Is glucose syrup derived from wheat safe for people following the gluten-free diet and are there any exceptions?

As a coeliac who has type 1 diabetes, this topic is close to my heart, as glucose is the preferred hypo treatment for its fast action. As coeliacs though, it’s always of concern when we see the word “wheat” on a label. You’ll be pleased to know that when it comes to glucose, the processing involved has made the product safe for coeliacs to consume.

It’s the same story with other “oses” (from wheat) including dextrose, fructose and maltose. Also in this highly-processed bunch sit caramel colour (150), sorbitol, maltitol 965, glucono delta-lactone E575 and glutamate-based flavours 620-625 that all may have wheat in brackets, eg, (wheat), after them.

It’s likely that we’ll start seeing less of the “from wheat” in products containing glucose (from wheat) as there’s been a change in labelling made by FSANZ. As result of this change, manufacturers are no longer required to declare when glucose syrup is wheat-derived if detectable gluten levels in the glucose syrup do not exceed 20ppm.

According to Coeliac Australia, the majority of wheat-derived glucose (at least 90%) contains no detectable gluten and that less than 10% of wheat-derived glucose might contain up to 10ppm of gluten (extremely low levels).Also, don’t forget that all food labelled gluten-free in Australia must have no detectable gluten levels.

Of course, the choice to consume or avoid these products remains up to the individual, but if you’re unsure about what’s right for you, please talk to your Accredited Practising Dietitian.


Sally Marchini is an experienced Accredited Practising Dietitian (APD) who combines professional qualifications with personal experience of type 1 diabetes and coeliac disease to give her a unique insight into the issues faced by people living with chronic and complex health conditions.