• Join our community!

    Do you have questions about celiac disease or the gluten-free diet?

  • Ads by Google:
     




    Get email alerts Subscribe to Celiac.com's FREE weekly eNewsletter

    Ads by Google:



       Get email alertsSubscribe to Celiac.com's FREE weekly eNewsletter

  • Member Statistics

    77,691
    Total Members
    3,093
    Most Online
    JHAllen
    Newest Member
    JHAllen
    Joined
  • 0

    General Mills Sued Over Recalled Gluten-free Cheerios


    Jefferson Adams
    Image Caption: Photo: CC--Bryce Mohan

    Celiac.com 12/09/2015 - Less than a month after General Mills announced a recall of nearly two million boxes of gluten-free Cheerios and Honey Nut Cheerios, the company is facing a class action lawsuit alleging it violated several consumer protection laws, and put consumers at risk.


    Ads by Google:




    ARTICLE CONTINUES BELOW ADS
    Ads by Google:



    Photo: CC--Bryce MohanThe complaint, filed in the eastern district of California on October 30 by plaintiffs Keri van Lengen and Deborah Nava against General Mills and Roxanne Ornelas (manufacturing manager at Gen Mill's Lodi plant), accuses General Mills of selling misbranded products; in this case, cereals advertised as gluten-free which actually contained gluten.

    It adds: "Plaintiffs and Class Members have all suffered and will continue to suffer harm and damages as a result of Defendants' unlawful and wrongful conduct."

    For the company's part, it states in a blog post published on October 5, by Jim Murphy, senior vice president and president of the Cereal division at General Mills, that:

    "Our Lodi production facility lost rail service for a time and our gluten-free oat flour was being off-loaded from rail cars to trucks for delivery to our facility on the dates in question. In an isolated incident involving purely human error, wheat flour was inadvertently introduced into our gluten-free oat flour system at Lodi. That error resulted in an undeclared allergen – wheat – being present in products labeled as gluten free at levels above the FDA gluten-free standard."

    Murphy went on to reassure consumers that the company's oat supply was safe, and that their gluten-free flours are pure.

    The post goes on to assure consumers that the company "tested our oat supply on these dates – and the oat supply tested as gluten free. We also tested the specific oat flour being used at Lodi – and our oat flour supply also tested as gluten free on the dates in question."

    The post closes by noting that General Mills is testing all finished product…[and has] instituted additional flour handling protocols at all facilities to ensure this will not happen again.

    Stay tuned for new developments or related news on gluten-free products from Cheerios or General Mills.

    Source:

    0


    User Feedback

    Recommended Comments



    I think litigation when companies take responsibility is unproductive. It will make companies less likely to try to bring new gluten free products safely to market.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites
    Guest Charlene H.

    Posted

    Our society is "lawsuit happy". Mistakes are made because we are human. General Mills acted quickly and took steps to fix the problem. This was not an intentional harmful act. If celiacs continue to bring lawsuits against companies (i.e. General Mills, PF Chang's), we will be limited again in our choices for gluten free products on the market. And YES, I am a celiac, as well as some of my family members!

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites
    Guest Cynthia

    Posted

    We need to use our buying power and the law to stop these types of things occurring with our store-bought foods these days. I would really like to see a non-profit that worked with people to educate them how to grow their own organic gardens, raise their own foods (if possible) and why it is now so important.

     

    This also falls right in line with GMOs and the damage they are going to cause to us and probably our environment later. I have Celiac's and am infuriated they would do this. Thank God I never have eaten this brand or brands.

     

    I feel totally violated on every level that we would be encouraged to buy these things without being informed so we would have the choice to buy or not to buy. But, then they wouldn't have as many sales and dollars in their pocket.

     

    We have to work together as Americans to find a way to break up the corporations and move back into flourishing small businesses where the dollars are distributed rather than a few greedy people owning the whole lot. We do that in our ability to grow our own and use our buying power no matter how small it is this days.

     

    If no one is buying they lose their power.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    At least General Mills is providing gluten free cereals. Its just human error people, cool down and quit being so quick to point fingers. I agree with the first few comments, we are finally being provided with more gluten free options. If these ignorant people want to file law suits, these companies may say screw it then... its not worth the hassle!!! Use your heads people and be thankful!!!

