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Found 7 results

  1. Celiac.com 07/24/2017 - Are many non-celiac gluten-free eaters actually treating unkown medical conditions? Is the gluten-free movement less a fad than we imagine? Currently, about 3 million Americans follow a gluten-free diet, even though they do not have celiac disease. Known colloquially as "PWAGs," people without celiac disease avoiding gluten. These folks are often painted as fad dieters, or hypochondriacs, or both. Call them what you will, their ranks are growing. According to a study in the journal Mayo Clinic Proceedings, the number of PWAGs tripled from 2009 to 2014, while the number of celiac cases stayed flat. A new study from the Mayo Clinic supports these conclusions. The study derived from data gathered in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, as well as serological tests. There is also a growing body of data that support the existence of non-celiac gluten sensitivities, though the evidence is not conclusive. Moreover, researchers really don't have any idea how many non-celiacs on a gluten-free diet may have legitimate reactions to gluten. The phenomenon has emerged in the past five years in medical literature. For a long time, researchers just assumed that only people with celiac disease would eat a gluten-free diet. About a decade ago, when research into celiac disease and gluten-free dieting began in earnest, says Joseph Murray, a celiac researcher at the Mayo Clinic and an author of the new research, researchers "didn't think to ask why people avoid gluten. When we designed this study 10 years ago, no one avoided gluten without a celiac diagnosis." The latest research by Murray and his colleagues showed that the total number of celiac cases leveled off in the last few years, while more non-celiacs began to avoid gluten for different reasons. Researchers still aren't sure what's driving the trend, and whether it will continue. Part of the increase is doubtless to growing awareness of gluten sensitivity. However, Benjamin Lebwohl, the director of clinical research at Columbia University's Celiac Disease Center, estimates that more than half of the 3.1 million PWAGs noted in this latest study have legitimate gluten sensitivity. "An increasing number of people say that gluten makes them sick, and we don't have a good sense why that is yet," Lebwohl said. "There is a large placebo effect — but this is over and above that." Non-celiac patients with gluten sensitivity often complain of symptoms similar to those of celiacs, such as intestinal problems, fatigue, stomachaches and mental fogginess. And while researchers don't know the reason, clinical studies have shown that these symptoms are often relieved by eliminating dietary gluten. One theory that is gaining some credence is that these people may be sensitive to other irritants, such as FODMAPS, a class of carbohydrates shown to cause gastrointestinal symptoms found in wheat, milk, onions and cheese. Look for more studies into this topic, as researchers seek to nail down answers about celiac disease and gluten-sensitivity, and similar symptoms in non-celiacs. Meantime, the number of people who suspect they have non-celiac gluten sensitivity, and who seek improvement in their symptoms by eliminating gluten from their diets, continues to grow. Source: DailyTribune.com
  2. Celiac.com 10/20/2016 - Whether you are an adult or a child, you could have attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), autism or even Asperger's Syndrome. If you do not have enough symptom improvements with the traditional treatments, then why not consider an alternative therapy? What about a gluten-free diet? There are so many statistics that show the connection between these mental conditions and celiac disease. Now, in order to help the symptoms, eating a gluten-free and casein-free (Gluten-free Casein-free) diet might actually help. There is evidence of a correlation between ADHD and celiac disease. It is actually fairly strong. Children and adults with undiagnosed celiac disease, seem to have a higher risk than the general population. Once they started a gluten-free diet, the patients or their parents, reported significant improvements in overall behavior and functioning. As for individuals with autism, they might have a food allergy or high sensitivity to foods containing gluten or casein. Eating a Gluten-free Casein-free diet, might help to reduce symptoms and improve speech, social and cognitive behaviors. Children with autism, according to theory, process peptides and proteins in food items that contain casein and gluten differently. The difference within processing, may exacerbate autistic symptoms. Lastly, children with Asperger's Syndrome, can actually have leaky gut syndrome as well. Treating with a gluten free diet could help ease certain symptoms, such as nonsense talk, obsessions, poor coordination, staring off into space and even social difficulties. Then, consider even going one step further and trying an elimination diet. This is an easy method of figuring out what foods your child is truly reacting to. So, as you can see, these three conditions might actually have more improvements with just simple dietary changes. Having less challenges and being able to focus and interact with less difficulty won't be just a dream, but could be a real possibility for your child. References: https://www.verywell.com/depression-behavior-issues-in-celiac-teens-563017 http://www.thesavvyceliac.com/2011/03/12/research-is-food-the-culprit-in-adhd/ http://www.webmd.com/brain/autism/gluten-free-casein-free-diets-for-autism#1 http://www.myaspergerschild.com/2011/11/misbehavior-or-food-allergy.html
