May 222013
 

We posted these info morsels a while ago on the AvoidGluten FB. In case you overlooked the info there, it is worth repeating:

Allergy and/or Contamination Alert: Xanthan gum, Guar gum, Locustbean gum (carob) are used in most “glutenfree” labeled products. These include: flour mixes, cookies, breads, etc. as binders as well as in yoghurts, ice creams and other dairy products, chewing gums, drinks, cosmetics, and more.

Here is why you want to stay away from these Gums – not only if you are trying to be glutenfree…

Gluten Contamination ALERT:

Xanthan Gum

  • “Xanthan and Guar Gums – Xanthan gum is created by the fermentation of corn sugar with the same bacteria that creates the black spots on cauliflower and broccoli.
  •  Xanthan gum is used to prevent oil separation and is found, along with guar gum, in foods such as ice cream. Many people are allergic to xanthan gum as it can be a derivative of corn, wheat and soy.”
  • => Stay away from glutenfree labeled products containing Xanthan Gum since it is produced on corn, soy or wheat and may be contaminated!
  • Warning: “Residual wheat gluten has been detected in the xanthan gum made on the wheat substrate.” http://www.allallergy.net/fapaidfind.cfm?cdeoc=2322

Guar Gum

  • may not be tolerated by those sensitive to gluten, especially if also experiencing reactions to fruit-latex and legumes…
  • “Mainly used in the paper, food, cosmetic, pharmaceutic, textile, printing, polishing and atomic metal processing industries. Also used as a thickener and emulsion stabilizer. Suspending agent. Bulking agent. Binder for meats, cheese spreads, etc. Keeps tablets bound. Used in toiletries. It is a fixing agent for colors and is used in carpet manufacturing to adhere the dye to fiber. In the process of making carpets, the guar gum can be easily aerosolized.”
  • http://www.allallergy.net/fapaidfind.cfm?cdeoc=731

Gluten Cross-reaction ALERT:

Locust Bean Gum / Carob

as thickener due to its coffee like properties. (Coffee often is misinterpreted by the immune system as gluten!)

Other:

  • “…which interfere with the body’s utilization of protein.”
    “The ingestion of carob bean gum caused a significant reduction in the absorption of Ca, Fe and Zn…”
  • “…warned that use of a carob seed preparation as a thickener could cause loose, gelatinous stools of sufficient frequency to warrant temporary withdrawal.”
  • http://www.allallergy.net/fapaidfind.cfm?cdeoc=253

So, What Replaces these “Gum” Thickeners?

  • Ground Chia seed
  • Ground Salvia seed

Both bind beautifully and even act as egg replacers (1Tbsp = 1 egg).

Grind your own to preserve their high omega-3 and nutritional benefits.

Chia and Saliva seed are available in good Health Food stores.

Jul 032012
 

Their is no such thing as a complete list of foods and other items that contain gluten.

Food, Drug and Supplement manufacturers regularly change their ingredients, mislabel, misinterpret, change their suppliers or recall products.

For this reason, we (and recently also the Gluten Free Society) have long suggested for genetically HLA-DQ typed non-celiac and/or celiac gluten sensitive individuals to avoid processed and packaged foods and eating out as much as possible. Pack your own lunch, snack or dinner and enjoy without worries!

Unsafe Gluten Containing Foods

(http://www.glutenfreesociety.org/gluten-free-society-blog/guidelines-for-avoiding-gluten-unsafe-ingredients-for-gluten-sensitivity/)

Hidden Corn Gluten

(http://www.glutenfreesociety.org/gluten-free-society-blog/hidden-corn-based-ingredients/)

************************************************************************

Alphabetic Drug Manufacturer Phone and Website Addresses

(http://therubins.com/resource/drugdirect.htm)

Small Drug Manufacturers List

(http://www.onlinedrugtest.info/companies/drug-manufacturing-companies-list.html)

Wikipedia’s (mostly up-to-date) links list to Pharmaceutical Companies

(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_pharmaceutical_companies)

************************************************************************

Glutenfree Prescription Medicines
(check every new Rx batch with the manufacturer and ask for detailed ingredient list in order for you to verify against above lists) http://www.glutenfreedrugs.com/list.htm

Drug Pamphlets and Manufacturer Info
(http://www.drugs.com/)

MedlinePlus Drug and Supplement Ingredient Search

(http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/druginformation.html)

Apr 112012
 

Global awareness about Celiac disease (CD) is growing—unfortunately, along with some rather unhelpful perceptions.

