Archive for the ‘Symptoms’ Category

 


The debate about autism and the effectiveness of the gluten-free, casein-free diet continues – this time due to irresponsible reporting of the mainstream news media who seem to have chosen sensationalism over objective journalism when covering an important medical paper on gastrointestinal disorders in autism.

This week, a panel of medical experts led by Timothy Buie, MD at Harvard Medical School published a consensus statement on the Evaluation, Diagnosis and Treatment of Gastrointestinal Disorders in Individuals with ASDs (Autism Spectrum Disorders) in the medical journal Pediatrics. You can find the full paper here.

The panel covered 23 topics in a document that is 20 pages in length, dealing with the diagnosis and care of individuals with autism spectrum disorders and gastrointestinal issues. The panel based its conclusions on available information which they agreed was limited and incomplete.

The Key Topic

“Individuals with autism spectrum disorders who present with gastrointestinal symptoms warrant a thorough evaluation, as would be undertaken for individuals without autism spectrum disorders who have the same symptoms or signs. Evidence based algorithms for the assessment of abdominal pain, constipation, chronic diarrhea, and gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) should be developed.”

Some of the other topics include recommendations for the banking of DNA samples, the complexity of diagnostic evaluation when ASD and gastrointestinal disorders present, the need for studies to determine the prevalence of intestinal permeability in neuropsychiatric manifestions of ASD, and the need for large studies to determine the effectiveness of the gluten-free, casein-free diet. (more…)


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[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…)

John Libonati

Hyperthyroidism, Celiac Disease and the Gluten Connection

November 16th, 2009 by John Libonati

 

Graves-Proptosis_and_lid_retraction_from_Graves_Disease-wikimedia[1]Hyperthyroidism is a common condition worldwide. It occurs in 1-2 per cent of the population with greater incidence in iodine-deficient regions and is 10 times more common in women than men between the ages of 20 and 40 years.(1)

Hyperthyroidism is estimated to affect about 3 million people in the United States. The disease affects more women than men, breaking down to about 2% of women and .2% of men. As many as 15 percent of cases of hyperthyroidism occur in patients older than 60 years.(2)

Hyperthyroidism (overactive thyroid) is a condition in which your thyroid gland produces too much of the hormone thyroxine. Hyperthyroidism can significantly accelerate your body's metabolism, causing sudden weight loss, a rapid or irregular heartbeat, sweating, and nervousness or irritability.(3) (more…)

John Libonati

Celiac Disease Alert: Six Ways Gluten Can Kill You

November 4th, 2009 by John Libonati

"I only cheat once in awhile. You know, like twice a week..."

Photo: Suite101.com

If you have celiac disease, you damage your body EVERY TIME you ingest gluten. That may sound bad, but it gets worse.

You can DIE from celiac disease in a variety of ways. None of them are fun. Some take longer than others. Some may not kill you per se, but rather they may stop you from enjoying life, make you suffer from chronic pain or limit your potential.

Celiac disease is a deadly serious condition caused by eating what is essentially a poison to susceptible people - gluten proteins in wheat, barley, rye and oats.

Here are just 6 examples how celiac disease from gluten ingestion can kill you: (more…)

Saving a life means more than just keeping a person from dying. It means helping them get well.

While practicing medicine as a registered nurse, Cleo Libonati regularly saved people's lives. Now her book "Recognizing Celiac Disease" is doing the same for people across the country and around the world.

Here is a letter telling how one family credits the book with saving their lives...

------------------------ Dear Cleo,

I have been "sick" most of my life (I turn 40 in July) with random things, too many to list here. I have been really sick the last 10 years, but started feeling as though I was "dying by the inch" in 2004. I finally broke down and went to my primary when premature ventricular contractions were occurring every 5-10 seconds that felt as though my heart was going to jump right out of my throat. I had many other random multiple sclerosis type symptoms, but the severity of the PVC's were what scared me the most, that is until 2006. I began to have many gastro symptoms that kept me in the bathroom several times a day with alternating elimination problems, I couldn't keep food down, and pain in the left side of my swollen, hard, tender abdomen every time I ate. I had an EGD and colonoscopy on 2/15/07. The three days before the test were the best I had felt in 4 years. Since I worked in Oncology and was used to seeing patients doing prep for them, I put myself on clear liquids 2 days before the Go-Lytely. So, I was gluten-free without knowing it for 3 days prior to testing. (more…)

About 20% of people with untreated celiac disease have chronic constipation instead of the classic symptom of diarrhea. As the rate of diagnosis improves, constipation is becoming recognized as a common symptom of celiac disease.

Constipation is a common problem in the general population of the United States. According to the National Institutes of Health, about 4 million people have frequent constipation. It is one of the most common digestive complaints in the United States, resulting in about 2.5 million doctor visits and 92,000 hospitalizations annually, although most people treat themselves. This high rate of constipation results in annual laxative sales of over $735 million in this country.

