What is gluten? Isn't it surprising how many people ask you that question?
Here's our simple answer:
Gluten is the general name for one of the proteins found in wheat, rye and barley. It's the glue that holds together baked goods and pasta. It gives elasticity to dough, helping it to rise and to keep its shape, and often giving the final product a chewy texture.
Of course, those of us with gluten sensitivity know that it can also hide in other places such as "natural flavors," modified food starch, MSG, lecithins, textured vegetable protein, emulsifiers, soy sauce, prescription and over-the-counter drugs, even some vitamins. Did you know that you can even pick up traces of gluten by licking an envelope because the glue might contain wheat?
What are some of the other questions about gluten or celiac that you're most often called upon to answer? We'll do our best to provide simple answers -- and this is a good place for you to share yours.