If you’re wondering if you’re part of the population that suffers from gluten sensitivity, there are a few steps you can take. The first one is free – simply take the self test below.
If your score reflects that gluten may be playing a role in your symptoms then please read on for further advice.
Take the Gluten Sensitivity Self-Test
Check off the symptoms that apply to you:
If you checked 1 to 3 boxes gluten sensitivity may be playing a role in your health problems.
If you checked 4 to 7 boxes there is a definite possibility that you are suffering from gluten sensitivity
If you checked 8 or more boxes the likelihood is strong that gluten sensitivity is having a negative effect upon your health.
How did you do? Does you score put you in the “suspicious” or “likely” category?
If so, you’re not alone.
What Should You Do Now?
Let’s discuss the two possible conditions that may be affecting your health, celiac disease or gluten sensitivity.
To define our terms, we will use the term “gluten intolerance” as an umbrella term that includes both celiac disease and gluten sensitivity.
Celiac disease is one of the most common life-long disorders in Europe and the United States. 1% of the population suffers and this percentage increases with age four-fold to 4%, making it extremely common.
One would think that such a common disorder was well diagnosed in an advanced medical system such as our own. Unfortunately that is not at all the case. Only 5 – 10% of all those people suffering from the disease are diagnosed. And to add insult to injury, those people who are diagnosed, take on average about 10 years to receive their diagnosis.
Why Do Most Celiacs Remain Undiagnosed?
There are a few possible answers:
• We live in a drug driven society that likes to swallow a pill and make symptoms go away. Celiac disease can only be treated with a dietary change and it isn’t an easy one. There is no drug to make celiac symptoms go away.
• Doctors in this country aren’t focused on diet and lifestyle. They don’t like to tell their patients to make diet changes. They are trained to give medications that make their patient “feel” differently quickly.
• The pharmaceutical companies in this country drive over 70% of all the research done. With diet being the only “cure” for celiac disease that we know of, it’s definitely not a disease that pharmaceutical companies are going to spend a lot of time and money researching.
• The test that has been used as the “gold standard” for celiac disease is not very sensitive. This means that many people are told that gluten is not their problem when it is. The test, an intestinal biopsy, requires that a tremendous amount of damage occur to the small intestine before the test will be positive.
• Doctors are set in their ways and it has only recently become apparent how common celiac disease is. Most of them were trained, erroneously, that celiac disease was rare and that patients would present with symptoms of abdominal pain, severe diarrhea and weight loss. It is now known that most patients with celiac disease will not have such symptoms, but changing how medical doctors think occurs slowly.
Causes aside, the facts remain the same – over 90% of those suffering from celiac disease – a common disease – remain undiagnosed and suffering.
What is Gluten Sensitivity?
Gluten sensitivity is a very common condition that affects anywhere from 8 to 40 times more people than those affected by celiac. Then why doesn’t “everyone” know about it? It’s only been recently appreciated that it legitimately exists.
In fact, when the Doctors Petersen wrote “The Gluten Effect” in 2009, they stated information about gluten that wasn’t at all accepted by the celiac community and leading researchers. In fact, at the time of its publication, the predominant thought was that those who “seemed” to be reacting to gluten but who didn’t have celiac disease, were likely mistaken and perhaps suffering from a “placebo effect” of some sort.
What a difference a few months can make! By the end of 2009 and continuing into 2010 and 2011, more and more research results have proven that gluten sensitivity is not only a very real condition, but one that is affecting the health of millions of unsuspecting individuals of all ages.
Gluten Sensitivity is Much More Common than Celiac Disease
While estimates vary, the incidence of gluten sensitivity in our population appears to lie somewhere between 8% and 40%. Why the wide variation? Research on gluten sensitivity has only recently begun to occur.
As an example of how much time it can take to get a “handle” on a disease, research on celiac disease has been occurring for decades yet it took until 2010 to discover that the incidence of celiac actually increased with age from 1% to 4%.
This is a 400% increase in a disease that was thought to be purely genetic – meaning you were either born with it or you weren’t.
It was a huge breakthrough to discover that dietary and lifestyle factors, in addition to a celiac gene, were needed to “turn on” the gene that makes one intolerant to gluten.
Want to find out more?
Contact us for a free consultation.