Having most of my family celiac, as well as myself, you would think by now I would learn the importance of reading labels. However, this past week while food shopping, I let go of my standard “read everything before it goes into my cart”.

My husband, a fellow celiac, really enjoys the Chex line of gluten-free cereals, especially the Cinnamon Chex. I bought the gluten free version several weeks ago and was thrilled to have found what I thought was the very same cereal in my local supermarket. My husband gobbled up the box in a very short amount of time. Along the way, he began having symptoms of contamination, such as abdominal pain, cramping and worsening Dermatitis Herpetiformis. We racked our brain to figure out the source of contamination.

One morning while he was sitting and enjoying what he believed to be a gluten free bowl of cereal, he was reading the box and looked a bit perplexed. He casually asked me if I was trying to “poison” him. I asked to see the box. Lo and behold, there were the dreaded words “barley malt”. I lost count at how many times I said I was sorry, but moreso I was angry with myself for not being more careful. The boxes look very similar, except that the one that I purchased had the words “gluten free” missing from the front of the package. Had I looked, I would have realized that it was the wrong version of the cereal he so enjoys.

So the moral of this story is not to get complacent or lazy. Continue reading your labels so you don’t “poison” someone you love!