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites
    Guest G. Harrison

    Posted

    I have to agree with Kay. Wouldn't it be better to work with General Mills to ensure that they have systems in place to prevent these kinds of mishaps rather than take them to court? I would far rather the large food producers get on board with gluten free options, rather than being scared out of the market and this "mistake" was a first time offence. If they made a practice out of falsely labelling their products, fine, but this is just going to send an alarm to anyone considering making more food options available at affordable prices...

     

    I'm not sure how solid their case is either. Given my own personal experience, I would say that the vast majority of people still think that celiac disease and gluten intolerance are an invented illness for picky eaters because it does not have an instant fatal response, like Anaphylactic reactions do.

     

    They will lose if a jury is involved.

     

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites
    Guest Lawanna

    Posted

    I think litigation when companies take responsibility is unproductive. It will make companies less likely to try to bring new gluten free products safely to market.

    I could not agree more, and was exactly what I was fixing to type as a comment myself.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites
    Guest Lawanna

    Posted

    I hope they get nothing. General Mills took prompt responsibility. We need more companies to offer gluten free products but lawsuit happy people as in this example will detour it and then we all suffer the limitations.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    These people are just trying to get a pay day for no reason. They probably aren't even allergic to gluten. Frivolous lawsuits like these are going to do nothing but make it that much more difficult for gluten free people like myself find foods we can eat without having to cook several hours a day. Keri van Lengen and Deborah Nava should do something more productive instead of trying to get something for nothing and ruin for the rest of us. Cheerios, clearly, did not intend for this to happen. I bought one of the boxes and received several phone calls and emails from Kroger, where I bought the cereal, and went above and beyond what they were expected.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites
    I think litigation when companies take responsibility is unproductive. It will make companies less likely to try to bring new gluten free products safely to market.

    Yes. It scares me to death that companies who have our best interests at heart are threatened in ways that will steer them away from bringing out new gluten-free products. As a society we are way too litigation prone and averse to looking at what the consequences are that follow.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites
    I think litigation when companies take responsibility is unproductive. It will make companies less likely to try to bring new gluten free products safely to market.

    Celiac disease patients should not allow any company to put a "gluten-free" label on products that are not really gluten-free.

    We want to avoid seeing more people ill or dead because of gluten ingestion. This is very serious and should be addressed no matter what. Celiac disease patients deserve respect and the companies that want to make money at the expense of celiac disease patients should know well what they are doing before launching any gluten-free product. This is not a game and nobody should be playing with people's health.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites
    Guest Kristina

    Posted

    Why in the world sue General Mills? They acknowledged the mistake, recalled the affected boxes, and know what went wrong. They didn't try to deceive anyone. How is a lawsuit in this situation productive?

     

    Like other commenters said, suing companies that try to bring new gluten-free products to the market for simple mistakes will likely only lead to fewer choices for celiacs. I'm glad I'm not the only one who sees that. I wish the plaintiffs did.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites
    Guest Linda H.

    Posted

    I agree that we are a "lawsuit" driven nation. Companies are going to shy away from providing gluten-free options if they fear litigation over honest and very rare human error. General Mills took swift action to identify and solve the problem. It appears that some people will take drastic measures to make money.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites
    I think litigation when companies take responsibility is unproductive. It will make companies less likely to try to bring new gluten free products safely to market.

    I totally agree with Kay. Litigation will only make these companies less likely to venture into gluten-free land. Thanks for the article. And I'm sure glad Coors will be going gluten-free soon but it will probably take a LONG time for the product to get to Georgia.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites
    I think litigation when companies take responsibility is unproductive. It will make companies less likely to try to bring new gluten free products safely to market.

