I thought that this was extremely interesting. It has been written to the BMJ - helping doctors make better decisions. Just in case the link to this letter doesn't work effectively I have included the whole letter below but please try the link and, if possible, read the original article to which this answer was directed.
"Living with coeliac disease
Re: How gluten free should a coeliacs diet be?
5 March 2001
As a dietitian diagnosed with coeliac disease myself, I am often called on to discuss the condition - or offer my opinion regarding its management.
There appears to be some division regarding the appropriate diet for people diagnosed with coeliac disease to follow, with the idea of a `low- gluten' diet (ie - allowing oats, wheat-based thickeners, malt etc.) to be included in the diet.
Have any long-term studies been performed to conclusively show that this dietary approach is a safe as a `gluten-free' diet? Until such evidence is available, I would consider it appropriate for people with coeliac disease to follow a gluten free diet - omitting wheat, barley, oats, rye, and triticale.
Recommendations for `low-gluten' diets (including the inclusion of oats) are creating confusion for people with coeliac disease. Until more conclusive evidence is available, I would consider the gluten-free diet most appropriate for people with coeliac disease.
While the food labelling system can still be improved, with good education on the part of dietitians, GP's, gastroenterologists and support from regional Coeliac societies the gluten-free diet is certainly not as difficult to follow as it is often made out to be, as substitutes for most gluten-containing products can be located.
Dietitian - Warwick / Stanthorpe Hospitals, Australia"
Competing interests: None declared