Gluten, Joint Pain, Gut Problems, GERD, and Blood Sugar

Gluten, Joint Pain, Gut Problems, GERD, and Blood Sugar

Gluten, Joint Pain, Gut Problems, GERD, and Blood Sugar Issues

Life is filled with learning moments. My husband and I had one this week.

I have a friend who has been researching genetics as they relate to health issues. She volunteered to help my husband research his genetic profile as it relates to his health. Interesting and insightful. It seems that he has a gene that is directly related to celiac issues. That he doesn’t have, but that particular gene is also connected to mononucleosis, and so far this is the gene that is directly linked to mono.  He did have a terrible case of mono several years ago. The only thing that cured him was a strict juice fast and raw foods diet for 3 weeks and adding in wheatgrass juice. He has enjoyed a beer or two in his life, and most beer has gluten. There is also a direct genetic connection to B-12 issues and blood sugar problems. He has hypoglycemia. Being low in B-12 can lead to craving beer. There’s also a link with joint pain. Going gluten free is the answer along with finding the right B-12 that his body can utilize. He’s now a believer.

gluten-allergy-cartoons-image-search-results373-x-500-58-kb-jpeg-xToday we know a lot about gluten sensitivity and wheat allergies—much more than at any other time in history. There are studies showing that over 2000 years ago a little girl suffered from gluten allergy causing an autoimmune disease (celiac) that killed her early in life. It was determined from analyzing isotopes in her skeleton, which was discovered off the coast of Tuscany. Now, we know that gluten sensitivity and gluten allergy can causes minor issues to major problems such as irritable bowel syndrome and celiac disease. Such problems are ever growing. Gluten intolerance has become the health issue of today. At least 70 million Americans suffer from digestive ailments related to gluten. (National Institute of Health, 2009) Symptoms range from bloating, abdominal distress to GERD, hemorrhoids, gallstones, peptic ulcers, hernias, and inflammatory conditions like Crohn’s disease.

Gluten is in wheat, barley, and rye. It is ending up in many of the foods we eat everyday. There is considerable research being conducted now on gluten sensitivity, which is not in the category of autoimmune reactions, but still produces symptoms such as fatigue, brain fog, lowered immunity, joint pain, and headaches. It is estimated that more than 18 million Americans may be gluten sensitive. Then there is also another component of wheat that has nothing to do with gluten—amylase trypsin inhibitors (ATIs).   They are potent stimulators of the immune system and can cause immune cells to release inflammatory molecules, including Interlukin-8 (IL-8) and tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-a).

The takeaway for today? Wheat (or gluten) allergy or sensitivity is a bonafide allergic reaction to foods containing wheat, barley, or rye. Wheat is one of the top eight food allergens in the U.S. Symptoms include swelling, itching, irritation of the mouth or throat, hives, headaches, bloating, sneezing, itchy and watery eyes, cramps, nausea, diarrhea, digestive issues, food cravings, and a depressed immune system. The answer is to go completely gluten free. Everyone I’ve worked with who has health issues and has eliminated gluten has felt better. Why not give it a try?

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Why Wheat is Toxic

Why Wheat is Toxic

Why Wheat is Toxic

Common wheat harvest protocol in the United States is to drench the wheat fields with Roundup several days before the combine harvesters work through the fields as the practice allows for an earlier, easier and bigger harvest.  Pre-harvest application of the herbicide Roundup or other herbicides containing the deadly active ingredient glyphosate to wheat and barley as a desiccant was suggested as early as 1980.  It has since become routine over the past 15 years and is used as a drying agent 7-10 days before harvest within the conventional farming community.

According to Dr. Stephanie Seneff of MIT who has studied the issue in depth, desiccating non-organic wheat crops with glyphosate just before harvest came into vogue late in the 1990′s with the result that most of the non-organic wheat in the United States is now contaminated with it.  Seneff explains that when you expose wheat to a toxic chemical like glyphosate, it actually releases more seeds resulting in a slightly greater yield:   “It ‘goes to seed’ as it dies. At its last gasp, it releases the seed” says Dr. Seneff.

According to the US Department of Agriculture, as of 2012, 99% of durum wheat, 97% of spring wheat, and 61% of winter wheat has been treated with herbicides. This is an increase from 88% for durum wheat, 91% for spring wheat and 47% for winter wheat since 1998.

Consumers eating products made from wheat flour are undoubtedly consuming Roundup. An interesting aside, malt barley which is made into beer is not acceptable in the marketplace if it has been sprayed with pre-harvest Roundup. Lentils and peas are not accepted in the market place if sprayed with Roundup….. but wheat is ok..

Glyphosate is now the #1 herbicide used in the U.S. and is increasingly used  around the world

Developed and patented by Monsanto in the 1970’s, it inhibits an enzyme in the shikimate pathway involved in synthesis of tyrosine, tryptophan and phenylalanine (the three aromatic amino acids). Huge expansion of GMO corn, soy, cotton, sugar beet and canola crops has led to sharp increases in glyphosate usage in the last decade. Glyphosate has been linked to the autism epidemic, gut microbes and digestive disorders, endocrine disruption, cancer, and kidney failure.  Currently, one in fifty children are diagnosed with autism; by 2025 it is predicted that one in every two will receive this diagnosis.  We are facing an epic global crisis.

Monsanto has argued that glyphosate is harmless to humans because we don’t have the shikimate pathway. However, our gut bacteria DO have this pathway. We depend upon them to supply us with essential amino acids (among many other things). Other ingredients in Roundup greatly increase glyphosate’s toxic effects. Insidious effects of glyphosate accumulate over time.

Some of the biological effects include:

  • Depletes aromatic amino acids and methionine
  • Tryptophan — serotonin — melatonin
    • Serotonin deficiency is linked to obesity, autism, Alzheimer’s disease, depression, and violent behavior
    • Melatonin controls sleep/wake cycle
    • Tyrosine — dopamine— adrenaline— and melanin
      • Dopamine deficiency leads to Parkinson’s disease
      • Melanin in skin protects from UV exposure
      • Methionine is an essential sulfur-containing amino acid
  • Disrupts gut bacteria
  • Studies with chickens, cows and pigs show overgrowth of pathogens in gut
  • Disrupts cytochrome P450 (CYP) enzymes which are involved in many biological functions
    • Regulation of sterols like vitamin D, cholesterol, and sex hormones
    • Bile acid production
    • Detoxifying environmental toxins
    • Stabilizing blood (hemorrhaging vs blood clots)
  • Depletes important minerals
  • Calcium, manganese, zinc, cobalt, iron
    • Likely impairs sulfate synthesis and sulfate transport

My recommendation is that you avoid all bread and wheat products, unless it is 100% organic and non-GMO.


My thanks to our friend Don Wallace for researching this.

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