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Found 6 results

  1. Celiac.com 11/02/2018 - In sensitive individuals, some foods can cause allergic or other immune system reactions. These reactions can be as mild as a little fatigue (many physicians believe the #1 symptom of allergies is fatigue), a mild headache, some congestion, or a ‘fuzzy brain’. Or, the reaction can be as severe as immobilizing migraines, asthmatic attacks and even life-threatening anaphylactic shock. Many of us have felt these types of reactions to foods. And if I tell the truth, I am guilty of many times in the past wondering, “how far can I push this? How much of this food (which isn’t good for me) can I eat without getting sick?” Researchers are now telling us, and studies are being published that gives answers to these questions. It seems to depend on the level of sensitivity. When a person has elevated antibodies to wheat or gluten, the evidence is suggesting ‘none at all’ is the answer to the question. In a recent paper entitled ‘A Milligram of Gluten a Day Keeps the Villous Healing Away’, the authors tell the story of a 32-year-old woman. Her symptoms of abdominal pain, diarrhea and weight loss were present for over 10 years. She also had a history of failure to thrive in childhood (one of the smallest children in the class throughout her education), late onset of menstrual cycles, recurring anemia, and hair loss. This is the history of a body physically ‘just barely getting by’. A positive blood test indicated elevated antibodies, and an endoscopic examination (biopsy of the intestines) confirmed Classic Celiac Disease. She had followed a wheat and gluten free diet for 16 months. Diarrhea and abdominal pain stopped completely and weight loss had been recovered. Some of her blood work had returned to normal. However anemia, hair loss, and increased antibodies suggestive of persistent Celiac Disease were still present. A focused interview revealed she was not on a strict gluten-free diet because she was taking a communion wafer and had several other unintentional dietary lapses. After discussion with her Doctor she refused to stop taking a daily fragment of communion wafer. Eighteen months after beginning a complete gluten-free diet, but still taking a communion wafer, her anemia, hair loss, diarrhea, and abdominal pains were gone. Most blood work was now normal. However some blood markers of possible Celiac Disease were borderline high. From how her body was functioning, one would think she was healed and her Celiac Disease was gone. However her repeat biopsy still showed the highest degree of severe intestinal damage—Marsh IV villous atrophy, and an increased number of intraepithelial lymphocytes, putting her at increased risk of osteoporosis and a severe form of cancer of the intestines (T-cell lymphoma). Her Doctors were concerned. She was following the diet perfectly. No hidden glutens in medications or foods. All of her symptoms were gone. She felt very good. But why weren’t her intestines healing? Could it be the fragment of communion wafer she refused to give up for religious reasons? She did not want to have this discussion and continued to refuse abstaining from the wafer fragment. An evaluation of the communion wafer revealed that it contained approximately 0.5 mg of Gliadin (1 milligram of gluten). That’s about 1/16 of a thumbnail. Now remember this woman’s symptoms had all but disappeared, she felt fine and her blood work was much improved (not quite normal, but close). She was very reluctant to give up her daily fragment of Communion wafer. Eighteen months later she returned and surprised her Doctors by announcing she had given up the wafer. A repeat biopsy now showed her intestines had healed and were completely normal. Discussion: What can we learn from this case? In sensitive individuals (with elevated antibodies to wheat or gluten), the symptoms are not just in the intestines. This person had suffered for years from anemia, hair loss, failure to thrive, weight loss, and hormone irregularities. Implementing a wheat and gluten free diet brought favorable results in eliminating all of the above symptoms Even with the elimination of symptoms and the return to normal of her blood work, ongoing very serious damage was occurring in the intestines without any noticeable symptoms. It only took 1/16th of a fingernail worth of gluten per day to stop intestinal healing and create great risk to life-threatening diseases. Blood antibody values that are border line may be an indicator of more aggressive damage occurring inside the body—not identifiable without an endoscopic exam. Conclusions One can be completely fooled as to whether they are having serious damage occur in their body if they just go by symptoms (or a lack of symptoms). Testing for wheat allergies and Celiac Disease must include comprehensive blood work and, when indicated, an endoscopic examination. If either test comes back positive, a complete elimination of wheat and gluten is necessary—not even 1/16th of a fingernail’s worth-not even a crouton on a salad can be considered harmless. Personal Note It is a necessity to do an endoscopic exam with positive blood work to wheat and/or gluten allergies. I’ve always thought doing the blood work was enough, especially in children. I was wrong. In researching this further I’ve found many studies that emphasize this necessity. Blood work comes first, but if positive, an endoscopic exam is essential. Otherwise, as in this study, severe damage may occur without any symptoms whatsoever.
