Uncle Ben’s Recall Brings Attention to Gluten Sensitivities

PLAINVIEW, NY – A recent food recall shows how diligent people with celiac disease and gluten sensitivities need to be, says a New York clinical dietitian.

Mars Food North America voluntarily recalled two lots of its Uncle Ben’s Ready Rice Garden Vegetable with Peas, Carrots and Corn pouches because there was barley in the rice mix, thereby no longer making them gluten-free. A Mars spokesman said these pouches were found in some New York-area Walmarts, but the affected products have been removed.
To see if  you or a loved one has been affected by this recall click here.
Celiac disease and gluten sensitivities have to do with an allergy a person has to the protein in oats, wheat and barley, explains Karen Wolff, registered dietitian at Plainview Hospital. People who have these issues and their loved ones need to vigilantly read food labels and ask questions about how their food is prepared. The incidence of celiac disease has gone up four fold since 1950, according to research done by the Mayo Clinic.
“Certain restaurants are certified gluten free; those are the safest,” Ms. Wolff said. “Cooking at home is the best. Keeping a gluten-free house -- separate pots, toaster oven, things like that. And it’s just a matter of reading labels and being very careful about that.”
The signs and symptoms of a gluten sensitivity or celiac disease include bloating, diarrhea, fatigue and headaches after the consumption of food with these proteins.

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