Celiac Disease Vs Gluten Intolerance: You May Have Gluten Intolerance If You Show These Signs
3 Min Read
Today, of the many noticeable changes in our lives is the rising awareness of personal fitness. People are now more careful than ever about following strict workout regimes, eating right, and taking care of themselves. Such a behavioral change is not without reason.
Our daily lives are not getting any less stressful. Amid the strenuous schedules we keep, we would obviously want to stay healthy and far from ailments, especially those that come with poor lifestyle choices, stress, and dietary habits.
In particular, most of us no longer throw caution to the wind when it comes to our diet. We watch what we eat, and our list of things to avoid is longer than it ever was. A certain word called ‘gluten’ has crept into our dictionary, and many of us who are calorie conscious and mindful of our diet avoid it as much as we can, if not completely.
So, what is gluten? What is gluten intolerance? What are Celiac disease symptoms? What are the adverse effects it could have on the body? Why do we need to avoid it? Let’s try and answer these basic questions.
What is gluten?
Gluten is a kind of protein commonly found in grains like wheat, barley, and rye. Of these, wheat is most consumed, and hence, one would typically avoid it in a gluten-free diet. We are talking about no roti or bread here.
When you mix flour with water, it is the gluten proteins that make the dough elastic. It also helps bread rise when baked. It is not without reason that gluten is called so; it gets its name from the glue-like texture it offers with wet dough.
The two primary proteins in gluten are gliadin and glutenin, of which the former causes the most harm to the body if a person is sensitive to it. Otherwise, it remains relatively safe and healthy for consumption.
It is primarily found in the following items:
– Cakes and cookies
What is gluten intolerance?
Gluten intolerance is a medical condition where your body reacts badly to gluten-rich food. Gluten intolerance is also called gluten sensitivity, non-celiac gluten sensitivity, or non-celiac wheat sensitivity.
What is Celiac disease?
While some can tolerate gluten, many with certain health conditions cannot. Among the most severe forms of this condition is celiac disease. It’s an autoimmune disorder where the body rejects this protein, and the immune system attacks gluten and the gut lining, causing damage to the small intestines.
A damaged gut lining leads to several other complications such as diarrhea, headache, constipation, lethargy, depression, and skin rashes. Notably, certain symptoms of celiac disease that are not related to digestive issues are difficult to diagnose. Hence, many people with the condition aren’t even aware of it.
There are also those who might not be affected by celiac disease and still be gluten intolerant. Such a condition is known as non-celiac gluten sensitivity.
What is the difference between Celiac disease and gluten intolerance?
In short, while both may have similar symptoms, they are different. i.e., people with gluten intolerance may have most of the same symptoms as Celiac disease and may want to avoid gluten. But, unlike Celiac disease, gluten intolerance doesn’t show an immune response nor damage the small intestines.
Symptoms of gluten intolerance
While digestive issues are the most common symptoms associated with gluten intolerance, there are also other symptoms like skin rashes and mood disturbances. Let’s look at some symptoms of gluten intolerance.
– Digestive problems like abdominal pain, diarrhea, constipation, and heartburn. These could further lead to malnutrition effects like weight loss, lethargy, etc.
– Skin issues like redness, rashes, bumps, itching, etc.
– Depression, migraines, and lack of concentration
– Frequent mood swings
Often, it is a gluten-free diet that is the most effective solution. However, other symptomatic effects like skin rashes, and migraines, among others, need to be treated accordingly by a doctor.
Here is a list of foods you can include in your diet:
– Gluten-free pasta
– Fresh fruits and vegetables
– Meat and seafood (not breaded)
– Unflavored dairy products
If you have any of the above symptoms with any obvious cause, consult your doctor and try removing gluten-containing products from your diet. Download the MFine app today and speak to one of our doctors available online.
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