  2. Celiac.com 10/06/2018 - In a recent discussion of Dangerous Grains, we (Mike and Ron) began to speculate about future prospects for those who are gluten sensitive. We talked about future directions for research into how gluten impacts on human health, the growing focus on celiac disease excluding gluten sensitivity, and whether grain consumption is a factor in health problems among those who are not gluten sensitive (according to currently available testing). This inevitably led to debate about whether gluten grains are harmful to all humans. In the context of this discussion, we agreed to write this article inviting further discussion of this matter and offering some suggestions to researchers and contributors to gluten-related research. These include several of our personal concerns and a number of questions that remain unanswered. Where is the research taking us? Perhaps the most important lesson that current research teaches is that a great deal more research is needed if we are to fully understand this ubiquitous hazard to human physical and mental health. There are several emerging trends in the research literature that warrant our attention and further investigation. For instance, celiac disease research has been conducted on the margins for so long that the recent, very rapid expansion of this field may have helped foster neglect of related and equally important research into non-celiac gluten sensitivity. Previous issues of the Scott-Free Newsletter have contained articles outlining the importance of extensive and appropriate testing (and subsequent dietary compliance) for those who have non-celiac gluten sensitivity as identified by a variety of tests including IgG ELISA testing for common food allergies. Further, our growing reliance upon endomysium or tissue transglutaminase antibody testing alone risks overlooking a significant portion of the population with celiac disease. Several reports indicate that in cases where serology testing is negative but symptoms and signs suggest celiac disease, a series of jejunal biopsies should also be taken and assessed by a pathologist who is familiar with celiac disease and uses the Marsh system for evaluating intestinal biopsies. Research into the oats question reveals that known toxic proteins in celiac disease are absent from oats. Yet one small study showed that a significant percentage of celiac patients will develop intestinal lesions characteristic of celiac disease from eating pure oats in the context of an otherwise gluten-free diet. This suggests that we have not yet identified all of the toxic proteins in gluten grains. Some current research is also aimed at developing similar grains without the toxic proteins found in regular gluten grains. The problems associated with oats research have a clear bearing on this issue as well. If celiac patients are developing intestinal lesions from pure oats, which have repeatedly been shown to lack the known toxic proteins, then we do not yet know all the harmful proteins. Thus, genetic development of “safe” wheat is not yet possible. Still, this research may help in the identification of additional toxic proteins. Current research has also led to a growing awareness, among the medical community and the general public, of the connections between gluten consumption and type I diabetes, epilepsy, thyroid disease, osteoporosis and a host of previously unsuspected autoimmune ailments. This is raising many questions about the potential value of a gluten-free diet as part of the treatment protocol for many of these ailments. Current research into zonulin may be one of the most exciting areas of investigation. The work of Dr. Fasano and many others in this important area may well lead to a better understanding of the impact of gluten on schizophrenia, attention deficit disorder, autism, bi-polar disorder, and a variety of ailments that have shown improvement on a gluten-free, dairy-free diet. Where would we like to see the research go? Gluten research is largely overlooked by many of today’s scientists. Despite the growing body of research that discredits gluten grains as healthy foods, the widespread, erroneous assumption of their nutritional value continues to foster gluten consumption. There is a pressing need to dispel the myths that protectively shroud this issue. Our first priority is to see a clear delineation of the gluten-derived proteins and peptides that are currently known to threaten human health. The next logical step would be to initiate an extensive investigation of the various other gluten proteins and peptides in order to identify all of the harmful substances in gluten. The relevance of gluten research reaches far beyond the concerns of academia and the individuals diagnosed with gluten sensitivity or celiac disease. We now know that many health problems could be wholly or partly the result of gluten, making this field worthy of investigation as well. The driving force for people to pursue research