This article will discuss the following topics:

1. How to recognize constipation.

2. Natural remedies that have been shown to help constipation.

3. How to induce a bowel movement.

WHAT IS CONSTIPATION?

Constipation involves problems with stool formation, consistency, and evacuation. It is characterized by one or more of these features:

· Hard, dry stool or soft, putty-like stool.

· Difficult defecation.

· Infrequent defecation, less than one bowel movement per day.

· A feeling of incomplete evacuation following bowel movement.

Constipation can give rise to many different ailments including indigestion, a white coated tongue, bad breath, gas, hemorrhoids, hernia, body odor, depression, fatigue, headache, insomnia, and varicose veins.

The three main causes of constipation are abnormal bowel motility, malabsorption and dysbiosis. Each one, or all three together can cause constipation.

1. Abnormal bowel motility is altered peristalsis, where food passes through the intestine too slowly, due to ineffective muscle action of the intestines. It may take the form of spastic colon or atonic colon.

· Spastic colon is characterized by a spasms, (irregular and excessive muscle contractions of the intestinal walls), so that the muscles resist stretching and thereby decrease the diameter of the inside of the intestine. This restricts the passage of food.

Hard, dry stools are produced as the colon absorbs too much water from the slowly advancing stool. Spasms can result from magnesium deficiency, chronic stress, lack of exercise, lack of water or lack of fiber in the diet.

Spastic constipation is associated with variable degrees of abdominal pain or distress, erratic frequency of bowel action, and variation in stool consistency. (more…)

Libonati_John_Philadelphia_PA

If you have been diagnosed with celiac disease, are following the gluten free diet yet are still sick, you may find this true story very helpful...

A few months ago, I was visiting the office of a celiac disease support organization. A woman in the office started asking me questions about her symptoms. She was diagnosed with celiac disease and following the gluten-free diet. She was suffering from peripheral neuropathy and a host of other health issues. We looked up her symptoms in our book Recognizing Celiac Disease and noticed trends that pointed to certain nutrient deficiencies. Symptom after symptom pointed to low folic acid, low thiamin, and low omega-3 fatty acids. When we looked up Thiamin Deficiency, she said she had almost every symptom listed.

At that point she said she couldn't possibly have nutrient deficiencies. After her latest endoscopy with biopsy, her gastroenterologist told her that her villi in her small intestine had recovered and she was absorbing normally.

But, was she truly absorbing normally? (more…)

Marissa Carter

Watch Your Waistline While on a Gluten Free Diet: Part Two

September 22nd, 2009 by Marissa Carter

Marissa_Carter_Exam_Pic

Keeping a slim and trim waistline seems to be an important topic lately. Members of the gluten free elite are trying to find ways to counter-act the effects of a gluten free diet on their weight.Carter_foodcart

In part one, the subject of will power was broached. Now that we have established that you have such a powerful tool at your disposal, let's work on how to use it.

Selective Substitutions

Since the problem lies with the super-carbs, that is where you need to start. Put your powers to good use by having three days a week with no gluten free substitutes. Stick to lean meats, fruits and veggies on these days. This is a budget friendly idea as well. Put the savings towards buying that new smaller wardrobe. (more…)

Marissa Carter

Watch Your Waistline While on a Gluten Free Diet: Part One

September 22nd, 2009 by Marissa Carter

Marissa_Carter_Exam_Pic

When cruising the gluten free forums, it is not hard to notice that there are a few issues associated with a gluten free diet that come up a lot. One of these issues is a rapidly expanding waistline.

The problem of gluten free weight gain comes from the higher concentration of carbohydrates and sugars found in gluten free foods. One serving of gluten free corn spaghetti has 7 more grams of carbs than the "regular" counterpart. That may not seem like much in terms of numbers, but your thighs can tell the difference.

With the holiday season quickly approaching, many people are beginning to search for a sure fire way to beat the bulge. This is even more challenging when you are already searching to find the gluten free jewels in every party menu. (more…)

Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN

Treating Candida Albicans Intestinal Yeast Overgrowth in Celiac Disease

September 10th, 2009 by Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN

The frequency of intestinal overgrowth by candida albicans is increased in people with celiac disease. In fact, infection by this common organism, also called C. albicans or candida, appears to be a trigger in the onset of celiac disease.1 Candida is yeast, a budding type of fungus, capable of fermenting carbohydrates. Albicans identifies this particular yeast from many others.

Candida albicans usually maintains a tiny appearance in our intestinal tract unless conditions change to favor its growth. It can thrive and invade if the intestinal lining becomes inflamed or damaged, the composition of normal flora becomes disrupted, immune defenses become diminished or malnutrition reduces our health. Candida albicans infection is characterized by superficial, irregular white patches with a red base. Invasion of the bloodstream is possible and would be life-threatening. (more…)