Eat­ing gluten-free? Be­ware at restau­rants

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One-third of sup­posed “gluten-free” restau­rant meals ac­tu­ally con­tain trace lev­els of gluten, ac­cord­ing to a study con­ducted by Columbia Uni­ver­sity’s Celiac Dis­ease Cen­ter. More than 800 in­ves­ti­ga­tors per­formed 5,600 gluten tests in restau­rants over 18 months and found that 27 per­cent of break­fast meals and 35 per­cent of din­ners la­beled gluten-free ac­tu­ally con­tained gluten. For the 1 per­cent of Amer­i­cans liv­ing with celiac dis­ease, this is of con­cern be­cause even a tiny amount of gluten can se­verely dam­age their in­testi­nal lin­ing.

There are cur­rently no fed­eral reg­u­la­tions on gluten-free claims in restau­rants, so if you have celiac dis­ease or are sen­si­tive to gluten, be vig­i­lant when din­ing out: Ask ques­tions about food prepa­ra­tion, and con­sider bring­ing a gluten sen­sor such as Nima ($289, ni­masen­sor.com) or EZ Gluten test kits ($60 for a five-pack, ezg­luten.com).

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