Is Cheese Gluten Free? Understanding Gluten in Food

These days, an increasing number of people have begun making the switch to a “gluten-free” diet for numerous reasons. In response to the higher demand for gluten-free foods, suppliers have also begun to make gluten-free versions of their products or even advertise their existing products as being gluten-free. But what, exactly, does it mean to eat a gluten-free food, and why do some people avoid gluten in their own diets?

What Does “Gluten Free” Mean?

Gluten, in a scientific sense, is simply a combination of two different proteins; these proteins give shape to foods and act as a sort of glue that holds them together. This is especially true in elastic foods, such as pizza dough or pasta.

What Kinds of Foods Have Gluten?

Most often, gluten is found in starches, such as wheat, rye and barley. Some of the more common foods that contain gluten, then, are:

  • breads
  • French fries
  • cold cuts
  • soups and broths
  • marinates/dressing
  • ice cream

Even some non-food products, such as shampoos and cosmetics, can contain gluten. As you can imagine, for somebody on a gluten-free diet, it can often be difficult to find foods that are safe for consumption.

Why Do Some People Avoid Gluten?

So, just why do some people need to avoid gluten in their diets? Is it really necessary? Unfortunately, yes; some people’s bodies are naturally intolerant to gluten. The most common example of this is found in people who suffer from Celiac disease. Those with Celiac disease have a difficult time digesting gluten in the small intestine as a result of an immune reaction. As a result, they experience severe discomfort and pain if they eat foods with gluten.

Some people, on the other hand, aren’t officially diagnosed with Celiac disease but still prefer to avoid foods with gluten due to an intolerance.

Is Cheese Gluten Free?

You may find yourself wondering, “is cheese gluten free?” Generally, most cheeses that you’ll find both in grocery stores and even boutique shops will be gluten-free, but this won’t be the case 100% of the time. When shopping for gluten-free cheeses, it’s always best to look for cheese in its most simple form (made with basic ingredients, such as milk and enzymes). Once you start buying cheeses that have additives such as preservatives, herbs, and spices, the risk of the cheese containing gluten becomes much higher.

If you’re looking for gluten-free cheese and don’t want to take any risks, consider visiting a boutique store that specializes in gluten-free and organic foods; these stores will be less likely to carry foods that have preservatives or other added ingredients that could contain gluten. More than likely, a good number of their foods (including cheeses) will be explicitly labeled as “gluten-free,” or they may even have a section of the store dedicated to gluten-free items.

As you can see, there’s a lot to keep in mind and many precautions that must be taken when you’re on a gluten-free diet. You must always be asking questions, such as, “is cheese gluten free?” to avoid eating something potentially harmful.

Now that you have an understanding of gluten-free diet, if you have questions about any of the products produced by Clover Milk, please feel free to contact us. You can also use our Store Locator tool to find a store near you that carry Clover’s products.