Gluten is natural protein found in wheat. This protein is said to effect persons with the Celiac desisease. Similar proteins which are harmful to Celiac are present in rye, barley and possibly oats. Wheat, rye and barley are therefore excluded from the gluten-free diet. Oats may be allowed for some patients, under careful medical and dietetic supervision.
Wheat gluten produces the texture and consistency desired in many food products, both human and pet. It has been food ingredient, used for decades in the preparation of breakfast cereals, pastas and whole wheat flower (Most bakery goods). Baking represents more than 60% of the total usage worldwide, and many of our healthier multi-grain and whole grain breads would not be appealing without it. It bindes our food and acts as a filler or as a carrier for flavoring and spices.
According to DAVID A. NELSEN, JR., M.D., M.S this deisease " is an autoimmune inflammatory disease of the small intestine that is precipitated by the ingestion of gluten, a component of wheat protein, in genetically susceptible persons. Exclusion of dietary gluten results in healing of the mucosa, resolution of the malabsorptive state, and reversal of most, if not all, effects of celiac disease."
Symptoms of celiac disease can range from the classic features, such as diarrhea, weight gain/loss, and malnutrition, to latent symptoms such as isolated nutrient deficiencies but no gastrointestinal symptoms (See list of symptoms).
The disease mostly affects people of European (especially Northern European) descent, but recent studies show that it also affects Hispanic, Black and Asian populations as well1. Those affected suffer damage to the villi (shortening and villous flattening) in the lamina propria and crypt regions of their intestines when they eat specific food-grain antigens (toxic amino acid sequences) that are found in wheat, rye, and barley3. Oats have traditionally been considered to be toxic to celiacs, but recent scientific studies have shown otherwise. This research is ongoing, however, and it may be too early to draw solid conclusions.
Take the guess work out of taking nutrients, take a gluten test for signs and symptoms of grain sensitivities. Another way to determine is to remove Gluten and wheat based products from your diet and observe any improvement in your condition. There is also a blood test that is now available which can detect this desease.
Celia’s should observe a lifelong gluten-free diet. This diet from experience was a challenging adjustment, but very manageable once adjusted. More stores are beginning to stock gluten and wheat free product on their shelf’s making for a wider selection of products. Natural fruits, vegetables, fish, meets, and poultries have been save and an easy choice. Most spelt bread has been a good substitute as well. Find the health food section of your groceries an search for gluten free products. Health touch has a list of what you should and should not eat.