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Frequently asked questions (FAQ)
about gluten and gluten intolerance

WHAT IS GLUTEN?

Gluten is a mixture of two proteins present in cereal grains, especially wheat, where this protein complex comprises 75–85% of the total protein in wheat.

WHAT GRAINS CONTAIN GLUTEN?

Cereals grains that contain gluten include the following:

  • Wheat (including Spelt, Durum, Semolina)
  • Rye
  • Barley

WHAT GRAINS ARE GLUTEN-FREE?

The most common grains that are naturally gluten-free are:

  • Maize (or corn)
  • Rice
  • Sorghum
  • Millet

DO OATS CONTAIN GLUTEN?

Oats are not related to gluten-containing grains such as wheat, barley and rye. They do not contain gluten, rather proteins called Avenins, which are similar to gluten. However, according to Coeliac UK, research has shown that most people with coeliac / celiac disease can tolerate oats. The challenge however arises when oats are produced / transported in the same place or same time as wheat, barley and rye, as the oats can become contaminated with these other gluten-containing grains.

The TrueEarth™ Breakfast Rings contain certified gluten-free oats.

WHAT IS GLUTEN INTOLERANCE?

If a person has gluten intolerance, it means that the gluten protein causes them digestive problems such as gassiness, abdominal pain or diarrhoea. Gluten intolerance is sometimes confused with Celiac disease, which is more severe than intolerance.

HOW DO I FIND OUT IF I AM GLUTEN-INTOLERANT?

Please consult a physician or simply try our products and see how good they make you feel!

WHAT IS CELIAC / COELIAC DISEASE?

Celiac disease is an autoimmune disease where the ingestion of gluten leads to damage in the small intestines lining, which leads to medical complications, including malabsorption of some nutrients. Treatment can help, but this condition is largely understood to be incurable.

The classic symptom is diarrhoea. Other symptoms include bloating, wind, fatigue, low blood count (anaemia) and osteoporosis. 

The core part of treatment is a strict gluten-free diet that can help manage symptoms and promote intestinal healing.

The disease requires a medical diagnosis, lab tests or imaging.

IS WHEAT INTOLERANCE THE SAME AS GLUTEN INTOLERANCE?

Not necessarily; you could be wheat intolerant but happy to eat rye or barley products, for instance. In that case, you are not gluten intolerant but there is an aspect of wheat that you are intolerant to, not its gluten content.

In most cases however, gluten intolerance and wheat intolerance are the same.

WHAT DOES IT MEAN WHEN FOOD IS GLUTEN-FREE?

According to South African legislation, food is considered gluten-free if it contains no more than 20 parts per million (ppm) of gluten. That level of gluten is considered to be safely below the level that people with gluten intolerance and Celiac disease can react to.