Gluten intolerance causes havoc with the digestive system and without proper care and attention can lead to Celiac Disease, a life-long allergy to gluten. However, there are ways to continue to enjoy regular meals and dishes without having to forego eating breads and other delights. This is done by substituting gluten rich foods with those containing little or no gluten. In the case of those with gluten intolerance, it is easier to remove these foods and eventually overcome the intolerance than it is for those who have the full blown gluten type allergy. This means first removing all obvious gluten foods from a patient’s diet, followed by less obvious sources.
Gluten intolerance is also called gluten sensitivity. It is not just one specific illness, but a series of conditions where a person has a reaction, not necessarily sufficient enough to call it an allergy. However, the intolerance is sufficient to cause damage over time to the intestines, even affecting the chemistry of the blood. In some people, with autoimmune diseases, this intolerance can make them harder to treat and in others, show the opposite effect. Each person is definitely affected differently, but very few people are aware that they have an intolerance at all. Some notice subtle changes – their pants do not fit as well as they used to. They put it down to getting older. They feel intense fatigue, as well as more headaches, but put it down to insufficient rest and too much stress. Some try diet after diet to find that their belly fat just will not budge. Overall, each one of them feels unwell, though they never consider the fact that they might be suffering from gluten intolerance.
There are many types of food intolerance and allergies, and wheat intolerance is one of the most common. But all wheat sensitivity is not created equal. Gluten intolerance – otherwise known as coeliac disease – is an inflammatory condition of the digestive tract, caused by gluten – a protein found in wheat, rye, barley and oats. It is not a contagious illness but is often genetic.