Gluten: what harms it and what foods it contains

Gluten is a complex protein that is part of the grains of many cereals. The problem is that it can cause a lot of trouble to a person, but the «victim» may not even guess about the true cause of its ailments.

Celiac disease is a chronic inflammation of the small intestine, the cause of which is hereditary intolerance to gluten, a protein that is part of cereals. People with genetic sensitivity to gluten develop an inflammatory reaction: the immune system «recognizes» this protein as foreign and seeks to destroy it by all means. The organs in which the immune system detects it also come under attack. First of all, the walls of the small intestine are damaged, the heart, brain, and joints may suffer.

In women, gluten intolerance is most often found in 30-40 years, in men — in 40-50. The insidious feature of this protein is that it accumulates over time. A person can safely eat gluten-free foods without suspecting that the body is on the verge of disease, and suddenly suddenly get to the hospital with dangerous symptoms: anemia, frequent abdominal pain, general weakness, stool disorders.

More and more
There are more and more people who are sensitive to gluten every year. Why is this happening? First of all, because the gluten content in modern wheat varieties has increased significantly. Breeders specially select varieties with a high content of gluten, and therefore gluten: this parameter directly affects how quickly the dough will rise, how lush, soft it will be. In addition, our body is not very adapted to digest grains, even specially processed ones. This is still the main food of birds, and they have all the necessary enzymes for this.

Gluten: what harms it and what foods it contains

To confirm the diagnosis of «gluten intolerance», you will have to undergo an examination.

Immunological examination of blood for the presence of antibodies (a special type of proteins that are produced after contact with gluten) characteristic of celiac disease. If the result is positive, which indirectly confirms suspicions, additional tests are prescribed.

Genetic blood testing. If the genes responsible for the development of celiac disease (HLA DQ2 and HLA DQ8) are found, it means that their «host» is predisposed to this disease.

Histological analysis. A biopsy (a section of tissue) of the small intestine is taken. If signs of inflammation are detected during its examination under a microscope, the diagnosis of «celiac disease» is finally confirmed.

If there are signs of inflammation on the skin, the damaged area of the skin is taken for analysis.


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