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Posted on 03/14/2017 in Category 1

What is Gluten?

What is Gluten?

Gluten is a special type of protein commonly found in:

  • Rye
  • Wheat
  • Barley

 

Which foods have gluten in?

Gluten is a highly complex protein that occurs in three main grains: Wheat, rye, barley.  This means Gluten is present in all baked foods that are made from these grains: bread, pies, cake, breakfast cereals, porridge, cookies, pizza and pasta. There are thousands of processed foods which contain Gluten.


What about oats?

A gluten-free diet may exclude oats; however medical practitioners are divided on whether oats are an allergen to coeliac disease sufferers or if they are cross-contaminated in milling facilities by other allergens. So it is your choice if you feel oats agree with you or not; unless you have been specifically advised to remove oats from your diet.


What are gluten intolerance symptoms?

The most well known and common symptom of gluten intolerance is gastro-intestinal such as:

  • Vomiting
  • Abdominal pain
  • Flatulance
  • Bloating
  • Dyspepsia (an uncomfortable sensation or pain in the upper area of the stomach)
  • Diarrhoea (possibly the symptom that is the most major)
  • Fat excreted in stools (because of poor digestion)


What is the difference between Gluten Intolerance and Coeliac Disease?

Gluten intolerance includes all kinds of sensitivity to Gluten. A small proportion of Gluten intolerant people will test positive to Coeliac Disease test, called Coeliac (0.5% of the population). If you have been diagnosed with Coeliac disease it is essential you ask for the correct guidance from your GP on how to treat you diagnosis.

However most people are unaware that most Gluten sensitive people return negative or inconclusive results from Coeliac testing. The correct term for these people is Non-Coeliac Gluten Sensitive (NCGS) and may be as many as 15% of all people or 1 in 7; this is a huge percentage misdiagnosed and causing misery in many people’s lives for years. The most accurate and effective way to identify NCGS is to do a Food Intolerance Test.


Did you know?

Coeliac Disease (CD) was the first type of Gluten sensitivity for which diagnostic testing was devised - in the 1940s.

Although coeliac testing is still used in many clinics as a first test for Gluten sensitivity, it only picks up the small percentage of Gluten-sensitive people who are Coeliac.

It misses the NCGS patients. Consequently this latter group is poorly diagnosed and misses out on discovering the simple and drug-free remedy of a Gluten-free diet for a dramatic recovery.

Gluten intolerance is often triggered by some life event like divorce, job loss or serious illness.


How common are Gluten Intolerance and Coeliac Disease?

Around ½% of the world's population is Coeliac. This means 1 in 200 people. Many people suffer from headaches, mouth ulcers, weight gain or weight loss, poor immunity to disease, and skin problems like dermatitis and eczema. But the common and well-known Gluten intolerance symptoms are gastro-intestinal (diarrhoea, flatulence, bloating etc.) however because the symptoms overlap with many other ailments, Gluten intolerance can be missed or misdiagnosed.

 

Is gluten intolerance genetic?

Both NCGS and Coeliac Disease is genetically inherited. Up to 10% of the immediate family will be affected, even if they don't have any symptoms.

 

The great news is:

No drugs or therapies are needed to treat Gluten sensitivity. The best treatment is to exclude Gluten for life. After just a few weeks on a gluten-free diet symptoms diminish or disappear completely. Many Gluten sensitive people report feeling better than they have for years.


Note - this is not a diagnostic blog, please seek medical advice for any health concerns


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