Hidden Ingredients Got You Scared?

Do you read labels? Sometimes it's simply overwhelming!

Is ignorance bliss? Not when you have a food or ingredient related health issue!

Ever wonder if everything that goes into a product is in fact in that lengthy label?

What's the big picture here? Buyer Beware.


This isn't simply about gluten and gluten containing ingredients. This is about transparent knowledge of what goes into the products we use, the foods we eat AND the foods and products that we use on our children and our pets.

Foods containing gluten can range from the obvious - baked goods, breads and grains - to the seemingly safe - grated cheeses, soy sauce, salad dressings and processed meats.

As Celiacs or someone with a gluten intolerance or sensitivity, we have typically been told to be aware of ingredients in any products that we ingest, eat or consume. However, as we've learned, EVERY body is unique. It's critical to make educated choices that help us to stay healthy, vibrant and comfortable.

Inedible gluten-containing products include shampoos, conditioners, hair styling products, cosmetics, lip stick and balm, nail care products, soaps, lotions, sunscreens, laundry detergents and household cleaning products, pet foods, arts and crafts supplies.

Some of these products we may be ingesting unintentionally, in the form of residue or through unintentional means.

One example, hydrolized wheat gluten, is used as a volumizer and conditioner in everything from hair products to household cleaners and cosmetics (example Ecover Dish Soap). Ever have shampoo run into your mouth? Ever see dish detergent residue on your water glass? Just to be on the safe side, I would prefer to choose products that do not contain these ingredients.

Did you know, that some feminine hygiene products use a wheat derivative for their absorbent materials (example Seventh Generation)?

Below I've included a list with a few hidden Wheat, Grain and Gluten-Containing ingredients that might surprise you. This list is in no way exhaustive, but it's a start.

Possible gluten-containing ingredients in common cosmetic products:

Avena Sativa (Oat) Kernel Flour

Cyclodextrin Dextrin

Dextrin Palmitate (for use as non-edible form only, may not contain gluten) Hydrolyzed Malt Extract

Hydrolyzed Oat Flour Hydrolyzed Vegetable Protein

Hydrolyzed Wheat Flour Hydrolyzed Wheat Gluten

Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein/PVP Crosspolymer

Hydrolyzed Wheat

Hydroxypropyltrimonium Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein Laurdimonium Hydroxypropyl Hydrolyzed Wheat Protein Malt Extract

Secale Cereale (Rye) Seed Flour

Maltodextrin (for use as non-edible form only, may or may not contain gluten) Triticum Vulgare (Wheat) Germ Extract

Triticum Vulgare (Wheat) Germ Oil Triticum Vulgare (Wheat) Gluten

Triticum Vulgare (Wheat) Starch

Tocopherol (may or may not be ask manufacturer)

Tocopherol Acetate (may or may not contain gluten ask manufacturer)

Wheat Amino Acids

Wheat Germ Glycerides

Wheat Germamidopropalkonium Chloride

Wheat Protein Wheatgermamidopropyl Ethyldimonium Ethosulfate

Yeast Extract

The takeaway - Let's come from a place of knowledge and power - not fear!

Make sure to take a closer look at the products we're using (and those of our family members). Don't make assumptions! I was recently surprised to find a wheat ingredient in a lip gloss I had previously used...

Not sure? Best practice is always to contact the manufacturer directly, especially as sources change, ingredients shift and products hopefully improve!

Live Inspired Today Tips:

Some retailers, such as Whole Foods, will help you to contact the manufacturer. Find out if where you shop can help you to determine safe, allergen-free, gluten-free products.

If a retailer doesn't know the answer to your questions, let them know that you will discontinue use of their products until they can give you an answer.

If you continue to have a reaction after using a product, discontinue use for 7-10 days to observe what happens. Do this with 1 product at a time, so that you can clearly observe any changes.

Let us know what you find! Join our community on Facebook and find me here. Share your stories, comment or ask questions. Connect on Twitter @CleaShannon. See you soon!

In Health & Gratitude,