How to manage your gluten allergy

Ever wondered if you were gluten intolerant?
Do you even know about it or should I keep minding my business?

Gluten is a protein found in most grains like wheat, barley, rye and spelt.
When flour made from grinding these grains is mixed with water the two proteins(gliadin and glutenin) combine to form gluten. Gluten cannot be formed without water. 

This glue-like property causes the dough to have this elastic feeling, giving the bread the ability to rise during the process of baking.

While most people can tolerate gluten in their diet, some people with a certain health condition cannot tolerate gluten in their diet. (There are other conditions which may bring about gluten intolerance; I'll be talking about them in future posts.)

This health condition is Celiac disease. It is an immune reaction a person experiences when gluten is consumed that causes an inflammation which damages the lining of the small intestine leading to malabsorption of nutrients.

It is estimated to affect 1 in 100 people worldwide.

Most people with this disease usually aren't aware they have it, they just know they have this discomfort after consuming certain foods containing the aforementioned.

Most times, the first reaction gotten is an itchy or watery eyes or a hard time breathing in children.
For adults, abdominal pain, bloating, joint pain, constipation and fatigue would be noticed.

There's no certain cause of celiac disease; it's just known to run in families, some attribute it to stressful episodes such as surgeries, trauma or a viral infection.


One outstanding symptom is diarrhoea.

Other symptoms include:
Lactose intolerance, 
Leg cramps, 
Skin rash, 
Weight loss
Heart burn
Abdominal and joint pain
Low blood count (anaemia)


When this symptoms becomes obvious or you've been diagnosed with the disease, an apparent treatment is of course adhering to a strict gluten free diet.

Basic tips to manage gluten intolerance

■ Read food labels carefully and avoid foods with emulsifiers and modified wheat starch.

■ Check all seasonings, thickeners and marinades for gluten-containing additives.

■ Avoid all products containing wheat, rye and barley (including breads and pastas).

■ Increase daily intake of fruits and vegetables.

■ Avoid baked foods like cake, pie and bread.

Switching diet isn't the easiest task to take on. 
Alternatives are there for you to easily switch to. You're rather not scrapping your entire diet, I see it as an adjustment to suit your body's natural functioning.

Other interesting facts you should know include:

✿ If diagnosed late, Celiac disease can lead to intestinal cancers, type 1 diabetes, osteoporosis, thyroid disease, multiple sclerosis, anemia, infertility and miscarriage, epilepsy, and more.

✿ There are over 300 symptoms associated with Celiac disease.

✿ Celiac disease can develop at any age.

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