If you frequently have headaches, digestive issues, or foggy thinking, you may be experiencing one of the symptoms of gluten sensitivity or perhaps even more serious, Celiac disease. With a market saturation of gluten in everything from crackers to soy sauce, is it any wonder that signs of gluten intolerance are coming out of the woodwork?
Gluten free products have made their way onto the shelves of just about every supermarket store and they don’t show signs of leaving. With 1 in 133 people having Celiac disease and even more having a gluten-sensitivity, gluten free isn’t a fad, it is here to stay.
Gluten can commonly be found in products containing wheat, rye, barley, spelt and some oats.
The defining difference between Celiac disease and gluten sensitivity is that Celiac disease is an inherited auto immune condition, whereas gluten sensitivity may produce some of the same symptoms, but not the damaging effects on the intestinal lining.
The following common signs of gluten sensitivity may not be indicators of gluten sensitivity individually, but as a majority they could denote an issue.
- Gastrointestinal issues such as bloating, constipation, or diarrhea.
- Headaches or migraines.
- Rash or itchy skin especially if it’s in the form of Keratosis pilaris or dermatitis herpetiformis.
- Joint pain and body aches as an inflammatory response to gluten, sometimes misdiagnosed as rheumatoid arthritis.
- Mood swings in the form of irritability, anxiety, depression.
- Brain fog or trouble thinking, feeling dizzy or spacy.
- Fatigue that doesn’t seem to go away, possibly as a result of malabsorption of nutrients.
This is not an exhaustive list of symptoms, but hopefully enough to help you identify a possible issue with gluten. This is not a condition to take lightly as it could lead to malabsorption of vitamins and nutrients and worse, damage to the small intestines opening the door to other auto immune diseases.
If you suspect that you may have Celiac disease or gluten sensitivity, it is important to be tested and talk to your doctor about an elimination diet plan. This basically consists of elimination of gluten for a set period of time then reintroduction of gluten to see if it is indeed the source of the symptoms.
Are you a candidate for a gluten-free diet?