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The Gluten in Ezekiel Bread

by
author image Andrea Cespedes
Andrea Cespedes is a professionally trained chef who has focused studies in nutrition. With more than 20 years of experience in the fitness industry, she coaches cycling and running and teaches Pilates and yoga. She is an American Council on Exercise-certified personal trainer, RYT-200 and has degrees from Princeton and Columbia University.
The Gluten in Ezekiel Bread
Wheat kernels are ground into flour for traditional breads. Photo Credit jeka1984/iStock/Getty Images

Ezekiel sprouted grain bread products, made by Food For Life, are flourless breads. Because the grain used to produce them is not ground, sprouted grain breads usually still contain gluten-containing grains, such as wheat, barley and spelt. Food for Life does make gluten-free products, but Ezekiel bread, muffins and tortillas are not among them.

Significance

If you are gluten intolerant or have celiac disease, you must avoid wheat, barley and rye because they contain gluten, a protein that disturbs your digestive tract. For the gluten intolerant, symptoms such as bloating, gas, diarrhea and fatigue are uncomfortable, but not permanently damaging. If you have celiac disease, eating even trace amounts of gluten sets off an autoimmune response that destroys the villi in your small intestine -- leading to malnutrition and potentially cancer, osteoporosis and other autoimmune conditions in the long run. The claim that Ezekiel bread is flourless could be confusing if you avoid gluten.

About Ezekiel Bread

Ezekiel bread contains wheat, barley, beans, lentils, millet and spelt. Unlike traditional wheat or white bread that is made from kernels of grain ground into flour, Ezekiel bread uses these grains after they have sprouted -- or started the germination process. Because it combines legumes and grains in its dough, Ezekiel bread contains more amino acids than traditional breads. More amino acids means the sprouted bread has more protein, especially valuable to vegetarians. Ezekiel bread is a whole-grain product and counts toward the minimum three 1 oz. servings the U.S. Department of Agriculture recommends you consume every day.

Gluten-Free Products

Food for Life makes gluten-free breads, English muffins and tortillas. These are sold with a label that clearly states they are gluten-free. If you must eat gluten-free but would like to consume sprouted grains, the company also makes a yeast-, wheat- and gluten-free corn tortilla that includes sprouted corn as the main ingredient.

Easily Digested

If you avoid gluten because of an intolerance and not celiac disease, consult your doctor about trying Ezekiel or other sprouted grain breads. Sprouted grain may be easier to digest than traditional flour breads and may not cause some of the symptoms associated with traditional wheat. During sprouting, an enzyme destroys the growth inhibitor that prevents grains from germinating without proper conditions. The starch stored inside the seed becomes available to the growing plant -- and to you -- in a more readily digestible form.

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