Gluten Sensitivity & Intolerance
What is gluten sensitivity?
A protein that is contained in wheat, rye, and barley is called Gluten. It is primarily present in most grains but can also be found in medications, vitamins, dietary supplements, and other products. People with gluten sensitivity have gluten problems. It is distinct from celiac disease, an inflammatory condition in which people cannot consume Gluten because it can affect their small intestines. A few of the symptoms of gluten sensitivity are similar to celiac disease. They include fatigue and stomach aches. It can cause other signs also, including muscle cramps and leg numbness. But it doesn't harm the small intestine, such as celiac disease.
Researchers are also learning more about the reaction of gluten. If your medical care provider thinks you have it, they may recommend that you stop eating Gluten to determine if your symptoms go away. But, you should first be analyzed to rule out celiac disease. Some people who experience distress when eating gluten-containing foods and show improvement when following a gluten-free diet might have what is commonly known as gluten sensitivity (GS) rather than celiac disease (CD). It's essential to bear in mind that GS isn't well understood, and it's still not clear whether other elements of gluten-containing grains might be involved in causing symptoms, at least in specific individuals. The symptoms found in gluten sensitivity resemble the ones associated with celiac disease, but often with an incidence of non-gastrointestinal symptoms.
Because gluten sensitivity isn't well known, and no biomarkers are identified, no specific medical evaluations may be performed to confirm identification. It's a 'rule out' diagnosis, instead. An elimination diet and tracked reintroduction of gluten-containing foods are often utilized to assess whether health improves with eliminating or reducing Gluten in the diet. If you feel like you may be allergic to Gluten, it's best to consult with your doctor before eating Gluten. The screening tests for celiac disease won't be valid if Gluten has been removed from the diet.
Scientific studies regarding non-celiac gluten sensitivity treatment are restricted; however, the suggested course of action would be to stick to a gluten-free diet. Consult a doctor or dietitian for dietary guidelines.
Confusion around gluten
There's no research demonstrating that gluten sensitivity contributes to celiac disease, and it is presently thought not to be true by experts in gluten-related disorders. There can be some intestinal inflammation associated with gluten sensitivity. However, Gluten doesn't harm the intestinal villi, as is the case in celiac disease.
For some people who think they are sensitive to Gluten, it may be other elements of gluten-containing foods that are debatable, such asFODMAPs. FODMAP's are types of carbohydrates and sugars found in gluten-containing grains and other foods. Find more information here -- FODMAP.
You may need to avoid gluten-containing foods, not just wheat if the symptoms are due to gluten sensitivity or coeliac disease. This means wheat, rye, and barley, in addition to any products derived from these grains. (Note: oats should also be avoided unless they are specifically labeled gluten-free because they are generally cross-contaminated with wheat.)
Some people with autism, multiple sclerosis, or chronic fatigue can have gluten sensitivity, resulting in some symptoms after removing gluten from the diet.
See: Gut Health Diet
Natural Remedies for Non-Celiac Gluten Sensitivity
Gluten sensitivity is a frequent problem involving a negative reaction to gluten--a protein found in wheat, barley, and rye. The principal treatment for gluten sensitivity from any cause is a change in diet. Several dietary recommendations are utilized for gluten sensitivity therapy, such as the fermented diet, FODMAPs, or limited α-amylase/trypsin inhibitors (ATI diet). Gluten sensitivity can be extreme (as with celiac disease) or mild, as with sensitivity to non-celiac Gluten.
(NCGS). The latter is the most common gluten sensitivity source, but the treatment may be similar for both conditions based on a person's specific symptoms.
Home remedies for gluten sensitivity
Because NCGS is thought to be a different condition than celiac disease, the focus will be on treating non-celiac gluten sensitivity. The principal treatment aims to alter the diet and observe if the dietary changes alleviate gastrointestinal symptoms (gas, bloating, abdominal pain, diarrhea, and nausea). Other treatment modalities include addressing the non-gastrointestinal indicators of NCGS, such as nutrient deficiencies, which may occur because of damage to the small intestine.
Because there's no definitive test to diagnose NCGS, the condition involves self-reports from patients. This subjective analysis limits the ability to correctly evaluate how effective the treatment of NCGS is. Always consult a professional healthcare provider rather than self-diagnosing, and above all, before changing your diet.
Gluten and ATIs
Diet change, especially eliminating Gluten (wheat, barley, and rye) in the diet, is the principal treatment modality for gluten sensitivity. Still, many experts think Gluten might not be the sole culprit. In actuality, based on some 2018 studies, other mechanisms that trigger symptoms might be in play. These include:
- Amylase-trypsin inhibitors (ATIs): Molecules present in wheat, barley, and rye that can fuel the immune response of gluten-sensitive individuals
- Fermentable oligo-di-monosaccharides and polyols (FODMAPs): A sort of carbohydrate found in wheat and several different foods. FODMAPs are hard to digest and are believed to be one culprit responsible for symptoms of NCGS and irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).