It doesn’t help that ”celiac disease” has become a generic blanket term not unlike how “Kleenex” today signifies no more than a box of tissue paper of any brand. So, in the public mind, “celiac disease” today stands for everything connected to a reaction to gluten.[i]

In an attempt to bring some clarity to the medical community, the world’s leading celiac minds recently met for an international convention in Oslo, Norway.[ii] During that convention, and after considering many of the most commonly used terms, they recognized the presence of genetic, predisposing patterns and called for a distinction between “celiac disease” versus “gluten-related disorders.”[iii]

However, even this latest attempt at coordinating nomenclature bears several major flaws:

1)    It will take possibly years for the new distinctions to become accepted throughout the international medical community.

2)    Recognizing a term such as “gluten-related disorders” calls for a total revamping of our medical and diagnostic systems in order for the large number (so far about 160) of autoimmune and other disorders to be recognized as gluten-related.

Additional questions arise:

3)    “Celiac” is not (yet) a disease but a metabolic predisposition, i.e. the body’s inability to digest certain grain proteins; much like a gasoline fueled car will not be confronted with diesel fuel.

A genetic predisposition to celiac only becomes a disease (e.g. celiac disease) if the body’s inability to digest gluten and certain other grain proteins is ignored.

In other words, an individual genetic predisposition to celiac only develops into full blown disease if that particular individual does not adhere to a glutenfree diet (GFD) and lifestyle.

4)    Some of the “celiac” patients, previously diagnosed with the typical celiac intestinal biopsy findings, on genetic testing turn out to carry “gluten-related disorder” and not “celiac disease” alleles.

Where does this leave them on the new “celiac disease” versus “gluten-related disorder” specter?

Moreover, where is the good intention for a more precise distinction? It appears that more work needs to be done ahead of defining medical terminology and disease pictures.

Until then, whenever one of my patients receives a positive gene test, I will adhere for now to the terms of non-celiac or celiac gluten sensitivity (NCCGS). This terminology refers solely to the underlying toxic effect of gluten rather than the possibly resulting disorders that may be based on other, additional triggers as well.

Most importantly, I will make sure to instill in my patients that disease is not the inevitable outcome of their genetic predisposition, and that a glutenfree diet and lifestyle allows for avoidance, control, and perhaps even reversal of a complex web of interrelated conditions and disorders, both for non-celiac and for celiac gluten sensitive disorders.


[i] http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22351716

Ann Intern Med. 2012 Feb 21;156(4):309-11. Nonceliac gluten sensitivity: sense or sensibility?

[ii] http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22345659

Gut. 2012 Feb 16. [Epub ahead of print] The Oslo definitions for coeliac disease and related terms.

[iii] http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19940509

Int Arch Allergy Immunol. 2010;152(1):75-80. Epub 2009 Nov 24. Differential mucosal IL-17 expression in two gliadin-induced disorders: gluten sensitivity and the autoimmune enteropathy celiac disease.

 Posted by at 5:51 PM
Mar 032012
 

Rethink your Health – Rethink your Breakfast

For decades, the Standard American Diet (S.A.D.) has suggested orange juice and cornflakes with milk (and sugar) for breakfast…
Then along came the Health Craze and updated the same S.A.D. breakfast to include freshly squeezed organic orange juice and fresh fruit topped with low fat, high carb yoghurt over muesli packed with grains, raisins and nuts, honey or sugar, all roasted in oil. While using healthier ingredients, suddenly we ended up with more calories and a whole lot more carbohydrates.

The unpleasant result of good intentions:
a sugar, starch and fat bonanza that promotes, inflammation, cravings among weight gain, hormone imbalances amid general ill health.

If there is any time for low carbohydrates, it is breakfast.

#1 Rule: Breakfast is Protein Time

Think ahead: Cook a little extra salmon, chicken or other light meat for dinner the evening before.

Breakfast Idea #1:

· Egg-feast: Gently heat the shredded or finely sliced protein in the skillet. For a change, add a handful of chopped veggies. Add, the lightly beaten egg(s), cover, and finish into an omelet.

Breakfast Idea #2:
· Boiled Eggs: Either chopped or whole, served with lettuce leafs or the protein almond crackers (see below).

