3 Out Of 100 People Effected By Gluten Reactivity!
Today, gluten reactivity is thought to effect 3 people out of every one hundred, and celiac disease about 1 in every one hundred. In those with pre-existing digestive disorders, it affects approximately one in fifty. And, according to experienced researchers, for every patient diagnosed with celiac disease, there are eight individuals undiagnosed with celiac disease who have no obvious G. I. symptoms! These patients are often only diagnosed more than 4 years after they become fully symptomatic. The percentage of individuals over 20 years of age with Celiac disease who go on to develop autoimmune conditions is estimated at 1 in 3. In my opinion, it’s likely to be even greater that.
What Grains Contain Gluten:
- Cereal Binding
- Graham Flour
How Would I Know If I Am Reacting To Gluten?
It should be noted that most lab tests for gluten allergies and celiac disease are unreliable and/or incomplete; therefore, it is difficult to make good clinical decisions based on them. One of the problems is that patients with gluten sensitivity are often highly reactive to other foods; in about 50% of cases, there is reactivity to both dairy and wheat proteins. And, to confuse the matter a bit further, about 50% of patients do not even react to the protein that causes reactivity in every one else!
Gluten, Intestinal Permeability & The Autoimmune Connection
It is now well recognized that reactivity to certain wheat/gluten fractions is a know cause of gut inflammation and intestinal permeability, and is often associated with autoimmune diseases. When gluten sensitivity and/or gluten enteropathy goes undiagnosed, and the patient continues to consume foods that are toxic to his/her biochemistry the eventual result is almost certain to be an autoimmune condition of varying severity. This process involves a cascade of events that results in the breakdown of mucosal tolerance against gliadin (wheat protein). It involves gut mucosal inflammation, small intestinal permeability to large food molecules and mal-absorption of essential nutrients.
The Structure & Chemistry Of Wheat Protein Has Changed Over Time
Todays generation of adults who successfully developed an oral tolerance to wheat products they consumed as children, now can start experiencing symptoms and problems. The reason is that there has taken place some really significant changes in the structure and chemistry of wheat protein. As a result, the regulatory immune system of our adult population may not recognize these new wheat proteins as friendly; and many such individuals react adversely to these new peptides; the result is increasing food sensitivity which, if not effectively addressed, can cause a variety of autoimmune reactions and condition in the body. This is one major reason why autoimmunty is on the rise in our aging population.
What About Cross Reactivity!
Then, to complicate matters further, there is the whole issue of cross reactivity. Dairy products are a major culprit and one of the most highly reactive of the cross-reactive foods that mimic the deleterious effects of gluten. Cross reactivity is also very prevalent with yeast, corn, rice, millet and oats. There is hope, there is an excellent lab that can provide highly accurate cross-reactive testing to a panel of 24 suspected foods.
This has proven absolutely invaluable for use with those patients who still have symptoms despite the total elimination of gluten from the diet.
Gluten Reactivity/Gut Permeability Must Be Handled Early on in the Diagnosis To Reverse/Stop Autoimmune Responses!
By dealing early on with gluten reactivity, gut permeability, cross reactive foods and associated antibodies, it may now be possible to stop or even reverse the course of many autoimmune responses before they present as frank pathologies (e.g. Lupus, Hashimotos, Sjorgen’s etc.