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Is Corn A Gluten?
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Does anybody know if there is a connection to gluten and corn? I'm still trying to figure out my nausea and diarrhea after eating some corn products (mesa corn and corn meal) and I read something saying that corn is a gluten?...weird. www.wellsphere.com/allergies-article/corn-gluten...celiac.../964619

I searched celiac.com and didn't come up with much.....

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Yes. I have seen corn gluten on ingredient labels. I read a couple articles about studies that were conducted in the late 70's (1978-ish, I think) that showed that 40% or 60% (I can't remember which but either is a big number) of celiacs react to corn gluten with exactly the same symptoms as with wheat gluten. With the corn lobby so powerful, the results were swept under the rug. It's about the same number of people as react to oats and most doctors equate oats with being off limits for celiacs. I always feel sick when I eat too much corn. Avoiding it all together is difficult since it is in, on or wrapped around almost every single item purchased at the store. (I know because my daughter is corn allergic and is very limited.) There are thousands of corn derivatives. I don't worry about avoiding things like ascorbic acid, citric acid, caramel color, etc for myself, but do avoid corn and anything with corn in the name as an ingredient. I can search for the articles and see if I still have the URLs for them if you are interested.

Michelle

Western Washington State

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Gluten is defined by a chemist as any prolamine protein from a grain source. That would include wheat and corn. Gluten as generally used by celiacs and dietitians includes only the prolamine proteins from wheat, rye and barley (oats may be included, or not).

So, corn has gluten, but celiacs do not need to be concerned about corn gluten.

If you are a celiac who is also intolerant to corn, then that is a different story,

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Gluten is defined by a chemist as any prolamine protein form a grain source. That would include wheat and corn. Gluten as generally used by celiacs and dietitians includes only the prolamine proteins from wheat, rye and barley (oats may be included, or not).

So, corn has gluten, but celiacs do not need to be concerned about corn gluten.

If you are a celiac who is also intolerant to corn, then that is a different story,

As a chemist, I'll second that. In addition, corn can be contaminated in wheat. I have personally found wheat berries in my whole organic corn.

The corn used in a study often sited to show that celiacs react to corn gluten contained 82 ppm gluten from wheat, barley or rye.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1774524/?tool=pmcentrez

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this is a fascinating and mysterious topic. there are some websites that claim that not enough research was done with corn gluten- i also found online (after i had an EXTREME reaction to High Maltose Corn Syrup)- that Celiacs should not be touching the stuff.

?? as a layperson, i presume that technically- corn gluten is not the same as the gluten we all know. BUT- i wouldnt be surprised if our bodies sometimes get confused.. i mean that happens all the time in life- for example- my A&P teacher/doctor was getting tested for different leukemias at one point- but it turned out that (temporarily)- he had a cold or a flu, and the virus must have looked identical to something in his body- and then his body started attacking itself.

in my own experience... rice/bean&corn chips i can handle... regular corn i may handle- or it may give me gas pain.. HFCS i can handle in SMALL amounts (or my fructose gas cramps/bloating starts).. POPCORN- i AVOID like the plague-> that will have me doubled over in horrific gas pain. small amounts of corn in gluten free treats are ok. and i will NEVER NEVER NEVER consume High Maltose Corn Syrup EVER again- im convinced my stomach identified it as gluten

on top of all that- i really try to avoid corn- i dont think its good for u- and its in everything anyways- so the most you can avoid the better...

but im not gonna stress about it- and im going to enjoy some gluten-free cornbread dressing on thanksgiving :P

ps- i simply cannot stress about this too much- because it's in EVERYTHING- including my advil & gluten-free meds!!!! so annoying.. it would be nice if they could do meds with a rice or potato startch.. but what are ya gonna do u know... they also feed it to every animal we consume including shrimp :angry:

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Gluten is defined by a chemist as any prolamine protein from a grain source. That would include wheat and corn. Gluten as generally used by celiacs and dietitians includes only the prolamine proteins from wheat, rye and barley (oats may be included, or not).

So, corn has gluten, but celiacs do not need to be concerned about corn gluten.

If you are a celiac who is also intolerant to corn, then that is a different story,

So the prolamine in gluten differs from the prolamine in wheat,barley,rye?

Are there many celiacs that have IgA to corn? I haven't been tested for it, but I think I must judging by my reaction. I have recently been logging all my food and symptoms after I got fed up with living life in a bathroom and with constant belly aches. Do you or anyone out there know how you get checked for corn allergy or whatever it's called? I suppose I could buy some corn meal or Mesa corn flour and test it out for sure.thanks.