  3. Celiac.com 09/12/2016 - Wheat gluten and related proteins can trigger an autoimmune enteropathy, known as celiac disease, in people with genetic susceptibility. However, some people experience a range of gluten reaction symptoms, but without the classic blood or gut markers for celiac disease. The etiology and mechanism of these symptoms are unknown, and so far, researchers have found no biomarkers to explain the issue. A research team recently set out to determine if sensitivity to wheat in the absence of celiac disease is associated with systemic immune activation that may be linked to some type of enteropathy. The research team included Melanie Uhde, Mary Ajamian, Giacomo Caio, Roberto De Giorgio, Alyssa Indart, Peter H Green, Elizabeth C Verna, Umberto Volta, and Armin Alaedini. They are variously affiliated with the Celiac Disease Center and the Department of Medicine at Columbia University Medical Center, New York, New York, USA, Departments of Medical and Surgical Sciences and Digestive System, Centro di Ricerca Biomedica Applicata (C.R.B.A.), University of Bologna, St. Orsola-Malpighi Hospital, Bologna, Italy, and the Institute of Human Nutrition at Columbia University Medical Center, New York, New York, USA. The study included a group of healthy control subjects, patients with clinical celiac disease, and patients who reported symptoms after wheat consumption, but in whom doctors had ruled out celiac disease and wheat allergy. The team analyzed test samples for markers of intestinal cell damage and systemic immune response to microbial components. Patients with wheat sensitivity showed sharply increased serum levels of soluble CD14 and lipopolysaccharide (LPS)-binding protein, as well as antibody reactivity to bacterial LPS and flagellin. Circulating levels of fatty acid-binding protein 2 (FABP2), a marker of intestinal epithelial cell damage, were much higher in the affected individuals, and correlated with the immune responses to microbial products. Patients with wheat sensitivity who observed a gluten-free diet saw levels of FABP2 and immune activation markers move rapidly toward normal. These findings show a state of systemic immune activation, coupled with a compromised intestinal epithelium, that triggers gastrointestinal symptoms in certain individuals who have wheat sensitivity, but don't have celiac disease. Source: Gut. doi:10.1136/gutjnl-2016-311964
  4. Celiac.com 06/20/2016 - Are there genetic correlations between PTSD and mental disorders or immune-related disorders? What role does genetics play in PTSD, if any? A team of researchers recently set out to discover genetic loci associated with the lifetime risk for PTSD in 2 groups from the Army Study to Assess Risk and Resilience in Service members (Army STARRS). The research team included Murray B. Stein, MD, MPH, Chia-Yen Chen, ScD; Robert J. Ursano, MD; Tianxi Cai, ScD; Joel Gelernter, MD; Steven G. Heeringa, PhD; Sonia Jain, PhD; Kevin P. Jensen, PhD; Adam X. Maihofer, MS; Colter Mitchell, PhD; Caroline M. Nievergelt, PhD; Matthew K. Nock, PhD; Benjamin M. Neale, PhD; Renato Polimanti, PhD; Stephan Ripke, MD5; Xiaoying Sun, MS; Michael L. Thomas, PhD; Qian Wang, PhD; Erin B. Ware, PhD; Susan Borja, PhD; Ronald C. Kessler, PhD; Jordan W. Smoller, MD, ScD; for the Army Study to Assess Risk and Resilience in Service-members (STARRS). They are variously affiliated with the Department of Psychiatry, and the Department of Family Medicine and Public Health, UCSD, La Jolla, the Psychiatry Service of the Veterans Affairs San Diego Healthcare System, San Diego, California, the Department of Psychiatry at Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School, Boston, the Stanley Center for Psychiatric Research, Broad Institute of Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Harvard, Cambridge, the Department of Psychiatry, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences in Bethesda, Maryland, the Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts, the Department of Psychiatry, Genetics, and Neurobiology at Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut, the Institute for Social Research, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, the Department of Psychology, Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts, the