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Found 5 results

  1. Celiac.com 07/10/2006 - Increased consumption of gluten, according to Dr. Michael Marsh, raises the risk of celiac disease symptoms1. Although these symptoms may not indicate celiac disease, they reflect some biological realities. Grain-based foods simply do not offer the nutrients necessary to human health and they damage the human body. USDA and Canada Food Guides notwithstanding, if people eat grain-laden diets, they may develop symptoms of celiac disease (but in most cases, without the diagnostic intestinal lesion). The connection between eating disorders and celiac disease is well known and well documented2,3,4,5. Thus, the dynamics at work in celiac disease may offer insight into the broader realm of obesity, especially among those who are eating the recommended, daily quantities of grain-derived foods, while attempting to keep their weight down by eating low-fat foods. The primary, defining characteristic of celiac disease is gluten induced damage to the villi in the intestinal lining. Since malabsorption of vitamins and minerals are well known in the context of celiac disease, it should not be surprising that some celiac patients also demonstrate pica (Pica is an ailment characterized by eating dirt, paint, wood, and other non-food substances). Other celiac patients eat excessive quantities of food, coupled with a concurrent failure to gain weight. Yet another, perhaps larger, group of celiac patients refuse to eat (One may wonder if the latter find that eating makes them feel sick so they avoid it). Perhaps the most neglected group is that large portion of untreated celiac patients who are obese. Dr. Dickey found that obesity is more common than being underweight among those with untreated celiac disease6. When I ran a Medline search under the terms "obesity" and "celiac disease" 75 citations appeared. A repeated theme in the abstracts and titles was that celiac disease is usually overlooked among obese patients. While obesity in celiac disease may be common, diagnosis appears to be uncommon. Given the facts, I certainly believe that some of the North American epidemic of obesity can be explained by undiagnosed celiac disease. However, that is only a small part of the obesity puzzle, and I suspect that celiac disease may offer a pattern for understanding much of the obesity that is sweeping this continent. One example, a woman diagnosed by Dr. Joe Murray when he was at the University of Iowa, weighed 388 pounds at diagnosis7. Dr. Murray explained her situation as an over-compensation for her intestinal malabsorption. I want to suggest a two faceted, alternative explanation which may extend to a large and growing segment of the overweight and obese among the general population. As mentioned earlier, anyone consuming enough gluten will demonstrate some symptoms of celiac disease. If large scale gluten consumption damages the intestinal villi—but to a lesser degree than is usually required to diagnose celiac disease—fat absorption will be compromised. Deficiencies in essential fatty acids are a likely consequence. The natural response to such deficiencies is to crave food despite having absorbed sufficient calories. Even when caloric intake is huge, and excess calories must be stored as body fat, the need to eat continues to be driven by the bodys craving for essential fats. Due to gluten-induced interference with fat absorption, consumption of escalating quantities of food may be necessary for adequate essential fatty acid absorption. To further compound the problem, pancreatic glucagon production will be reduced, compromising the ability of the individual to burn these stored fats, while the cells continue to demand essential fats. Poor medical advice also contributes to the problem. The mantra of reduced fat continues to echo in the offices of health professionals despite a growing body of converse research findings. In February of this year, the results of a powerful, eight year study of almost 49,000 women showed little difference between the health of women consuming low fat diets when compared to those consuming normal diets8. Alarmingly, this low fat diet seems to have resulted in weight gain, a well recognized risk factor for a variety of diseases. For some of us, this result was predictable. The likely result of a low-fat diet is an increased intake of carbohydrates while food cravings are fuelled by a deficiency of essential fatty acids. If my sense of the underlying problem (caloric excess combined with essential fatty acid deficiency due to fat malabsorption at the microvilli) is accurate, then a low fat diet is exactly the wrong prescription. Many obese persons are condemned, by such poor medical advice, to a life of ever