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    • Scott Adams

      Frequently Asked Questions About Celiac Disease   04/24/2018

      This Celiac.com FAQ on celiac disease will guide you to all of the basic information you will need to know about the disease, its diagnosis, testing methods, a gluten-free diet, etc.   Subscribe to Celiac.com's FREE weekly eNewsletter   What is Celiac Disease and the Gluten-Free Diet? What are the major symptoms of celiac disease? Celiac Disease Symptoms What testing is available for celiac disease?  Celiac Disease Screening Interpretation of Celiac Disease Blood Test Results Can I be tested even though I am eating gluten free? How long must gluten be taken for the serological tests to be meaningful? The Gluten-Free Diet 101 - A Beginner's Guide to Going Gluten-Free Is celiac inherited? Should my children be tested? Ten Facts About Celiac Disease Genetic Testing Is there a link between celiac and other autoimmune diseases? Celiac Disease Research: Associated Diseases and Disorders Is there a list of gluten foods to avoid? Unsafe Gluten-Free Food List (Unsafe Ingredients) Is there a list of gluten free foods? Safe Gluten-Free Food List (Safe Ingredients) Gluten-Free Alcoholic Beverages Distilled Spirits (Grain Alcohols) and Vinegar: Are they Gluten-Free? Where does gluten hide? Additional Things to Beware of to Maintain a 100% Gluten-Free Diet What if my doctor won't listen to me? An Open Letter to Skeptical Health Care Practitioners Gluten-Free recipes: Gluten-Free Recipes
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    Does a Gluten-free Diet Mean Higher Arsenic and Mercury Levels?


    Jefferson Adams


    • A study finds higher levels of arsenic and mercury in gluten-free eaters.


    Celiac.com 03/01/2017 - Do people who eat a gluten-free diet face an increased exposure to toxic metals like arsenic and mercury, and thus possibly higher rates of cardiovascular disease, cancer and neurological effects?


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    That's a very possible scenario, according to a report published in the journal Epidemiology. Maria Argos, assistant professor of epidemiology in the UIC School of Public Health, and her colleagues searched data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey for a link between gluten-free diet and biomarkers of toxic metals in blood and urine.

    Of the 7,471 people they surveyed between 2009 and 2014, they found 73 participants who reported eating a gluten-free diet.

    People on a gluten-free diet higher concentrations of arsenic in their urine, and mercury in their blood, than those who ate a non-gluten-free diet. In fact, arsenic levels for gluten-free eaters were nearly twice as high, and mercury levels were 70 percent higher.

    So, does a gluten-free diet pose an actual health risk? Do people need to make any immediate dietary changes?

    While noteworthy, Argos says the findings indicate the need for more studies, "to determine if there are corresponding health consequences that could be related to higher levels of exposure to arsenic and mercury by eating gluten-free."

    Argos points out that the EU has in place regulations for food-based arsenic exposure, while the United States does not. The question that needs to be answered if whether rice flour consumption increases the risk for exposure to arsenic. An answer to that requires further study.

    Source: University of Illinois at Chicago


    Image Caption: Do people with celiac disease face higher levels of arsenic and mercury levels? Photo: CC--Matt Brubeck
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    Very little helpful information in this article. The article points to increased levels of arsenic in rice, a gluten free diet staple... but what about in other foods? People on a gluten free diet are already used to managing their food intake...so please give us a few more guidelines. There's no mention of what foods constitute an increased risk of exposure to mercury in a gluten free diet.

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    Guest Pippy

    Posted

    Jefferson, do you know if any of the people were tested for arsenic and mercury before going on the gluten-free diet? I do wish these studies had more detail. A lot of this makes sense as almost all the processed food out there is based on rice and rice is notorious for having arsenic. All the more reason to eat a whole food diet AMAP. I feel for the children whose parents are not hip to this knowledge. Many of them will have life long problems like learning disabilities, hearing loss and neurological issues, depending on how much exposure they have.

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    Guest Janet Hoover

    Posted

    I have been reading that rice has arsenic in it so this would make sense that gluten-free dieters have more arsenic in their urine. Rice is one of the most substituted ingredients that I have found in the gluten-free diet. In fact I have developed a sensitivity to rice since being on the gluten-free diet for over 10 years. Whenever I eat rice, my skin breaks out in a rash now. I am finding it difficult to find ready made gluten-free breads, cakes, etc without rice flour. So maybe this link to arsenic should be investigated as well.

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    Guest Catherine

    Posted

    That was my first thought about higher levels of arsenic--rice. It is reputed to have high levels of arsenic. I eat a fair amount of rice as my starch and imagine others do too.

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    Destiny Stone
    Celiac.com 07/21/2010 - Naturally gluten-free foods have long held the assumption that they are supposed to be gluten-free. However, a new study has found that many naturally occurring gluten-free foods are in fact not gluten-free.
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    Journal of the American Dietetic Association - Volume 110, Issue 6, Pages 937-940 (June 2010)

    Dr. Vikki Petersen D.C, C.C.N
    This article originally appeared in the Spring 2010 edition of Celiac.com's Journal of Gluten-Sensitivity.
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    Jefferson Adams
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    Zyana Morris
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    Sources:
    ncbi.nlm.nih.gov  Celiac.com ncbi.nlm.nih.gov  mendfamily.com