So you all know I treat a lot of patients with autism, allergies and irritable bowel syndrome (among other things). Many of you may also have had our famous food sensitivity test done to assess sensitivity toward various foods, including gluten and gluten containing foods. Today on the Wall Street Journal, we are reading what mainstream medicine is now starting to observe to be true and that is that one can have a sensitivity to gluten and gluten containing grains but not have Celiac disease? Of course this may be old news to all of you savvy readers and patients who have been hearing me talk and lecture about food sensitivities for years.
Diet is an incredibly important aspect of health and healing and the correct diet is imperative for reversing any chronic illness. Many people come to see me and tell me how healthy their diet is but they still feel awful and have a seemingly difficult to treat diagnosis. The number one thing I do in my practice is to assess for food sensitivities. Let's be clear, these are not food ALLERGIES which are an immediate hypersensitivity reaction but food sensitivities are delayed reactions. Delayed hypersensitivities can take 2 to 72 hours to come on and are never acute or immediately severe like allergies can be. We usually all know if we have been exposed to a food or environmental allergen that causes an allergy because almost immediately (or within 20 minutes) we are experiencing typical allergic symptoms like a stuffy nose, runny or puffy eyes, throat constriction, asthma or breathing difficulties etc. But food sensitivities are more stealth than the average allergy and you could be consuming a food you are sensitive to and it could be causing you to be miserable. Many find after testing for food sensitivities that their "healthy" diet was not necessarily "healthy" for them.
This is especially true for people with arthritis, diabetes (especially type 2 but type 1 as well), high blood pressure, asthma, eczema, headaches or migraines, obesity, chronic fatigue and ANY irritable or inflammatory bowel disease including IBS, IBD, ulcerative colitis, chrons disease, diarrhea, constipation or celiac disease. Also in this list would be thyroid issues, especially hypothyroid, and any and all autoimmune disorders like Grave's disease, rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, mixed connective tissue disorders, and Srojgren's disorder. Gluten is a protein in many grains like wheat, oats, rye and barley. More and more people are finding themselves unable to tolerate gluten containing foods but when their doctor does a test for celiac's disease, they come up negative.
Finally, the conventional medicine population is finding out that gluten sensitivity is possible without the markers for Celiac disease to be present. I'll go further and say that in my years of practicing I've found that it is possible for a person to be sensitive to wheat or oats and not be sensitive to gluten or have Celiac disease. In fact, it is possible to have a sensitivity to just about anything you consume if your body has a problem with it, your body will start to react to it. Just like when you have an allergy to a food or environmental contaminant such as dust mites, mosquitoes, bees, pollen, carrots, strawberries, peanuts etc, anything is possible.
So if you are finding that your health has been suffering in the past few years and you are dealing with a chronic illness, give a call to your naturopathic doctor so that they can find out for you what your food sensitivities are. Incidentally, you'll find that most of the listed illnesses or diseases listed above are all wholly or partially reversible by being on the correct diet for YOU. Also, check out NAET and how a simple allergy elimination technique which includes an acupressure (no needles) process to re-balance your body to a food sensitivity or allergen so that you no longer react to the food once consuming it. I've found that NAET is a reliable, easy and painless way of desensitizing people from foods or allergens that make them sick.
Oh, one last thing about food sensitivity testing, it is not easy to do and I've only ever used one lab called Immunolabs in Florida. Not all food sensitivity tests are created equal, I've historically relied on other lab's tests only to find out that there are a lot of false negatives or unreliable results on retesting. So save yourself some grief and make sure you find a lab that knows how to do a good reliable test or call ImmunoLabs and find a doctor near you who can do the testing for you. (No, I don't work for them and they don't pay me to say this stuff, it's just been my experience). Good luck and let me know how you feel after a couple weeks off the foods you are sensitive to. To YOUR future health!
For further reading, check out my article about the autism diet and why avoiding gluten and casein just isn't enough.