    I agree 100%

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    I certainly hope General Mills doesn't decide to drop the whole gluten-free program because somebody wants a payday! They DID voluntarily release the information.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites
    Guest Wendellyn Plummer

    Posted

    Not only are Manufacturers responsible, so are Restaurant owners. Many times I have been told that the food I was getting gluten-free and then have been sick for days because the food wasn't prepared properly. Most people think it is a dietary choice not a Medical necessity. Honestly, it shouldn't matter.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites
    We need to use our buying power and the law to stop these types of things occurring with our store-bought foods these days. I would really like to see a non-profit that worked with people to educate them how to grow their own organic gardens, raise their own foods (if possible) and why it is now so important.

     

    This also falls right in line with GMOs and the damage they are going to cause to us and probably our environment later. I have Celiac's and am infuriated they would do this. Thank God I never have eaten this brand or brands.

     

    I feel totally violated on every level that we would be encouraged to buy these things without being informed so we would have the choice to buy or not to buy. But, then they wouldn't have as many sales and dollars in their pocket.

     

    We have to work together as Americans to find a way to break up the corporations and move back into flourishing small businesses where the dollars are distributed rather than a few greedy people owning the whole lot. We do that in our ability to grow our own and use our buying power no matter how small it is this days.

     

    If no one is buying they lose their power.

    Cynthia, you seem to be one of those people who likes to take any issue and blow it up into a rant about how everything is wrong in the world today. I own a small business, suffer from celiac and ate the Cheerios but I also realize that human error is just not something that can be completely eliminated. The company took responsibility and acted appropriately. I agree with the other posts, if we punish them for coming forward and disclosing the problem then companies will just not want to produce gluten free items because the risk of being sued is so high. Meanwhile, we will be back to eating the limited, sub-par selection of gluten free items we (enjoyed) years ago. I don't know about you, but I really love the fact that I can have such things as Cheerio's, cake, delicious pasta and all of the other wonderful items that have been introduced over the last few years.

     

    Just think of how you would feel if somebody sued you every time you made a mistake.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites
    I think litigation when companies take responsibility is unproductive. It will make companies less likely to try to bring new gluten free products safely to market.

    AGREE

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites
    I think litigation when companies take responsibility is unproductive. It will make companies less likely to try to bring new gluten free products safely to market.

    Absolutely. Give GM a break during their transition. I am speaking as one who got sick from accidentally buying a box of whole grain cheerios that did not say "gluten free." Uggg. We lost Chex oatmeal. Let's not lose Cheerios again...

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    My concern is that if wheat flour contaminated the line, how will they ever make sure the equipment is completely clean again? I doubt they would disassemble all of it and clean it sufficiently. No more cheerios for us (not that I was eating them, but my husband was - his sensitivity is not nearly as bad as mine)

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    I HATE that these people keep bringing lawsuits. I'm finding it harder and harder to find information about gluten from drug companies, and the food companies will be next. They won't want to say "gluten free" to avoid being sued. I know anytime I eat out at a restaurant, or eat a ready-made food like cereals, that it poses a risk to my health. If I get sick, I'm just more careful next time. I get cross-contaminated in my own kitchen (not often, but it happens) and I'm super careful; of COURSE it's going to happen on a corporate level. This is a responsible company getting the word out and taking action to protect their consumers. They should be applauded, not sued. And yes, I'm a very sensitive celiac.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites

    I agree with Kay and Charlene. I often question the real motives behind lawsuits - I think it's often the lawyers see an opportunity and go looking for a plaintiff to make it fly. The fact is, the plaintiffs, however many there are, will share in 30% of the pot, getting nothing meaningful individually, but the law firm will take 70%, walking away with millions. Today's society is way to quick to sue. Lawyers advertise on every billboard and television channel, fishing for the next opportunity. "Did you slip and fall?... Call 1-800-...". Get over it, and move on. (...and yes, I have celiac disease, but I have better things to do with my time than get involved in suing GM for my $100 share of the pot.)

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites
    We need to use our buying power and the law to stop these types of things occurring with our store-bought foods these days. I would really like to see a non-profit that worked with people to educate them how to grow their own organic gardens, raise their own foods (if possible) and why it is now so important.

     

    This also falls right in line with GMOs and the damage they are going to cause to us and probably our environment later. I have Celiac's and am infuriated they would do this. Thank God I never have eaten this brand or brands.

