More frequently, reported by the media, health professionals and the food industry itself, gluten free oats, otherwise known as uncontaminated oats, are being marketed under the gluten free label. This may seem like totally unimportant news to the general population, but to the diagnosed celiac, this news gives them just one more item they can use in their daily diet without restrictions.

But, just how safe are the gluten free oats?

The word has been whole grain oats themselves actually have none of the gluten peptide. Arguments, of course, follow this line of thinking also. But the common problem, as told, has always been the almost impossible task of preventing the risk of cross-contamination. All of those “amber fields of grain” we Americans are so proud of grow side by side in an industry that lacks a total sense of control. Common deterrents may include:

wind currents or water run-off from field to field create toxicity for the allergen communitycross-pollination because of the birds, the bees, the wildlife or man himself as he treks from field to fieldharvesting equipment sharing the same equipment from different fields, thus different types of grainstorage capabilities, transportation equipment and processing machinery (the milling process itself) all share the same machinery.

Thus, it is pretty obvious, the chance of cross-contamination has a very high risk indeed. But carefully monitored fields, equipment, and processing practices by some participating vendors are now stating the gluten contact has now been eliminated.

For many people with celiac disease, important vitamins and minerals plus a healthy dose of daily fiber can be missing from the daily diet only because most gluten free flours have only trace amounts of these qualities. Oats themselves is considered a broad-spectrum supplier of many of these key nutrients. Having the capability of using fresh whole grain oats can only be considered one giant leap of nutrition for a strict gluten free diet.

But does this mean you should rush out and buy some?

No!! Then why not?

Although preliminary research is showing some favorable results for some people, many others are still reporting adverse reactions to gluten free oats. Some safety pointers to keep in mind for your situation, ask and answer these questions first.

How long has it been since my diagnosis?Have you had at least one year’s worth of positive follow-up appointments with your doctor/allergist?Are you currently comfortable health-wise since your diagnosis and transition to the new lifestyle?What is your satisfaction level like with your current selection of daily food choices?

If you can honestly say to yourself you have reached the stage you are comfortable with your gluten free lifestyle, your doctor’s appointments have been on track and you desire just to give them a try, talk it over with your doctor first for their guidance.

Start very slowly using less than a 1/4 cup per day. Build this up to approximately 1/2 to 3/4 cup, if desired. Reduce all of these quantities for kids by at least 50%. Just keep in mind, as gluten free oats become more popular, the food industry itself has taken notice also. This is a new opportunity for them also in food production. If you purchase store-bought goods, always confirm by reading that ingredient label. You could be ingesting oats daily without your knowledge.

That one cookie for a snack, the breakfast/protein bar, the ground meat in the casserole at dinner, plus any other item you did not make yourself from scratch may have gluten free oats as an ingredient. All of these must be claimed also in your daily totals.

So, if oats initially seem to be a troublemaker for you, log it with date, time, amount per serving and any comments or pertinent details. This information then needs to be passed along to your doctor. Unless, otherwise directed, avoid this new item in your diet again for about 6 months before trying any re-testing.

About The Author:Kathi Robinson
Whether you are a diagnosed celiac or just gluten intolerant, both of these conditions need to remove all gluten from their diet. Start at