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The Gluten Syndrome: A neurological disease – Source: Medical Hypotheses, Apr 28, 2009

  [ 51 votes ]   [ 1 Comment ]
By Rodney Philip Ford • • May 2, 2009

Hypothesis: Gluten causes symptoms, in both celiac disease and non-celiac gluten-sensitivity, by its adverse actions on the nervous system. Many celiac patients experience neurological symptoms, frequently associated with malfunction of the autonomic nervous system. These neurological symptoms can present in celiac patients who are well nourished.

The crucial point, however, is that gluten-sensitivity can also be associated with neurological symptoms in patients who do not have any mucosal gut damage (that is, without celiac disease).

Gluten can cause neurological harm through a combination of cross reacting antibodies, immune complex disease and direct toxicity.

These nervous system affects include:
• Dysregulation of the autonomic nervous system,
• Cerebella ataxia [balance/coordination disorder],
• Hypotonia [reduced muscle strength/tone],
• Developmental delay,
• Learning disorders,
• Depression,
• Migraine, and headache.

If gluten is the putative harmful agent, then there is no requirement to invoke gut damage and nutritional deficiency to explain the myriad of the symptoms experienced by sufferers of celiac disease and gluten-sensitivity. This is called "The Gluten Syndrome."

Source: Medical Hypotheses, Apr 28, 2009. PMID: 19406584, by Ford RP. The Children's Gastroenterology and Allergy Clinic, P.O. Box 25-265, Christchurch 8144, New Zealand. [E-mail:]

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Article Comments Post a Comment

don't forget gut damage from other sources
Posted by: Sandy10m
May 7, 2009
Yes, celiac disease causes gut damage, but other things can cause the gut damage and thus cause the same kind of gluten sensitivity symptoms. In my case, I was using a lot of Advil and Tylenol for pain. I also had problems with sinus infections, so I was on a lot of antibiotics, which destroyed all the good gut bacteria. So, the combination of medications, poor diet, and antibiotics caused the gut damage. THEN, along comes Candida albicans, a really nasty fungus that loves to live in the walls of your intestines when there is damage and creates lots of nice toxins for your body to deal with. Normally the fungus can't get in, but a weakened immune system is an open door. Your gut will NEVER heal if the Candida is there. Add some wheat/gluten products in your diet, and you're going to have a reaction. I healed my gut using 2 main concepts: take oral powdered Nystatin to kill the Candida while taking away all the offending foods using the Paleolithic/Caveman diet. It took about 6 months to fix things, but it finally worked. Good luck to all!
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