Breakfast Idea #3:
· Swiss Greens: Heat up a skillet. Meanwhile, coarsely chop a head of romaine lettuce or a few ribs of Swiss chard with lots of greens, Chinese Yuk choy, or other leafy greens. Add a little olive oil to the skillet. Add a handful of almonds and the greens. Cover and finish on low-medium heat for 5-6 minutes. — The romaine turns slightly crisp and sweet and the almonds will be pleasantly roasted.

Breakfast Idea #4:
· Egg-free: Wrap meat protein leftovers in a nori sushi wrapper, a leaf of romaine lettuce, Belgian endive or radicchio. — Make a “veggie mayo” from your cooked veggie leftovers, peas, chickpeas, carrots, celeriac, sweet potatoes, avocados, etc.

Breakfast Idea #5:
· Almond Crackers/Cookies: This batter takes 2 minutes to make while the oven heats up.

Grind a handful of almonds with a teaspoon of flaxseed, chia or salba seed in your coffee grinder of magic bullet. Blend in a little sea salt, a teaspoon of glutenfree baking powder, and a heaping tablespoon or two of gf arrowroot flour or gf tapioca flour or gf rice flour. Then mix in a couple of tablespoons of olive oil and sufficient water to turn it into a paste to drop by the spoonful onto a large flat cookie sheet. The thicker the batter, the “meatier” the crackers or cookies; the thinner the batter, the thinner and crispier the crackers. Bake at 350F for 5 to 10 minutes until lightly browned.
— Enjoy with an easy homemade olive tapanade, avocado or tuna-artichoke heart guacamole, peanut or almond butter, etc.

Proteins for breakfast up your brainpower, energy, a lasting feeling of satiety and a good mood to boot.

 Posted by at 7:48 PM
Feb 112012
 

Beware of Hidden Toxins:

Not all Products in Commercial GF Foods are Healthy

Daily, more individuals become aware that their body cannot handle gluten, a protein contained in grains such as wheat, barley, rye, spelt, triticale and, as contaminant, in oats and many other carbohydrate sources.
The call for glutenfree (GF) foods hasn’t gone unnoticed by the food industry. There is money to be made! Most supermarkets today carry a wide selection of supposedly gf processed foods. The labels say so: “GLUTENFREE.”
The problem is that regulations haven’t gone into effect or are not consistent.
  1. Product batches are not tested (i.e. measured) in a lab to confirm the absence of gluten and gluten contaminants, such as to confirm <20 ppm (US) or <10 ppm (Canada). – (ppm = parts per mill)
  2. Ingredients such as quinoa, rice, or legumes (all considered free of gluten) may have been contaminated during shipping in trucks that previously have shipped wheat or barley.
  3. Suppliers may have changed and the manufacturer has failed to verify the gluten status of new batches of ingredients. This is a common issue also in the manufacturing practices of medications and supplements.
  4. Declarations such as modified…, natural…, spices, flavors, etc. are suspicious and may contain hidden gluten that does not need to be declared separately.
  5. Who knows how many wheat crumbs from their lunch sandwich adhere to a worker’s clothes in a dedicated glutenfree factory.
All this before you open the gluten-containing cardboard box and, with your now glutened hands, believe that you put truly GF food into your body. You get the idea: Assuring that there guaranteed is no needle in that haystack is not easy.

Other Toxins

But is gets worse: Assuming that there is no way any of the ingredients in those supposed GF foods have been contaminated, we have to deal with a muck-bucket full of other ingredients not healthy to a living body.
Last week two of my GF patients approached me with great exuberance. “We have found a coconut milk yoghurt, soy free & certified glutenfree!”
One of the individuals was concerned about the presence of rice starch as a potential source of hidden gluten. Yet, that is not even my biggest concern; some of the other ingredients are.
For instance, I refuse to burden my body with stuff like…

e.g. Dipotassium Phosphate

See what I got from the regulating EPA government website about dipotassium phosphate:
This active ingredient is commonly sprayed on leaves as a fertilizer, and seems also to help control certain fungal diseases on ornamentals. When used in association with another fertilizer, dipotassium phosphate is approved for use in the manufacturing of pesticide products intended to control certain fungal diseases on ornamentals. When label directions are followed, this active ingredient is not expected to harm people or the environment.
And the website continues with the active ingredient description:
Dipotassium phosphate, in combination with another EPA-approved compound (dipotassium phosphonate), is intended to control fungal plant diseases on turf, ornamentals, and non-bearing fruit and nut tree crops (that is, on trees that have not yet developed the edible crop). The active ingredient appears to have a mixed mode of action involving direct toxicity to the pathogen, aided by a boosting of the plant’s defense mechanisms due the fertilizing properties of the compound.(CAS # 7758-11-4)

My Question: Do you really still want to eat anything containing dipotassium phosphate in any form?
READ the ENTIRE LABEL
The GF Lifestyle is a Healthy Lifestyle – Don’t Buy Processed Foods!

