Archive for the ‘Neurological Disorders’ Category

 


Dr. Rodney Ford, pediatrician and author of The Gluten Syndrome, provides us with an excellent and easy-to-follow video that tells us how to know if we need a gluten test.

This short presentation explains which symptoms to look for and tells you the tests you need to to request to find out if gluten is making you sick.

Dr. Ford estimates up to one third of people with chronic diseases are being affected by gluten and sums up why people do not ask to be tested. “We are so used to being sick that we don’t know we’re sick.” People think they have always been this way, so they do not know to ask.

He then establishes a great litmus test to determine who should be tested – “People who are sick, tired or grumpy should be tested.”

 

(more…)


Teri Gruss, MS

The Neurological Symptoms of Gluten

October 4th, 2012 by Teri Gruss, MS

Our terrific Guide to Celiac Disease, Jane Anderson has been exploring the neurological effects of gluten on celiacs and those with non-celiac gluten sensitivity. (more…)

 

Editor’s note: Promising research published January 8, 2007 shows that adequate levels of vitamin D in the elderly are important to maintain cognitive function or thinking skills that include use of language, awareness, social skills, math ability, memory, reasoning, judgment, intellect, learning, and imagination. This study is called a retrospective review because the researchers did not actually examine anyone. Instead they reviewed data from records of 32 older adults who had been examined for memory (more…)

Claire Houston, MS, LCMHC

Celiac Disease, on the Couch

June 30th, 2010 by Claire Houston, MS, LCMHC

Kathleen (not her real name) came to counseling because of anxiety. After an intake, we identified several areas in her life that sounded like they were contributing to her difficulties. We started working with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, a system that looks at the thought sequence you use, and where a distorted belief can be corrected and thereby relieve suffering.

After teaching her a series of formulas, she was able to apply the principles herself when not in the office with me. This is a very effective psychotherapy intervention, that is so useful that many insurance companies paying for counseling expect to see it as part of a treatment plan. But, it did not seem to offer Kathleen the relief I was expecting. So, we continued looking elsewhere in her life for the source and solution of her anxiety. If it wasn’t her thinking causing it, perhaps it was situational. (more…)

John Libonati

Migraine Headaches and Celiac Disease

June 21st, 2010 by John Libonati

According to WebMD, approximately 45 million Americans suffer from chronic headaches, and of them, 28 million suffer from migraines.(1) A migraine headache is a neurologic disorder characterized by reduced cerebral blood flow. They are marked by periodic, usually one-sided pulsing headaches with or without aura and light and noise sensitivity or nausea.(1)

A 2003 medical study testing migraine sufferers for celiac disease showed that 4.4% had the disorder.(2) That would equate to more than 1.2 million migraine sufferers in the US having celiac disease.  (more…)

[Editor's Note: The following is a post I recently submitted to a listserv concerning attitude and nutritional deficiencies in celiac disease. I posted it in response to a heated exchange folks were having on the topic.]

Hi there,

The “rage” we see in posts from time to time is part and parcel with celiac disease. My business is celiac disease. I own Glutenfreeworks.com and edited the book, Recognizing Celiac Disease.

I frequently see abnormal personalities in my travels, presentations, discussions and on listservs. I meet people with anxiety, depression, irritability, distrust and other unexplained “attitudes.” There is an explanation - and no they aren’t jerks, as much as people might want to call them that. Whether they are gluten-free or not, they are sick – malnourished in fact.

Nutrients play a huge part in our attitude.

Here is an example. While dropping off a shipment of Recognizing Celiac Disease books at the post office on Friday, a woman in line with thinning hair and poor skin color noticed my Gluten Free Works label. She asked what the packages were and I told her the packages contained books I was sending to customers.

She immediately launched into a tirade about how only biopsy-proven people have celiac disease and people are making money off celiac disease and how she should write a book because her daughters have celiac disease and she has read all the research and knows everything… (more…)

If you or someone you know has a child with a mental illness, behavioral problem or unexplained neurological issue, you must watch these videos. They vividly illustrate how gluten and celiac disease can cause neurological illnesses and how removing gluten and casein from the diet can improve or cure the child.

Eamon Murphy started exhibiting mental aberrations and problems eating at three months of age. By the time he was three, his parents were frantically trying to understand what had caused his developmental delay in walking and talking, and now his trances, seizure-like episodes and regression. After a determined effort by his mother and a series of extraordinarily lucky events, he was finally diagnosed with celiac disease…and FULLY RECOVERED.

Watch these videos NOW and then forward this message to everyone you know with a child with a similar mental illness and their healthcare providers…because it is unacceptable that any child should be unnecessarily consigned to a life of suffering and diminished potential when a simple change in diet may cure them.

Eamon is totally normal now. If he had not been diagnosed, it is easy to see how he could have become incapacitated within a few years as his body and mind became sicker and sicker. Eventually, he may have been labeled autistic or schizophrenic. He may just have been called odd and slow.

