I’m intrigued to hear your response about FOS, too, Able. I scanned our area for kefir w/o it, and finally found some, but MAN! I have to use a lot more stevia in that stuff than I want to use! It literally burns my mouth a bit w/o it. I don’t mind the taste of stevia in some things, but I would really prefer to use it only a few times a week, not in big amounts twice a day (when I take the kefir). I’m considering going back to the Helios w/ FOS just so I can drink it straight out of the carton. It’s still rather sour, but much more pleasant tasting than the plain kefir I’m using now.
On the oat – oat is not a wheat-related grain. It has no natural gluten in it. However, in the U.S. at least, it is nearly always grown and harvested right alongside wheat, so it gets contaminated in the farming process and winds up with gluten present in the packaging. Bob’s Red Mill has started selling *gluten free* oats, oat flour, and other oat products – grown on a farm some regulated distance from any wheat fields so that it can avoid contamination. My only concern with an oat product at this stage would be the introduction of gluten from cross-contamination. If you are 100% sure that none of your symptoms are aggravated by gluten sensitivity, it might not be a big deal. However, if you are one of the many people sensitive to gluten, even the trace gluten would pose a big problem, especially if you have a leaky gut that hasn’t healed.
I’ll have to look into certified gluten free oat bran. I’m not sure if they’re marketing it at this point. They only began selling the oats about 5 years ago.