Is that gluten-free meal you're ordering really free of gluten?

October 08, 2018 - 3:36 pm

NEW YORK (1010 WINS) -- Is that gluten-free meal you're ordering at a restaurant really free of gluten?

If it's pizza, probably not.

A new study by researchers at Columbia University Medical Center found that almost a third of foods labeled gluten-free contained gluten. That number went up to 53 percent when it came to Italian food and -- specifically pizza.

"Contamination happens during the heating process,” Benjamin Lebwohl, MD, a gastroenterologist at Columbia University Medical Center said. "Pizza contamination comes from shared ovens. Your gluten-free pizza goes in and it touches the same surface that a gluten-containing pizza did."

The same thing happens with pasta if the same water was used to cook regular pasta.

Researchers analyzed data from more than 800 users of a portable gluten-detection device called the Nima, according to an article in Everyday Health.

Even eating one meal containing gluten, a protein found in wheat, rye and barley, can affect people with the Celiac Disease, according to the study.

Lebwohl suggests asking questions about how your food is being prepared to be safe.