Gluten allergies, which are allergic reactions to a protein commonly found in wheat, rye and barley, are actually quite common in children and adults. According to some studies, 1 out of 167 children has a gluten allergy, while 1 in 111 adults have an allergy. Gluten allergies are different from celiac disease, which is an autoimmune disease triggered by that same protein. There is even a different set of criteria for diagnosing an individual with celiac disease. However, if you suspect that you or someone you know has a gluten allergy, you should be on the lookout for these 10 symptoms:
As anyone who has battled constant allergies knows, it wears your body out. If you feel constantly tired and have several of the other symptoms on this list, you may be experiencing a gluten allergy.
2. Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS)
If you have been diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and have several other symptoms on this list, your CFS may be triggered by a gluten allergy.
3. Anemia or Iron-Deficient Anemia
Another cause of profound fatigue and another possible symptom of gluten allergy is anemia, or iron-deficient anemia. A simple blood test will help your doctor determine if you are anemic.
4. Weight Loss
If you have been experiencing a great deal of weight loss without a change in your diet or exercise regimen, then a gluten allergy may be to blame.
5. Mouth Ulcers
If you are prone to mouth ulcers but cannot figure out why even after a trip to the dentist, it could be a symptom of an underlying gluten allergy.
If you experience diarrhea or constipation constantly, your digestive troubles may be linked to a gluten allergy.
Bloating is another digestive symptom that can be linked, along with constipation and diarrhea, to a gluten allergy.
It goes without saying, but if you are feeling bad physically most of the time, it will definitely affect your mood. If you are prone to chronic depression and have other symptoms on this list, a gluten allergy may be the trigger.
Again, if you are feeling bad all the time, you are likely to be irritable. If you have problems with irritability of temperament and also have other symptoms on this list, a gluten allergy may be to blame.
10. Crohns Disease
Crohn’s disease is a type of inflammatory bowel disorder, which may be triggered by the continuous inflammation in the digestive tract. This response may be provoked by constant irritation caused by a gluten allergy.
If you suspect that you or a loved one has a gluten allergy, a simple elimination diet can help you know for sure. If you eliminate wheat, rye, or barley from your diet and your symptoms abate, you may well have a gluten allergy. However, you should be aware that many processed foods contain wheat products, so in order to do a complete, “clean” elimination diet, you should read labels carefully to make sure you are not ingesting anything with the protein in it.
Your physician can also run tests that will make a definite diagnosis, but you should not be on an elimination diet when the tests are performed. Otherwise, you might not get an accurate diagnosis. Although eliminating gluten from your diet is not easy, it is getting better every year as more specialized products hit store shelves. If you have an allergy, it’s definitely worth the extra effort to seek products and eliminate others that can make such an intense change in your health and well-being.