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Corn Gluten - Is it Safe for a People with Celiac Disease Who are on a Gluten-Free Diet?

The term gluten in reference to the cohesive, elastic protein mass remaining after starch is washed from a dough goes back to Beccari in 1745. Strictly speaking, gluten is found only in wheat because it is difficult to wash a cohesive protein mass even from rye, the closest relative to wheat, let alone from barley or oats or anything else. Unfortunately, a misuse of the term by the corn industry has become common in recent years. It has become fairly common to call corn storage proteins corn gluten. Personally, I think there is no justification for such usage. Corn may contain prolamins, as does wheat, but not gluten.

When it comes to celiac disease, a similar corruption of the term has become very common. There are certain related proteins in wheat, rye, and barley that give rise to particular peptides during digestion that are capable of triggering the responses typical of celiac disease. Only in the case of wheat can these be strictly considered to be derived from the gluten proteins. But for lack of a suitable term, patients and their physicians began speaking of gluten-free or gluten-containing foods. People ask me, How much gluten is there in quinoa? I have to translate this into, Are there any harmful peptide sequences in the proteins of quinoa? There is nothing in quinoa that is like gluten prepared from a wheat flour dough, which has an unusual, perhaps unique, viscoelastic character.

In any case, as far as we know, corn does not seem to cause harm to celiac patients. Corn has not been studied in the extensive way that wheat has in relation to celiac disease, but for 40+ years patients and their physicians have seemed to agree that corn is OK. The sequences in the corn zein (prolamin) fraction are suspicious, but they do differ in an apparently crucial way from the protein sequences of the wheat gliadin (prolamin) fraction. There have been no modern biopsy-based studies of the effects of purified corn proteins on the celiac intestine as there have been for wheat, but the mass of evidence still seems to point in the direction of corn being safe for celiac patients.

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99 Responses:

 
Eileen Swanson
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said this on
13 Nov 2007 3:47:11 PM PST
Anyone else have problems with corn? I am aware that it is not gluten, but after my celiac disease diagnosis I slowly became more sensitive to other foods. Rice first. (ouch) Then corn. Soy. Tomato. Besides the yeast, dairy, eggs, acidic foods...

 
sylvia
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said this on
05 Dec 2009 5:26:05 PM PST
Response to Eileen Swanson who seems to think she is allergic to corn, rice, soy, tomato, yeast, dairy, eggs, acidic foods....Goodness, this sounds like a perfect reason to create food out of cardboard....

 
Juggernaut
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said this on
27 May 2011 5:55:43 PM PST
Sylvia, you obviously are not and do not have a loved one who is stricken with celiac disease. Otherwise you'd not makes such an insensitive comment. What an idiot! Do yourself a favor, read some book on the disease, try to cultivate some degree of compassion for others. Otherwise you're just an empty vessel and waste of life.

 
Heather
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said this on
27 Aug 2011 6:53:29 AM PST
Juggernaut, I am celiac and I think that Sylvia's comment is hilarious. Especially before diagnosis I felt like that a few times. At one point I didn't want to eat anything cause I was sick all the time!! If only they made food from cardboard!!! But after diagnosis I have slowly started to love food again and appreciate a lot more fruit and veggies.

 
Naomi
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said this on
21 Apr 2013 4:00:33 AM PST
Better yet, Ms. Sylvia should stay off this website and others like it. I do not have celiac disease or any other disease that I am aware of, but I'm sure those that do are already frustrated and upset with having to remove a list of items from their daily diet. Especially cases like Eileen, who also have an intolerance to dairy, eggs and other foods. Furthermore, those who suffer with a condition such as celiac disease are probably even more frustrated with having to take drugs to replace the nutrients from said foods and their benefits.

A perfect example of kicking someone while they are down. I am becoming very upset, so Ill just wish good luck and good health to everyone who is suffering from an ailment.

 
JuJuBee
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said this on
04 May 2014 4:41:59 PM PST
Being newly diagnosed with celiac disease, Thank you for your post.

People who do not know or do not take the time to research before they post come off as insensitive.

 
atheist lady
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said this on
12 Apr 2015 3:43:53 PM PST
Thank You, I have severe celiac and Stills and nerve damage etc. Checking for MS now. Thanks for being logical and supportive to Eileen.

 
Bridget
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said this on
15 Aug 2013 2:31:06 PM PST
Very well said!!!!!

 
Saesae
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said this on
10 Sep 2014 12:33:35 AM PST
I don't know Sylvia personally, so I don't know the motive of her comment. With all the sensitivities and allergies that people have toward various foods, it almost -- almost -- sounds like a reasonable suggestion, joking of course. About 1% of Americans and Britons suffer from celiac disease, which requires a gluten-free diet. However, I think I read somewhere that 57% of people who buy gluten-free products do so because they believe these items are healthier for them. They are not. Most people benefit from products such as whole wheat, barley, and rye, etc. Those who suffer from celiac diseases and similar maladies benefit from gluten-free diets -- not everyone.

 
Bragladish
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said this on
24 Jan 2012 12:04:01 PM PST
Sylvia, there's a difference between food sensitivity and an allergy. Food sensitivities can cause a wide variety of symptoms like dander, bloating, headaches, sore joints, poor mental clarity, exhaustion, malnutrition, weight gain, irritability, poor memory, gas, diarrhea, etc. If you have a sensitivity, that doesn't mean you can never eat that food again, it just means you have to stop eating it for a period of 6 months to a year, to let your body heal. Then you can eat it again.