     

    I feel totally violated on every level that we would be encouraged to buy these things without being informed so we would have the choice to buy or not to buy. But, then they wouldn't have as many sales and dollars in their pocket.

     

    We have to work together as Americans to find a way to break up the corporations and move back into flourishing small businesses where the dollars are distributed rather than a few greedy people owning the whole lot. We do that in our ability to grow our own and use our buying power no matter how small it is this days.

     

    If no one is buying they lose their power.

    This was an error - not an intentional misbranding of product. Mistakes happen and the company has taken responsibility and put new measures in place to prevent something like this in the future. Nothing is perfect. I agree with other posters that lawsuits of this nature will only hinder the willingness of companies to create of new gluten-free products in the future. Everyone growing their own organic gardens is not feasible in the real world.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites
    Guest Pia Martin

    Posted

    Cynthia is right about "using our buying power" when it comes to how and where we get our food. The real truth is that the food/agricultural companies are ruining our food. Monsanto is the biggest, most corrupt of all, including general mills. Monsanto controls over 90% of the world's seeds, yes they control what kind of seeds farmers plant in the ground. AND, if you think GMO is okay, then please understand a simple truth, "if insects and animals won't eat it, why would I??" And lastly, I wish the whole world knew that those "chem trails" in the sky are a result of Monsanto putting barium and aluminum into the atmosphere, in an effort to control the environment. What they do not realize is that they are what is killing all the bees. You never hear about that in the mainstream media outlets, but my friends, please know this "IF THE BEES GO, ALL PLANT AND ANIMAL/HUMANS WILL DIE OFF". Do you research, get some heirloom seeds and grow your own!!

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites
    Our society is "lawsuit happy". Mistakes are made because we are human. General Mills acted quickly and took steps to fix the problem. This was not an intentional harmful act. If celiacs continue to bring lawsuits against companies (i.e. General Mills, PF Chang's), we will be limited again in our choices for gluten free products on the market. And YES, I am a celiac, as well as some of my family members!

    I would rather have limited choices that are safe and actually use gluten free oats than deal with someone who's in it for the money and the fad and end up getting sick and have to start the healing process all over again.

    Share this comment


    Link to comment
    Share on other sites



    Your content will need to be approved by a moderator

    Guest
    You are commenting as a guest. If you have an account, please sign in.
    Add a comment...

    ×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

      Only 75 emoji are allowed.

    ×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

    ×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

    ×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Ads by Google:

  • About Me

    Jefferson Adams is a freelance writer living in San Francisco. He has covered Health News for Examiner.com, and provided health and medical content for Sharecare.com. His work has appeared in Antioch Review, Blue Mesa Review, CALIBAN, Hayden's Ferry Review, Huffington Post, the Mississippi Review, and Slate, among others.

  • Popular Contributors

  • Ads by Google:

  • Who's Online   2 Members, 0 Anonymous, 279 Guests (See full list)

  • Related Articles

    Jefferson Adams
    Celiac.com 01/23/2015 - This Superbowl Sunday gluten-free fans can celebrate with gluten-free Pizza Hut pizza, and, in a few lucky test markets, gluten-free Coors beer.
    You read right. First, Pizza Hut has announced that, starting Jan. 26, it will be debuting a gluten-free pizza in about 2,400 locations in the U.S. The new pizza will be a 10-inch, six-slice pizza, which will go for $9.99. The pizza crust will be made by popular gluten-free brand Udi’s Foods, and certified gluten-free by the Gluten Intolerance Group.
    Pizza Hut’s gluten-free pie will be one of the restaurant’s lowest-calorie pizzas, with about 100 fewer calories per serving than their current “Skinny Slice” pizza. 
    Every Pizza Hut Gluten-Free Pizza will be baked fresh-to-order on parchment paper and delivered in a specially branded Udi’s Gluten-Free Pizza box. Also, all employees handling Pizza Hut’s Gluten-Free Pizza have been trained to wear gloves and use a designated gluten-free pizza cutter.
    If that’s not enough good news, beer-loving gluten-free football fans in Seattle and Portland will be able to chase their gluten-free Pizza Hut pizzas with Coors’ new gluten-free Peak Copper Lager, which will debut in those markets on Superbowl Sunday.
    Coors will gauge the response in its test markets as it looks to make Peak Copper Lager available in more U.S. markets.
    Gluten-free Pizza Hut pizza and gluten-free Coors beer on Superbowl Sunday? I’m going to call that a touchdown.
    Read more in USA Today, and Money.

