How To Accurately Tell If You’re Sensitive To Gluten, Dairy, Or Any Food Without A Blood Test
The gluten-free diet has become very popular in recent years, but is it all just a fad? If you don’t have gluten sensitivity or Celiac disease, you probably know nothing about gluten.
What is gluten?
Gluten is a protein found in wheat, spelt, rye, durum, udon, barley, bran, orzo and other types of grains.
Gluten intolerance vs. gluten sensitivity
Gluten sensitivity is a delayed hypersensitivity immune response that occurs when a sensitive person eats gluten for a longer period. Its symptoms are migraines, brain fog, behavioral difficulties in children, digestive problems, low energy, weight gain, etc.
Gluten intolerance occurs when there’s lack of enzymes that breakdown gluten in the body. Research is currently underway to identify the enzymes. The symptoms of gluten intolerance are explosive diarrhea, excessive gasses, low energy, fatigue, dehydration and malnutrition. If a person suffering from gluten intolerance or sensitivity ingests gluten, it causes an inflammatory response in the body which damages the intestinal lining of the stomach.
Testing for gluten sensitivities measures for an immune system antibody called IgG.
- In vivo (in/on the body) – muscle testing or energetic tests
- In vitro (in a lab) – IgG blood sample with finger prick
The in vivo tests are controversial. The idea is that the patient holds a vial of food antigen and the body will weaken if there’s gluten sensitivity. The physical strength is manually tested and offers a level of bias. Other energetic tests can also measure the person’s response to gluten.
The current IgG tests are also unreliable. Some people send multiple tests of the same blood sample to different labs and come up with different results, and some patients have shown to be sensitive to foods they have never eaten before. Until these tests are more reliable, a hypo-allergenic diet is the best way of identifying gluten and food sensitivities.
Celiac disease is an autoimmune condition of the small intestine which occurs when there’s inflammation and loss of villi in a part of the small intestine. This disrupts the mucosal cells and allows large molecules to pass through the tightly packed cells of the mucosal lining and into the blood stream. This is similar to leaky gut syndrome.
Sometimes, food particles have a similar structure to body molecules and the antibodies are confused into attacking your own healthy cells. This is called autoimmunity and appears in the form or rheumatoid arthritis, Addison’s disease, psoriasis, multiple sclerosis, Graves’ disease and Hashimoto’s.
Where else can gluten be found?
Besides in wheat, gluten can be found in seasoning, flavoring, ales, beer, rice syrup, candies, sauces, marinades, lipsticks and balms.
Malt, a substance used in beer contains gluten, and caramel colorings have been found to contain it as well. Wheat flour, soups and condiments also contain gluten. Some supplements may also contain the protein as filler or in the coating of the capsules.
- Corn meal
- Rice bran
- Corn bran
- Corn flour
- Soy (but be cautious of wheat additives in soya sauce)
- Legumes (bean, chickpea, garfava, lentil and pea)
Since celiac disease and gluten intolerance have become common in recent years, gluten-free products are easier to find, although we recommend eating organic food.
How to Test Yourself For Food Sensitivities, at Home and For FREE?
As we mentioned before, the hypo-allergenic diet is the best way to test yourself for gluten sensitivity or intolerance. It’s not a diet that reduces weight, and includes eating common ingredients which cause inflammation and digestive problems. The most common food “offenders” are dairy, soy, eggs, wheat and corn. Eliminate them one by one to identify your sensitivity and get them back on the menu afterwards.
You should know that some non-gluten foods may not be healthy for you. In general, you should avoid processed foods, as well as canned and deep fried food, and stay away from dehydrated and dried foods as they contain sugars and preservatives.
The diet needs 6-8 weeks to complete. Follow these 4 steps:
- Eliminate gluten for 3 days and see how you feel
- On the 4th day, eat 3 servings of gluten (wheat, rye, etc.)
- If you have no change in symptoms, wait another couple of days while keeping your other foods consistent
- If your condition is not worsened, avoid eating gluten for 1 month then slowly start adding it back into your diet in reduced quantity and frequency.