About 1% of the population suffers from gluten intolerance. Gluten intolerance is an adverse allergic reaction to gluten, a protein found in rye, wheat, and barley.
Of those with gluten intolerance, some develop celiac disease while the remaining population only demonstrates non-celiac gluten allergic reactions.
Whether celiac or non-celiac, gluten intolerance can have severe effects including digestive problems, chronic fatigue, depression, autoimmune disorders, muscle and joint pain, and more.
Although we mostly focus on the negative effects of gluten in the food we eat, this protein can also be a problem in common personal care products such as sunscreen.
For people who are allergic to gluten, regular non-gluten free sunscreen may cause symptoms such as rashes, dermatitis, and worsen conditions such as acne and psoriasis.
If you are gluten intolerant, you should consider using gluten-free sunscreen to avoid the general adverse effects of this protein.
On the other hand, truly gluten-free suntans can protect your skin from harmful UV rays and minimize the risk of adverse reactions.
Why You Should Choose Gluten-Free Sunscreen
If you have gluten intolerance, you may wonder why you need gluten-free sunscreen when you are only applying to the skin and not ingesting the product.
The truth is sunscreen, which typically contains some gluten can find its way to your mouth in one way or another.
For examples, when you are swimming, some amount of sunscreen will drip down to your mouth area and could end up making its way inside your mouth.
Handshakes, towels, volleyballs, and all the items we handle during a typical summer when we use sunscreen the most can increase the risk of ingesting gluten.
If you touch any of these items and by chance place your hands on your mouth, traces of gluten can enter your mouth and have severe consequences.
You might think that small amounts of gluten cannot be as bad as eating a whole slice of wheat bread. However, some studies show that even traces of ingested gluten can increase an individual’s risk of developing a leaky gut, with the presence of celiac disease increasing the risk of adverse reactions.
Exposure to gluten, from any source, can predispose you to a leaky gut, which further increases the risk of developing serious autoimmune diseases.
The Problem With The Gluten-Free Industry
Would it not be nice if you could just walk down the aisle of your local store or go straight to your online shopping site, check for a gluten-free sunscreen, buy, and start using happily ever after?
Unfortunately, things are not always that easy. The problem is you cannot always tell whether a product is gluten-free just by looking at the label.
Just because a product does not include gluten as one of its ingredients does not mean the product does not contain gluten.
To make matters worse, some of the most common sunscreens we use and think are gluten-free are actually not tested for gluten!
These products do not contain gluten as an active ingredient but their manufacturers have not gone to the extent of testing for gluten and can therefore not make a certain claim that their product is free of gluten.
Case in point: Coola Suncare, Neutrogena, Banana Boat, Solskyn, and Hawaiian Tropic among others may not contain gluten as an active ingredient but these products have not been tested for gluten and can therefore not make a ‘gluten-free’ claim because of the possibility of cross-contamination.
The Best Gluten-Free Sunscreen
Fortunately, some sunscreen brands have actually tested their products for gluten and they can say with certainty that they are 100% without gluten protein.
These are certainly in the minority but they are without a doubt the best gluten-free sunscreens for those who are adversely allergic to this protein.
So, below we recommend some of the best sunscreens that do not contain gluten.Table could not be displayed.
Sunscreen is an important part of a healthy skin care regime. If you have adverse allergic reactions to gluten, regular sunscreen may not be a good choice.
Instead, consider sunscreens that have been tested for gluten and declared completely gluten-free.
Remember, just because a line of sunscreen does not list gluten on the product label does not mean the product is automatically gluten-free. If you are unsure whether a product is completely free of gluten, call the manufacturer to find out.