 
Bridget
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said this on
15 Aug 2013 2:29:56 PM PST
You are a sad person...

 
atheist lady
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said this on
12 Apr 2015 3:42:08 PM PST
I hope you get Eileens type celiac so you can understand and become a better person. I'll pray you do.

 
wowser
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said this on
18 Apr 2015 2:21:50 PM PST
Whom are you praying to, atheist lady? I don't believe Sylvia meant any harm in her comment. Dietary issues are horrible to live with and difficult to get under control, but you must have a bit of levity with things, otherwise you will go insane.

 
Lisa
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said this on
26 Jul 2010 3:18:33 PM PST
Get checked for Mastocytosis. This is how mine started. First Wheat, then rice, then soy, then corn, beef, pork, milk, eggs, chocolate, tomato and finally onions. I ended up enteral feed until I got it under control. I still have flares.

 
Tomo Lennox
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said this on
07 Jan 2012 10:01:28 PM PST
I have had celiac for several years, but the gluten-free diet was only slightly helpful. Over the years I "scientifically" identified dozens of foods that don't work for me, but the list makes no sense. Recently I got and additional diagnosis of Fructose Malabsorption. This helps explain many of the things I can't eat, and also suggests many things that I eat lots of (Fruit, onions, garlic, vegetables, honey...)that I should not have been eating. Now, when I stick to the GF and MF diets, I really can eat most of the things I thought were bothering me. Most of my list was bad science from making too many assumptions. I am in the process of retesting everything. I still might have a problem with cornstarch and yeast, but almost everything not on the GF or FM list now seems to work.

 
renee
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said this on
28 Oct 2012 9:16:19 AM PST
You know, I just read about how fatty acids in products like coconut oil work with different sugar usage and such. You might want to explore the idea for food combinations. Coconut oil is curing Alzheimer's: they are thinking Alzheimer's disease is like a brain starved of sugars it can absorb. Thus, it is kind of similar to diabetes. By aiding in sugar absorption in the brain, maybe we're curing Alzheimer's. Maybe some of these issues are about what foods you are eating and in what combinations. Also, I personally am convinced that your MTdna is the key to how we should eat, as that is the way we are adapted to eat in our very cells by our direct ancestors before us. You might want to take a trip into understanding that concept a little bit.

If we have not been consuming food we need or are geared for, it may set us up for some major imbalances. Just a thought.

 
Holly
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said this on
07 Oct 2015 3:22:28 PM PST
I'm glad you are feeling better and finding things that work to help you manage your celiac symptoms. I was diagnosed with Celiac, plus, GERD, gastritis, duodenitis, etc., with a plethora of symptoms in January, but have suffered for over 7 years. Gluten free was not enough. I took a blood test and started working with a nutritionist at which point I ended up in the ER with Edema. That was when I broke down and prayed for God to people give me answers. I felt like it was something simple, like being deficient in something. I live a health lifestyle, so my health issues did not make any sense. After a lot of prayer and trial and error, I went from feeling like I was dying to feeling youthful again. I hope sharing what has worked for me with help others. We are all different, but it was through talking to others and sharing our successes that allowed me to manage my health issues and pretty much feel normal, again; except for gluten. Prayer is a very powerful thing and we must never giving up hope that we will find what works for us.

 
vernon
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said this on
12 Feb 2011 1:43:39 PM PST
I have had extreme problems to the point of just eating white rice and a potato. I started drinking 6 oz Kefir a day and 2 to 3 oz potato juice in 2 to 3 oz hot water a day. After a month I am now eating a much bigger and varied diet.

 
Glynis
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said this on
26 Jun 2011 4:36:08 AM PST
I'm really intolerant to corn - it makes me really ill. I'm struggling to find food I can eat as I plan to go gluten free very soon. It seems that the only alternative to wheat is corn - I despair!!

 
Rayna
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said this on
05 Jul 2011 8:22:06 PM PST
There are many prepared foods that are gluten free, yet they contain corn starch (watch baking powder) or corn syrup. Be careful! I'm learning to read labels VERY carefully, and I'm starting to prepare all my food from scratch again and things are much better. Take care and best wishes!

 
Tabitha
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said this on
12 Aug 2011 8:12:01 AM PST
I feel ya, Glynis. Corn seems to be in everything. Even if I go to a restaurant that has allergy protocols, I still get corned.

Have you searched for Grain free alternatives? These cookbook authors also have blogs: Elena Amsterdam has an almond flour cookbook, Spunky Coconut (I think she is Christian). I also find some ideas on Grain Free Mom (don't know her name) and Cooking Traditional Foods (the mom and a few kids have been diagnosed as Celiacs)

I went gluten free and about 2-3 months later got really sick. The corn was just too much. It's a fairly common occurrence to go GF, feel better for a few months, than consider grain free for better healing.

I recently got Pascalite clay and take it before eating out. It helps minimize (not eliminate) any discomfort from being corned.

 
Shivani
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said this on
21 Jun 2012 11:51:17 PM PST
You can eat Ragi and Sorghum. They are aboslutely safe and gluten-free.

 
Ascheb
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said this on
25 Mar 2012 1:49:19 PM PST
You can eat rice! I find that it's an awesome alternative. There are rice noodles, and crackers, and so so many things. It's been really awesome and super helpful on my gluten free journey!

 
Julie
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said this on
03 Apr 2012 9:28:48 AM PST
Rice and soy are also alternatives.