    Jefferson Adams
    Celiac.com 02/25/2015 - General Mills has announced that original Cheerios, Honey Nut Cheerios and three other Cheerios varieties will undergo formula changes, including a switch to gluten-free oats, and will be released as a gluten-free cereal.
    The move by the food and cereal giant mirrors a similar recipe change that successfully boosted sales for its Chex brand, which has been gluten-free since 2010.
    The company will likely begin selling gluten-free versions in July, says Jim Murphy, president of Big G Cereals, General Mills' ready-to-eat cereal division.
    Apparently, General Mills felt that that could no longer ignore the skyrocketing sales of gluten-free foods, and the slow decline of foods that contain gluten, including breakfast cereals.
    "People are actually walking away from cereal because they are avoiding gluten," says Murphy, a development that, at a time when cereal sales, including Cheerios, are already weak, the company can ill afford.
    Meanwhile, unit sales growth of food with a gluten-free claim on its packaging grew 10.6% in 2014 compared to the previous year, and gluten-free sales, especially among breakfast cereals are expected to continue double-digit growth through at least 2018.

    Jefferson Adams
    Celiac.com 09/02/2015 - Cereal maker General Mills is pulling the plug on its Gluten Free Chex Oatmeal.
    A spokesperson for General Mills confirmed that the product has been discontinued due to low sales. The company says it will make its final shipments of the gluten-free oatmeal in October.
    This constitutes an ignoble end for a brand that made its official debut last year.
    Chex Gluten Free Oatmeal was available in original, apple cinnamon and maple brown sugar flavors, and made without artificial flavors, colors, preservatives or high fructose corn syrup.
    The decision to discontinue Gluten Free Chex Oatmeal comes amid controversy regarding General Mills methods of sorting oats for its new gluten-free Cheerios.
    What do you think? Are you sad? Or are there too many good gluten-free choices to worry? Share your thoughts below.

    Jefferson Adams
    Celiac.com 09/07/2015 - Cereal maker General Mills is facing criticism from some people with celiac disease who say its gluten-free manufacturing practices are unsafe, unreliable, and leave them at risk for adverse gluten reactions.
    A number of celiac disease patients and others with gluten sensitivities are questioning the company's practice of removing wheat, rye and barley from standard oats, rather than sourcing actual gluten-free oats. General Mills' special method for sorting grains allegedly removes any wheat, barley and rye from the whole oats, before they are made into oat flour.
    A group called "Gluten Free Watchdog" has engaged General Mills regarding cross-contamination possibilities during the grain sorting and manufacturing process. The process used by General Mills to sort its oats for the gluten-free Original, Multi-Grain, Apple Cinnamon, Honey Nut and Frosted Cheerios is described in an official blog post.
    Gluten Free Watchdog's concerns include the reliability of testing analysis. General Mills currently uses a sampling method to test the cereal and check that gluten is 20 parts per million (ppm) or less, but Gluten Free Watchdog claims this method can result in uneven results, and that some batches of cereal may actually contain more than the allowed 20 ppm of gluten, although they haven't offered any solid examples that support their theory.
    To its credit, General Mills seems to be honestly engaged in the discussion, and has signaled an openness to sourcing pure gluten-free oats, which would address the concerns of groups like Gluten Free Watchdog.
    What do you think? Should General Mills be using gluten-free oats for their gluten-free products? Is it okay if they use regular oats and special sorting equipment to ensure the final oats are under 20 ppm, as required by law? Share your thoughts below.