Was it a miracle that Eamon recovered? No. It was a miracle that Eamon was diagnosed…

Here are some facts:

Autism affects 1 in 150 children. Medical experts recommend behavioral management and specialized speech, physical and occupational therapies (costing an estimated $70,000 per year per child), medications, community support and parental training.

Medical experts recommend AGAINST dietary intervention, yet the gluten-free/casein-free diet that helped Eamon has been demonstrated in thousands of cases to improve or resolve symptoms.

Celiac disease is still considered a rare gastrointestinal disorder that affects children by the majority of health professionals. In reality, celiac disease affects 1 in 100 people of any age, classifying it an epidemic by NIH standards. More people have celiac disease than Type 1 diabetes, breast cancer or autism. Diagnosis of celiac disease is estimated to take up to 11 years from first presentation of symptoms. Only 5% of people with celiac disease are estimated to be diagnosed.

Gastrointestinal problems occur in about 20% of people with celiac disease whereas neurological problems have been seen in as high as 51% at time of diagnosis.

The treatment for celiac disease is removing gluten from the diet and correcting nutrient deficiencies and any complications that have developed.

Unless you have symptoms that doctors expect to see – chronic diarrhea, failure to thrive, abdominal bloating and pain, and anemia – your likelihood of being diagnosed is extremely low.

For a complete list of symptoms related to celiac disease including dozens of neurological issues and problems in childhood, visit Gluten Free Works.

An excellent resource that outlines over 300 signs and symptoms and explains the relationship between celiac disease and the nutrient deficiencies that cause them is the book Recognizing Celiac Disease, by Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN. Recognizing Celiac Disease was endorsed by Dr. Peter Green, the director of the Celiac Disease Center at Columbia University who diagnosed Eamon Murphy.

John Libonati

Neurological Disorders, Gluten & Celiac Disease

March 13th, 2008 by John Libonati

The brain is a delicate organ, where billions of cells, electrical and chemical reactions have to interact correctly to function optimally.  When something unbalances brain chemistry, interrupts reactions or damages the cells, brain dysfunction results. Gluten does all these things – whether or not you have celiac disease.

Neurological disorders from gluten can arise in either, or both, of the following ways.  Gluten can penetrate the intestinal lining and enter the bloodstream, by its own mechanism, travel to the brain where it can damage or disrupt cells or cause inflammation.  This is the direct effect of gluten on the brain.  Gluten can also lead to malabsorption of nutrients in celiac disease.  In this case, the body does not absorb the nutrients it needs. Nutrients are chemicals. The brain, therefore, does not receive the chemicals it needs to function correctly and problems develop.

Nervous system disorders have been found in over 50% of newly diagnosed celiacs.  The list of nervous disorders is long: autism, gait ataxia, gluten ataxia, progressive myoclonic ataxia, chorea, tremors, brain atrophy, cerebral perfusion abnormalities, cortical calcifying angiomatosis (cerebral calcifications), dementia, headaches, epilepsy, chronic fatigue and chronic fatigue syndrome, migraines, multiple sclerosis, vasculitis of the central nervous system, chronic maladaptive anxiety, apathy, depression, inability to concentrate, insomnia, irritability, schizophrenia spectrum disorders, and peripheral neuropathy.  New disorders are being added as the link between

These nervous disorders can include either hard or soft disorders.

Examples of hard disorders would be epilepsy, ataxia (motor abnormalities), myoclonus, internuclear ophthalmoplegia, multifocal leukoencephlopathy, dementia and peripheral neuropathies.  Hard disorders, besides peripheral neuropathies, do not respond to gluten restriction – so identifying gluten sensitivity and/or celiac disease early is critical.

Soft disorders in celiac disease include a broad range of what are considered common neurological disorders.  Hypotonia (flaccid muscles in babies), developmental delay, learning disorders and ADHD, headaches and cerebellar ataxia are examples.  Importantly, there does not seem to be a difference in whether people with infantile-onset gastrointestinal symptoms, those with late onset symptoms or are asymptomatic (have no symptoms at all) develop soft disorders.

This means you may never experience a gastrointestinal symptom, yet still suffer from neurological disorder due to celiac disease.

Recovery from these neurological disorders usually depends on length of time gluten has been digested. The gluten-free diet can result in complete recovery, improvement or no recovery depending on the amount of damage incurred. This means the earlier gluten is removed from the diet, the greater the likelihood of successful recovery.

For these reasons, anyone with an unexplained neurological disorder that does or does not respond to traditional treatment should be screened for celiac disease and gluten sensitivity.

(This Health Alert was taken from information found in Issue #10 – “How Gluten Perturbs the Brain” of the Gluten Free Gazette.)

Celiac disease is a hereditary, auto-immune disorder estimated to affect 1% of the human population (3 million in the US). Less than 3 % are estimated to be medically diagnosed, but numbers are expected to rapidly increase as diagnosis improves. Celiac disease is caused by the ingestion of wheat, barley, rye and oats and treated by removing these items from the diet. Signs, symptoms, associated disorders and complications can affect any part of the body and removal of the offending foods can result in complete recovery.

Visit Glutenfreeworks.com for more information.