Probiotic Supplements Tainted With Gluten: What to Look Out For

Probiotic Supplements Tainted With Gluten: What to Look Out For

Source: Source: Dana Angelo White, MS, RD, ATC| July 2015 | 3 min read

Many celiac sufferers opt to take supplemental probiotics to help ease digestive woes. Recent research finds that more than fifty percent of US-sold probiotics contain traces of gluten.

Key Points

  • The new study was lead by Dr. Samantha Nazareth of Columbia University Medical Center. Findings were presented at the Digestive Disease Week meeting in Washington, DC.

  • This study was prompted by Nazareth’s previous research that determined many celiac patients using supplements have more persistent symptoms.

  • Nazareth and colleagues tested a total of 22 products.

  • Fifteen of the tested products (or 55 percent) contained traces of gluten.

  • Four products exceeded the FDA limit of 20 parts per million and two of those products were specifically labeled gluten free.

  • Researchers conclude that avoiding mega doses of supplements may protect celiac suffers since 10 milligrams of gluten exposure a day is considered a threshold for damage.

    Key Takeaways

    Many celiac patients turn to probiotics to help manage digestive discomfort, but there are reasons for concern. Not only are dietary supplements not held to the same standards as prescription and OTC medications, there is evidence of gluten contamination even in products that are labeled gluten free. If you are considering or currently taking a probiotic, be sure to contact the manufacturer to confirm there are no traces of gluten in it.


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