Department of Computational Biology and Bioinformatics, Graduate School of Arts and Sciences at Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut, the National Institute of Mental Health, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland, and with the Department of Health Care Policy, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts The study looked at subjects from two coordinated genome-wide association studies of mental health in the US military. The first study, the New Soldier Study (NSS), included 3,167 unique patients with PTSD and 4,607 trauma-exposed control subjects. The NSS data were collected from February 1, 2011, to November 30, 2012. The second study, the Pre/Post Deployment Study (PPDS), included 947 unique patients with PTSD and 4,969 trauma-exposed control subjects. The PDDS data were collected from January 9 to April 30, 2012. The primary analysis compared lifetime DSM-IV PTSD cases with trauma-exposed controls without lifetime PTSD. Data were analyzed from March 18 to December 27, 2015. The team used logistic regression models to conduct association analyses for PTSD among European, African, and Latino Americans by study, followed by meta-analysis. They also estimated heritability, genetic correlation and pleiotropy with other psychiatric and immune-related disorders. The NSS population of 7,774 patients was just over 80% male, and about 21 years old, while the PPDS population of 5,916 patients was 94.4% male, and about 26.5 years old. A genome-wide significant locus was found in ANKRD55 on chromosome 5 (rs159572; odds ratio [OR], 1.62; 95% CI, 1.37-1.92; P = 2.34 × 10−8) and persisted after adjustment for cumulative trauma exposure (adjusted OR, 1.64; 95% CI, 1.39-1.95; P = 1.18 × 10−8) in the African American samples from the NSS. They also found a genome-wide significant locus in or near ZNF626 on chromosome 19 (rs11085374; OR, 0.77; 95% CI, 0.70-0.85; P = 4.59 × 10−8) in the European American samples from the NSS. They did not find any similar results for either single-nucleotide polymorphism in the corresponding ancestry group from the PPDS sample, in other ancestral groups, or in transancestral meta-analyses. Overall, they saw no significant evidence for single-nucleotide polymorphism–based heritability, and they found no significant genetic correlations between PTSD and 6 mental disorders or 9 immune-related disorders. They did find significant evidence of a single-gene linking PTSD and rheumatoid arthritis and, to a lesser extent, psoriasis. Beyond that, they didn't find not much to support any connection to specific gene locations. The researchers are calling for additional studies "to replicate the genome-wide significant association with ANKRD55—associated in prior research with several autoimmune and inflammatory disorders—and to clarify the nature of the genetic overlap observed between PTSD and rheumatoid arthritis and psoriasis." Source: JAMA Psychiatry. Published online May 11, 2016. doi:10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2016.0350
  5. Gluten intolerance often presents itself in ways unexpected, including several common skin conditions. Ranging in severity from dermatitis herpetiformis to dry skin, avoiding gluten may have more to do with your plaguing skin concerns than you imagined. Here are some common dermatological concerns associated with celiac disease: Dermatitits Herpetiformis—This painful, blistery condition can be very stressful, especially when misdiagnosed. An inflamed, itchy rash, dermatitis herpetiformis begins as tiny white filled blisters or red spots around hair follicles. Trying to hide or disguise DH, as well as trying to treat it when misdiagnosed can be incredibly stressful for a person. Eczema—Eating a gluten-free diet is becoming an increasingly popular mode of treatment for eczema. Those who are gluten intolerant also tend to have more advanced psoriasis.Psoriasis—Like eczema, psoriasis has in many cases shown improvement when the person is put on a gluten free diet. In Scott Adams’ 2004 article, he also mentioned that psoriasis in those with celiac tends to be more severe. Acne—Links between celiac and malabsorption, as well as hormonal upset can contribute to a greater production of acne. Many birth control pills boast promises of clearer skin, their method is through hormone manipulation. Because many who suffer from gluten intolerance also experience a disruption of normal hormone function, this disharmony can lead to problems with acne. Dry Skin—Also correlated to malabsorption, dry skin is a very common complaint amongst those with celiac. But this condition is one that many people see even after the prescribed treatment of a gluten free diet. Why? Vitamin E rich grains are vital to maintaining skin harmony, but since many who are gluten intolerant begin avoiding grains completely—even those grains that are gluten-free, getting that important Vitamin E in their diets can become a challenge.
