Turning down a decadent cupcake may seem super trendy, but many people are shunning anything made of wheat, barley, rye and oats out of medical must. Trust me, being “that girl” who can’t go with the flow and order from a regular menu is not easy—but assuming the role of a “glutard” pays off especially if you are truly gluten intolerant, gluten sensitive or have a diagnosis such as Celiac disease.
The medical symptoms can be diverse, and are due to problems in the intestines. Gluten can wreak cellular havoc by causing inflammation, and when this happens, the small intestines can’t absorb the nutrients that your body needs so dearly. Although these problems are often noticed in childhood, signs and symptoms can also develop later in life.
Mild symptoms may include: always being tired and irritable, joint pain, oral ulcers or general changes in your tongue and skin. Gut specific symptoms include: cramping, bloating, diarrhea, vomiting, and excessive farting. Because malabsorption may become an issue, weight loss, anemia and signs of vitamin deficiency may be later clues that your body just can’t jibe with gluten.
More serious symptoms such as ataxia, seizure, depression, anxiety, migraines, peripheral neuropathy, ADHD, autism, schizophrenia, osteoporosis, kidney disease and heart problems may also be present. Ultimately, ignoring the signs and symptoms of an inflamed and angry belly can lead to even more serious problems such as cancer—more specifically—T-cell lymphoma of the small intestines.
There’s always room on the bandwagon if you want to test-drive a gluten free lifestyle. But it also comes with many sacrifices—so before banishing half your pantry, a medical evaluation may be in