Angela Wetzel
Free Press Health Columnist

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April 15, 2014
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Health Column: Gluten-free Easter treats

Easter is this Sunday, which means kids and some of us adults will be looking for candy to nibble on. Here are a list of gluten-free candies that are safe for you to put into Easter baskets.

Easter-themed Dove chocolate products, including Dove chocolate Easter bunnies, Dove egg-shaped candies and Easter-themed Dove bars.

Jelly Belly jelly beans, which includes the licorice-flavored jelly beans and all Jelly Belly-themed Easter packages

Most Easter-themed M&Ms chocolates, including M&Ms solid milk chocolate Easter bunny, M&M candies in Easter colors, and egg-shaped M&M candies.

Easter-themed Starburst candy, including jelly beans and special Easter candy packages.

Peeps marshmallow treats by Just Born.

Plain milk chocolate regular-sized Hershey’s Kisses in Easter-themed foil wrappers.

Kraft Bunny Mallows and Egg Mallows.

While Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups are gluten free, the egg-shaped ones may or may not be. Some websites say they are, some not. So stick with the regular shapes if you want some peanut butter and chocolate and avoid the gluten.

There is also a debate online on whether Cadbury Crème Eggs — my personal favorite — are gluten free or not. Some say that it depends on whether or not it was made in the United States among other reasons. Unfortunately, I would have to recommend that it’s best to stay away from these yummy treats to avoid side effects of being “glutened.” Please remember that it’s always best to check with the manufacturers on any of the above candies to be certain that they are gluten free.

For those health-conscious folks, give a gift card to their favorite coffee shop, a restaurant or a store. If you want to avoid candy for the kids, a fun new game could be a great Easter gift as well as books or stuffed animals. To keep everyone active, buy an outdoor game for the family or get creative with sidewalk chalk.

No matter what you put into the basket, remember to have a safe and fun Easter holiday with family and friends.

GJ Free Press health columnist Angela Wetzel has celiac disease and is president of Gluten Free Grand Valley, a support group for those with celiac disease and wheat allergies. Contact her at or visit Gluten Free Grand Valley on Facebook.

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