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Six things about gluten


Gluten = glue
The name is borrowed from the Latin word glūten, which translates to glue. Foods produced from wheat and related species of grain contain gluten, a protein composite that provides elasticity in dough and is responsible for giving many wheat products a chewy texture.

No animals necessary
Gluten is able to provide supplemental protein to products that would not normally contain any, such as imitation meats.

Early discovery
Gluten was discovered by Buddhist monks in the seventh century. The monks, who followed a strict vegetarian diet, were on the hunt for a source of protein and realized that when dough was submerged in water the starch washed off and they were left with a textured, gummy mass that resembled meat.

It doesn’t work for everyone
Approximately one in 133 people are gluten intolerant.

Check your labels
In Canada, food products containing gluten levels higher than 10 ppm must be clearly labelled.

Gluten-free zone
Celiac disease is a genetic condition caused by a class of gluten protein known as gliadin. If exposed to gliadin, the immune system cross-reacts with the small-bowel tissue, resulting in an inflammatory reaction. Those diagnosed with Celiac disease must adopt a gluten-free diet, but the condition is not to be confused with a wheat allergy. V

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