Healthy Living

The Challenges of Being Catholic with Celiac Disease

Is low gluten hosts an option?

The memo that went out to Catholic bishops in July spoke primarily about gluten-free communion hosts not being valid, not necessarily low in gluten.  This is an important distinction to make because low gluten hosts or those made with traces of gluten are in fact allowed in the Catholic Church.

The Food and Drug Administration states that food, including communion hosts, that contains less than 20 parts per million of gluten is considered to be low gluten, while the Celiac Support Association puts their seal of approval on food that has less than 5 parts of million of gluten.  Basically, this means that the trace amount of gluten that is found in low gluten food is minimal and relatively safe for celiac patients to consume.  All recognized low gluten communion hosts fall within the ranges stated above.