of these topics might well be found in a broader awareness of the preliminary findings that connect this wide variety of health conditions to gluten consumption. Further research into this field would reveal many aspects of our current lifestyle. For instance, why are we facing such a widespread variety and increasing rates of psychoses? And how does gluten relate to the multitude of diseases, seldom seen until the advent of agriculture? Gathering more information about gluten and its effect on both gluten sensitive and non-gluten sensitive individuals may provide a greater understanding of modern illnesses. For instance, Dr. Hadjivassiliou’s extensive investigations of neurological diseases of unknown origin, in association with gluten sensitivity, reveal several important research concerns which include: Does current testing identify all important immune reactions to gluten? What other, as yet unidentified proteins are toxic to celiac patients? How often is gluten sensitivity/celiac disease considered in the context of these related ailments? What portion of the population is at risk of developing gluten sensitivity? What portion of the population is at risk of developing celiac disease? What other problems may be associated with gluten consumption? What is the cost-benefit of our escalating consumption of gluten? What vested interests are inhibiting the widespread recognition of health hazards associated with gluten consumption? Concurrent with this research, we would like to see investment in the development of safe, healthy, alternative food sources. Realistically, everyone would probably be better off on a diet of fruits, vegetables, and various meats. But is this possible for the world’s overwhelming and growing population? The necessary resources, including the cost to the consumer, would be prohibitive by current standards and methods of food production. New, more efficient food sources must be found, developed, and widely adopted. These foods must be a better fit with our evolutionary adaptations. This search will require considerable investment and social resolve. What questions should have priority? The question on peoples’ minds is how the research will directly affect them. This means that the research will have to explain the relevance of gluten proteins to such diseases as cancer, autoimmune disorders, obesity and food addiction. Each of these food-related topics is a common concern, widely discussed, and a key topic for gluten-related research. The many applications of food addiction research will attract widespread attention and discussion. The current spotlight on dieting in the popular press reflects a great deal of personal concern, among the general public, regarding this topic. Cancer and autoimmunity have been examined in great detail and a universal cure is still a distant dream. Yet the high rate of gluten sensitivity among these patients suggests a pressing need for research. Such investigations could provide a monumental step toward finding the causes and the explanations for these widespread, devastating health problems. Since these topics have yet to be explored, mainly due to limited research funding, a shift in research focus may yield the solutions to many of these conditions that plague our society. An important hurdle to overcome There is a dichotomy between governmental dietary recommendations that encourage gluten grain consumption and the growing body of research that discredits grains as a healthy food for a significant portion of the population. Unfortunately this is an area where progress is necessary for gluten research to really thrive. Since grain production, processing, and consumption constitute huge portions of various state economies, it is in the best interests of governing bodies to keep grains on everyone’s plate for many years to come. It will require a truly overwhelming body of knowledge, based on solid research proving the hazards of grains to topple the current, flawed structure of governmental dietary recommendations. Conclusion Without this vast array of research, leading to widespread recognition of the hazards of gluten, we can expect little social change. Thus, future prospects for gluten sensitive individuals may be somewhat dim. Increasing population densities may lead to escalating competition for finite food resources. Cheap and available foods derived from gluten grains will become increasingly attractive. Future generations of our families (remember that gluten sensitivity and celiac disease have a large genetic component) will be at risk. The best answer, as we see it, is to fund research aimed at the questions posed here, as well as those that arise out of these investigations. We have offered several directions that we consider important. Whether or not you agree with our priorities, we hope you agree that we need further research into the human health hazards posed by gluten grain consumption. This article was co-written by Mike Pearson.
