Before You Give Up Gluten, Consider Celiac
I have only one regret about giving up gluten.
I wish I had taken the Celiac test and taken full labs BEFORE going gluten-free. At that time, I could not afford the litany of expensive tests without the help of insurance.
It’s absolutely certain that gluten was destroying my health, slowly and painfully.
In giving up gluten completely, much of my health regenerated. I found energy I thought I’d left in childhood. I built muscle mass after it wasted away from health failures that gluten helped create. A mental fog lifted. My canker sores healed. My joint pain resolved. My chronic, crippling migraines lessened in severity. I had fewer colds.
I now encourage my clients to get the genetic testing done. Many people give up gluten without testing for Celiac disease, but later decide that they can tolerate “small amounts of gluten”. This practice is detrimental someone with Celiac disease.
If you find that you are sensitive to gluten, you are likely going to be sensitive to other foods as well.
Gluten sensitivity promotes potential problems for leaky gut syndrome. This sets the stage for other food sensitivity issues. Going gluten-free requires a committed lifestyle change – it’s a serious undertaking, not for the faint-hearted. When cutting out gluten, there is no middle road. Every time you eat just a bite, gluten re-injures your gut, and re-inflames your tissues. You either are eating gluten or you aren’t eating it at all. Read here to learn more about food sensitivities.
Celiac disease is a genetic, autoimmune disorder that is quite serious, and it’s symptoms are often SILENT.
Left unaddressed, you may be playing Russian Roulette with other autoimmune disorders. Many silent “symptoms” of Celiac disease manifest as other autoimmune diseases.This includes type 1 diabetes, Hashimotos thyroid disease, rheumatoid arthritis and small intestinal cancer. Many people never manifest any gut disturbances that might suggest a problem.
Now that my gut has healed from gluten’s damage, I can’t know for sure if I have Celiac disease.
It’s years later, and I’ve learned that I do carry two Celiac genes: DQ2 and DQ8. 97% of Celiac patients carry at least one of these genes. 39% of the US population carries variations of the genes. Just because I carry the genes, it is not indicative that I have Celiac disease. Unless I eat gluten again for long enough to re-damage my gut and cause an immunological reaction. That would simply be intolerable.
Gluten addiction can be severe.
Many people struggle to imagine their lives without bread or pasta. As a vegetarian, it was a reliable and comforting energy source for me.
I believe we are only on the precipice of understanding just how severely gluten impacts our gut, our brain and our health.
To learn how gluten is linked with psychiatric disorders, listen to my podcast on Food and Mood here.
Please share this post with others who could use some insight into this topic. If you want help with going gluten-free or learning how to address your symptoms, find out how to work with me here.
Now, you tell me.
Are you eating gluten? What stood out to you in this post that’s surprising? Please comment below.