Gluten in my pills

November 11, 2016


Celiac disease is a chronic condition involving an abnormal immune response to the ingestion of gluten containing foods and products. 

This multisystem inflammatory response often leads to nutrients malabsorption, impaired drug absorption, reduced metabolizing enzymes and other factors which can affect drug response.


Currently, no medications are available to manage symptoms or prevent small intestine damage associated with gluten ingestion. The management of this chronic condition relies solely on avoiding gluten in diet, and products.


Medications, supplements, and vitamins can often be overlooked as a source of gluten, for that  reason some patients with celiac disease experience ongoing symptoms-although they are avoiding gluten containing foods and beverages.


The good news is that there are many resources available for patients, healthcare professionals and scientists. These resources provide information about common food and beverages that contain gluten, on how to read food labels and screen for food additives ( like stabilizers,...etc ) that may contain gluten.


Avoiding gluten in medications, OTC products, supplements and vitamins requires a different more thorough approach.

  • Investigate every oral product before ingestion for any ingredients and excipients that contain gluten

  • If a product has a new formulation, appearance, manufacturer reevaluate and screen for ingredients and excipients containing gluten

  • A product from a certain manufacturer that is considered to be safe for people with celiac disease does not mean that the same product made by a different manufacturer is safe too.

For prescription medications consult with your pharmacist or get in touch with the manufacturer for accurate sources of the inactive ingredients. The FDA and the National Institute of Health provide useful resources for prescription and nonprescription products.


Patients with celiac disease should always discuss any safety and efficacy concerns they have regarding their medications with a healthcare professional.


Elimination gluten from diet, medications and supplements is the cornerstone of celiac disease management,and may require significant lifestyle changes. Many community resources are available, for no or a small fee you can consult with a qualified healthcare professional who can identify products that may contain gluten by reviewing the contents of each product, contacting the manufacturer, utilizing internet resources, and recommend a gluten free product.


Disclaimer; the information presented in this article is not medical advice and it should be treated as such.


Ramzy Haddad, RPh

Health scientist & health hacker


Health Hacker I My goal is to assist people with decisions about nutrition, exercise and drug therapy to reduce their personal risk of injury. My favorite way to spend time is outdoor adventures and cycling.


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