State representatives introduce a bill to support people living with celiac disease.
“Just as consumers deserve to know if their food contains gluten, it is critical that consumers know if medications contain gluten.” It is this rationale from New York Democratic State Representative Nita Lowey that put a bill in motion which would require drugs to disclose any gluten-containing ingredients. Democratic Ohio State Representative Tim Ryan is also backing the bill.
So why is gluten used in medications? Manufacturers use excipients to bind pills together and help deliver the medication to patients. There are a few different kinds of excipients and some of them may contain gluten. While few medications do contain gluten, it is still essential for people with celiac disease and non-celiac gluten sensitivity (NCGS) to ensure their medications are gluten-free, as no study has yet to be completed to determine if the amount of gluten in a medication is enough to cause negative reactions.
In 2011, the National Foundation for Celiac Awareness (NFCA) received a $50,000 grant from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to fund the first scientific research surrounding gluten in medications. The goal of this ongoing study is to determine if the amounts of gluten in medication is enough to harm consumers living with gluten-related disorders.
NFCA is excited to follow this story and see how the bill progresses. Keep an eye on Celiac in the News for updates as they are available!