Gluten-Free vs Gluten-Friendly Selections at Fresh and Natural
Gluten-Free vs. Gluten Friendly
The food groups that do NOT have gluten in them are fruits, vegetables, meats and fats. Thus, gluten is found typically in baked products or snacks, breads, pastas that have been made with flours or grains made from wheat, barley, spelt, rye, kamut, or eikhorn . Wheat being the most common flour used containing large amounts of gluten. The only grains that do not contain gluten are rice, oats, quinoa, amaranth, farro and teff.
In 2014, the FDA came out with a definition of “gluten-free” for food manufacturers who wanted to use the term on their labels. The set of guidelines they provided for gluten-free labeling also applies to restaurants and bakeries that wish to use the term “gluten-free” on their menus or menu boards.
Let’s take a look at the official guidelines so you can ensure your gluten-free products are in line with the FDA’s standards:
- The food item must be inherently gluten-free (i.e. a food that naturally doesn’t contain gluten, like tea, coffee, or fruit).
- The food item must be free of any gluten-containing grains, including wheat, barley, spelt, rye, kamut, or einkorn.
- The food must not contain any substances made from gluten-containing grains that have been processed to remove the gluten (i.e. wheat starch).
- The food item has fewer than 20 ppm of gluten if it is prepared in a gluten-containing facility where cross-contact may occur.
It’s important to keep in mind that since gluten-free labeling in restaurants and bakeries is voluntary, establishments do not have to label their foods as gluten-free even if they meet the above criteria. There is no designated gluten-free symbol, nor a specific place where the gluten-free claim must appear on your menu or menu board.
Gluten Friendly: This is a term used by many restaurants that specialize in gluten-containing foods (i.e. pizzas, sandwiches, etc.) but also offer gluten-free options. It implies that the food may not be entirely gluten-free because it is prepared in the same kitchen as gluten-containing foods but that it is okay for those with mild gluten sensitivities
Made Without Gluten: This term indicates the product was intentionally made without gluten while leaving room for the fact that cross-contamination could have occurred.
Wheat-Free: Wheat has the highest concentration of gluten of all grains, and many people who are sensitive to gluten do consume grains with lower gluten content, like spelt, rye, and barley. Just remember that just because a food is wheat-free does not mean it is gluten-free.
For Baking Purposes
There are several gluten-free flours that can purchased to use in place of wheat flour when baking. The following is a list of of a few of the many gluten-free flours that can be found at Fresh & Natural Foods:
Cup 4 Cup Multipurpose Flour Gluten Free
Bob’s Red Mill 1 to 1 Baking Flour
King Arthur’s Gluten Free All Purpose Flour
Pictured below are several frozen as well as fresh gluten-free products available at Fresh & Natural Foods as well. To name just a few: tortillas, english muffins, donaus, bagels, bread, pizza, and pot pies.
Take a look around and you will find there is much available for your gluten-free needs at Fresh & Natural Foods. Don’t forget there is a large selection of the naturally gluten-free food products such fresh or frozen fruits, vegetables, meats and fats available as well gluten-free grains (i.e., rice, quinoa, amaranth). Have fun exploring!
Author: Michelle Hanson
Michelle Hanson, MA, RD, LD is Fresh & Natural Food’s Registered Dietitian. She received a Bachelor of Science degree in Nutrition and Clinical Dietetics with a minor in Community Health from the University of Minnesota – Twin Cities. She is a registered dietitian and current member of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Michelle has been a nutrition consultant for numerous years as well as a nutrition research director at the University of Minnesota – Twin Cities.
Michelle is passionate about food and nutrition and believes in helping people find simple, realistic ways to make healthy eating a part of their everyday lifestyle.
If you are interested in meeting Michelle or have questions for her, you can email her at: firstname.lastname@example.org. She will look forward to meeting you!