Grain is one of the main culprits for foodborne illness outbreaks in Canada, according to experts.
It’s one of many foods that people get sick from, said Dr. Robert Lippman, the director of the Centre for Food Safety at Queen’s University in Kingston, Ont.
He’s the co-author of a study that shows how people can avoid eating grains.
The researchers looked at how often people eat a grain-containing product, such as bread or pasta, and what types of foods are served.
Here’s what you need to know.
Who is at risk?
People with food allergies are at greater risk.
People with wheat allergies are twice as likely to have a food-borne illness than those with a milk-based allergy, said Lipper.
People who have been diagnosed with wheat allergy have a three times higher risk of developing food-related illness.
Why are grain products so important?
Lipperman said grain products contain a lot of different ingredients.
In addition to wheat, the researchers found some other grains, such red rice and brown rice, may also contain gluten.
The most important thing is the type of grain, he said.
“The most important part of a grain is its gluten content,” he said, adding that the type and quantity of gluten can also affect how a food is digestible.
For example, he explained that if you eat brown rice with brown sauce, the brown sauce will affect how quickly the rice absorbs water and it will turn white.
“It’s the way in which it absorbs water, and that’s how it will make you sick.”
How can I avoid grains?
Lipsman said the best thing to do is to avoid all grains, even if it means avoiding certain types of bread.
“Just try to avoid everything that’s gluten-containing,” he advised.
“That’s really the only way to really avoid it.”
For those who don’t have a gluten allergy, Lippler said avoiding grains can be a good thing.
“You know, grains are one of those things that’s pretty important,” he added.
“They make a lot more calories than other foods.
They’re the main source of protein, so they’re one of these foods that you need if you want to be able to get the nutrients you need.”
Lippers findings were published in the journal Food Allergy and Clinical Immunology.
The Canadian Food Inspection Agency said it has been working with the university and food safety experts to understand the potential for cross-contamination of grain products in the United States.