Understanding Gluten Intolerance: Symptoms, Causes, and Testing

Understanding Gluten Intolerance: Symptoms, Causes, and Testing

For some individuals, the consumption of gluten-rich foods can lead to various adverse effects, both within the intestines and elsewhere in the body. Recognizing the symptoms and causes of gluten intolerance is crucial for maintaining overall health and well-being. Here's what you need to know:

Common Symptoms of Gluten Intolerance:

  • Abdominal cramps and pain
  • Bloating
  • Flatulence
  • Constipation
  • Chronic diarrhoea
  • Steatorrhea
  • Fatigue
  • Anaemia
  • Weight loss

What is Gluten Intolerance and Sensitivity?

The origins of gluten intolerance remain somewhat elusive. Research suggests that factors like intestinal inflammation, a weakened gut barrier, and changes in the gut microbiome may contribute to its development. Some individuals might even have a genetic predisposition to this condition.

Gluten sensitivity, on the other hand, is triggered by amylase trypsin inhibitors found in wheat and possibly other gluten-containing grains. These substances can provoke inflammation in various parts of the body, including the intestines.

Understanding Gluten

Gluten is a protein present in wheat, barley, and rye. It serves to maintain the structure of foods and acts as a binding agent. Foods containing flour, such as bread, pasta, cereals, cakes, and biscuits, typically contain gluten. It can also be found in certain sauces, sausages, gravies, soy sauce, and even chocolate.

Coeliac Disease Vs. Gluten Intolerance

The most severe form of gluten intolerance is coeliac disease, an autoimmune disorder that triggers an immune response damaging the small intestine. Even tiny amounts of gluten can result in significant harm. However, gluten intolerance can also occur without coeliac disease.

Genetics and Gluten Intolerance

Specific genetic variants, like those in the HLA-DQ genes, are associated with an elevated risk of gluten intolerance. While having these genes doesn't guarantee coeliac disease, they heighten the risk. A genetic test can provide insights into this predisposition.

Can Gluten Intolerance Subside?

Individuals without genetic predisposition might experience temporary relief from symptoms when gluten is eliminated from their diet. However, reintroducing gluten often leads to the return of symptoms. Coeliac disease requires a lifelong gluten-free diet.

Onset of Gluten Intolerance

Gluten intolerance can develop at any stage in life due to factors beyond gluten consumption. Infections, surgeries, and medications can be catalysts for this intolerance.

Duration of Symptoms

Symptom duration varies based on individual tolerance and gluten intake. Research indicates that some individuals may experience symptoms within an hour of consumption, with resolution in around 48 hours.

Testing for Gluten Intolerance

Discover your predisposition to gluten intolerance through our at-home Intolerances & Sensitivities test. With a simple saliva swab and comprehensive instructions, the test provides insights into potential gluten intolerance risk. If symptoms persist or there's a family history of coeliac disease, consulting a healthcare professional is recommended.

The DNA Intolerances & Sensitivities test by MyHealthChecked empowers you with personalized insights about your body. Your health report will guide your dietary choices, helping you avoid unpleasant symptoms associated with gluten intake.

If you're experiencing severe symptoms like persistent diarrhoea, vomiting, or sudden weight loss, it’s important that you consult with a healthcare professional immediately.

Learn more: Intolerances & Sensitivities Test