 
Shivani
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said this on
21 Jun 2012 11:49:06 PM PST
Hi! I am gluten intolerant and have severe intestine damage, as it was not diagnosed for 11 years. I am now fine and consume Ragi (we call this in India), rice and sorghum-made breads. Ragi is extremely calcium rich and very healthy. You may try this. All the best. Life is good now.

 
mary beth
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said this on
26 Jun 2011 5:26:07 AM PST
I just stumbled upon this post. There are reasons to issues with other non gluten foods. Dairy, eggs and meats all have a protein that over shoot the autoimmune system, soy is horrible for the thyroid and also taxes the autoimmune system, yeast grow in the gut and can in TCM be known to cause all kinds of other problems. Candida (yeast) can take 6 months through dietary changes to get under control. Tomatoes, potatoes and shades in general can be issues for people with food sensitivities. Also keep in mind that citrus, bananas and lechtins in legumes are problems for many with over all autoimmune issues. Once removing allergen and problematic foods it is easier to detect where other allergies to foods are. I don't usually eat corn because of cross contamination issues. I have all these issues above and celiac is the least of my concerns. Sometimes it does feel like diet is a bit cardboard - having a sense of humor is important when dealing with huge dietary changes. Add in the importance of changing to reverse osmosis water and you have an MS diet.

 
bibiana
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said this on
28 Mar 2013 1:27:53 PM PST
Anything with high fructose corn syrup makes my symptoms bad enough to want to go to the ER. I don't eat much corn anyways so I'm not sure about anything else.

 
Tina
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said this on
04 Aug 2013 6:14:20 PM PST
Hi Eileen,
I too am similar to you. Cannot do corn, soy, eggs, apples or cashews as well as wheat. Would love to hear anything you can share.

 
Shelley
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said this on
12 Dec 2013 8:10:24 PM PST
Based on a recommendation by my Aunt, I read some books by Dr Theron Randolph. I then went the Academy of Environmental Medicine to find a Dr who could work with my daughter and found Dr Hotze. I was diagnosed with Hashimoto's thyroiditis. I looked up symptoms of hypothyroidism and among them were having anxiety and ADHD, both conditions that my daughter has. When I asked her pediatrician to run a thyroid panel, only the TSH was done and she was anemic. The doctor wouldn't give referral to pediatric Endo doctor. The Hotze clinic said that they would see her. She was tested for inhalant and food allergy in addition to other tests. She had many allergies, but, the biggie was gluten. She was put on a yeast free diet while we waited on results. Her doctor said that the type of antibody test used for allergy was the best, but, that her clinic did not have access. It was IgG and IgM. I was told by Hotze clinic that a gluten allergy meant that unless we cut out all gluten from my daughter's diet, it could lead to celiac later. I actually was double checking a claim on another gluten free website claiming that what is defined as gluten free does not cover everything like corn gluten. That this was a reason why gluten sensitive people don't always improve. This site had a link to access a genetic gluten test that they claimed was more accurate than checking for antibodies or doing biopsies.

 
atheist lady
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said this on
12 Apr 2015 3:40:51 PM PST
Everything you mentioned plus potatoes for me have been deemed as harmful. My celiac took over 2 years to diagnose with a final biopsy. Damage was done to my intestines to the point that if I were to continue, I would require an operation on them. Good thing I stopped all those foods. They were murder, one day it'll get better. Go Paleo and use almond flour, arrow root, maple syrup for all sauces as a base. etc.
What you have is a extreme case of celiac mixed with other complex auto immune factors like me. I have Stills and they are checking for MS now. Do NOT LISTEN and pay attention to forum people who make jokes out of this. It isn't funny. Because often people don't have extreme forms of celiac. They talk crap.

 
Frank
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said this on
17 Sep 2015 3:57:33 PM PST
It will take awhile to recover if you have just discovered your gluten issue. some people are able to have dairy, corn and soy after they detox from being 'glutened'. It's hard to try things again once it gets so bad (ie...shortness of breath, horrible bloating, flu like symptoms from being glutened'.

 
Raven
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said this on
05 Feb 2008 2:01:22 AM PST
I was really glad to find this article because I have seen food with 'corn gluten' in the ingredients and since my diet is boring enough already, I thought 'Oh no, that's one more thing I can't have!' I said, 'Corn is great, and I can have it. Why ruin it? What idiot decided to start putting GLUTEN into corn?'

Thanx very much for clearing that up for me!

 
Saesae
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said this on
10 Sep 2014 12:59:34 AM PST
According to Wikipedia, gluten is a protein composite of a gliadin and a glutenin. It is naturally present in grains such as wheat, barley, rye, etc. Corn gluten is not the same product. It is composed of the protein prolamin, which does not exacerbate celiac disease. So, corn-based products are okay for celiac patients as long as these products do not contain gliadin or glutenin.

 
an unknown user
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said this on
10 Feb 2008 10:11:23 AM PST
Anything that improves on my understanding of gluten is beneficial. In our household we have become almost paranoid in our obsession with 'analyzing ' the content of foodstuff and corn gluten had given rise to another ominous ingredient.

 
Irene Stern
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said this on
25 May 2008 4:02:11 PM PST
Very helpful. I'm going through the tests for Celiac right now and am rather worried. My GI doctor seems pretty sure that I have Celiac.

 
Haley Evans
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said this on
22 Nov 2011 12:17:48 PM PST
Irene stern don't be worried about celiac. I'm 15 and have had it for 6 years...it's a huge adjustment but it's kind of fun to go an adventure for new and interesting foods.

 
patricia
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said this on
11 Jan 2012 1:23:05 PM PST
Irene:
Have the tests been conclusive for your celiac suspicion? Are you on a gluten/wheat free diet and how is that working. Personally I have been undiagnosed but am always having 'flares'.

