Hot tea has gluten in it?!

Did you know that some hot teas hide barley malt in their "natural flavors"? 

My daughter was really sick this past week. It started with a bronchial virus and ended up as pneumonia fairly quickly. Her coughing fits were getting pretty bad and she was not a fan of honey water or the Zarbee's. I decided to try chamomile tea. The only kind we had in the house was Tazo tea. I caught myself before giving it to her and decided to look into the ingredients. Come to find out they hide barley malt in their natural flavors!! Sneaky and scary! 

A couple days later the doctor heard wheezing in her lungs and called in some Azithromycin for her to take or what many know as a "Z pack". I had gotten my daughter and son home from the doctor's office, fed them a snack then administered Hailey her medicine and within 10 minutes she was complaining of her stomach and throat hurting and within 30 minutes she violently thew it all up. She became very pale and almost immediately passed out around 5pm. Close to 11pm that night she made a mad dash for the bathroom but the sweet girl had nothing left in her system to throw up. It was awful seeing her once again with dark circles under her eyes, pale skin and looking miserable. 

The following day the doctor and the pharmacist did their best to hunt down an alternative antibiotic and had to call on Clarithromycin since it has maltodextrin in it. The manufacturer couldn't figure out if the maltodextrin was derived from wheat or corn, so the doctor decided to play it safe and not give it to her. So, another day passed and we had to put her on breathing treatments. The following day the doctor saw her again and decided to try Amoxicillin even though she wasn't convinced it would be strong enough to knock out her pneumonia.

I did do my own research on the ingredients. I also checked with a celiac Facebook group for the USA and Canada and about 10 people responded saying they struggle taking the Z pack meds too. The Azithromycin is gluten free from what we could all tell, so we are not sure why it causes so many issues for celiac's, including my daughter. It's a very potent antibiotic, that is for sure. 

Thankfully, we have turned a corner and her medicine seems to be working and her breathing is getting back to normal. Medicine sure can be something we take for granted until there isn't one we can take due to something like an allergy or celiac. We are grateful for the persistence of our doctor and her team and for our friends and family who said prayers for her this past week! 

*Here is an article we found that helped us pick some gluten free tea for our daughter: 


Shauna Futch