HuffPo has a really good entry today about gluten. More news outlets are starting to pay attention to this problem, which is good. Wheat and other gluten-containing grains are like sugar; if they were discovered today, there is no way they would pass approval as foods without some “payola.” The only reason this stuff is in the supermarket is bad, old habits and lack of interest in finding out what problems that are causing.
…most doctors are only now starting to realize that some people who don’t have celiac disease may benefit from diets free of (or low in) gluten.
In fact, experts now believe that celiac disease represents just one extreme of a broad spectrum of gluten intolerance that includes millions of people like Cooper with less severe — but nevertheless problematic — reactions to the protein. While celiac disease affects about 1 percent of the U.S. population, experts estimate that as many as 10 percent have a related and poorly understood condition known as non-celiac gluten intolerance (NCGI), or gluten sensitivity.
“This is something that we’re just beginning to get our heads around,” says Daniel Leffler, M.D., an assistant professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School and a gastroenterologist at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, in Boston. “There is a tight definition of celiac disease, but gluten intolerance has been a moving target.”
Growing awareness of gluten sensitivity has led some people who struggle with gut problems but have tested negative for celiac disease to take matters into their own hands and try a gluten-free diet, even though it’s an extremely difficult diet to follow. Sales of gluten-free products increased 16 percent in 2010, according to the Nielsen Company.
“Gluten is fairly indigestable in all people,” Leffler says. “There’s probably some kind of gluten intolerance in all of us…”
People who are having undiagnosed stomach or bowel problems should start their troubleshooting by eliminating gluten for a week or two and see what happens. You don’t need a doctor’s appointment or a test. Just stop eating the stuff and see how you feel. You might be surprised.
Another issue with this gluten intolerance is that it caused general inflammation in the gut that you might not even feel, but your body is fighting it all the time. As a result, your immunity is compromised because your body is doing battle all the time. Another HuffPo blogger, Dr Mark Hyman has written about this before-
Something you’re eating may be killing you, and you probably don’t even know it!Share on Facebook
If you eat cheeseburgers or French fries all the time or drink six sodas a day, you likely know you are shortening your life. But eating a nice dark, crunchy slice of whole wheat bread–how could that be bad for you?
Well, bread contains gluten, a protein found in wheat, barley, rye, spelt, kamut, and oats. It is hidden in pizza, pasta, bread, wraps, rolls, and most processed foods. Clearly, gluten is a staple of the American diet.
What most people don’t know is that gluten can cause serious health complications for many. You may be at risk even if you don’t have full blown celiac disease.
In today’s blog I want to reveal the truth about gluten, explain the dangers, and provide you with a simple system that will help you determine whether or not gluten is a problem for you.
The Dangers of Gluten
A recent large study in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that people with diagnosed, undiagnosed, and “latent” celiac disease or gluten sensitivity had a higher risk of death, mostly from heart disease and cancer. (i)
This study looked at almost 30,00 patients from 1969 to 2008 and examined deaths in three groups: Those with full-blown celiac disease, those with inflammation of their intestine but not full-blown celiac disease, and those with latent celiac disease or gluten sensitivity (elevated gluten antibodies but negative intestinal biopsy).
The findings were dramatic. There was a 39 percent increased risk of death in those with celiac disease, 72 percent increased risk in those with gut inflammation related to gluten, and 35 percent increased risk in those with gluten sensitivity but no celiac disease.
This is ground-breaking research that proves you don’t have to have full-blown celiac disease with a positive intestinal biopsy (which is what conventional thinking tells us) to have serious health problems and complications–even death–from eating gluten…
Here’s some news that is no surprise at all to people who have learned it the hard way-A lot of people with intestinal problems do better when they cut out wheat/gluten, even if their doctors says that is not what it is. For people that have inflammatory bowel syndrome, Crohn’s, Ulcerative Colitis, or similar autoimmune problems, wheat/gluten is on the short list of things to eliminate when people start troubleshooting what foods are causing them problems.
From the Wall Street Journal, via Marksdailyapple.com-
Lisa Rayburn felt dizzy, bloated and exhausted. Wynn Avocette suffered migraines and body aches. Stephanie Meade’s 4-year-old daughter had constipation and threw temper tantrums.
All three tested negative for celiac disease, a severe intolerance to gluten, a protein found in wheat and other grains. But after their doctors ruled out other causes, all three adults did their own research and cut gluten—and saw the symptoms subside.
A new study in the journal BMC Medicine may shed some light on why. It shows gluten can set off a distinct reaction in the intestines and the immune system, even in people who don’t have celiac disease.
“For the first time, we have scientific evidence that indeed, gluten sensitivity not only exists, but is very different from celiac disease,” says lead author Alessio Fasano, medical director of the University of Maryland’s Center for Celiac Research.
The news will be welcome to people who have suspected a broad range of ailments may be linked to their gluten intake, but have failed to find doctors who agree…
Here’s another helpful summary:
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Autoimmune diseases are illnesses characterized by an overactive immune reaction in which the body attacks its own tissues and cells as if they were foreign invaders.
Normally, the human immune system is designed to protect the body by reacting to invading microorganisms, such as viruses or bacteria. In its defense of the body, it produces antibodies, also known as immunoglobulins (Ig for short). These Ig antibodies are proteins with specific structures, which under normal conditions, only attack and kill invading germs.
But in autoimmune disorders, these antibody proteins go rogue and attack the very tissues and organs that they are meant to protect. In other words, rather than simply attacking and killing invading germs, the body’s immune system attacks the body itself, causing inflammation, organ damage and in severe cases, death…