  • Recent Articles

    Jefferson Adams
    Celiac.com 06/21/2018 - Would you buy a house advertised as ‘gluten-free’? Yes, there really is such a house for sale. 
    It seems a Phoenix realtor Mike D’Elena is hoping that his trendy claim will catch the eye of a buyer hungry to avoid gluten, or, at least one with a sense of humor. D’Elena said he crafted the ads as a way to “be funny and to draw attention.” The idea, D’Elena said, is to “make it memorable.” 
    Though D’Elena’s marketing seeks to capitalizes on the gluten-free trend, he knows Celiac disease is a serious health issue for some people. “[W]e’re not here to offend anybody….this is just something we're just trying to do to draw attention and do what's best for our clients," he said. 
    Still, the signs seem to be working. D'elena had fielded six offers within a few days of listing the west Phoenix home.
    "Buying can sometimes be the most stressful thing you do in your entire life so why not have some fun with it," he said. 
    What do you think? Clever? Funny?
    Read more at Arizonafamily.com.

    Advertising Banner-Ads
    Bakery On Main started in the small bakery of a natural foods market on Main Street in Glastonbury, Connecticut. Founder Michael Smulders listened when his customers with Celiac Disease would mention the lack of good tasting, gluten-free options available to them. Upon learning this, he believed that nobody should have to suffer due to any kind of food allergy or dietary need. From then on, his mission became creating delicious and fearlessly unique gluten-free products that were clean and great tasting, while still being safe for his Celiac customers!
    Premium ingredients, bakeshop delicious recipes, and happy customers were our inspiration from the beginning— and are still the cornerstones of Bakery On Main today. We are a fiercely ethical company that believes in integrity and feels that happiness and wholesome, great tasting food should be harmonious. We strive for that in everything we bake in our dedicated gluten-free facility that is GFCO Certified and SQF Level 3 Certified. We use only natural, NON-GMO Project Verified ingredients and all of our products are certified Kosher Parve, dairy and casein free, and we have recently introduced certified Organic items as well! 
    Our passion is to bake the very best products while bringing happiness to our customers, each other, and all those we meet!
    We are available during normal business hours at: 1-888-533-8118 EST.
    To learn more about us at: visit our site.

    Jefferson Adams
    Celiac.com 06/20/2018 - Currently, the only way to manage celiac disease is to eliminate gluten from the diet. That could be set to change as clinical trials begin in Australia for a new vaccine that aims to switch off the immune response to gluten. 
    The trials are set to begin at Australia’s University of the Sunshine Coast Clinical Trials Centre. The vaccine is designed to allow people with celiac disease to consume gluten with no adverse effects. A successful vaccine could be the beginning of the end for the gluten-free diet as the only currently viable treatment for celiac disease. That could be a massive breakthrough for people with celiac disease.
    USC’s Clinical Trials Centre Director Lucas Litewka said trial participants would receive an injection of the vaccine twice a week for seven weeks. The trials will be conducted alongside gastroenterologist Dr. James Daveson, who called the vaccine “a very exciting potential new therapy that has been undergoing clinical trials for several years now.”
    Dr. Daveson said the investigational vaccine might potentially restore gluten tolerance to people with celiac disease.The trial is open to adults between the ages of 18 and 70 who have clinically diagnosed celiac disease, and have followed a strict gluten-free diet for at least 12 months. Anyone interested in participating can go to www.joinourtrials.com.
    Read more at the website for Australia’s University of the Sunshine Coast Clinical Trials Centre.

