Cross contamination is when your gluten free food comes into contact with gluten, which might not be obvious. For example, your gluten free toast may come into contact with gluten containing crumbs which have been left in the toaster.
Unfortunately, even the smallest amount of gluten may cause your symptoms to return in the short term, and, in the longer term, result in damage to the lining of your gut. If you continue to suffer from symptoms once you are on a gluten free diet, we suggest you make an appointment with your doctor or dietitian to discuss this. One of the main reasons for experiencing continued symptoms is due to cross contamination; however, it is important to be sure that this is the reason.
Avoiding cross contamination at home
Avoid cross contamination at home by following these tips;
Labelling and separating
- Label your containers with a colour or sign if they contain gluten free food
- If you have enough space, try keeping separate storage spaces for gluten free foods and gluten containing foods
- Keep gluten free foods at the top of the fridge – this ensures that crumbs from gluten containing foods from dishes won’t accidently fall into your gluten free food
- Have separate bread boards, bread knives and toasters for non-gluten free and gluten free use
- If you don’t have a second toaster, use toaster bags, which are available in many supermarkets
- If possible, have separate areas for food preparation
- Use separate butter or margarine tubs as knives can transfer crumbs from gluten containing bread
- Use a separate flour sieves and pasta strainers
Clean and cover!
- Cover the grill pan with foil
- Wipe surfaces thoroughly after preparing foods containing gluten
- Wash hands thoroughly before handling gluten free foods
- Wash any shared utensils thoroughly after each use (if you cannot use separate utensils for gluten free and non-gluten free food)
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