The Action of Gluten on Gastrointestinal Tract & Immunity
Patients with signs of gluten intolerance influence the immune system to manifest innate and acquired immune responses on the intake of gluten rich food. In such a case, the immune system generates autoantibodies, which swell and cause infection in the villi.
Villi is hair like tiny projection, which lines the small intestine. It helps the small intestine to absorb essential nutrients such as minerals and vitamins. An inflated or damaged villi adversely affects the overall function of the small intestine. Moreover, such persistent conditions make the body release some mediators. This enhances the permeability of antibodies inside the tissues that cause damage to other organs of the body. (2)
Also Read – GERD Awareness Week – 17th to 23rd Nov 2020
What is Gluten?
Gluten is a protein present in some cereals and whole grains. Patients with coeliac disease must not include it in their diet. However, there are some patients with nonceliac gluten sensitivity, and they must restrict intake of gluten based foods.
Those without such health conditions can take whole grains with gluten. It otherwise has no negative effects. (3)
Is it safe to eat a Gluten-Free Diet without any Medical Condition?
National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey asserted that adopting a gluten free diet without having coeliac disease results in the nutritional deficiency of calcium, iron, fibre, etc. In fact, individuals without gluten based diet have comparatively a higher cardiac risk. (4)
What are the Symptoms of the Coeliac Disease?
Symptoms of coeliac disease or gluten intolerance symptoms are:
- Abdominal pain
- Weight loss
- Skin problem
How to Diagnose Coeliac Disease?
Followings are coeliac disease blood tests that can confirm the diagnosis:
- Serology Test – This test finds antibodies in the blood of the patient, which indicates immune reaction against gluten. If the level of such antibody proteins is higher then the disease exists.
- Genetic Testing – Testing the antigens HLA-DQ2 and HLA-DQ8 in human leukocyte can confirm the disease
It is advisable to get these tests done before starting a gluten-free diet.
There are two further tests that the doctor advises in order to confirm the diagnosis of this ailment:
- Endoscopy – This test takes out a sample of the small intestinal tissue for analysing the damage of the villi
- Capsule Endoscopy – This is one of the most updated technologies that uses a tiny wireless camera to take the image of the small intestine. The camera is seeded inside a capsule, which moves through the digestive system and takes several photos. These photos are transmitted through a recorder (5)
How can a Gluten Free Diet help Recover from Coeliac Disease?
After two weeks of following a gluten free diet, the symptoms cease to manifest. The intestine heals completely within 3 to 6 months of having a strict gluten free diet. For elderly patients, it may take up to 2 years to heal completely. (6)
How to Assure that your Diet is Gluten Free?
Gluten is present in various food products. Therefore, often without knowing patients intake a gluten item. Condiments, sauces, salad dressings, etc. comprise gluten as well
Therefore, one must seek assistance of a nutritionist to avoid foods that have gluten.
Having a gluten free diet creates some nutrition deficiency. Hence, taking other dietary supplements or herbal supplements is necessary to accomplish the nutritional balance in the body.
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Anzen Exports’ blog posts are based just on our research from cited websites. To be best informed, we advise consulting a doctor about an ingredient or medicine prior to taking it.
- Celiac Disease Foundation
Website – https://celiac.org/about-celiac-disease/related-conditions/non-celiac-wheat-gluten-sensitivity/
- Journal of Steroids & Hormonal Science
Website – https://www.longdom.org/open-access/effect-of-coeliac-disease-on-gastrointestinal-tract-and-immunity-2157-7536-1000185.pdf
Website – https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4695591/
Website – https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5459670/
- Mayo Clinic
Website – https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/celiac-disease/diagnosis-treatment/drc-20352225#:~:text=A%20strict%2C%20lifelong%20gluten%2Dfree,Barley
- Johns Hopkins Medicine
Website – https://www.hopkinsmedicine.org/health/conditions-and-diseases/celiac-disease#:~:text=After%20you%20stop%20eating%20foods,for%20your%20body%20to%20heal.