So much information's in the media about Celiac, gluten this and that, and Gluten Sensitivity that many people are left confused or don't bother to go to the doctor to have their issues with wheat/gluten checked out because of beliefs that they're the same issue. There's a difference between the two, Celiac Disease is an inherited autoimmune disorder which effects the digestion process of the Small Intestine.
Damage occurs when the invader gluten/wheat ( and all products containing gluten/wheat) are consumed and the intestinal tract becomes damaged over time which then causes other issues like osteoporosis , malnutrition and a host of other diseases. It's the immune's response that actually causes the damage to the intestines, not the gluten/wheat directly. The Protein in gluten triggers an immune response of the white blood cells to attack the intestinal tract.
Gluten Intolerance or Non Celiac Gluten Sensitivity alerts the body to react through GASTROINTESTINAL symptom responses but this response ISN'T connected to your IMMUNE system responses. There are significant differences between the two,though many of the symptoms are the same and both cause severe suffering, discomfort and other symptoms in the body. Confused Much? :D
Symptoms experienced by those with Celiac range from :
Abdominal bloating and pain,
Weight loss (from lack of ability to absorb nutrients )
Anemia ( doesn't respond to anemia iron therapy )
Joint pain, tingling & numbness in the legs
Pale mouth sores
Liver tract disorders
Failure to thrive, delayed puberty in children
Osteoporosis mild or serious
Psychiatric disorders like depression, and anxiety
Celiac is also known to be associated with type 1 Diabetes and Thyroid disease
[ Forgetfulness is common with gluten/wheat sensitivities ]
I have non celiac gluten sensitivity ( as far as i've been told because I had the blood test for Celiac- which may not even be accurate and insurance wouldn't pay for a GI scope, a more thorough way to test of for this issue), and my symptoms range from triggering of my other health afflictions such as Osteoarthritis, and Asthma, both being autoimmune disorders. Gluten/Wheat cause inflammation which triggers the arthritis and swelling in the bronchial tubes that trigger my asthma. I also experience 'Wheat Brain', and yes, it's a thing! :D I become forgetful or foggy minded, and it's directly related to any wheat/gluten consumption. Bloating is another symptom I experience as my digestive system becomes distressed and my body reads gluten/wheat as an invader.
Symptoms of Non Celiac Gluten Sensitivity are:
[New research now confirms that Celiac disease and Gluten Intolerance have been linked to mood disorders, anxiety and depression.]
Brain Fog ( it's thought that it's because of the inflammation gluten causes)
Digestive symptoms like cramping, bloating and pain of the abdomen
Diarrhea and constipation
Painful joints and muscles, even numbness and tingling in the lower extremities
Reproductive problems and infertility
Skin rashes, eczema, dermatitis and rosacea
Anemia and nutrient deficiencies
Autism and ADHD
As we can see, BOTH of these conditions can be very serious if not addressed, and they are so much more than just having 'digestive issues'. The Gut is known as our second brain [ See my blog post Keeping the Old Grey Matter In fighting Shape! I address the importance of developing a health gut. :d ]
[ Ok, so I should just AVOID the gluten ants & bugs?? But, they're some of my favorites!]
Here's where it gets confusing, and why I say to just AVOID gluten foods and products if you're experiencing reactions to gluten/wheat. Gluten has been (like Celiac) linked to many autoimmune diseases like Multiple Sclerosis, Chron's Disease, Type 1 Diabetes, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Vitiligo, Grave's Disease, and that's bad news :/ It's because at the root, both of these afflictions lead to INFLAMMATION which is the mother of most disease!
[ So many are left with the same thoughts as the woman above, because it can be confusing... If your insurance will cover the Celiac Scope Test then tale advantage of it! ]
So it may not be really clear if I have Celiac or not, but I was to just Avoid all gluten/wheat products. I basically live somewhat like a Celiac patient would. Bottom line, I'm fine if I steer far away from these two offenders (gluten/wheat) and that's what I do.
[ Celiac & Non Celiac Gluten Sensitivity can leave people feeling like this little guy, overwhelmed, confused, and ready to just ingest little 'food pills' like in the old cartoon The Jetsons! :D But together here on LivingThruGrace we will walk through this journey while gaining the understanding and knowledge we need to manage our health!! ]
If you aren't sure please ask you doctor about the test, the most accurate tests for Celiac; and until you can, avoid what's making you feel miserable ( all wheat & Gluten products and grains ) and causing your body to react with some of the symptoms mentioned above.
[ Both Nikita and Clawdie are gluten free for their Asthma and other health issues consuming gluten/wheat products cause. They're enjoying some white cake cupcakes made with Bob's Red Mill Gluten Free Cake Mix! We used Simple Mills chocolate frosting with only 6 grams of sugar! It's sweetened with Monkfruit! Delicious :D ]
In my next blog post I will list gluten containing grains and foods and the hidden ingredients that still read as gluten. One step at a time, we can tackle this!!
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