If you shop any grocery store these days you can find a number of gluten free items. From bread to crackers to cereal – gluten free seems to be the “in” thing. However, for those suffering from gluten intolerance, going gluten free is not a weight loss scheme, but a necessary dietary restriction in order to function. For those who truly suffer after eating gluten, you must be wondering what its really doing to you. After all, anything that makes you feel that bad must have other negative impact on your system, right?
How right you are! In addition to the general symptoms such as gastrointestinal distress, malaise, headache, gas and bloating, there are significant issues associated with gluten intolerance. First and foremost, you could actually have Celiac disease. In addition, gluten intolerance could signal other issues going on such as increased destruction of the intestines or inflammatory bowel disease. Furthermore, gluten intolerance left unchecked can lead to other autoimmune conditions, often caused by barrier breach. Finally, your body simply loses the ability to detox, leading to other “food allergies” and sensitivities.
Whew! Who knew gluten intolerance could have so many repercussions? Well, we did. That is why it is important to delve more deeply into the symptoms you presently chalk up to gluten intolerance. And it’s important to focus on correcting some of the issues you most likely have in order to restore your body to a more healthy and balanced state.
Gluten Intolerance Testing – Where to start?
Frankly, we recommend starting with a blood work-up to identify any stage of leaky gut, celiac, IBS or Crone’s. In addition to uncovering these ailments, blood work will provide a more accurate and quantifiable means to determine treatment efficacy and outcomes. Once the blood work is completed and analyzed, then a more personalized treatment can be developed for your specific gluten-related issues.
One of the primary forms of treatment is supplementation. Thank goodness! After all the scary stuff we’ve discussed, isn’t it nice to know that you will begin with feeding your body good supplements, getting your system back on track. Each person should receive a personalized supplement plan, since everyone is different.
In addition, the professionals in our office have many tests to check for celiac and gluten intolerance. Again there is good news because our testing looks for genetic factors, not IgE testing. What that means is you do not have to eat gluten to be tested for gluten intolerance.
Once results are received, each person receives a personalized plan based on nutrition, education and life-style changes. To really repair the damage and get healthy requires understanding the cause of the gluten intolerance, not just the act of no longer ingesting gluten. That’s an important point so let’s repeat…
To become healthy, a person must correct the CAUSE of the gluten intolerance, which is now an immune response. This goes beyond simply no longer eating gluten.
Why Is Gluten Intolerance Treatment Important?
In addition to the fact that gluten-intolerant people have developed an immune response that is causing other issues, such as leaky gut, the immune system has been compromised. Now the immune system has either become over-active and attacks your own body OR under-active which allows inflammation in your body to spiral out of control. Without intervention and life style change, your body cannot return to normal and you will soon find symptoms spiraling out of control. By utilizing more traditional forms of medicine, you’ll receive treatment for IBS or reflux or any one of a number of issues related to inflammation. If you treat the cause of your gluten intolerance, then your treatment will most likely be diet, exercise and supplements. Much better than a bunch of pills!
The Best Defense is a Good Offense
There are many treatments we can offer to gluten-intolerant patients who desire relief from their symptoms. These include ionic detox, cold laser therapy, or even scar tissue treatment if need be. We often ask that home exercises be performed to improve memory loss. At the end of the day, however, the most important thing any of us can do to battle gluten intolerance and all the associated illnesses is education, life-style change, and supplementation. It didn’t happen to you overnight. This gluten sensitivity has embedded into your body, so it will take some time to reverse the symptoms. The good news, though, is it can be done!