The Gluten-Free Diet
The diet (GFD) is the most popular gluten sensitivity therapy. According to a study," Although convincing evidence is available to support the advantages of a GFD for specific patient populations with no gluten-related disorder (mainly patients with IBS and NCGS), the data are conflicting and not definitive." The research also revealed that many people that are eating gluten-free foods don't have a definitive physiological condition that needs treatment.
The principal foods removed with a gluten-free diet are grains like wheat, barley, and rye. Grains to prevent a gluten-free diet include wheat, whole wheat, graham, bulgur, durum wheat, wheat berries, farro, farina, Kamut, spelt, and bromated flour. Another grain that needs to be prevented on a gluten-free diet is triticale (a grain made from a combination of rye and wheat). Grains that are permitted on the gluten diet include:
A word of warning, eliminating the consumption of wheat and other grains in the daily diet on a long-term foundation might be detrimental to general health. Individuals who consume a diet low in grains might be at risk for nutritional problems such as calcium and folic acid deficiency.
Moreover, research linked low-gluten diets to a higher risk for Type 2 diabetes. A gluten-free diet may be unsafe since the sugar content of most commercially fermented items is far higher than that of whole wheat and whole-grain solutions. Thus, it's important to speak with your healthcare provider to be certain of a diagnosis of NCGS before changing your diet.
The Minimal FODMAP Diet: FODMAP is an acronym for' fermentable oligosaccharides, disaccharides, monosaccharides, and polyols,' which are components of wheat, wheat products, and many other foods are short-chain carbs and sugar alcohols. FODMAPs aren't absorbed very well by the digestive tract, which could then cause abdominal bloating and pain. They may occur naturally in certain foods, or they may be an additive. A 2018 study analyzed that FODMAPs play at the function of NCGS symptoms. The study revealed that gastrointestinal (stomach and intestines) symptoms were enhanced when research participants with gluten sensitivity ate a low FODMAP diet. This study revealed that various wheat components might cause symptoms of NCGS, which a very low FODMAP diet might be a good treatment choice.
See: Yoga for digestion
Foods to Avoid on the Minimal FODMAP Diet
Several foods are considered high in FODMAPs. Foods that are limited to the low FODMAP diet include vegetables such as:
Other foods that are restricted to the low FODMAP diet include:
berries (peaches, apricots, nectarines, plums, prunes, mangoes, apples, pears, watermelon, cherries, blackberries, and dried fruits)
Bread, cereals, and pasta
All products Made from wheat and rye
Dairy products (unless they're lactose-free)
Isomalt (like an additive found in sugar-free gum, mints, and cough syrups)
Sweeteners (like artificial sweeteners, honey, agave nectar, sorbitol, mannitol, xylitol, and high-fructose corn syrup)
Processed drinks (such as sports drinks and coconut water)
The Low ATI Diet
Amylase/trypsin inhibitors, otherwise called ATIs, are plant-derived proteins that cause wheat to be pest-resistant (able to withstand damage from mealworms and germs ). Some researchers have speculated that Gluten isn't the principal culprit when it comes to NCGS symptoms. As a consequence of this new study, a new choice for gluten sensitivity therapy is the low ATI diet. Foods to prevent high levels of ATI include rye, barley, wheat (and all kinds of wheat products) as well as gluten-containing:
On occasion, people with gluten sensitivity could accidentally ingest medications or foods with Gluten. There's absolutely no mandatory labeling of products that contain Gluten. Instead, an individual with gluten sensitivity should read labels and decode which food components contain Gluten. Eating out at restaurants, misreading labels, or ingesting foods or medications that aren't labeled properly can lead to Gluten's accidental ingestion.
- Barbaro MR, Cremon C, Stanghellini V, Barbara G. Recent advances in understanding non-celiac gluten sensitivity. F1000 Research. 2018;Rev-1631. doi:10.12688/f1000research.15849.1
- Niland B, Cash BD. Health Benefits and Adverse Effects of Gluten-Free Diet in Non-Celiac Disease Patients. The Journal of Gastroenterology and Hepatology. 2018;14(2): 82-91.
- Schuppan D, Pickert G, Ashfaq-Khan M, Zevallos V. Non-celiac wheat sensitivity: Differential diagnosis, triggers, and implications. Best Pract Res Clin Gastroenterol. 2016;(3):469-76. doi:10.1016/j.bpg.2015.04.002
- Low gluten diets may be associated with a higher risk of type 2 diabetes. American Heart Association. Published March 9, 2017.