If you have wheat allergy, exposure to a wheat protein primes your immune system for an allergic reaction. You can develop an allergy to any of the four classes of wheat proteins — albumin, globulin, gliadin and gluten.

Sources of wheat proteins

Some sources of wheat proteins are obvious, such as bread, but all wheat proteins — and gluten in particular — can be found in many prepared foods and even in some cosmetics, bath products and play dough. Foods that may include wheat proteins include:

  • Breads and bread crumbs
  • Cakes and muffins
  • Cookies
  • Breakfast cereals
  • Pasta
  • Couscous
  • Farina
  • Semolina
  • Spelt
  • Crackers
  • Beer
  • Hydrolyzed vegetable protein
  • Soy sauce
  • Some condiments, such as ketchup
  • Meat products, such as hot dogs or cold cuts
  • Dairy products, such as ice cream
  • Natural flavorings
  • Gelatinized starch
  • Modified food starch
  • Vegetable gum
  • Licorice
  • Jelly beans
  • Hard candies

If you have a wheat allergy, you might also be allergic to barley, oats and rye — but the chance is slim. If you're not allergic to grains other than wheat, a wheat-free diet is less restrictive than a gluten-free diet.

Wheat-dependent, exercise-induced anaphylaxis

Some people with a wheat allergy develop symptoms only if they exercise within a few hours after eating wheat. Exercise-induced changes in your body either trigger an allergic reaction or worsen an immune system response to a wheat protein. This condition usually results in life-threatening anaphylaxis.

May. 17, 2014

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