencing symptoms of celiac disease?
article Aussie food industry and gluten experts agree, according to the Australian Food Institute’s annual gluten sensitivity survey.
The results from the survey show that about one in six people in Australia are gluten intolerantly, with about one-third of people being found to be intolerant.
The survey also found that a quarter of people in the survey said they had had symptoms of food allergies, with one in three being found sensitive.
Dr Julia Pritchard, a food science specialist from the University of Queensland, said she had not been able to find the right word to describe how sensitive people were.
“Gluten sensitivity is a real issue for people, and it’s not just for people who are sensitive to wheat,” she said.
“I think it’s very much in people’s minds.”
Dr Pritcherson said people with food allergies were more likely to have symptoms like diarrhea and vomiting and were less likely to get the disease themselves.
“They’re more likely if they have some other food allergies like hay fever or wheat allergies,” she explained.
“People who are allergic to wheat, which is the most common type of food allergy, can be sensitive to other wheat.”
Dr Richard Walker from the Australian Centre for Disease Control and Prevention said the number of people with gluten sensitivity was increasing and it was a very serious problem.
“It’s one of the worst health problems for people in this country,” he said.
Dr Walker said it was important to identify foods that were not safe to eat and to have a gluten-free diet.
“If you’re a gluten intolerent person, if you’re not sensitive to gluten and you can’t get your food to go down the wrong route then you need to be aware of what you’re eating and when you eat it,” he explained.
The ASI survey also revealed that a third of Australians have had symptoms like constipation or bloating and that one in five people had had a stomach bug.
Dr Pita Fadnavis, from the Centre for Food Safety, said there was a real danger that people with these symptoms could get the illness themselves.
She said people who were found to have gluten sensitivity could be at risk of developing Crohn’s disease or anorexia.
“That’s one thing that we’re finding is that people who have been diagnosed with Crohn or ulcerative colitis and who have symptoms of bloating or constipation may also be at high risk of actually developing anorexic syndrome,” she told 7.30.
“There’s no evidence that those people are actually consuming gluten, but they’re actually consuming an in-situ gluten source.”
Dr Fadnsavis said the survey showed people should be mindful about what foods they eat.
“You’re not eating all of it,” she warned.
“What you should be focusing on is what’s in your diet.”
Dr Walker recommended that people avoid eating foods with gluten that had been processed or prepared in a way that made them more likely have the disease.
“The food is really going to make your gut and the body respond to the gluten, so it’s probably best to avoid processed foods,” he advised.
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