  6. This article originally appeared in the Summer 2002 edition of Celiac.coms Scott-Free newsletter. On June 2, 2002, hundreds of researchers traveled from all over the world to Paris, France, in order to hear the latest scientific reports on celiac disease research and to present results from their own investigations. Over the course of three days, scientists presented dozens of reports, and displayed over a hundred posters covering all aspects of celiac disease, from laboratory research on the microbiologic aspects of the disease, to quality of life issues in patients who are on the gluten-free diet. There were so many exciting reports presented at the conference, and the following describes the research findings from these new reports concerning the screening and clinical presentation of celiac disease, osteoporosis and osteopathy and neurological conditions. SCREENING ISSUES IN CELIAC DISEASE In order to understand how best to screen populations for celiac disease, it is important to know how celiac disease affects a portion of the population, and how it compares to similar populations in other countries. Mayo Clinic Retrospective Study Dr. Joseph Murray from the Mayo Clinic conducted a retrospective study on the population of people living in Olmsted County, Minnesota. This county has kept medical records on all of its residents for over 100 years. Dr. Murray looked at the medical records to determine which residents were diagnosed with celiac disease from 1950 to 2001. He found 82 cases of celiac disease, with 58 in females and 24 in males. The average age of diagnosis was 45. Pediatric diagnoses of celiac disease during this time period were extremely rare. Dr. Murray found that while the diagnosis rate of dermatitis herpetiformis (DH) remained constant over the 51 year period, the diagnosis rate of celiac disease increased from 0.8 to 9.4 per 100,000 people. He also noted that over time, adults with celiac disease were less likely to present diarrhea and weight loss as symptoms. Encouragingly, he determined that the average life expectancy for a diagnosed celiac in this community was no less than that of the normal population, despite the fact that celiac disease was often diagnosed later in life. What does this mean? The celiac disease diagnosis rate in this county is much lower than the actual incidence rates that have been reported in other studies; however, that rate has greatly increased over the past 51 years. It is also noteworthy that so few children were diagnosed with celiac disease. The analysis highlights interesting and useful information about the presentation of celiac disease in adults, and about the potential life expectancy for people with celiac disease who are diagnosed later in life. United States and Europe Compared Dr. Carlo Catassi of Ancona, Italy is currently a visiting researcher at the University of Maryland Celiac Research Center. He presented an analysis of the similarities and differences between the clinical presentations of celiac disease in the United States and Europe. Dr. Catassi established that the prevalence of celiac disease in the U.S. and Europe are the same and range between 0.5 to 1.0 percent of the general population. The prevalence in at-risk populations is much higher, ranging between 5 and 10 percent, and the prevalence in people with Type 1 Diabetes is approximately 5 percent in both the U.S. and Europe. He found that the typical (symptomatic) cases of celiac disease were less common in the U.S., and that the latent (asymptomatic) cases were much more common. Dr. Catassi stated that these differences could be due to genetic factors (for example, there are more Asians in the United States than in Europe), but are more likely due to environmental factors. He noted that infants born in the U.S. are often breastfed longer than their European counterparts. There is also a lower gluten intake in the first months of life for infants in the U.S. The timing of the introduction of cereals could help explain why many American children have somewhat milder symptoms and a more unusual presentation of the disease. What does this mean? Dr. Catassis analysis underscores the need to better educate physicians in the U.S. so that they learn to see typically atypical signs of celiac disease in children and adults. He also reinforced the importance of breastfeeding as a protective factor for children with a genetic predisposition to celiac disease, which could also improve the outlook for European children in the future. United States Prevalence Research Dr. Alessio Fasano presented a poster which outlined his recent findings that are a follow-up to his now famous 1996 blood screening study. The original study found that 1 