The Sneeze

Am I Allergic to Gluten?

September 15, 2021

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Am I Allergic to Gluten?

Gluten is a general name for the proteins that are found in wheat. Someone intolerant to gluten cannot consume grains such as wheat, barley, and rye. There are several types of gluten intolerance, ranging from celiac disease, gluten sensitivity, and wheat allergy.

In this blog from Premier Allergy & Asthma, we’re going to discuss potential causes and signs of gluten allergies. To learn more about gluten intolerance, what causes it, and potential warning signs, read on.

Causes of Gluten Intolerance

While all forms of gluten intolerance may present with similar symptoms, they are not necessarily the same and do not experience the same symptoms or responses to consuming gluten. 

In Celiac disease, Celiacs disease is when someone has an immune reaction to consuming gluten, which causes inflammation. It is an autoimmune disorder that causes damage to the intestines if gluten is consumed. 

A wheat allergy is not the same as a gluten allergy. Gluten is a particular protein found in wheat. A person with a wheat allergy may experience unpleasant symptoms when consuming wheat but not when consuming other gluten proteins.

Finally, non-celiac gluten sensitivity is a blanket term used to describe people whose bodies do not tolerate gluten well but who do not have a gluten allergy. These people can experience similar symptoms as those with Celiac disease but they do not experience intestinal damage and do not have the same antibodies.

Common Signs of Gluten Intolerance

  • Bowel Movement Issues - Issues with bowel movements are common for people with Celiac disease, because of inflammation in the small intestine which damages the gut lining. You may experience diarrhea or constipation. Another common sign of gluten allergy is to have foul-smelling bowel movements or stools that are pale in color.
  • Fatigue - The exact cause of fatigue in those with Celiac disease is not known, but it is thought to be associated with other issues caused by a gluten allergy, such as depression, trouble sleeping, being in pain, and having an autoimmune disorder in general.
  • Skin Rashes - Certain skin reactions have been associated with gluten intolerance, such as dermatitis herpetiformis, also known as gluten rash. This produces an itchy, blistering skin rash after consuming gluten. They look similar to hives and may cause a burning sensation.
  • Mental Health Problems - Those with gluten intolerance are at an increased risk for anxiety and depression. There are several possibilities for why this might be, including excess harmful bacteria in the gut microbiome, a serotonin imbalance, or gluten exorphins that interfere with the central nervous system.
  • Unexplained Weight Loss - It is common for those recently diagnosed with celiac disease to have lost a significant amount of weight without any identifiable cause. The weight loss could be attributed to issues with digestion and insufficient absorption of nutrients.
  • Iron Deficiency - When someone has Celiac disease and consumes gluten, this causes damage to the small intestine. As a result, the body's ability to absorb nutrients is impaired, including iron. This can cause fatigue, dizziness, and weakness.

Get a Food Allergy Test at Premier Allergy & Asthma

If you are experiencing any of the previously mentioned symptoms, it’s a good idea to get tested for food allergies. At Premier Allergy & Asthma, we can identify and treat food allergies such as gluten intolerance so you can be more functional and happier in your everyday life. 

Serious food allergies can be treated with epi-pens to prevent serious life-threatening situations. Contact us at Premier Allergy & asthma today to schedule an appointment and take back control of your life.