 
Shawna
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said this on
14 Aug 2008 10:49:56 AM PST
I'm glad this was explained (and explained well) because I couldn't find anything on the internet other than using this as a herbicide!?

 
Larry
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said this on
02 Sep 2008 11:56:15 AM PST
I have a similar reaction to corn so I do wheat and other grains as most celiacs do although it is a very mild reaction in comparison. I know a man that has a medical license and has celiac. Also has the same reaction to corn. It seems to me that this is misinformation to say that celiacs are not sensitive to corn. I have never had problems with rice or central American grains, nor soy, the only problems I have had with tomatoes is when they are canned and have calcium lactate added, in that it is made from corn.

 
Sheri
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said this on
14 Nov 2008 11:33:46 AM PST
It seems that when we remove certain foods from our diets which have been harmful to us, our bodies have, or sometimes have, a knee jerk reaction. Maybe some celiacs are allergic to corn, or develop an allergy to corn, soy, dairy, eggs, etc. It is good to know, as this article states clearly, that there is not an automatic total ban on corn for all celiacs. Thank you for your research and hard work in this area! It is very much appreciated.
Sheri

 
Teresa
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said this on
24 Nov 2008 7:55:21 AM PST
Thanks so much for this article. My friend's daughter has celiac and I am trying to learn to prepare food so that she is able to eat at our house. We are doing Thanksgiving here! I will double check with my friend to make sure her daughter has no outside problems with corn, but this has definitely helped clear up the question of 'corn gluten' for me. Thanks again!

 
jeanette
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said this on
02 Dec 2008 1:15:51 AM PST
Thanks for the info. More than half the frozen veges I have had have corn gluten in them. Thanks again.

 
thinx2much
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said this on
11 Jan 2009 11:58:27 AM PST
I hate corn, and the whole corn industry that forces it into EVERYTHING. So I'm like commenter #1 in that corn gives me the same reaction as gluten, namely: making my 'acne' flare up (dermatitis herpetiformis). I'm getting another round of scratch testing done to check for allergies to things like corn. I am also looking into metal poisoning (I have a number of metals I'm actually allergic to from my dermatological testing: nickel, chromium, aluminum, etc). Then I'm looking at candida and/or parasite issues. But I still have to eat. Does anyone have anything I can actually eat? I'm really hungry.

 
Susi
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said this on
21 Jul 2009 1:40:35 AM PST
Buckwheat - I mix up equal quantities of flour and water and leave over night then make pancakes, you can put banana, sultanas or whatever in or have as savory, nut butter on them is great many possibilities.
Quinoa, chickpea flour - can replace wheat flour in pancakes or baking chickpeas.

 
D. Collins
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said this on
19 Apr 2010 8:59:38 AM PST
You may have more than gluten sensitivity. I would do candida test. Then go on a candida diet. Having a candida problem can have some of the same symptoms. Unfortunately the diet is not easy. The candida die off causes flu like symptoms.

 
Carolyn
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said this on
24 Jul 2012 1:30:47 PM PST
I too have super sensitivity to nickel. You may want to look into nickel ingested from foods. It naturally occurs in lots of foods absorbed from earth. Legumes (soybeans are the worst for me), raspberries etc. It is hard to find data, but there is some. Some dermatologists disagree - find one that doesn't! It changed my life. Oddly enough, teas contain pretty high content, but they were what helped me diagnose. Avoiding it has cleared up terrible dermatitis on my hands.

 
Cindy
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said this on
16 Aug 2013 4:40:15 AM PST
It is an interesting comment on tea. The other problem with tea is fluoride. It occurs naturally as the plant pulls it from the soil, however it is still detrimental to the thyroid and other parts of the body. As a person with two autoimmune disorders I have to be careful of what I eat and drink. Gluten is the last thing I would have thought of, but if any of you suffer from vitiligo, a medical study proved the connection between gluten and this disorder.

 
Colleen
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said this on
09 May 2009 9:48:53 PM PST
I've just figured out, myself, in the last week, that I have celiac disease. My doctor insists it's IBS. Well, I've been reading and following strictly, a Gluten Free Diet. It's only been a week, and I am starting to feel a significant change in my body.Earlier today, after reading an article that Corn was 'okay' to eat, I cooked corn on the cob for dinner. Almost instantly, I started feeling my legs getting heavy, my hands and legs going numb, and felt just as I did prior to figuring out that it was Gluten affecting me. The corn (for me) does not agree with whatever My body is trying to fight against. I have been very ill for 3 yrs, and saw several doctors. All misdiagnosed and wanted to pump drugs into me. I am glad I followed my own instincts and hope I am going to feel better with each day.

 
shannon
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said this on
04 Aug 2011 5:15:24 PM PST
There have been several case reports of people with IBS being very sensitive to "grain" this is not celiac, it is a sensitivity that affects people in a very negative way. Options for "flour" are chick peas, nuts, other legumes etc. Diet profoundly affects many people, but celiac is a very specific disease not just "gluten sensitivity."

 
Jody Skelton
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said this on
22 Jan 2013 11:20:10 PM PST
I was diagnosed 2 years ago with celiac disease. My number then was 15. At the time, even though I was sick for what seemed a daily thing, I continued to eat what I wanted regardless of the havoc my body went through as a result. Well for the past 4 months I've spent much of it ill and bouts of diapheria several times a day. I followed up with my GI doctor who was positive it was my celiac disease, and my lack of following the gluten-free diet. He did blood work again and my celiac number is now 61. I am convinced now that eating what I wanted has caused me to be sick and now I'm 3 days following the gluten-free diet. I have to say I'm already noticing a significant difference in my well being and less time spent in the ladies room suffering behind closed doors. Now I'm all about embracing this disease that I have and I am now a compliant celiac disease patient.

 
Kathleen
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said this on
29 May 2009 4:44:41 AM PST
Great article! Yes, some celiacs are also allergic to corn. Some non-celiacs are allergic to corn too. Thanks for showing that it's a separate issue, and that it's not an automatic matter of concern for celiacs. I think we need to be careful sometimes about attributing every problem we have to our celiac disease. I'm allergic to caraway seeds, for example, but that has nothing to do with my celiac disease!

 
Paul Uhr
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said this on
05 Jun 2009 7:50:37 PM PST
Your site is fantastic!! I would like say that Eastern medicine is aimed at fixing the ailment and Western medicine aims at the symptoms, so conventional western doctors will be more than happy to give you a so called quick fix (drug) for the symptoms that you may, to their financial benefit require for a long long time all the while still holding the original ailment. Trust your instincts and seek the advice of a QUALIFIED alternative practitioner and be patient with altering your diet and bodies physiology as these things will take some time and most importantly dedication.

 
barry
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said this on
28 Jul 2009 5:09:43 AM PST
Thank you, I am not celiac, but my son I believe is. we decided to move as a family gluten and casein free as I have other issues with fog and sleep. We started compensating with rice, corn, peanut butter and soy products. Now I am reading where some or all can still cause issues. I am struggling with the hit and miss methods as there are so many combinations to consider. for instance how you would ever determine a spice to be a reaction issue? I'm just tired of feeling bad and we don't have money to go get testing done. Thanks everyone for your input.

 
Marlene
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said this on
22 Jan 2012 10:46:27 AM PST
I have heard from several people and read that although small amounts of soy may be good--beware, do not intake too much soy because it can have negative effects.

 
Jerry
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said this on
07 Nov 2009 2:19:58 AM PST
I have a similar reaction with corn as I do with wheat. My research has taught me that it may be due to the pesticide being the same used for both effecting the gluten somehow.

 
Gloria
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said this on
11 Dec 2009 2:56:16 AM PST
Excellent article

 
Angus
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said this on
25 Jan 2010 7:18:36 AM PST
Thank you for that.

I also am alot more sensitive to food, I get so sick.... from nearly anything...

 
Anna B
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said this on
20 Feb 2010 7:59:25 AM PST
Thanks for the article. Like others, I have more recently become sensitive to corn. To respond to Jerry, I do not believe that common pesticides would be responsible at least in my case, since I got a reaction from eating organic corn flakes (three ingredients: corn, grape juice, salt). Oh well, I guess cereal is off the list for me.

 
Kristen
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said this on
05 Apr 2010 10:34:35 AM PST
Hi Scott,
You have a great site. In reference to corn, glutensociety.org is saying that corn does have gluten along with all grains. Although, I always felt better on a "gluten-free" diet, as soon as I took myself off of all grains I felt an immediate difference. I went from about 80% better to 100% and no more muscle fatigue! I think more research needs to be done in this area. Physically, I am in agreement with there being gluten in all grains.

 
casper van aswegen
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19 May 2010 5:23:19 AM PST
I faint sometimes and the doctors keep on saying it is epilepsy, but since I'm on a fruit and vegetable diet, which is gluten-free it is something of the past. This is only the case if I don't eat grain products. As soon as I'm eating oats or corn, I'm feeling bad! Therefore, this article was very interesting, by hearing that corn also affects other people the same way as gluten containing foods.

 
Michelle
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said this on
22 May 2010 10:02:02 PM PST
This article might be a little out dated because people with celiacs should definitely avoid corn!! I know it sucks for the gluten-free community because what the heck are we going to eat now?! But corn along with rice, contain gluten which makes perfect sense considering all the comments above who had reactions to corn. And being allergic to corn is totally different than being intolerant to it. Like Kristen said above some groups totally advise against all grains for people with celiac and gluten intolerance's.

 
Pa Purphy
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said this on
31 Oct 2010 12:28:56 PM PST
The more we learn, the less we realize what we know.

 
Patricia
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said this on
30 Jan 2011 10:50:32 AM PST
You hit the nail on the head. Plus the fact that we are individuals who will react in our own individual way.

 
Jean Stip
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said this on
15 Nov 2010 9:06:04 AM PST
My doctor advised me that all grain has gluten in it and that I should stay away from traditional gluten free foods. As soon as I removed corn and rice (my favorites) from my diet, I enjoyed a huge improvement in health. My higher energy level was an unexpected surprise. I wish I would have known that corn was not good for me years ago!

 
RVA
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21 Nov 2010 12:25:55 PM PST
I react to corn the same way as gluten. I have celiac disease and I've been on a gluten free diet for 3 years and continually getting worse. Finally, my doctor actually told me she would feel she was at risk for "malpractice" if she didn't insist I stop eating corn. Apart from food being a challenge to find, my biggest problem is medications. They ALL have corn starch or lactose in them.

 
Niall
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23 Nov 2010 3:48:42 AM PST
I also react to corn the same way as gluten. Dr Peter Osborne's research tells me that we should be avoiding ALL grains. Healthy, genuinely gluten-free alternatives are buckwheat, quinoa, amaranth and wild rice (not white or brown rice).

 
RoseinSWVA
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said this on
10 Dec 2010 6:36:14 AM PST
Corn gluten is NOT safe for all celiacs, I have a severe reaction to it and I wish I had known this months ago. I wish you would revise your article because it was truly misleading for me and can be harmful to other celiacs who are struggling to feel better.

 
Kendrick
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19 Dec 2010 10:35:04 AM PST
I don't completely agree with this. I've eaten corn based products and have had reactions before. Fritos corn chips, for example, I can't eat those without a reaction of some kind.

 
Chris
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19 Jan 2011 1:17:15 PM PST
I was interested in the bit about mastocytosis because I have multiple food intolerances- my hubby has watched my abdomen expand several inches simply from eating onions (caramelized). Corn and soy are especially bad (for me) also tomatoes and I think something else. I too am tired of eating this way- cardboard sucks!! Plus - I work at a restaurant and it is very frustrating to see and smell everything all the time...

 
LYND
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said this on
02 Feb 2011 10:15:40 PM PST
I AGREE CHRIS, IT'S HARD AND SUCKS. I AM HUNGRY A LOT AND IT'S A LONELY WORLD WITH NOTHING TO EAT. THE SUPERMARKET IS CRAZY FOR ME....I NEVER REALIZED I COULD FEEL LIKE THIS. IT IS FRUSTRATING.

 
Catherine
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09 Jun 2011 3:43:09 AM PST
Great article. I do not have celiac, but am a restaurant operator looking for clarification on the corn for our gluten sensitive guests. I also follow a no grain diet in general for my health. Corn is insidious in so many foods and once all grains are removed you will see and feel a closer connection to your body and foods in general. Good luck to you all in your quest for good health.

 
Joey
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said this on
02 Jul 2011 9:40:22 AM PST
I was recently diagnosed with celiac and am pre-diabetic. It helps to have a good doc finally after so many not listening. I have to add so it may help some of you out there. My doctor does integrative and functional medicine. So he is helping with that and got me on Bioidentical hormones. So here is the news I got this week: he works with neuroscience which has testing I have heard some of you mention before in other postings here called IGg. They tested my blood serum through Pharmasan lab their sister company and low and behold out of 154 foods and 22 spices. I have serious problems with sensitivity in my gut. I have been poisoning myself for years. I think with all that it revealed I most definitely dealing with candida. So the best advice I can give anyone is that is you have pain whether right away or in the morning you have a problem with certain foods and better get it out of your system. The person who said you are hungry, right now I am only able to eating beef and chicken. I use coconut oil since I am sensitive to olives so no more olive oil until I can kill whatever candida is there plus nothing containing sugar or fermentation products. It is difficult and I do have to take probiotics--anything to help with elimination. I actually scored low for gluten but moderate for barley, wheat and millet and quinoa. So all grain for me is out. I have to determine what foods will help me heal and what aggravates. So I hope this helps some of you in your wellness journey. We must listen to our bodies.

 
Julia
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said this on
04 Jul 2011 3:45:51 PM PST
I'm new to all this. I have experienced stomach issues for years and am just beginning to realize I need to make changes to my diet so I can begin to feel better

 
Jerry
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said this on
29 Jul 2011 12:54:43 PM PST
If you are celiac, stay away from grains. I react to corn and so called safe oats. Grain free for me baby! Also watch out for Candida!

 
marion
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said this on
09 Sep 2011 3:23:12 AM PST
Once your small intestine is inflamed for whatever reason, it cannot properly release the enzymes necessary to digest some foods. Dr. Mercola's site has articles stating that even potato, tomato and rice has a component similar to gluten.

 
Peter Anania
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said this on
29 Sep 2011 6:53:33 AM PST
Thank you! Just what I needed to know.

 
Gayle
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19 Dec 2011 3:24:19 AM PST
I totally agree with avoiding corn. First, most of it is GMO and second grains are not for humans!

 
Caryn
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said this on
09 Jan 2012 1:23:42 PM PST
Many celiacs have co-morbid conditions --like leaky gut syndrome-- and they need to avoid difficult to digest foods in order to heal the damage in the intestine. But I have found that certain foods and grains remain difficult for celiacs even after the gut has healed. Corn and sorghum are two such grains. That is why we are doing a low carb gluten free diet for our family now.

 
The Health Guy
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22 Feb 2012 7:49:13 PM PST
Unfortunately I have to disagree with you Scott simply because there has been research that proves certain group of celiacs, maybe as much as 36% of celiacs are challenged by corn. Whether the corn contains gluten or not isn't the issue. The issue is whether or not corn and it derivatives can challenge celiacs. You may want to update your knowledge with more research. Here is one study publish on pubmed and there are more saying the same thing which is corn can be an intestinal challenge is a certain percentage of celiacs: Well darn this site doesn't allow me to publish the study - do a pubmed search.

 
admin
( Author)
said this on
23 Feb 2012 9:58:06 AM PST
I've not seen any research that indicates corn gluten is toxic for celiacs....I seriously doubt I could have missed that, since I do get notified of all studies published concerning celiac disease, and have looked at each of them since 1995.

 
Melanie
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16 Apr 2012 10:19:41 AM PST
Good explanation. I had wondered if I was missing something when I saw references to corn gluten. My thoughts are that GM foods are no good for us, and there is research out there to back it up. Maybe it is the pesticides, maybe the GM, but I do my best to stay away from both. Corn is on our "naughty list" along with soy and other common GM foods.

 
Heather E
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28 Jun 2012 2:37:08 PM PST
My husband was just diagnosed and he is 64. Reading your comments has been very helpful. He had lost 30 lbs before being dianosed - they thought it was cancer. Finding food gluten-free here in Wpg, MB Canada is very difficult but we are looking to the internet for help and this website is great.

 
Sharon
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20 Jul 2012 12:32:16 PM PST
Think about going natural and organic - no preservatives, additives, thickeners/emulsifiers - and eat simple for 2-3 months with foods you know do not bother you - including obviously the proven gluten-containing grains - and others as needed. If you can get the inflammation down doing this then slowly one by one - perhaps even one a week add those questionable ones back in - while still staying additive free. You may find that it is things like carrageenan (from red seaweed species) causing the inflammation - found in tons of dairy products-including most ice creams, soy, almond milk (though Whole Foods has removed it from almond milk, soy and coconut are on the way); also watch seaweed and seaweed in canned products like beans, and of course MSG or monoammonium glutamate - MSG was originally derived from seaweed. Often times these inflammatory additives never let us heal and more and more complex carbs become harder and harder for our digestive systems to handle thus we assume they are gluten-like and off our list. So, for example, is it the soy causing the problem or the carrageenan in every soy milk? For me this emulsifier made from seaweed not only causes me gastrointestinal issues but joint and muscle pain as if I had eaten gluten.

 
Sharon
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21 Jul 2012 2:36:33 PM PST
To the admin - author - my son is a runner and subscribes to active.com website. You will love this article on CD, GS, GF eating. There is so much misinformation - it is hard to know where to begin critiquing it (see "Is Eating Gluten Bad for You?" by Jaylin Allen active.com) from the gluten-free diets can be "helpful" to people with celiac disease, sugar and fat are the binding agents for gluten-free (not eggs and the gums), and then there is the fellow who posts the lastest research that states gluten is in corn and rice. Many other points are off in this piece including the caloric value in terms of fats with pretzels. Snyder's (not sure about Glutino) are about the same, granted the wheat ones have the natural protein. The calories in gluten-free food are usually from the flours that are higher calories than wheat coupled with the need for more moisture via extra fat/oil, not necessary more added sugar - though one can argue the glycemic index of the flours impacts overall "sugar" metabolism.

This would be a good piece to review for your website, as points to make are that gluten-free products, unlike wheat based ones, are not always fortified, etc. and eating complex carbs in vegetables over too many gluten-free products is advisable. Many other points as well as written in "wheat belly" in terms of how it is metabolized, its inflammatory nature for some GS folks, etc. that may help and has helped some athletes perform better.

 
Sharon
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22 Jul 2012 3:12:55 PM PST
The other thing to consider with corn is that it could be contaminated with wheat - as happens often with oats - that might not only be rotated with wheat in the fields but also potentially contaminated from field to processing in factories. Not certain of the likelihood of this, but it is something to consider especially more likely with corn products - corn flour, corn meal or especially tortilla shells, wraps, even if wheat or gluten-free as opposed to corn on the cob as these may not be processed in dedicated gluten-free factories. I had to stop purchasing gluten-free pizza as even if prepared in a separate area or oven, the flour from the wheat pizza easily contaminates the gluten-free pizza in small shops. Contamination has to be considered when assessing a corn tolerance issue.

 
Bellycose
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13 Aug 2012 4:26:25 AM PST
A good attempt to clsarify the "Corn - OK or Not for Celiacs" question but as with every aspect of the autoimmune diseases, there are just too many variables, too many opportunities for concurrently occurring conditions to overlap, making a generic answer to the simply phrased question impossible. I have psioritic arthritis and celiac, the PA brings its own distinct allergens (potatoes, tomatoes, peppers, aubergine, strawberries, citrus fruits) and I've found oats and corn trigger a bad reaction. But by ruthlessly excluding gluten and these additional PA triggers I have claimed back my life. Experiment but be aware, every failed experiment has inflicted real physical damage on you, somewhere.

 
BonnieD
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04 Nov 2012 6:13:54 AM PST
I have been celiac/gluten-free for 2 years. I recently had a horrible episode that sent me to a specialist, as I couldn't figure out what was wrong. I knew I hadn't had any gluten. After two months of inflammation and pain, I started doing my own research and eliminated corn. I could not believe the difference. I have tested it since, and I am just as sensitive to corn as I am to wheat gluten. I wish they would study it more here; they have overseas and confirmed it does have the same effect with some people.

 
Lee
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said this on
18 Jan 2013 3:49:18 PM PST
My 3 year old has celiac disease, and is suffering from malabsorbtion and presented with increasing skin complaints with upset gastro and undigested food in stools. When we went off wheat, his body was covered in a burn-like rash with tiny pimples... To which the allergist suggested was a corn intolerance as that was what all the gluten free easily accessible foods contained. Honestly, Eileen, I would never dismiss your corn reaction. Not everyone's condition is the same. My son is also high positive intolerant (blood tested) to dairy, soy, egg white, oranges, cashews and peas... Life isn't easy. We are a family of 5 and we get around it by eating clean, raw or steamed foods with no processed or sauced foods. My son has also just had an allergic reaction to soy with welts and redness on his face. You are not alone. It is time consuming and certainly challenging. The best person I've found is a nutritionist. They are fabulous with knowledge of food production and can help with nutritional deficiencies, even enzymes to help when internals are showing signs of inflammation if something "sneaks" through... Finding or sourcing foods that work for you is the biggest issue. I feel for you and hope you got some answers.