in 250 Americans had celiac disease. It was performed using anti-gliadin antibodies (AGA), and when a blood sample tested AGA positive it was confirmed using anti-endomysial (EMA) antibody testing. Now that human tissue transglutaminase (tTG) testing is available, Dr. Fasano and his colleagues wanted to see if the results of their original study would be different using the tTG test. He and his colleagues tested the negative samples in the original study, and found 10 more positives using the tTG test. Two of these samples were confirmed positive when checked using the AGA antibody test. Dr. Fasano concluded that the original (1996) prevalence estimate of 1 in 250 understated the true prevalence rate, which could actually be greater than 1 in 200 Americans. Dr. Michelle Pietzak, a pediatric gastroenterologist at the University of California at Los Angeles, also presented a poster which described the prevalence of celiac disease in Southern California. In a study of 1,094 participants, Dr. Pietzak found that 8% of Hispanics tested positive for celiac disease. The most common symptoms presented by subjects in her study included abdominal pain, diarrhea, constipation, joint pain and chronic fatigue. What does this mean? It is important to understand that the foundation of all U.S. prevalence research on celiac disease began with the blood donor study performed by Dr. Fasano in 1996. His newly revised findings, which have been supported by at least one other major study, show that the prevalence of celiac disease in the U.S. population is much higher than originally believed, and that it could be greater than 1 in 200 people. Additionally, the California study is one of the first to establish a celiac disease prevalence figure for the Hispanic population in the U.S., and if the 8 percent figure is supported by further research it would indicate that celiac disease significantly affects Hispanic Americans. OSTEOPOROSIS AND OSTEOPATHY Dr. Julio Bai of Argentina presented important information on a condition that affects many people with celiac disease, and one that is often overlooked by physicians—osteoporosis or osteopathy (its milder form). Both children and adults with celiac disease can have low bone mineral density, and its method of treatment can have important consequences. Dr. Bai treats adults with bone loss, and has studied the nature of fractures and bone health in adults with celiac disease. In a case-control study of 78 celiac disease patients, Dr. Bai found that symptomatic patients were more likely to experience bone fractures than the normal population. Interestingly, he also found that patients with latent (asymptomatic) celiac disease had lower fracture rates than those with symptoms, and that the rate was equal to that of the normal population. None of the patients, however, experienced a fracture of the more serious type—in the hip, spine or shoulder, and the fractures tended to occur in their arms, legs, hands and feet. The doctor also discussed preliminary evidence which showed that most women with osteopathy and celiac disease who go on a gluten free diet will experience an improvement in bone density, while many men do not. There was, however, no difference found between the fracture rates of men and women. Dr. Bai also found that nutritional and metabolic deficiencies in patients with celiac disease and osteopathy might also contribute to fractures by weakening the muscles that surround essential bones. He added that immunological factors could also enhance or inhibit bone rebuilding, and that there is a bone-specific tissue transglutaminase (tTG) that plays a role in this process. What does this mean? It was certainly good news to hear that most people with low bone density due to celiac disease can reverse the damaging process, and if celiac-related fractures do occur they tend to be of the less serious type. Additionally, it was interesting to learn just how important a role muscle health plays in preventing celiac-related fractures. Osteopathy in Children Dr. Mora, an Italian researcher, presented data on osteopathy in children with celiac disease. His results indicate that a gluten-free diet can improve bone mass, and the effect is maintained even after 10 years. He also added that a gluten-free diet improved the overall bone metabolism of the children, and that the diet alone could cure their osteopathy. Osteopenia and Osteoporosis: Conditions Related to Celiac Disease In a chart prepared by Dr. David Sanders of the United Kingdom, data on 674 patients, 243 with osteoporosis and 431 with osteopenia, were presented. He found 10 cases of celiac disease among a mostly female population that had an average age of 53. In all ten cases, patients