Do you experience bloating, abdominal pain, diarrhoea or headaches? If so, then you could be one of millions potentially affected by gluten sensitivity and you may benefit from a gluten free diet. Gluten sensitivity may affect up to 6% of the population and can be easily confused with other gluten related disorders.
Here are some facts about gluten sensitivity and how to recognise it.
Gluten sensitivity exists alongside the other gluten-related conditions and shares many of the symptoms of coeliac disease making it trickier to diagnose. Despite this, there are some definable ways of establishing this condition with guidance from a medical professional:
1.) The following symptoms affecting different parts of your body, are signs that you could be suffering from gluten sensitivity:
- abdominal pain
- diarrhoea and/or constipation
- nausea and vomiting
- swelling of tongue and colour changes
- pain or burning sensation of upper stomach
- headaches and mental confusion
- numbness and/or pain in limbs
2.) If you experience symptoms, it is important to exclude the possibility that you are suffering from coeliac disease, a wheat allergy or any other conditions which may be causing the symptoms. To exclude these conditions, you should seek advice from a medical professional and not make any changes to your diet until advised to.
3.) Finally, if the other possible causes of your symptoms have been excluded, trialling a gluten free diet to see if your symptoms improve is a way of establishing if you may be suffering from gluten sensitivity.
Despite little being known about this condition, researchers believe gluten sensitivity is more common than both coeliac disease and wheat allergy combined. It is estimated that gluten sensitivity may occur in up to 6% of the population, compared to coeliac disease, which affects around 1%.
*If you are experiencing any of the above symptoms, it is extremely important that you visit your doctor to rule out coeliac disease and wheat allergy before commencing a gluten free diet. It is vital that you remain on a gluten containing diet until you have visited a medical professional.