Just like many places around the world, gluten intolerance and celiac disease are significantly underdiagnosed in India. According to Macrobiotic Food Counselor Shonali Sabherwal, in Mumbai, the ignorance level of gluten intolerance is almost 80 percent. She says that many people attribute their stomach problems to eating large amounts of curry but Sabherwal says that in many cases it is because they cannot digest gluten.
Nutritionist Naini Setalvad says that 1 in 3 patients she treats has a gluten allergy that has gone uncontrolled and led to not only digestive problems, but also severe arthritis, bronchitis and asthma.
Check out this great article published on www.celiac.com about Australian research that identifies gluten as a trigger for stomach pain in people who do not have celiac disease.
The study, done by a team of researchers in Australia, put participants who exhibited symptoms of IBS into two groups and put them on a gluten-free diet. After 6 weeks, the groups were given bread and muffins, though one group was given gluten-free and one was given products with gluten. After only one week, 68% of the patients eating gluten reported more severe pain, bloating, and tiredness, and less satisfaction with their stool consistency. Tiredness and fatigue were also major symptoms.
This study is significant as it is the first demonstration that gluten may trigger gut symptoms in people who don’t have celiac disease.
Check out this article from Science News that talks about treating Celiac in people who have unnoticeable symptoms.
Researchers in Finland found that people who tested positive for Celiac in a blood test and began to follow a gluten-free diet were able to reverse intestinal damage and feel better over all even though they didn’t exhibit typical symptoms of Celiac (diarrhea, bloating, etc). They might have experienced some symptoms of ADD (especially in children) or headaches and fatigue, but didn’t attribute the feelings to Celiac until they were tested via blood test.
The bottom line? Get yourself tested even if one person in your family has Celiac or if you feel general malaise. It can help you feel better! Read more: http://www.sciencenews.org/view/generic/id/74083/title/Unnoticed_celiac_disease_worth_treating
The New York Times' Blog has done a marvelous job discussing celiac disease over the last several months and as a result hundreds of readers have sent in questions for the resident expert, Dr. Sheila Crowe of the University of Virginia's division of gastroenterology and hepatology.
Many of the reader inquiries have questioned whether or not a person can have an intolerance to gluten rather than full blown celiac disease. Check out the blog to read about the latest research on the topic:
A study in the March issue of the journal Pediatrics finds that a simple five-question survey about abdominal pain, chronic diarrhea, constipation and lack of height and weight gain may help identify celiac disease in children.
For the study, researchers from Odense University Hospital in Denmark tested the questionnaire on the parents 9,880 children who were 8 or 9 years old. Of the 7,029 respondents, 2,835 reported at least one symptom. Of those, 1,720 received a blood test and 24 were were found to have antibodies characteristic of celiac disease. After further testing, 14 of the children were positively diagnosed with celiac disease.
The researchers suggest that "a number of preclinical and low-grade symptomatic patients with celiac
disease may be identified by their responses to a mailed questionnaire."