Gluten Intolerance

An amazingly large number of patients come to Caring Medical with symptoms of GI disturbances such as gas, bloating, indigestion, diarrhea, constipation and the like. They also may notice that they experience joint pain when they eat certain foods like pizza or pasta. When we test them for food allergies, we often find that the patients have allergy to wheat and/or gluten.

Another related condition is Celiac disease, which is an intolerance of the small intestine to gluten. Celiac disease (CD) is also referred to as gluten sensitive enteropathy (GSE), gluten intolerance, or celiac sprue. It is considered to be one of the most under-diagnosed common diseases today, potentially affecting 1 in every 133 people in the USA. It is a chronic, inherited disease, and if untreated can ultimately lead to malnutrition. Gluten intolerance is the result of an immune-mediated response to the ingestion of gluten (from wheat, rye, and barley) that damages the small intestine. Nutrients then quickly passed through the small intestine, rather than being absorbed.

To develop Celiac disease (CD) three (3) things must be present: 1) you must inherit the gene, 2) consume gluten, and 3) have the gene triggered. Common triggers may include stress, trauma (surgeries, pregnancy, etc.), and viral infections. Approximately 1 in 20 first-degree relatives could have CD triggered in their lifetime. Natural medicine physicians have known for years that Gluten intolerance is a very common finding in the chronically ill. Many people with chronic fatigue, chronic pain, insomnia, digestive complaints, and stomach pains are found to be allergic to gluten (sensitive to it) when they undergo food blood allergy testing.

A recent study confirms that the natural medicine physicians are correct. When a gluten intolerant person is taken off of the above foods, many of their symptoms stop. Yes, we are saying that the allergic response to gluten could actually be causing the patient to develop terrible chronic pain or chronic fatigue, due to the body’s immune reaction to the gluten in the food the patient is eating.

Most people fail to realize (as do many doctors) that 50% of the immune system lines the bowel walls. This lymph tissue is called GALT which stands for Gut-associated lymphoid tissue. Consuming an allergenic food causes the immune cells in GALT to then attack the food via the production of antibodies. This is seen as redness on the intestinal lining. Yes, that is correct. Colonoscopy or endoscopy results show redness, however, most of the time it is diagnosed as “gastroenteritis” or “gastritis.” The itis on the end of those words means the doctor saw redness during the test. Redness is from what? Inflammation! What causes inflammation in the intestines, food allergies.

What is the cure for gastritis, stomach pain, irritable bowel syndrome, or chronic gastroenteritis? You are right-it is not Prevacid, Zantac, Tums or the little purple pill. The cure begins with finding the cause of the excess acid or redness, which is very commonly due to food allergies. See a natural medicine physician and get food allergy testing. If your results show allergenic foods – stop eating them! You will be amazed at how good you feel!

Our patients with food allergies are typically helped tremendously by a few supplements.