 Posted by at 2:12 PM
Feb 102012
 

Q: Many people are allergic to dairy as well as Gluten. The allergies seem to go hand in hand. Why is that?

The Short Answer:

  • every gluten molecule contains 15 receptor sites for Opioid Exorphins
  • every casein molecule contains 8 receptor sites for Opioid Exorphins

Both, glutens and casein, are addictive (their morphine/opioid connection!)

The (medium) Long Answer:

Both tend to destroy the gut mucosa barrier in those genetically not set up to handle them.
Since there is no health without a healthy gut mucosa, ingesting gluten and/or casein may trigger:
  • inflammation (acute and/or chronic, i.e. build-up over time)
  • -> over time leading to leaky gut syndrome
  • -> food and environmental toxins being dumped directly into the bloodstream

As a result the body tries to quench the inflammation:

  • leaching of calcium from bones and teeth to buffer blood pH value
  • -> bone loss, tooth enamel loss, osteopenia, osteoporosis
  • -> rheumatoid arthritis, osteo arthritis, fibromyalgia

All this leads to…

  • lack of mineral, nutrient absorption
  • -> physical / mental weakness, tiredness, chronic fatigue syndrome, etc.
  • -> sleep disturbance
  • -> heart irregularities, anxiety

and also:

  • kidney issues, UTI
  • shortness of breath, asthma, allergies

Over time the system develops…

  • weakened immune system
  • thyroid and adrenal issues
  • fertility problems
  • skin issues

etc., etc.

TESTING

These days it is so easy to “test” for the necessary underlying genes that predispose an individual to gluten and/or casein sensitivity. When we know if our body runs on “gasoline” or on “diesel” we will be able to avoid most health issues by feeding the body the right fuel.

 Posted by at 2:27 PM
Jan 132012
 

Comment of a dog owner newly switched to RAW feeding:

I think the raw diet (still with some kibble as I am transitioning them) is affecting [my two big dogs’] behavior. Both seem more relaxed and less hyper. Hmmm… I really hope that this is the case in the long term.

Dearest Doggy Friend,

good observation. A dog fed a natural diet will be happier and healthier. That is exactly why many of us more experienced dog owners have been feeding RAW for decades.
Not to worry, you will never see your dogs’ behavior revert unless you put them back on commercial CRAP food (CRAP = Cereal Reinforced Altered Protein – one of those 1960s misguided and destructive marketing ploys praised to make our  life easier).

Dogs simply are not grain eaters.

  1. like us gluten-sensitivity or celiac individuals, dogs lack the enzyme needed to digest grains and any of the carbohydrates.
  2. neither can dogs handle the sugar boost they get from being fed any starches/carbohydrates.
  3. to be digested, grains and starches need saliva and lots of chewing (IF the necessary enzyme is available to process them past the stomach!). I have yet to see a dog chew!

For comparison in people – 101 of Anatomy and Physiology:
carbs are digested in the mouth – proteins in the stomach – fats in the small intestines.

Why do you think cancer tumor rates in dogs have gone up?
– (sugar feeds cancer cells)

Why do you think there are so many more fat dogs?
– (excess sugar stores in fat cells)

Why do you think diabetes rates in dogs are going up exponentially?
– (not only can dogs not process starches, they also don’t produce the amount of insulin needed to move carbohydrates/sugars into the cells where they could be converted into energy)

Why do you think so many dogs develop stomach ulcers?
– (wolves don’t!)

Why do you think there are more dogs with behavioral issues?
– (comparable to ADD/ADHD, schizophrenia, etc.)

Why do you think so many dogs are on ritalin or antidepressants?
– (ditto!)

Why do you think so many dogs are developing epileptic seizures?
– (same in people many of whom now are being diagnosed with underlying gluten-sensitivity or celiac disease instead)

Why do you think so many dogs develop tendon and bone issues?
– (mineral imbalances, lack of mineral absorption and dog-appropriate nutrients)

Why do you think veterinarians are starting to diagnose celiac disease in dogs?
– (stunning to see the growing number of articles in DVM journals)

It is no day too soon for you to make the transition to

RAW FOR YOUR DOGS.

