Possible explanation for increases in gluten sensitivity?

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Possible explanation for increases in gluten sensitivity?

Postby Jenise » Fri Feb 21, 2014 1:42 pm

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Re: Possibe explanation for increases in gluten sensitivity?

Postby Hoke » Fri Feb 21, 2014 2:44 pm

Another possible explanation for increased gluten sensitivity could be that everybody is talking about gluten sensitivity so the common person often figures if there's so much noise about that, well then maybe I have it too.

Not talking about those people who have such medical problems; just the people who like to imagine they have the medical problem au courant. And they are legion.
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Re: Possibe explanation for increases in gluten sensitivity?

Postby Karen/NoCA » Fri Feb 21, 2014 3:19 pm

I think you are right Hoke. Years ago, Hypoglycemia was the big rage. All of a sudden, many ladies my our neighborhood "had it" and I could not figure out why that was. Then I realized it was "the thing" to have. It sort of went away. Too, I have recently heard of several people who have decided to eat Gluten free, just because they want to...saying it is healthier cause wheat is not good for you, they say. It is a big thing right now with a health food store in Redding who developed all sorts of products that are gluten free. She is advertising all over. We also have a new cafe in Redding where most of the food is raw and gluten free. She was telling me about several of her products "that I should really try". I checked with the ladies at the nail salon I go to which is right next door and they all told me the food there was not that good. Yet, they have increased their hours, hired 6 new people to cover the new hours, and seem to be busy all the time. I know only one person with Celiac's and her diet is very restrictive and she has to be very careful. Not a fun thing to have. She takes all her own food to functions, basically refuses to eat anything that is not prepared at her home, unless she knows you very well.
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Re: Possibe explanation for increases in gluten sensitivity?

Postby Jenise » Fri Feb 21, 2014 4:26 pm

Well, of course you're right about the fad part, Hoke. And it's getting a lot of help--have you seen Dr. David Perlmutter's PBS 'presentation' (complete with audience who smile and nod appreciatively a lot, and an opportunity to pick up your phone and order) on PBS? It's based on his book Grain Brain, and looks like a slightly more educated Ron Popeil infomercial. After watching, you'll be convinced that your next PB & J will give you Alzheimers. Easy to dismiss, however I've separately read that some studies do indicate that, celiac disease aside, there is evidence that some people are discovering that they actually do have a sensitivity they'd be better off without.
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Re: Possibe explanation for increases in gluten sensitivity?

Postby Hoke » Fri Feb 21, 2014 5:04 pm

Jenise, my favorite of all time is the "hydration" trend...wherein the soft drink makers convinced most of us we absolutely had to have eight glasses of water a day (aided and abetted, of course, by the medical types)...not stopping to think that eight glasses of water a day would bloat the average person beyond sensibility and increase the average female's frequency of visits to the restroom to...oh, roughly, all the time.

But that enable the soft drink companies to take all their additives, sugars and flavoring and chemicals, and sell us millions upon millions of bottles of clear water---which is what they started witht to make the soft drinks in the first place!---and then (and here's the truly brilliant part) when they created that "need" out of largely thin air, they charged more for the water than they did for the soft drink version!!!! Gotta admit, that's a shuck of the first order of magnitude. :lol:

Another, but not food related, scam was when the gasoline people added lead to gasoline, then charged more for adding lead. Okay, so far. But then when the enviornmentlists starting making enough noise to get people upset about that, they took the lead out of the gasoline (which meant for a while car engines, now used to leaded gasoline, started coughing and wheezing and rattling and trying to run of the 'lead-free' stuff). Again, the beauty is the gas producers charged more for taking the lead out of the gasoline. The same lead they previously charged to put in the gas, and they now charged you more for taking that lead out, thus going back to essentially the same gas they had originally, but having successfully raised the price twice on it in the process of lead-no lead.

Beautiful, just beautiful.

(And again, this side-traffic in no way should belittle what some few folks are going through with food allergies. I had a student in high school who was terribly allergic to gluten. Both painful and monstrously inconvenient to him.)
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Re: Possibe explanation for increases in gluten sensitivity?

Postby Robin Garr » Fri Feb 21, 2014 7:29 pm

Speaking of food-and-drink-related health hysteria, how about those turrible Sulfites in wine?
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Re: Possibe explanation for increases in gluten sensitivity?

