How to Decide if You Should Go Gluten-Free

Good evening, yogis!

People go gluten free for many reasons. Some have been diagnosed with celiac disease and have to change their diets. Others have determined that they have a gluten intolerance or sensitivity. Then there are others that want to try it to improve their health in general. The symptoms for these conditions vary extremely. So this leads us to the question: what is gluten and how can it affect your body? 

Gluten is the major protein found in some grains. It is present in all forms of wheat (bulgur, durum, semolina, spelt, farro and more) as well as in barley, rye and triticale (a wheat-rye cross). This protein is difficult for the human digestive system to break down and process completely. This can make some people very sick, and others handle it without a problem.  If you have celiac, even the smallest trace of this protein can wreak havoc on your entire body. We will teach you how to completely and easily eliminate this from your diet.

Here are some facts:

  • Celiac disease is an autoimmune digestive disease that damages the villi of the small intestine and interferes with absorption of nutrients from food.
  • An estimated 1 in 133 Americans, or about 1% of the population, has celiac disease.
  • It is estimated that 83% of Americans who have celiac disease are undiagnosed or misdiagnosed with other conditions.
  • Celiac disease can lead to a number of other disorders including infertility, reduced bone density, neurological disorders, some cancers, and other autoimmune diseases.
  • About 1.6 million people are currently living a gluten free lifestyle and that number is steadily increasing. 

My symptoms were unique to me. I first became gluten free in 2009 after a slew of health problems left me medically without answers. I was rapidly gaining weight, experienced amenorrhea, brain fog, dizziness, puffiness, bloat, constipation, and constant nausea. After enduring multiple medical exams, doctor visits, and even a trip to the Mayo Clinic, I finally was tested for celiac disease.  The tests were negative but did show inflammation in my small intestine. Still without answers, and seeing as I did test positive for carrying the celiac disease gene, I decided to try eliminating gluten from my diet. Immediately the nausea subsided, the constipation and dizziness stopped, and the puffy appearance went away. With the final relief from some of my odd, sudden ailments, I decided to continue to commit to a strictly gluten free diet. I have been gluten-free for five years. If you haven’t been diagnosed, but experience any of the following symptoms, you should probably give it a try. Eliminate all gluten from your diet for a few weeks and write down how you feel each day. If your ailments go away, it’s safe to say you at least have a gluten sensitivity if not full blown celiac.  From here, it’s best to see your doctor to find out your next steps. The good news is, while it’s unfortunate that so many people are suffering from this, it’s caused medical practitioners to become more aware of what to look for and how to advise treatment. More good news, you don’t have to take pills to cure it! Simply changing your diet can heal your body. I’ll talk more about making the transition soon, and remember you can always ask me for help! Support is nice to have.

I really like this image of possible gluten consumption caused symptoms! 

Check it out: http://tv.greenmedinfo.com/84-signs-may-celiac-disease-infographic/

Health & lots of love, 

Jenny