Why are gluten cross-reactive foods on the Autoimmune Protocol List to avoid?

First, which foods are considered gluten cross-reactive foods? The following is a list of 24 potentially cross-reactive foods:

  • Amaranth
  • Barley
  • Buckwheat
  • Chocolate
  • Coffee (instant, latte, espresso, imported)
  • Corn
  • Eggs
  • Hemp
  • Milk (Alpha-Casein, Beta-Casein, Casomorphin, Butyrophilin, Whey Protein and whole milk)
  • Millet
  • Oats (2 different cultivars)
  • Polish Wheat
  • Potato
  • Quinoa
  • Rice
  • Rye
  • Sesame
  • Sorghum (often used as a sweetener or grain)
  • Soy
  • Spelt (Hulled wheat flour)
  • Tapioca (a.k.a. cassava or yucca)
  • Teff (an African flour)
  • Yeast

Why do these fall on the list? These foods are fairly stealthy in the sense that since antibodies only recognize short sequences of amino acids they can confuse the items on the list for foods with gluten. This accounts for multiple formations of antibodies against a single protein since several proteins have the same amino acid sequence.

For those of you that are gluten-intolerant or sensitive, this particularly includes those with celiac disease, grasping gluten cross-reactivity is very critical. When food is consumed that doesn’t technically contain gluten but has a similar amino acid sequence, as mentioned above, it can be confused for gluten and cause the same reaction! On the flip side, not everyone that is sensitive to gluten will have this problem but they should be vigilant to avoid stimulating the immune system.

Please be aware that if you do have gluten sensitivity you must be additionally attentive to the consumption of the following: corn, dairy, instance coffee, milk chocolate, millet, oats, potatoes, rice, soy, and yeast. Several of these ingredients like rice and corn are used as processing agents in a variety of products. They are often used to help with flow-ability through manufacturing equipment so it really serves no other purpose outside the manufacturing effort. They are so common that often they legally aren’t required to be listed on the ingredient deck of a product and some companies are completely unaware this happens. Rest assured that the Paleo Perfection Natural has no processing agent of any kind!

So what’s the moral of this story? If you have been living paleo and haven’t had success in overcoming the reactions to gluten-sensitivity then you may want to try eliminating those items on the lists above. You can also pinpoint particular foods to see if they are causing the problems rather than doing the full sweep of all those foods. The Paleo Perfection Proteins can help in the process and we encourage you to try! #primalhn