    Source:
    FoodProcessing.com.au

    Jefferson Adams
    Celiac.com 06/19/2018 - Could baking soda help reduce the inflammation and damage caused by autoimmune diseases like rheumatoid arthritis, and celiac disease? Scientists at the Medical College of Georgia at Augusta University say that a daily dose of baking soda may in fact help reduce inflammation and damage caused by autoimmune diseases like rheumatoid arthritis, and celiac disease.
    Those scientists recently gathered some of the first evidence to show that cheap, over-the-counter antacids can prompt the spleen to promote an anti-inflammatory environment that could be helpful in combating inflammatory disease.
    A type of cell called mesothelial cells line our body cavities, like the digestive tract. They have little fingers, called microvilli, that sense the environment, and warn the organs they cover that there is an invader and an immune response is needed.
    The team’s data shows that when rats or healthy people drink a solution of baking soda, the stomach makes more acid, which causes mesothelial cells on the outside of the spleen to tell the spleen to go easy on the immune response.  "It's most likely a hamburger not a bacterial infection," is basically the message, says Dr. Paul O'Connor, renal physiologist in the MCG Department of Physiology at Augusta University and the study's corresponding author.
    That message, which is transmitted with help from a chemical messenger called acetylcholine, seems to encourage the gut to shift against inflammation, say the scientists.
    In patients who drank water with baking soda for two weeks, immune cells called macrophages, shifted from primarily those that promote inflammation, called M1, to those that reduce it, called M2. "The shift from inflammatory to an anti-inflammatory profile is happening everywhere," O'Connor says. "We saw it in the kidneys, we saw it in the spleen, now we see it in the peripheral blood."
    O'Connor hopes drinking baking soda can one day produce similar results for people with autoimmune disease. "You are not really turning anything off or on, you are just pushing it toward one side by giving an anti-inflammatory stimulus," he says, in this case, away from harmful inflammation. "It's potentially a really safe way to treat inflammatory disease."
    The research was funded by the National Institutes of Health.
    Read more at: Sciencedaily.com

    Jefferson Adams
    Celiac.com 06/18/2018 - Celiac disease has been mainly associated with Caucasian populations in Northern Europe, and their descendants in other countries, but new scientific evidence is beginning to challenge that view. Still, the exact global prevalence of celiac disease remains unknown.  To get better data on that issue, a team of researchers recently conducted a comprehensive review and meta-analysis to get a reasonably accurate estimate the global prevalence of celiac disease. 
    The research team included P Singh, A Arora, TA Strand, DA Leffler, C Catassi, PH Green, CP Kelly, V Ahuja, and GK Makharia. They are variously affiliated with the Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston, Massachusetts; Lady Hardinge Medical College, New Delhi, India; Innlandet Hospital Trust, Lillehammer, Norway; Centre for International Health, University of Bergen, Bergen, Norway; Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston, Massachusetts; Gastroenterology Research and Development, Takeda Pharmaceuticals Inc, Cambridge, MA; Department of Pediatrics, Università Politecnica delle Marche, Ancona, Italy; Department of Medicine, Columbia University Medical Center, New York, New York; USA Celiac Disease Center, Columbia University Medical Center, New York, New York; and the Department of Gastroenterology and Human Nutrition, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, India.
    For their review, the team searched Medline, PubMed, and EMBASE for the keywords ‘celiac disease,’ ‘celiac,’ ‘tissue transglutaminase antibody,’ ‘anti-endomysium antibody,’ ‘endomysial antibody,’ and ‘prevalence’ for studies published from January 1991 through March 2016. 
    The team cross-referenced each article with the words ‘Asia,’ ‘Europe,’ ‘Africa,’ ‘South America,’ ‘North America,’ and ‘Australia.’ They defined celiac diagnosis based on European Society of Pediatric Gastroenterology, Hepatology, and Nutrition guidelines. The team used 96 articles of 3,843 articles in their final analysis.
    Overall global prevalence of celiac disease was 1.4% in 275,818 individuals, based on positive blood tests for anti-tissue transglutaminase and/or anti-endomysial antibodies. The pooled global prevalence of biopsy-confirmed celiac disease was 0.7% in 138,792 individuals. That means that numerous people with celiac disease potentially remain undiagnosed.
    Rates of celiac disease were 0.4% in South America, 0.5% in Africa and North America, 0.6% in Asia, and 0.8% in Europe and Oceania; the prevalence was 0.6% in female vs 0.4% males. Celiac disease was significantly more common in children than adults.
    This systematic review and meta-analysis showed celiac disease to be reported worldwide. Blood test data shows celiac disease rate of 1.4%, while biopsy data shows 0.7%. The prevalence of celiac disease varies with sex, age, and location. 
    This review demonstrates a need for more comprehensive population-based studies of celiac disease in numerous countries.  The 1.4% rate indicates that there are 91.2 million people worldwide with celiac disease, and 3.9 million are in the U.S.A.
    Source:
    Clin Gastroenterol Hepatol. 2018 Jun;16(6):823-836.e2. doi: 10.1016/j.cgh.2017.06.037.