Top 10 Things You Didn’t Know Had Gluten

I remember sitting in the room with my dietitian and the other people in the Celiac class.  There were a grand total of 3 people including myself.  She went through a brief list of foods that we could no longer eat.  Muffins, cookies, pasta, licorice…


Oh, don’t even go there.  Why in God’s name wouldn’t licorice be gluten-free?  Turns out it’s the second ingredient in most licorices.  I have not found a good or comparable gluten-free licorice to this day.  I kinda gave up.

Anyway, that was my biggest shocker.  Hard to believe, but I’m still finding things I didn’t know weren’t gluten-free.  Here is my top 10 list.

1.  Licorice.  You couldn’t tell that this one upset me, could you?  Wheat flour in licorice, come on…

2. Toothpaste.  You put it in your mouth so it should be pretty obvious, but for me it wasn’t.  Always check because even though you don’t swallow toothpaste (at least you shouldn’t be) it’s in your mouth.  There aren’t many that I’ve found, you should still check.

3. Make-up.  I just found this out last week. I haven’t had any problems with my make-up (that I know of), but the gluten still absorbs into you through the pores on your face.  Chapstick is a must to be gluten-free, as well.

4. Soy sauce.  Okay, am I the only one who was surprised how many different soy sauces have wheat in them!?  And do you know how many different things use soy sauce?  It’s ridiculous.  Gluten-free versions (natural or specially gluten-free) are out there, so don’t stress.  Just make sure you always read ingredients of premade things because they CAN contain soy sauce.

5. Imitation crab. Such a bummer, but this one is not gluten-free.  Real crab is gluten-free, though!  I know, I know, it’s not the same comparison, but it’s okay. 🙂

6. Barbecue potato chips.  Why only barbecue flavors?  I have no idea.  But, most, if not all barbecue varieties have wheat flour in their seasoning.  I have recently found that a few brands are, but they don’t say gluten-free right on the bag.  Always always always read the ingredient list on these.

7. French fries.  Now, french fries from restaurants are never trustworthy, but frozen french fries that are sneakily seasoned can and do have wheat.  Go for plain and simple fried potatoes and you’ll be in the clear.  Better yet, make your own!

8. Medicines.  If you haven’t checked this list, do it!  Gluten can sometimes be used as a binding agent in certain pills.  So check the list, find the medicines you use most often and toss out any that you can’t find on the list.  I swear.  RIGHT now.  You’ll regret it later when you’re trying to feel better and the medicine only makes you feel worse.  Or, if there are other people in the house, take a Sharpie and write on the bottle.

9.  Play dough.  I suppose this is only important if you have a small child with Celiac Disease or gluten intolerance, but I’m almost 20 and I still would like to play with play-doh every now and then.  It’s a good stress reliever, okay?

10.  Alcohol.  Obviously, beer: not a good thing for Celiacs.  But, many other alcoholic beverages are malt-based.  Do your research.  Lots of companies are coming out with gluten-free beers and ciders, so it’s getting better.  I’m not 21 until next year, so hopefully there will be some more options between now and then. 😉