Celiac disease

How Gluten Causes a Cascading Effect of Symptoms

You may have heard that gluten can cause over 300 signs, symptoms, associated disorders and complications. This is true and we were the ones who brought this to light in our 2007 medical reference, Recognizing Celiac Disease.

This video uses our Gluten Free Works Health Guide to show you how gluten causes hundreds of health problems in a cascading effect.

What started as the printed book in 2007, has developed into an all encompassing online health manual that we know can revolutionize how celiac disease, gluten sensitivity and healthcare are treated by professionals and people at home.

Subscribe to the Gluten Free Works Health Guide to recover your health and stay healthy.

How Gluten Causes Alopecia Areata

Alopecia-Areata-wikimedia-227x300[3]Do you recognize this circular hair loss pattern? It is called alopecia areata. According to the National Alopecia Areata Foundation, “no FDA approved treatment or cure exists yet.”

No cure, eh? It is amazing how many times I hear this “no cure” declaration when I KNOW people who have been cured of the condition in question, in this case, alopecia areata. Maybe they mean no DRUG exists that cures it.

I was recently shopping at a department store to pick up some new exercise shorts when the security guard walked past me.

He was a young man, about twenty-five, medium height with a thick build, pale skin and short cropped black hair. I noticed several round spots where hair was missing from the side and back of his head. It looked like he had taken an electric razor and buzzed those places bare.

I said hi. He replied with a smile and a hello. I told him I didn’t mean to pry, but I noticed the bald spots and asked whether he got them in an accident. He said no, they just started appearing a few years ago and he’s tried everything to get the hair to grow back.

I asked if he was taking zinc supplements. He said no and asked why…

I looked up hair disorders in our Gluten Free Works Health Guide.

According to the Health Guide, alopecia areata is caused by an immune reaction and targets the area and zinc deficiency. The immune reaction can be caused by gluten and the zind deficiency by either not eating enough, or more likely, by malabsorption of zinc – a common problem in people with celiac disease who are not on a gluten-free diet. Taking zinc and following a gluten-free diet can turn around alopecia areata so that the hair grows back.

The guard thanked me about ten times. He was ecstatic to discover that he might have hope of getting his hair back after all.

Now, I don’t know how smart it is to walk up to a stranger and start advising them on their hair loss, but in this case I already knew a number of people whose alopecia areata resolved after they went gluten free.

This is why we gathered medical information from around the world to create the Gluten Free Works Health Guide. So, everyone, no matter where they live, can access it and find out what is causing their symptoms and the steps they need to take to fix them. So, they could discover which of their medications might be depleting the nutrients they need and which foods or supplements they need to ingest to replete their levels. So, they could connect the dots and take charge of their health. So, they could get healthy and stay that way.

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How the Gluten-Free Diet is like a Zombie Apocalypse

Going gluten-free is a battle. A battle of the many emotions involved with learning an entire new way of eating. The battlefield is similar to the one that Rick, Carl, Maggie, Daryl and the others face on every episode of The Walking Dead. How do the two journeys relate? Well, let me explain…

1. What the ______?

When Rick woke up in the hospital he had no idea what was going on. Where was his family? Were they infected with this new ‘disease’? What just happened to life as he knew it? These feelings are similar to the ones someone experiences when diagnosed with Celiac Disease or Gluten Intolerance. They are confused about their new condition. How did this happen to them?

2. Stay Away!!

On The Walking Dead, the group did not know exactly what the zombies were or how they got that way, but Read More »

How to Lose Weight on the Gluten-Free Diet

The traditional look of celiac disease was an underweight person. However, a large minority (39%) are now found to be overweight at diagnosis.

A woman with a history of struggling to lose weight is diagnosed with celiac disease. After starting the gluten-free diet she loses 50 lbs in less than a year…seemingly without effort. A middle-aged man who has never had issues with his weight is diagnosed with celiac disease, adopts the gluten-free diet and begins to pack on pounds and doesn’t know why. A young man loses over 20 lbs in less than 3 months and reaches his ideal weight after going gluten-free.

These are true stories – in fact the last one was mine. Read More »

How To Make the Most of Celiac Awareness Month!

celiac

This year I am taking Celiac Awareness Month a little more personally than years past! In March, I went to the Digestive Disease National Coalition and met with Senators to discuss Resolution 550 that officially makes May  National Celiac Awareness Month.