Postby Fred Sipe » Fri Feb 21, 2014 8:57 pm

Monsanto.
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Re: Possibe explanation for increases in gluten sensitivity?

Postby Hoke » Fri Feb 21, 2014 11:37 pm

I blame Obama.
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Re: Possibe explanation for increases in gluten sensitivity?

Postby Mark Lipton » Sat Feb 22, 2014 12:46 am

Hoke wrote:Another possible explanation for increased gluten sensitivity could be that everybody is talking about gluten sensitivity so the common person often figures if there's so much noise about that, well then maybe I have it too.

Not talking about those people who have such medical problems; just the people who like to imagine they have the medical problem au courant. And they are legion.


Certainly, as awareness of gluten sensitivity has grown, so has people's self-diagnosis of gluten sensitivity. Like any other medical trend ("fad" may be too strong a term) it's overused in many cases. However, I can use my wife's experiences as an illustration of why there's more attention paid to it now. Jean, on the advice of her nutritionist, went on a "purge" where she removed about five different items from her diet. This was motivated by a recent history of near-debilitating stomach problems involving pain so severe that she would lie prone on the floor in abject agony for hours at a time. After two weeks, she found herself symptom-free. She then systematically introduced each item (alcohol, caffeine, sugar, dairy and gluten) back into her diet. When gluten was reintroduced, the stomach problems reappeared. When she removed it again, the stomach problems faded away. Moreover, she found that the muscular aches she'd been having for the past decade also were greatly reduced. Her massage therapist, unbidden, commented on a change in the feel of her muscles (they weren't knotted as in the past). Finally, she also noted that her lifelong problems with constipation were resolved and she became much more regular in her bowel movements.

So, in her case, there is no question that removal of gluten from her diet has had pronounced and lasting health benefits for her. She's been tested for celiac and does not have it, so it's not an autoimmune reaction to the gluten. Periodic re-exposure to gluten (usually, when she breaks down and has a slice of pizza) reinforces for her the need to stay gluten-free. Our growing understanding of the importance of microflora in the gut raises the possibility that some gluten sensitivity might arise from a disruption of one's microbial ecology. No doctor has been able to offer any insight into what's going on, but as scientists, we're convinced that something real is going on.

A generation ago, what would have been made of Jean's condition? Would it even have been recognized as a medical condition? I don't recall even hearing the word celiac until about 1997, and the broader term of gluten intolerance even later than that. My own feeling is that we still have a lot to learn about what goes on in the gut, and how gluten proteins interact there.

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Re: Possibe explanation for increases in gluten sensitivity?

Postby Jeff Grossman/NYC » Sat Feb 22, 2014 1:02 am

Fascinating. Thanks for the story, Mark.

Mark Lipton wrote:A generation ago, what would have been made of Jean's condition? Would it even have been recognized as a medical condition?

I think it would not. Everyone, Jean included, would have simply said that that is how she is.
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Re: Possibe explanation for increases in gluten sensitivity?

Postby Hoke » Sat Feb 22, 2014 2:54 pm

Yep, good story, and great that Jean resolved her issues, while gaining a bit of clarity about how her body tends to function.

Can't pin it down, and too lazy too even google it so that I'll appear to be knowledgeable, but I believe I heard/saw some comments that in general substance allergies are on the increase. So it's not just the celebrity status of gluten that increases the incidence of reported allergies, but that people are becoming more allergic as well as taking action to find what they might be allergic to.

I discovered, much to my horror, that I was "allergic" to wine...no, not really. When I did a series of competitions back to back, tasting hundreds of wines in a short time span, and was also doing some pretty heavy buying samplings, I neglected to take my usual dose of antihistamines (I tend to get nasal/sinus stuffiness and teary eyes when I have to much wine) and suddenly I had these strange little protuberances, little tendril like things, on the bottom of my tongue. Very painful, made my mouth feel strange, and affected my ability to taste. Weird.

I figured it was primarily the histaminic thing, but could've been a reaction to excess acidity or something like that. Once I toned down the wine and kept the antihistamines at hand, the problem went away...or rather was satisfactorily manageable and that was enough for me.
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Re: Possibe explanation for increases in gluten sensitivity?

Postby Bill Spohn » Sat Feb 22, 2014 4:52 pm

Hoke wrote:Another possible explanation for increased gluten sensitivity could be that everybody is talking about gluten sensitivity so the common person often figures if there's so much noise about that, well then maybe I have it too.

