Everyone knows someone with gluten intolerance. Gluten intolerance is an intestinal sensitivity to the gluten in the grains wheat, barley, rye, spelt, kamut and triticale, and one legume, the soybean. Gluten Intolerance is inflammation of the intestinal tract caused by the gluten protein (gliaden) fraction of the grain or legume. This gliaden acts like a "foreign substance," and the body reacts with antibodies, which sensitize the white blood cells. These sensitized cells then release their antibodies, enzymes, histamines, free radicals, and other damaging substances to protect the body from a perceived invader. These products of inflammation accidentally damage normal cells, some of which die, and some become swollen and dysfunctional.
This condition is genetically based. It occurs most often in those of Northern European descent, that is, those with Nordic, Celtic and Germanic heredity. This would include those with Icelandic, Grennlandic, British, Swedish, Danish, Norwegian, German and Austrian origin. Since so many Americans have or know someone of Northern European descent, it is a lot more common a problem than you would think. There are some indirect estimates that suggest gluten sensitivity may occur in 12% of those with this heredity. There is now a simple saliva test for determining if a person has this condition and it is an inexpensive screen used in many of those countries described above as well as in the USA.
When gluten intolerance first expresses itself, often at a young age, it can originate with moderate or severe diarrhea and other abdominal complaints. If the diarrhea is severe, it will probably be diagnosed early and the patient taken off the offending gluten for the rest of their life. But if the original diarrhea is moderate, the patient's body may adapt to this problem. The diarrhea will subside, leaving elusive symptoms such as intermittent abdominal symptoms, fatigue, or any symptoms related to poor vitamin and mineral absorption. This "subacute" gluten intolerance hastens the aging process. Poor nutrient absorption and excessive production of free radicals cause changes in all tissues, leading to arteriosclerosis, arthritis, diabetes, and other disease.
To make an appointment at the Natural Healing Clinic call (360) 457-1515.