 
Sheila
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12 Mar 2013 9:51:20 AM PST
An article in the World Journal of Gastroenterology, published November 14, 2012, is called "Celiac Disease: Prevalence, diagnosis, pathogenesis and treatment", and addresses the corn issue as follows: "CD is an intestinal enteropathy triggered by the ingestion of gliadin AND OF OTHER RELATED PROLAMINS in genetically predisposed individuals" (p. 6040; bold-face emphasis mine). "Gluten is a protein that appears in wheat, barley, rye and oat, compositing of prolamin and glutelin. THE MAJORITY OF THE PROTEINS IN FOOD RESPONSIBLE FOR THE IMMUNE REACTION IN CD ARE THE PROLAMINS. Prolamins is[sic] found in several grains, such as wheat (gliadin), barley (hordein) and rye (secalin), CORN(zein) and as a minor protein, avenin in oats. Because of their high glutamine content and specific sequence patterns, prolamins are resistant to gastrointestinal proteolytic enzymes" (p. 6041; boldface emphasis mine). Translating the jargon, this means that the sub-element of gluten that causes problems is prolamin, and there is a type of prolamin found in corn. Thus, it is not unreasonable to assume that people with celiac disease will be challenged by corn. This article does not make recommendations about diet other than refraining from all gluten-containing foods, but given that they say that it is prolamins that cause the immune reaction, and corn contains prolamins, the logical conclusion is that corn can be a problem. I saw a reference on another website to a journal article that stated that about 30% of people with celiac disease have corn anti-bodies present in their blood (and are therefore having an immune reaction to corn), which concluded that people should ask for this blood test, but I have not read the source article so I can't speak to the accuracy of that claim.

 
stephen m
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said this on
27 Aug 2014 7:43:07 AM PST
Excellent! See also:

Plant Foods Hum Nutr (2012) 67:24–30
DOI 10.1007/s11130-012-0274-4

Maize Prolamins Resistant to Peptic-tryptic Digestion
Maintain Immune-recognition by IgA from Some Celiac
Disease Patients

 
Saleda

said this on
19 May 2013 2:18:03 PM PST
I used to love Canyon Bakehouse gluten-free bread (The 7 grain). It was made without any corn products and I never had problems with it. Now, I've noticed they started adding corn starch, corn meal or corn flour to their products and I started having problems when eating this bread. This is so upsetting because it really is one of the best-tasting gluten-free breads out there.

 
Sage
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said this on
21 May 2013 12:20:05 PM PST
I, too, follow a strict gluten-free diet. My diagnosis came long after my sensitivity to corn became apparent. As soon as genetically altered corn hit the market, I began to have extreme reactions, including one bout of anaphylactic shock which now means I have to carry an epipen for my allergy if I attempt to eat out or eat anything that is not specifically labeled corn-free and gluten-free. Amazingly, I am able to find many products that are both.

 
Julia Lu
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08 Jun 2013 12:08:06 PM PST
I am Brazilian and in my country the information about food allergies and intolerances are not well reported. I discovered that I have intolerance to various foods by myself. I can not eat gluten, eggs, dairy, soy and corn. I tried taking lactobacilli, but they gave me diarrhea. Now I'll try saccharomyces boulardii. I liked this site very much!

 
Jo Hannah
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said this on
01 Jan 2014 11:34:56 AM PST
I think this article needs to be updated by the author at this point, since (as several readers have pointed out), corn is NOT SAFE for all celiac patients, me being one of them. I think I wasted several years of "gluten free" dieting because I continued to consume corn flour, corn starch, and other corn-based products that were labeled "gluten-free" by the manufacturer. My symptoms did not abate until I removed all grains, and specifically, corn, from my diet altogether. I have a link to the NIH study in my blog article listed at the bottom of this comment.

Hopefully as more and more attention is brought to this subject, we will see better and stronger studies on all kinds of grains, which I also suspect may be unsafe for some celiac patients. Thanks for opening up the conversation about it!

 
Jim
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said this on
28 Sep 2014 1:34:18 PM PST
I too am sensitive to glutens and started having problems with corn BUT things seemed to improve when I switched to non-GMO products (including corn). It is a wonderful addition to the gluten free diet!

 
E B Freeman
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said this on
28 May 2015 10:35:12 AM PST
Corn may not be an issue due to gluten, but people with sugar absorption issues (like diabetes) know that it can trigger problematic reactions. SO do be careful when you consider corn as an alert and keep it to a small portion. It is also very processed and it may trigger people who have chemical sensitivities.

 
Carolyn
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19 Mar 2016 10:53:13 AM PST
I have celiac disease. After eliminating "the usual suspects" I found oat avenin was even more of a problem. So I don't eat it anymore either. Now I'm sure I'm still ingesting something that sets off the same symptoms, and corn seems to be the culprit although I haven't restricted my use of it yet. It fills the empty place left in my diet after I cut out so many other offenders. But I guess corn is next. All I can do is stop eating all corn-containing products and see if I feel better. I can always add it back if this proves not to be the case.

 
Joy Greenhalgh
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said this on
23 Apr 2016 3:00:52 PM PST
This article is out of date. There is now scientific evidence that shows that coeliacs are more likely to have auto immune reaction to dairy (casein) and corn. I am one of those people! Gluten corn oats and dairy all make me,very ill. I don't need tests,to prove,this! I keep a very careful food and symptom diary.

 
Jennifer
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said this on
14 Jul 2016 8:23:48 PM PST
I also am a celiac who became very responsive to rice and corn. Before I was diagnosed with celiac, my eye lids were swelling and extremely itchy. I actually stretched my skin from scratching. After I was diagnosed, I started getting hives on my face and my lips actually itched and oozed a clear, sticky substance. It was the weirdest thing. I finally figured out that rice and corn were the culprits. I cannot have ANY amount of rice or corn products or I will have these symptoms. Pretty upsetting considering most GF things have rice and/or corn in them. But I am thankful that I know what to avoid and hopefully live a long and healthy life.




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