Not talking about those people who have such medical problems; just the people who like to imagine they have the medical problem au courant. And they are legion.



Agree. Targeting the hypochondriacs for money - selling low gluten food products and books etc. to those who don't need it

Reminds me of the low fat brigade - they'd stick 'Low Fat' on a pound of sugar and the pleebs would buy it as health food. :roll:
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Re: Possibe explanation for increases in gluten sensitivity?

Postby Jenise » Sat Feb 22, 2014 5:22 pm

Jeff Grossman/NYC wrote:I think it would not. Everyone, Jean included, would have simply said that that is how she is.


Or it would have been shrugged off as part of being "female".
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Re: Possibe explanation for increases in gluten sensitivity?

Postby Hoke » Sat Feb 22, 2014 8:29 pm

Jenise wrote:
Jeff Grossman/NYC wrote:I think it would not. Everyone, Jean included, would have simply said that that is how she is.


Or it would have been shrugged off as part of being "female".


In that case, Congress would have to order up more vaginal probes.
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Re: Possibe explanation for increases in gluten sensitivity?

Postby Mike Filigenzi » Sun Feb 23, 2014 12:11 am

We have a close friend who is a successful lawyer who also has a degree in physics. Although she doesn't have celiac disease, she is pretty well convinced that she needs to stay off of gluten. She's not the kind of person to follow fad diets, and I have to believe that she has noticed effects from eating the stuff. We have other friends who've been gluten free at one time or another, and I'm guessing it didn't really make any difference for them.

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Re: Possibe explanation for increases in gluten sensitivity?

Postby Jenise » Sun Feb 23, 2014 3:42 pm

Hoke wrote:In that case, Congress would have to order up more vaginal probes.


Oh they apparently do plenty of 'probing', but it's off the clock. And when their wives are out of town. :)
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Re: Possibe explanation for increases in gluten sensitivity?

Postby Jeff Grossman/NYC » Sun Feb 23, 2014 6:29 pm

Jenise wrote:
Hoke wrote:In that case, Congress would have to order up more vaginal probes.


Oh they apparently do plenty of 'probing', but it's off the clock. And when their wives are out of town. :)


Sounds like you've bent over a page in this book before.
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Re: Possible explanation for increases in gluten sensitivity?

Postby Fredrik L » Tue Feb 25, 2014 6:45 am

In Sweden gluten intolerance is not a fad, nor is it a trend, but rather a very serious problem. Approximately one-third of the world´s population is genetically prone to Coeliac disease, with just 1 percent actually developing it. In Sweden the numbers are 50% genetically prone and 2,5% (1 in 40) developing it. On the other hand, we have the lowest number of lactose intolerant adults (4%), and scientists are now trying to find if there is a connection.

The most alarming thing is that if we forty years ago diagnosed babies in the casualty ward with Coeliac, we now see the signs much later and we have no idea why. The biggest issue is still patients being diagnosed too late, being instead prescribed Prozac et al or symptomatic treatment.

Greetings from Sweden / Fredrik L
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Re: Possibe explanation for increases in gluten sensitivity?

Postby Brian K Miller » Wed Feb 26, 2014 1:36 pm

Mark Lipton wrote:
Certainly, as awareness of gluten sensitivity has grown, so has people's self-diagnosis of gluten sensitivity. Like any other medical trend ("fad" may be too strong a term) it's overused in many cases. However, I can use my wife's experiences as an illustration of why there's more attention paid to it now. Jean, on the advice of her nutritionist, went on a "purge" where she removed about five different items from her diet. This was motivated by a recent history of near-debilitating stomach problems involving pain so severe that she would lie prone on the floor in abject agony for hours at a time. After two weeks, she found herself symptom-free. She then systematically introduced each item (alcohol, caffeine, sugar, dairy and gluten) back into her diet. When gluten was reintroduced, the stomach problems reappeared. When she removed it again, the stomach problems faded away. Moreover, she found that the muscular aches she'd been having for the past decade also were greatly reduced. Her massage therapist, unbidden, commented on a change in the feel of her muscles (they weren't knotted as in the past). Finally, she also noted that her lifelong problems with constipation were resolved and she became much more regular in her bowel movements.


Sounds exactly like a friend of mine.

Now...the latest trend is interesting to me. Because I am totally addicted to the evil white powder/clear golden liquid. SUGAR, of course. Which would be Schedule One if it were invented today!

