What’s the Difference Between Glueten Intolerance and Celiac Disease?
People who are suffering with Autoimmune Diseases and Inflammation-related chronic conditions
Celiac Disease (CD) is a diagnosis involving either a blood test or taking a small sample of stomach lining to confirm. It involves an autoimmune reaction to gluten found in any grain (not just wheat): corn, rice, barley rye, oats, spelt, etc. CD occurs when a gluten, or a gluten-cross reactive substance (soy, coffee, dairy, etc.) spurs your immune system to attack the lining of your small intestine. The resulting intestinal damage (called villus atrophy) can cause GI inflammation, malnutrition and can lead to things like osteoporosis, and nutrient deficiencies among others.
Gluten Intolerance (GI) (usually to wheat gluten) is on a wide spectrum, and is very common because of how many places wheat is found in our food and environment. For instance, I bet you didn’t know that gluten can be found in non-food items that you may use everyday like your shampoo, and in your paper towels. The difference between GI and CD is that GI is not an autoimmune condition per say, but it is a stressor on your digestive system that can lead to any of the following:
- Digestive issues such as gas, bloating, diarrhea and even constipation
- Keratosis Pilaris, (also known as ‘chicken skin’ on the back of your arms)
- Fatigue, brain fog or feeling tired after eating a meal that contains gluten
- Related issues: Sinus infections, bacterial overgrowth, bladder problems, blood pressure, poor sleep, blood sugar imbalances
For answers to more frequently asked questions about Autoimmune Diseases and Imflammation-related Conditions and the Functional Medicine and Clinical Nutrition approach to reversing them, click these links: