Gluten Allergy Symptoms

The list of gluten allergy symptoms is long, and varies with the individual. Many different body systems may be affected, or the person may just have intestinal issues.

The common thread that connects these health issues seems to be an autoimmune reaction to gluten, a protein found in wheat, rye and barley and the foods made from these grains.

A ketogenic diet has been shown to reverse many of these symptoms, sometimes unexpectedly, as in this amazing case study.

I did some research on Pubmed and found many studies which confirm the symptoms below are associated with gluten consumption and celiac disease.

And although a gluten free diet is not the same as a ketogenic diet, I would submit that including a ketogenic component to a gluten free diet would result in an even greater resolution of the gluten allergy symptoms listed below.

In one case study, the following symptoms were reported and relieved by putting the patients on a gluten free diet.

  • Osteomalacia characterized by bone fractures that happen with very little injury, muscle weakness, and widespread bone pain, especially in the hips.
  • Low calcium levels leading to epileptic seizures associated with low calcium absorption. Other symptoms of low calcium absorption can include an abnormal heart rhythm, numbness around the mouth, numbness of arms and legs and spasms of hands or feet.

Other symptoms that have been confirmed in various studies include:

In general, many body systems are affected by gluten ingestion, as the gluten allergy symptoms mentioned in this study confirm:

  • Blood disorders such as anemia of various types, red blood cell issues and spleen dysfunction (hyposplenism), and abnormal signs of bleeding in various body systems.
  • Skin issues such as itching, painful rashes, hives and wheals (medical conditions such as herpetiform dermatitis, Wells syndrome, and cutaneous vasculitis).
  • Mucosal issues such as mouth ulcers
  • Liver problems including the liver scarring of cirrhosis
  • Neurophysical issues such as fatigue, behavioural issues, brain disorders, and nerve pain such as peripheral neuropathy.
  • Joint and bone pain as in osteopenia, rheumatoid arthritis, other arthritic conditions and bone softening due to vitamin D absorption problems.
  • The gluten association with certain auto-immune illnesses must be emphasized, including diabetes, thyroid damage and Hashimoto thyroiditis, and Gougerot disease.

All of these symptoms can be alleviated and in some cases, completely reversed by following a ketogenic diet which eliminates all grain consumption.

In fact, in my opinion, the relief of grain allergy symptoms is one of the most unrecognized benefits of switching to a low carb diet.

Gluten Intolerance versus Gluten Allergy

In his book, Healthier Without Wheat: A New Understanding of Wheat Allergies, Celiac Disease, and Non-Celiac Gluten Intolerance, Dr. Stephen Wangen discusses the spectrum of this list of gluten intolerance symptoms, many of which are overlooked in routine medical examinations as they are so general.

In addition, a book by Dr. William Davis has just been released. I highly recommend buying a copy of Wheat Belly: Lose the Wheat, Lose the Weight, and Find Your Path Back to Health, as it goes into detail on how modern, genetically modified wheat effects human health.

A note on semantics: Although the terms gluten intolerance and gluten allergy mean the same thing to most non-medical personnel, a diagnosis of gluten allergy symptoms is usually associated with more severe allergic reactions such as hives and swelling of the lips and tongue.

However, in order to reach the average reader interested in this information, I have used the term gluten allergy to also broadly indicate a gluten intolerance or gluten sensitivity.

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