One interesting argument that I read somewhere (and I know Otto would jump in...but in my uneducated layman's view Otto is wrong here) is that the genetic modification of wheat, the new Green Revolution strains prominent in the United States have exacerbated the problem significantly
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Re: Possibe explanation for increases in gluten sensitivity?

Postby Mark Lipton » Wed Feb 26, 2014 2:27 pm

Brian K Miller wrote:Now...the latest trend is interesting to me. Because I am totally addicted to the evil white powder/clear golden liquid. SUGAR, of course. Which would be Schedule One if it were invented today!


Yes, I've read some studies recently that proclaim sugar as the #1 problem in the American diet these days, even exceeding that of fat. Pretty impressive!

One interesting argument that I read somewhere (and I know Otto would jump in...but in my uneducated layman's view Otto is wrong here) is that the genetic modification of wheat, the new Green Revolution strains prominent in the United States have exacerbated the problem significantly


I've heard this, but can't for the life of me see a logical connection. Gluten is actually two proteins (gliadin and glutenin) that are found in all wheat strains, as well as rye and barley. Modern "hard" wheat contains more of these proteins (as they're what gives the chewy structure to breads and many other baked goods and pasta) but the identity of the proteins themselves haven't changed, hence their immunogenicity shouldn't be any different. More likely, the rise in gluten intolerance is related to increased awareness of the condition as well as the rise in allergies and autoimmune diseases overall in our population, a trend that still hasn't been adequately explained.

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Re: Possible explanation for increases in gluten sensitivity?

Postby Jenise » Wed Feb 26, 2014 3:11 pm

Further to what Mark and Brian are discussing:

http://www.alternet.org/food/could-baker-solve-gluten-mystery
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Re: Possibe explanation for increases in gluten sensitivity?

Postby Fred Sipe » Thu Mar 06, 2014 9:38 am

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Re: Possibe explanation for increases in gluten sensitivity?

Postby Mark Lipton » Thu Mar 06, 2014 5:06 pm



Fred,
That linked article is fearmongering of the worst sort. Dr. Davis is a cardiologist. His claims about wheat are not backed up by peer-reviewed science. It is true that today's wheat is different from the wheat of the early 20th C. The same could be said of virtually ever food that you eat. It's also true that mutations have been introduced into wheat. The same could be said of countless other agricultural crops and animals. There is nothing inherently wrong with inducing mutations by ionizing radiation instead of cross-breeding: it's simply a way to accelerate the process by orders of magnitude. They may be correct that the mutations made to gliadin are linked to the increase in celiac and other gluten sensitivities, but I'd like to see the peer-reviewed studies showing that to be the case rather than by simple assertion. While I am quite sympathetic to organic farming and heritage crops, I also recognize that tarring all genetic modifications with the GMO label is highly disingenuous: all breeding efforts result in genetic modification (the term for that is "evolution"). To the extent that GMO might be viewed with suspicion, it is when genes from radically different organisms (i.e., Bacillus thuringiensis) are inserted into genomes without proper testing to avoid the Law of Unintended Consequences.

The reason I am leery of placing the blame on gliadin mutations or lectins such as Wheat Germ Agglutinin is that they're all proteins, and your digestive system is designed to convert proteins into their constituent amino acids prior to their absorption into the bloodstream. In fact, the remarkable aspect of food allergies is that partially digested proteins and peptides are getting into one's bloodstream to elicit an immune response. Usually, this is due to damage to the intestinal lining that permits the "slippage" of those species into the blood. Celiac disease arises from an immune response to gliadin in the gut and from mutations in the victim that cause their intestinal lining to more tightly bind the gliadin fragments, thus elicing an autoimmune response. There's no evidence I've seen to suggest that changes to glidin promote this response in any way.

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Re: Possible explanation for increases in gluten sensitivity?

Postby Fred Sipe » Thu Mar 06, 2014 6:52 pm

Mark,

I admit I am blindly swayed by much of the fearmongering regarding bad stuff in our food supplies. It just seems that we have blindly "progressed" in the ways of food production simply so fewer can feed more. And that just seems wrong.

I don't pretend to understand the actual science behind these modifications but it scares hell out of me. Just passed this article along as food for thought for those interested and to see what greater minds than mine think of it.

Thanks for your learned explanation. Now, where can I find some spelt bread to try. :)
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