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Reading Labels: 4 Easy Steps to Label Reading

Blog – May 14

When my daughter was first diagnosed, I thought I would never be able to figure out the labels to know what was safe or not safe. There were so many ingredients I had never heard of. In fact, the first time I went to buy baby cereal, I cried in the aisle of our local grocery store while I called every dietician’s number I had saved in my phone. I was so overwhelmed. It took some time (and lots of additional calls to our dietician) but I did eventually learn. So here are some tips to navigating label reading:

  1. Make sure you have the most recent dietary guidelines. You can always find the latest and greatest on the Galactosemia Foundation website.
  2. Look for “milk” in the bold allergy statement at the bottom of the list of ingredients
  3. If there isn’t an allergy statement it’s USUALLY an indication that it’s safe, but not always. Companies aren’t required to have the allergy statement if it’s listed in the ingredients.
  4.  Look through the ingredients and compare it to the dietary guidelines to see if there are any unacceptable ingredients.

A couple other things to note:

MAY CONTAIN: If the product has a “may contain” statement, it is allowed if there are no unacceptable ingredients listed. This is just another way of the company saying it is made in the same facility or on shared lines as dairy products.

Changing ingredients: You will find brands and products that are safe and end up being your go tos. But companies can change ingredients at any time, so it is important to continually check the ingredients list, even of your favorite “safe” products.


Diet Guidelines

Learn more about a Galactosemia-friendly diet.