One Size (Doesnt) Fit All
Comments (10)Posted by Living Without special projects editor Laurel Green
You know those dresses or bathrobes that claim, “One size fits all”? Well, they lie. They don’t fit a 5-foot, 2-inch 90 pounder and at the same time fit a 5-foot, 11-inch 300 pounder. They just fit most of us.
I find the same principle is true of food. When I eat eggs in cakes or cookies, they only show up on my hips. But if I eat fried eggs, in particular, fried eggs served on styrofoam plates at a well-known fast-food place, my face immediately looks like “Strawberry Fields Forever.” My answer? Avoid fried eggs, especially fried eggs served at that place on styrofoam.
Removing all names, a recent poster on Living Without’s website wrote: “I'd be very careful about using XXX’s gluten-free oats. I was so happy to find what I thought was a gluten-free oatmeal only to become very, very sick after eating it. I personally would never use this product again.”
Like the shortlist of manufacturers of certified gluten-free oats, the company that produces this particular product has gone to the trouble of certifying its oats as gluten free. This company states, “Our oats are pure. They are grown by over 200 farmers on clean, dedicated oat-growing fields. They plant only "pedigreed" seed stock. Each farm delivery is sampled hundreds of times and tested with an R5 ELISHA gluten test to ensure the absence of gluten. Advanced color-sorting removes undetected impurities. Roasting enhances that wholesome, robust flavor you expect. The oats are packaged in our 100% gluten free facility and tested for gluten again to ensure their purity.”
Most gluten-free people, including those with celiac disease, would not have a reaction consuming a reasonable amount of certified gluten-free oats. But a tiny minority would. (Celiac expert Stefano Guandalini, MD, says that less than 1 percent of celiacs show a reaction to large amounts of gluten-free oats in their diet.)
Why might a person react? Maybe it’s the increase in dietary fiber (oats are extraordinarily fiber rich). Or maybe the person is sensitive to the avenins (proteins) in oats. Or maybe they’re intolerant or allergic to oats. Or maybe they’re sensitive to the ultra-low ppm gluten that slipped under the GF-certification radar.
In a sense, does it matter? (Yes, consulting with your doctor is essential. Yes, an official food-allergy diagnosis is helpful. But you know what I mean.) If oats make you ill, avoid them. If anything makes you ill, avoid it. Know your body. Do the detective work on the products you consume. Read every label, every time.
One size doesn’t fit all. What works for someone else—or maybe almost everyone else--may not work for you.
For more about gluten-free oats, including how much experts say most celiacs can safely consume each day, click here.