Abdominal pain and cramping, joint pain, headaches, fatigue and migraine are just a few of many symptoms, which may indicate gluten intolerance. Gluten is a protein composite found within the seeds of grass-related grains (wheat, rye and barley).
Gluten provides an elasticity and glue-like capacity to hold its flour products together and provide them with a chewy texture. While western civilization has come to rely on gluten not only as an important nutritional protein but also as a utility for obtaining a desired texture and elasticity in foods, in recent years some substantial and controversial studies suggest our bodies may not tolerate and digest gluten as well as everyone had always assumed.
Numbers of clients presenting to us as Chiropractors in Manly with signs of Gluten Sensitivity is on the rise, and a new study in the journal BMC Medicine may shed some light on why. It shows gluten can set off a distinct reaction in the intestines and the immune system, even in people who don’t have celiac disease.
Although much remains unknown, it is clear that gluten—a staple of human diets for 10,000 years—triggers an immune response like an enemy invader in some modern humans.
Some experts think as many as 1 in 3 Australian’s may have some form of it, but there is no test or defined set of symptoms. The most common are Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) -like stomach problems, headaches, fatigue, numbness and depression, but more than 100 symptoms have been loosely linked to gluten intake, which is why it has been so difficult to study.
“People aren’t born with this. Something triggers it and with this dramatic rise in all ages, it must be something pervasive in the environment,” says Joseph A. Murray, a gastroenterologist at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn. One possible culprit: agricultural changes to wheat that have boosted its protein content.
How a reaction to gluten could cause such a wide range of symptoms also remains unproven. Experts speculate that once immune cells are mistakenly primed to attack gluten, they can migrate and spread inflammation, even to the brain.
The good news is that such intolerances can be easily reversed through eliminating gluten from the diet. The mucosal lining of the small intestine are then able to repair and absorb nutrients without the repeated irritation caused as a result of the body’s inability to digest the gluten protein. Gluten sensitivity is most easily identified via elimination, so if you suspect this to be the case or you are just interested in a way to maximize your health and wellbeing then our Manly Chiropractors suggest a one month trial of a gluten free diet.