When talking with the Senate staff I explained that making May Celiac Awareness Month gives members of the gluten free community a great jumping off point for awareness campaigns and projects. For example, the Read More »

How to Read Your Fingernails to Determine Your Nutrient Deficiencies

Find out what your nails are telling you about your health in this important video tutorial. These nail problems reveal underlying causes that need to be corrected – and are usually simple to fix – even if you have had them your entire life! Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN shows you what you need to know!

Visit our Health Guide to find out how to fix hundreds of health conditions related to gluten sensitivity and celiac disease!

How YOU Can Be Your Own Doctor and Why You Must

Neck InjurySeveral years ago I was referred to see a neurologist for a neck injury I received in a car accident.

This doctor is one of the top neurologists in the United States. He is a well known authority who teaches at a prestigious medical school. He is also a really nice guy.

After learning I publish Glutenfreeworks.com, he said he would pass the information to his mother, who he mentioned has gluten sensitivity. Noticing his small stature, slim build, flaking skin and 1/8th inch long paper-thin fingernails, I asked if he had been tested for celiac disease.

He chuckled and said, “I don’t have a malabsorption problem.”

One of the most distressingly common things I experience is meeting sick people who do not even know they are sick.

This physician, published and famous for his expertise in neurology, had no clue he was suffering from multiple symptoms of nutrient deficiencies. He was sick, but did not recognize the signs.

Doctors cannot recognize symptoms of nutrient deficiencies in themselves, let alone in their patients.

Why? Read More »

Hyperthyroidism, Celiac Disease and the Gluten Connection

 

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) Read More »

Hyperthyroidism, Celiac Disease and the Gluten Connection

Hyperthyroidism, also called Grave’s Disease, is an immunologically mediated thyroid disease.  That basically means it is brought on by the action of specific abnormal autoantibodies, called thyroid receptor antibodies (TRAb), that stimulate excessive release of normal thyroid hormones into the blood.  Thyroid hormones control body metabolism.

Features of hyperthyroidism are diffuse non-tender goiter (enlarged thyroid gland), elevated blood levels of thyroxine hormone, suppressed blood levels of thyrotropin hormone (TSH), and the presence of thyroid receptor antibodies in the blood.

Symptoms include various degrees of bulging eyeballs, staring, firm areas of edema or swellings of the lower legs in most patients, rapid pulse, increased blood pressure, palpitations, nervousness, depression, anxiety, heat intolerance, weight loss, thigh and upper arm weakness, brisk tendon reflexes, cardiac abnormalities and oligomenorrhea in females – infrequent or scanty menstruation. 

According to a recent medical study of 111 people with hyperthyroidism, 4.5% had positive celiac disease antibodies, 14% had anti-gliadin antibodies and 3% had IgA deficiency. Anti-gliadin antibodies demonstrate a normal reaction to the abnormal presence of gluten in the blood. The high presence of anti-gliadin antibodies in thyroid disorders is likely related to gluten entering the bloodstream through the small intestine via “leaky gut.”  Leaky gut can result from poorly digested gluten with or without celiac disease. 

An immune-linked reason for the co-existence of hyperthyroidism and celiac disease revolves around the fact that both disorders (and several other diseases) share the immune system genetic markers HLA B-8 and HLA DR3. Individuals having these genetic markers can develop one or more of a certain cluster of diseases associated with these genes.1

The good news is that a strict gluten free diet can successfully treat hyperthyroidism in celiac disease.

Thyroid function should be assessed in all celiac disease patients at diagnosis and follow-up if clinically indicated. Screening of high-risk groups such as those with autoimmune thyroid disease is a reasonable strategy.2

If you have hyperthyroidism, be sure your doctor tests you for celiac disease and gluten sensitivity. Anti-gliadin antibody (AGA-IgA and AGA-IgG) tests for gluten sensitivity while EMA-IgA and EMA-IgG or tTG-IgA and tTG-IgG  are specific tests for celiac disease.  Testing that is based on IgA only would give a false negative result for individuals who are unable to produce IgA antibodies, that is, in IgA deficiency.

If your physician refuses or dismisses the idea of testing for celiac disease, please get a second opinion from a medical provider who is knowledgeable about celiac disease.  The longer gluten is consumed, the greater will be its damaging effects on your body.

(This Health Alert was taken from information found in Issue #11 – “Gluten and the Thyroid” 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.
Grave’s Disease and Gluten Sensitivity Enteropathy (GSE). Elaine Moore. http://www.suite101.com/article.cfm/graves_disease/54749
Ch’ng CL, Keston Jones M, Kingham JGC. Celiac disease and autoimmune thyroid disease. Clinical Medicine & Research. May 2007; 5(3)184-192.

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