deepening depression, autoimmune diseases, and increasing obesity. At the end of the day, when these folks drop dead from heart attacks, strokes, or some similar disaster, the self-righteous bystanders will just know that the problem was a lack of willpower. I watched my mom steadily gain weight for 35 years. I watched her exercise more will power beyond the capacity of most folks. Still, she could not resist her compulsive eating. I have seen her take something from the freezer and chew on it while agreeing that she had just eaten a very large meal and should feel full. In December of 1994 I was diagnosed with celiac disease. According to the published experts in this area, my mom should also have been invited for testing. Yet, when asked for testing, her doctor refused her. Through persistence, and a pervasive faith in her son, mom finally (after months of negotiation) swayed her doctor to do the anti-gliadin antibody blood test. Despite the fact that she had been on a reduced gluten diet for the past year, her antibody levels were elevated. She never sought a biopsy diagnosis, and the EMA and tTG were not available here in Canada at that time. However, she has been gluten-free for the past seven years or so. She dropped a considerable amount of weight. Her weakness was never will power. She was battling an instinct so basic that few of us could have resisted. That, I think, is the story behind much of North American obesity. The widespread, excessive consumption of gluten at every meal, in addition to the low-fat religion that has been promulgated throughout the land, is resulting in intestinal damage and a widespread deficiency in essential fats is among North Americans. Ron Hoggan is an author, teacher and diagnosed celiac who lives in Canada. His book "Dangerous Grains" can be ordered at www.celiac.com. Rons Web page is: www.DangerousGrains.com References: Marsh, Michael N. Personal communication. 2002. Ferrara, et. al. "Celiac disease and anorexia nervosa" New York State Journal of Medicine 1966; 66(8): 1000-1005. Gent & Creamer "Faecal fats, appetite, and weight loss in the celiac syndrome" Lancet 1968; 1(551): 1063-1064. Wright, et. al. "Organic diseases mimicking atypical eating disorders" Clinical Pediatrics 1990; 29(6): 325-328. Grenet, et. al. "Anorexic forms of celiac syndromes" Annales de Pediatrie 1972; 19(6): 491-497. Dickey W, Bodkin S. Prospective study of body mass index in patients with coeliac disease. BMJ. 1998 Nov 7;317(7168):1290. Murray, J. Canadian Celiac Association National Conference. 1999. Howard BV, Van Horn L, Hsia J, et. al. Low-fat dietary pattern and risk of cardiovascular disease: the Womens Health Initiative Randomized Controlled Dietary Modification Trial. JAMA. 2006 Feb 8;295(6):655-66.
  2. Hi everyone, About a month ago, I was diagnosed with Celiac and it's been a bit of a journey thus far. While I've done a pretty good job of sticking to a strict gluten-free diet, I have had a few moments when I've been craving gluten and broken my commitment (just last week I made a batch of brownies, only to consume 1 and throw out the rest.) For those who have been gluten free for a longer period, I'm curious to know if these cravings stop, or if you always wish you could just pig-out on a deep dish pizza? Additionally, I met with my nutritionist earlier this morning and she informed me that with Celiac, it's incredibly important to pay attention to foods with possible cross-contamination or shared oils (specifically foods like french fries.) I understand this, but how big of a deal is this really? Provided I don't feel physically sick afterwards, is it OK to occasionally have fries that may have shared a friar with other foods?
  3. I am a month and a half gluten free after being diagnosed with celiac. I have been doing well, but I have been having extreme craving and hunger. Why do I feel like I am being starved when I am eating big meals. I have been eaten a lot of protein and replacing the gluten carbs with brown rice, potatoes, beans, etc. Nothing makes the hunger and cravings stop. Even when my stomach is full and bloated I still just want to eat all the time. I have never had hunger like this before. Is it because my body is trying to heal from inflammation, lacking nutrients, or something else?
  4. I have had severe constant bloating for many years. I have diagnosed with celiac diseases about two months ago and have been gluten free since. My skin rashes and constant nausea have improved a little, but the bloating is much worse. Is this because of celiac? If so how long will it take for bloating to settle down? Is it because my stomach is inflamed? My stomach also gets full and bloated easily, but I am Always hungry. I constantly want to eat since I started eating gluten free.