either had a history of iron-deficient anemia or gastrointestinal symptoms. He concluded that all patients with osteopenia or osteoporosis and a history of anemia or gastrointestinal symptoms should be screened for celiac disease. What does this mean? Dr. Sanders has identified a subset of people with osteoporosis and osteopenia that should be screened for celiac disease—those who have been anemic or have gastrointestinal symptoms. This helps physicians know when to refer patients for celiac disease screening. NEUROLOGICAL SYMPTOMS Dr. Marios Hadjivassiliou of the United Kingdom presented data on neurological symptoms and gluten sensitivity. In an eight-year study, Dr. Hadjivassiliou screened people who had neurological symptoms of unknown origin using the anti-gliadin antibody (AGA) test. He found that 57 percent of these patients had antibodies present in their blood, compared to 12 percent of healthy controls or 5 percent of patients with a neurological condition of known origin. From this group, he studied 158 patients with gluten sensitivity and neurological conditions of unknown origin (only 33 percent of these patients had any gastrointestinal symptoms). The most common neurological conditions in this group were ataxia, peripheral neuropathies, myopathy, and encephalopathy (very severe headache). Less common were stiff person syndrome, myelopathy and neuromyotonia. He noted that ataxia is not a result of vitamin deficiencies, but is instead an immune-mediated condition. Patients with ataxia have unique antibodies that are not found in patients with celiac disease. Dr. Hadjivassiliou felt that up to 30 percent of idiopathic neuropathies could be gluten-related, and that there is preliminary evidence which indicates that a gluten-free diet is helpful in cases of neuropathy and ataxia. What does this mean? It is interesting to note that Dr. Hadjivassiliou has studied gluten sensitivity and not celiac disease. The test used in this study is not specific enough to identify people who were likely to have celiac disease. However, his finding that the gluten-free diet may be helpful in people with certain types of neuropathy and ataxia opens the door for further research on these conditions in people with celiac disease.
  7. Celiac.com 02/10/2010 - A team of researchers recently set out to determine whether patients with autoimmune thyroid disease risk developing secondary autoimmune disorders, and whether such diseases tend to cluster in families. The research team included Kristien Boelaert, PhD, Paul R. Newbya, Matthew J. Simmonds, PhD, Roger L. Holderb, Jacqueline D. Carr-Smitha, Joanne M. Heward, PhD, Nilusha Manjia, Amit Allahabadia, MD, Mary Armitage, DM, Krishna V. Chatterjee, PhD, John H. Lazarus, MD, Simon H. Pearce, PhD, Bijay Vaidya, PhD, Stephen C. Gough, PhD, Jayne A. Franklyn, PhD. To properly assess the prevalence of coexisting autoimmune disorders, the team conducted a cross-sectional multi-center study of 3286 Caucasian patients at UK hospital thyroid clinics. 2791 of the patients had Graves' disease, while 495 had Hashimoto's thyroiditis. Patients completed a comprehensive questionnaire detailing personal and parental history of common autoimmune disorders, along with a history of hyperthyroidism or hypothyroidism among parents. The frequency of developing another autoimmune disorder was 9.67% in Graves' disease and 14.3% in Hashimoto's thyroiditis index cases (P=.005). Rheumatoid arthritis was the most common coexisting autoimmune disorder, striking 3.15% of those with Graves' disease and 4.24% of those with Hashimoto's thyroiditis. Relative risks of almost all other autoimmune diseases in Graves' disease or Hashimoto's thyroiditis were significantly increased (>10 for pernicious anemia, systemic lupus erythematosus, Addison's disease, celiac disease, and vitiligo). Results showed relative “clustering” of Graves' disease, and of Hashimoto's thyroiditis, among patients whose parents had hyperthyroidism. Moreover, most other coexisting autoimmune disorders showed markedly increased relative risks for patients with parental history of such disorders. This effort to quantify the risk of diagnosis of coexisting autoimmune diseases in more than 3000 index cases with well-characterized Graves' disease or Hashimoto's thyroiditis represents one of the most comprehensive studies yet completed. The elevated risks for developing multiple conditions emphasizes the importance of screening for other autoimmune diagnoses in subjects with autoimmune thyroid disease who present new or nonspecific symptoms. Source: American Journal of Medicine - Volume 123, Issue 2, Pages 183.e1-183.e9 - February 2010
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