Going gluten-free is all the rage these days. It’s the diet of choice for Hollywood starlets and health nuts alike; supermarket aisles are packed full of products touting their lack of the stretchy protein. But for a lot of people, the gluten-free lifestyle may do more harm than good.
Wheat is everywhere and in everything. There is no food store that doesn’t have at least several isles with foods containing wheat! In my practice, it’s interesting to observe the reactions people have when we talk about wheat and I recommend to eliminate it from their diet. I often get answers like:
“ I can’t do that, I’m too attached to my bread, and my whole family eats it!” (addiction)
“I don’t think I really have a problem with wheat!” (denial)
“What if I reduce my intake and buy organic?” (negotiation)
So what is behind this food and its voracious consumption?
The story of mycotoxins begins with the story of agriculture. In prehistoric times, humans initially began farming by forest gardening, planting along river banks, and planting in the wet foothills during monsoon season. Later, more organized farming began in the Fertile Crescent, India, Western Asia, and Egypt with these crops: wheat, barley, flax, vetch, lentils, peas, and chickpeas. As time passed, peoples in the Americas, Eastern Asia, and Africa began their own farming and agriculture techniques. (more…)
Among thoughtful and informed medical providers and public alike, there is an ongoing transition toward recognizing adverse health effects from grains as being common and normal rather than rare and abnormal. Not all medical providers, of course, support this change in perspective and some are downright hostile toward it. Likewise, a segment of the public seems to be irritated by the gluten free trend and consider it just a silly fad.
Yet, if medicine is to be science based, no credible medical provider can dismiss the possibility that a large proportion of the U.S. (and possibly world) population may be sensitive to certain molecules present in most grains. Similarly, those that belittle the gluten free movement as a fad might, in fact, be an unknowing victim of grain sensitivity.
Celiac disease may have been described by the ancient physician Aretaeus of Cappadocia in the first century CE. It was not until the 1940′s, however, that the Dutch physician Willem Karel Dicke connected the disease to wheat as a result of the Dutch famine of 1944, in which wheat was scarce and those suffering from the disease seemed to dramatically improve. Since that time, modern medicine has narrowly defined the disease as an autoimmune disease resulting from the ingestion of gliadin, a component of wheat gluten. (more…)
Gluten Sensitivity, Autoimmune and Neurological Disease
by Jeffrey Dach MD
This article is Part Three of a Series.
For Previous Parts,
Click Here: Part One and Part Two
Two Very Mysterious and Complicated Cases caused by Gluten Sensitivity
What is wheat gluten?
Gluten is a protein in grains such as wheat, rye, barley, spelt, triticale, kamut,and possibly oats.
In susceptible individuals, about one per cent of the population, Wheat Gluten stimulates an immune response which may damage the inner lining of the gastrointestinal tract, or cross-react with other tissues in the body producing auto-immune, neurological and psychiatric illness.
Upper left image: A variety of foods made from wheat, all containing gluten. Courtesy of the USDA and Wikimedia Commons.
Celiac Disease or Gluten Sensitivity ? Shag Carpet or Flat Carpet ? (more…)
Eating genetically modified corn (GM corn) and consuming trace levels of Monsanto’s Roundup chemical fertilizer caused rats to develop horrifying tumors, widespread organ damage, and premature death. That’s the conclusion of a shocking new study that looked at the long-term effects of consuming Monsanto’s genetically modified corn.
The study has been deemed “the most thorough research ever published into the health effects of GM food crops and the herbicide Roundup on rats.” News of the horrifying findings is spreading like wildfire across the internet, with even the mainstream media seemingly in shock over the photos of rats with multiple grotesque tumors… tumors so large the rats even had difficulty breathing in some cases. GMOs may be the new thalidomide. (more…)
New research finds that almost one in four adolescents in the United States have diabetes or pre-diabetes, according to The New York Times. These are not children with juvenile diabetes but full-on type 2 diabetes. More than 25 million adults already have diabetes and 79 million may have prediabetes, yet few people consider a diabetes diet. There is a definite correlation between diet and diabetes symptoms. Studies suggest that eating a gluten-free diet without dairy could be good for diabetes and celiac disease, a condition characterized by an allergy to gluten.
The following table shows the five-year weight change for the different quartiles of each diet pattern. Remember that the “traditional” and “vegetable-rich” diets are the only ones defined—at least in part—by wheat consumption (or lack thereof). (A) is the traditional pattern, (B) is the macho pattern, (C) is the sweet-tooth pattern, and (D) is the vegetable-rich pattern. (more…)