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I'm not sure I get your meaning, but testing for corn intolerance by eating mesa flour will not work very well because it could be contaminated. Try corn on the cob instead. Buy an intact cob. Husk it yourself, wash it carefully and then eat it. We can eat corn in that way in our family, but can't eat processed corn products. See an allergy doctor for corn allergy testing. You can look at foodintolerances.com. They discuss breath testing for food intolerances there.

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So the prolamine in gluten differs from the prolamine in wheat,barley,rye?

Are there many celiacs that have IgA to corn? I haven't been tested for it, but I think I must judging by my reaction. I have recently been logging all my food and symptoms after I got fed up with living life in a bathroom and with constant belly aches. Do you or anyone out there know how you get checked for corn allergy or whatever it's called? I suppose I could buy some corn meal or Mesa corn flour and test it out for sure.thanks.

"Gluten" means different things to cereal chemists, bakers, and celiacs. Let's just get away from it because the word is confusing and not well defined when we are talking about all the different grains. Prolamin is the cereal chemistry name for proline-rich storage proteins in grains. Prolamins are a mixture of different proteins, some of which make us sick, and some of which don't. Gliadin the type of protein in the mix that makes us sick. The other type is called glutelin, and it's safe.

The prolamins in all the grains are slightly different. Wheat, barley, and rye have very similar prolamins, and oats are close. Wheat, barley and rye all make both glutelin and gliadin type proteins. Oats make a gliadin too, and it's close enough that some celiacs cross-react. Corn and rice have a different mixture of prolamins and they make only glutelin type proteins. There is really no reason to suspect that corn or rice would be a problem for celiacs.

All celiacs seem to react to wheat, rye, or barley because they are so similar. Some cross-react to avenin from oats. Antibody reactions to corn proteins on blots have been picked up in studies, but the reactions are pretty different from those to wheat, barley, and rye. It's likely the researchers were seeing an allergy or intolerance. In the only study where corn protein did trigger a mild celiac-like reaction, the corn was found to be contaminated with 82 ppm of wheat gliadin. Lots of people on this board are perfectly healthy and eating corn comfortably, as long as we can get it without wheat contamination.

The best way to check for corn food allergy is to go off ALL corn for at least two weeks (including all the traces of it in processed foods like starch and HFCS) and see if you feel better. Then challenge with corn on the cob, whole hominy kernels, or popcorn where you sift through the grains for wheat berries first. Don't challenge with any corn that you can't tell whether it might have wheat cross-contamination as it will just be confusing.

You can be tested, but most allergists will tell you that a strict elimination and challenge is a very good way to check for a sensitivity.

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I have a question. Skylark, I think you answered it, but I want to clarify.

Can a corn intolerance cause damage as severe as celiac disease?

Is the scientific world aware of any other food product besides the types of prolamine in certain grains that make celiac's sick, that can produce the same kind of damage?

I ask because I am intolerant to 3 things - gluten (or bad types of prolamine's in grains), corn and tapioca. I had a gastro-interologist apointment today, and I forgot to ask this question. I either have a strong gluten intolerance or celiac (not sure and all tests will be negative because I have been off wheat/barley/rye products for a few years now, but it's not a big deal, I don't ever intend to begin consuming them intentionally again), so I know I won't be damaging anything from that.

But corn and tapioca also make me sick. Are these definitely just intolerances that will not cause severe damage if I continue to eat them (not that I'm going to), or could they potentially cause the kind of damage that gluten causes in individuals with celiac?

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I have a question. Skylark, I think you answered it, but I want to clarify.

Can a corn intolerance cause damage as severe as celiac disease?

Is the scientific world aware of any other food product besides the types of prolamine in certain grains that make celiac's sick, that can produce the same kind of damage?

The only intolerance (other than wheat, barley, rye, and oats) I've seen documented to cause celiac-type villous damage is the casein protein in milk and it's fairly rare. Casein seems to cross-react with the gliadin antibodies in a few celiacs. There is no documented villous damage from corn or rice in the literature.

I can tell from the way you worded your questions that you are aware of the limitations of the literature. Just because someone hasn't seen something, it doesn't mean it can't happen.

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It seems like some of us react to below the testing limit for gluten of 5 ppm. That makes it very hard to tell if it is something else causing the reaction, or if it is cross contamination.

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There is a mill near my home that alternates grinding wheat and corn so I agree with the above to test yourself by eating corn on the cob not corn meal. You could be reacting to CC and not the corn itself.

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