  3. Iron: 17 mcg/dL (Low) November 11, 2016 Ferritin: 1.8 ng/mL (Low) November 11, 2016 RBC: 4.05x10^6/uL (Low) November 11, 2016 Hemoglobin: 8.5 gm/dL (Low) November 11, 2016 Vitamin D: 25.7 ng/mL (Low) February 22, 2017 ANA Profile : February 27, 2017 FANA: Positive FANA Titer: 1:640 FANA Pattern: Homogenous Gliadin IgA: 2 units June 29, 2017 Gliadin IgG: 3 units June 29,2017 TTG Ab IgA: <1 units/mL June 29, 2017 TTG Ab IgG: <1 units/mL June 29, 2017 Immunoglobulin A: 59.1 mg/Dl (Low) July 10, 2017 Immunoglobulin M: 44.2 mg/Dl (Low) July 10,2017 Immunoglobulin G: 1010.0 mg/Dl (Normal?) July 10, 2017 Immunoglobulin E: 5 KU/L July 10,2017 My RBC and Hemoglobin have come up and are normal. My iron levels will get high (too high) when I take 65 mg elemental iron twice a day for several weeks but my ferritin has never gotten over 42 ng/mL. When I stop taking my iron supplement my iron and ferritin plummet in just a matter of weeks. My hair is falling out, I get rapid heartbeat when I get too low on iron and if I get my iron too high. My whole body hurts especially my finger joints, back , knees and really all of my joints. Going to the bathroom at least 2 times day and sometimes up to 5 times a day. Extreme fatigue, Brain fog, extremely emotional and irritable. I just went gluten free July 1, 2017 and am starting to feel better. Joints feel better, I can sleep better, my mood is better. Celiac or maybe just gluten sensitive? Any thoughts? What do my labs say about me?
  4. I started having a lot of digestive issues and was tested for many things. I tested negative for celiac disease and positive lactose intolerance, fructose malabsorption, and SIBO. I was put on a low fodmap diet which excluded gluten. When I began to feel better, I tried adding gluten back in and had digestive symptoms return as well as a red bumps on my face with burning and itching and a strange tightness in my throat. A few weeks ago, I went on a vegan diet in an attempt to heal my gut and stopped eating gluten again as well, of course. Recently, I tried eating meat and discovered it gave me the same reaction; digestive discomfort, rash on my face, and terrible tightness in my throat. Has anyone else had issues with this? If I'm negative for celiac, could I have a wheat allergy? Could I have developed an allergy to animal protein because of damage to my gut? Also? I had been eating gluten free for quite some time when my doctor decided to do the blood test for celiac. She told me I only needed to eat gluten for a couple of days before being tested. I've looked around on here and see that many say you have to be back on gluten for 8-12 weeks!
  5. Let me explain some background information first. I have been diagnosed as "very gluten sensitive," because a blood test for celiac disease came back as negative (I had gone gluten free about a month before the blood test without knowing that I shouldn't have done that... oops.) The symptoms I have had for my entire life (or at least since I can remember) included gastrointestinal symptoms (diarrhea, abdominal pain, bloating, etc.), constant joint pain, etc. which deteriorated to pretty severe muscle weakness as well, which is what prompted me to get tested in the first place. I was at a point where I was considering a wheelchair.. couldn't walk more than a few steps at a time.. Anyways. So one of the (scariest) symptoms that I get whenever I eat gluten is all my muscles in my arms, hands, legs, and abdomen, basically are "paralyzed" in a way for 2-4 hours... I put "paralyzed" in quotes because I can still move my body, just with really great difficulty. I can't stand or hold anything, however, when this happens. I was glutened a few days ago and this happened and I tried to stand up to drink water and within seconds collapsed. Pretty scary. I woke up the next morning (after somehow crawling to bed) with little to no control of my abdomen muscles, and am just now starting to get a small percentage of muscle control and strength back. I also notice that my right eye twitches when this happens (and by the way has not stopped twitching sense being glutened a few days ago...) and this same eye has been feeling "fuzzy" as if there is cotton behind it and blurry vision. After doing research it sounds like gluten ataxia rather than celiac or gluten sensitivity. My question is, would it be worth it to try to get an official diagnosis, or just keep not eating gluten? I hope this post made sense. I am still kind of fuzzy headed.
  6. For those who are gluten sensitive and not confirmed celiacs I have a question for you. Do you strictly buy foods that are certified gluten free? Or can I get away with things that I know that should be gluten free but does not say it on the package? For example, baking soda, cornstarch and baking powder are some of my concerns. Do I need specifically gluten free cornstarch? I know to buy gluten free certified rolled oats because of the possible cross contamination. Speaking of cross contamination, do you take extra measures at home to avoid cross contamination? Such as dedicated toaster, dishes, sponges, etc? Separate butter containers? I'm only gluten sensitive and I don't know how sensitive I really am and if I need to take those extreme measures. Sorry, I'm just worried I could be sabotaging myself but finances plays a part in this and I don't know if I can afford everything to avoid every molecule of gluten.
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