Monday, February 23, 2015

10 Symptoms of Gluten Intolerance


More than 55 diseases have been linked to gluten, the protein found in wheat, rye, and barley. It’s estimated that 99% of the people who have either gluten intolerance or celiac disease are never diagnosed.

Celiac disease can affect genetically predisposed people of all ages. Gluten sensitivity or intolerance is a condition that causes a person to react after ingesting gluten, a protein found in wheat, barley and rye.

Symptoms it could be a sign that you have gluten intolerance:

Digestive issues such as gas, bloating, diarrhea and even constipation.

Keratosis Pilaris, (also known as ‘chicken skin’ on the back of your arms). This tends be as a result of a fatty acid deficiency and vitamin A deficiency secondary to fat-malabsorption caused by gluten damaging the gut.

Fatigue, brain fog or feeling tired after eating a meal that contains gluten.

Migraine headaches.

Diagnosis of an autoimmune disease such as Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, Rheumatoid arthritis, Ulcerative colitis, Lupus, Psoriasis, Scleroderma or Multiple sclerosis.

Neurologic symptoms such as dizziness or feeling of being off balance.

Hormone imbalances such as PMS, PCOS or unexplained infertility.

Mood issues such as anxiety, depression, mood swings and ADD.

Diagnosis of chronic fatigue or fibromyalgia. These diagnoses simply indicate your conventional doctor cannot pin point the cause of your fatigue or pain.

Inflammation, swelling or pain in your joints such as fingers, knees or hips.

How to test for gluten intolerance?

Other diseases can produce the same signs and symptoms and can be confused with celiac disease (pancreatic insufficiency, Crohn's disease of the small intestine, irritable bowel syndrome, and small intestinal overgrowth of bacteria).

Blood tests: blood tests that are specific for celiac disease include antigliadin antibodies, endomysial antibodies, and anti-tissue transglutaminase antibodies. Blood is screened for AGA (Antigliadin) and EmA (Andomysium Antibodies).

Small intestinal biopsy: this procedure is considered the most accurate test for celiac disease. During the endoscopy samples of the intestinal lining are taken. Usually several samples are obtained to increase the accuracy of the diagnosis.
Single best ways to determine if you have an issue with gluten is to do an elimination diet and take it out of your diet for at least 2 to 3 weeks and then reintroduce it. In order to get accurate results from this testing method you must elimination 100% of the gluten from your diet.
How to treat gluten intolerance?

Eliminating gluten 100% from your diet means 100%. Even trace amounts of gluten from cross contamination or medications or supplements can be enough to cause an immune reaction in your body. An article published in 2001 states that for those with celiac disease or gluten sensitivity eating gluten just once a month increased the relative risk of death by 600%.

Guidelines of a gluten free diet include:
  • Avoid all foods made from wheat, rye, bran, enriched flour, bulgur and barley (cereals, breads, pasta, croutons, crackers, cakes, cookies..)
  • Avoid beer and other grain-based alcohol.
  • Avoid oats. Some oat preparations can be contaminated with wheat. In some cases small quantities of oats are allowed into the diet under medical supervision. Also some food products can be produced in facilities that manufacture gluten.
  • Use caution with processed foods that may contain gluten (canned soups, salad dressings, soy sauce, seasonings, ice cream, candy bars, instant coffee, ketchup, mustard, processed and canned meats, sausages...)
  • Read the food and product labels before buying or consuming any product. Manufacturers are required to provide information about the ingredients used to make their food products. Gluten containing fillers can be found in some prescription and over-the-counter medications. Gluten also can be found in many vitamin products, tablets, vitamin preparations and even cosmetic products such as lipstick, lip gloss, chapstick and toothpaste.
  • Avoid milk and other dairy products that contain lactose. Untreated individuals with celiac disease often are lactose intolerant. With successful treatment, dairy products can be reintroduced slowly into the diet.
  • Other cereals such as corn, millt, sorghum, teff, rice, and wild rice are safe for patients to consume. Non cereals such as amaranth, quinoa or buckwheat are also harmless.
  • Non-cereal carbohydrate-rich foods such as potatoes and bananas, tapioca, garbanzo beans are safe to consume. They do not contain gluten and do not trigger symptoms.

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