Celiac patients could eat Hydrolyzed wheat flour foods

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A recent study showed about three million Americans may have celiac disease.

Now people suffering from celiac disease may be able to eat baked foods made from hydrolyzed wheat flour, according to a study in Clinical Gastroenterology and Hepatology, the official journal of the American Gastroenterological Association (AGA) Institute.

Celiac disease is a digestive disease that damages the small intestine and interferes with absorption of nutrients from food.

People who have celiac disease cannot tolerate gluten, a protein in wheat, rye, and barley, according to the National Institute of Health.

"This is the first time that a wheat flour-derived product is shown to not be toxic after being given to celiac patients for 60 days," said Luigi Greco from the University of Napes, Italy, and lead author of the study.

Researchers recruited 16 patients ages 12 to 23, who were in good health at least five years on a non-gluten diet, to evaluate the safety of daily consumption of baked goods made from wheat flour.

Researchers fermented wheat flour with sourdough lactobacilli and fungal proteases to reduce the concentration of gluten.

"Prolonged trials have to be planned to underscore the safety of baked goods made by applying the rediscovered and adapted biotechnology of hydrolysis,” Dr. Greco added.

Gluten is found mainly in foods but may also be found in everyday products such as medicines, vitamins, and lip balms.

Stephen Lau and editing by Aimee keenan-Greene

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