  5. I've recently come to terms with my issue with gluten. Those terms being : drug addiction. When a craving hits I'd rather feed it than face the unsettling loss of control I feel when I go without it. I feel pathetic and desperate and I don't like feeling that way. Especially about etwas as silly as food. It's like there's a hole that will cause me extreme anxiety and irritability unless I plug it up with bread. Until I got online and learned that wheat foods act upon our brain in the same way opiates do I just felt like I was losing my mind to some strange eating disorder. People on gluten intolerance message boards even said that they have faced heroin addiction and withdrawal and gluten is no different. I don't even need to eat gluten immediately when a craving hits. Oddly enough, if I plan how I will soon be consuming gluten that'll stave off the desperation for a few days. I make excuses for it. Like, it's a holiday, or life has been stressful. I act like I can have just a little & it doesn't open the floodgates to full on cravings for the stuff. Wheat products will help me sleep when I have insomnia. Help me cope when I have anxiety or depression. They are an option for pain management when I either don't have my prescribed opiate or don't want it cuz it makes me very nauseous and itchy in a way that bread will never do. I recently realized that the only way I know to come down from feeling extremely suicidal and manic (dealing with depersonalization) is to eat wheaty foods. I've got these very good, valid reasons for why I continue to use it. But, I'm using it. Using it instead of learning healthy coping techniques. Instead of facing demons. And worst of all, I have chronic lyme disease on top of gluten intolerance. Chronic inflammatory disease plus inflammation from gluten intolerance. I see the hair loss, the weight gain and bloating, the pimples and clogged pores. What I don't see is how much damage I'm doing to my insides by continuing to eat gluten. It makes my arthritis flare, so my hands and back hurt worse. I brush that off though, cuz they hurt anyway; what's the big deal with worse. My hair is falling out, my complexion is wrecked, my arthritis is worse, my stomach is huge....and I'm still trading my health away for the comfort of breads. What if this choice, this bad choice, I keep making is going to prevent me from being functionally healthy....like ever?! If the hallmark of any addiction is continued use despite the negative impact on your life, then it's safe to say I'm addicted to gluten. Admitting I have an addiction is a big step. It means that now when I use, I say to myself that I am "using" and no longer refer to it as, "going off my diet". I'm slowly recognizing the ways that I use it. I'm overcoming some of those issues. I can deal with not sleeping; sleeping at night instead of the day is not worth eating gluten for. It's a challenge. I know just what to do; how "using" would fix it. I feel guilty and anxious about sleeping all day instead of at night. But, I can stay strong in that situation. When I fold and hit that gluten hard is pain and suicide. By pain I don't mean , "oh ow, I'm not comfortable, I don't want to do anything." I mean pain like my leg is being torn from my body by a mac truck and writhing in bed, screaming (actually screaming) in agony until I'm too exhausted to move and too hoarse to cry out. I mean pain like I can't move out of my bed to even eat or pee and even a normal breath is excruciating so I have to consciously breathe. By suicide I don't mean that I just want to kill myself. For me, it's a spinning out, losing my grip sort of situation, where continuing to participate in this hell is just illogical and thus killing myself is the solution. The world is just wool over my eyes; nothing is actually real. I died a long time ago and this is now a prison for my mind. I guess it's more like psychosis. (been a problem since I got dosed with anti-psychotics cuz doctors didn't realize my leg/back pain was nerve pain; they thought it was a delusion) Yeah, gluten is the best for those two things. I'll consciously trade away my hair, my beautiful body and youthful clear complexion for less pain and no psychosis any day. But that doesn't legitimize my drug use and it doesn't excuse it. I imagine a lot of heroin addicts are opting out of worse suffering too. They still need help. And so do I. Friends and family literally scoff at me when I tell them I'm addicted to gluten & tell them how their encouraging me to eat it is like handing heroin to heroin addict or cigs to a smoker. They say I'm a adult and I can make my own choices. They don't want the responsibility of helping me stay clean. I need like a sponsor or a gluten addicted buddy to help me thru this. I've been trying for years on my own & am still failing. Where can I get that help?
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