 Posted by at 12:24 PM
May 092011
 

Question:
I have been diagnosed with celiac disease and follow a 100% gluten-free lifestyle. Many symptoms have improved but more or less acute pain is still part of my day. Why do I still experience intense itching, skin (and possibly gut) ulcers and other signs?

Answer:
Gluten intolerance often is accompanied by additional sensitivities and/or allergies. One such allergy is that to aspirin (acetyl salicylic acid) and foods containing natural salicylic acid.

We used to put the percentage of those at risk of experiencing or developing gluten intolerance and/or Celiac disease at 43% of the North-American population due to the presence of certain inherited genetic factors. These days, rates of 81% are being rumored. — Presumably, therefore, aspirin reactions may be more frequent too.
Whatever the percentage, the patient numbers being diagnosed with gluten intolerance or full-blown Celiac disease (CD) are growing exponentially. Even, just last summer, Health Canada stated “today, Celiac disease is the most common chronic disease worldwide; even more common than diabetes…”

Carrying one or several of the gluten intolerance causing genes means that a person lacks the enzymes required to digest gluten grains and possibly cope with other substances such as salicylic acid containing foods.
Unfortunately, this has led widely to suggestions of supplementing enzymes. Since we cannot yet duplicate the specific enzymes though, this is a very simplistic and, in fact, possibly dangerous approach. Recently, more monkeys have been found to show all the typical celiac disease genes and symptoms and signs to improve only on the 100% glutenfree diet. We thus can expect more research along these lines in the near future.

In many of our earlier blogs we have discussed how to avoid gluten and where it is found. We also have mentioned how many common and otherwise healthy foods may trigger allergic reactions in celiacs. Here, we would like to address a reason behind accompanying allergies to those common foods.

The most common allergen substance for gluten intolerant or celiac patients is salicylic acid. Sounds familiar? Remember that highly praised aspirin? The “a baby aspirin a day keeps the doctor away” statement may be far from the truth for many individuals who develop new challenges after starting treatment with this synthetic form (acetylsalicylic acid = aspirin) of the birch bark-derived salicylic acid. Many celiacs thus must avoid aspirin.

But birch bark, where salicylic acid occurs naturally, is not the only place to watch out for. Salicylic acid is also found as a possible allergen in many of our “healthy” foods; foods that may have to be avoided if you are sensitive to aspirin as a result of gluten intolerance factors.

Salicylic Acid (Aspirin like) Allergenic Foods:
Fruits and Berries: Apples, Apricots, Cherries, Melon, Nectarines, Oranges, Peaches, Plums, Prunes, Blackberries, Boysenberries, Currants, Dewberries, Gooseberries, Grapes, dried Raisins, Raspberries, Strawberries.
Vegetables: Avocados, Cucumbers, green Bell Peppers, Potatoes, Tomatoes.
Other: Almonds, Cloves, Olives, Pickles.
Condiments and Processed Foods (even some glutenfree products!): Biscuits, Cakes and Cake mixes, Cereals, Crackers, Muffins, Pastries, green and yellow Candies, Cocoa and hot Chocolate mixes, Corned Beef, Gum, Gelatin, Jell-O, Ketchup, Margarine, Mayonnaise, Salad dressings, Tabasco, Tartar sauce, and others.

Unlike gluten intolerance or Celiac disease, (acetyl)salicylic acid allergy is a true allergy. This means that the more of these foods, salicylic acid face washes and/or aspirin products an individual is exposed to the greater the likelihood for them to develop allergic reactions.

Should you suspect any of these triggers the way to go is to follow a strict elimination diet. Start out by avoiding everything listed above for two weeks while following your glutenfree diet. Then, for a couple of days at a time, include one of these products in your daily regimen. All going well, add something else after a few days. If any reaction occurs eliminate the culprit for now.

Just to clarify: this process of elimination and slow re-introduction will not work for gluten-containing products because gluten intolerance is determined by your genetic background, which cannot be overcome.

Only you can make the decision about what will work best for you and your body. Raising relevant questions is important. Have your doctor help you or consult with a qualified natural medicine professional before you decide on your customized plan of action.

 Posted by at 8:43 PM