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Eating Disorders and Celiac Disease EP043

Imagine being admitted to a psychiatric hospital and accused of being a pathological liar because no matter how carefully you follow the high-carb diet prescribed by your physicians, you continue to lose weight. In the introduction to his book, How Doctors Think, Dr. Jerome Groopman shares the story of a woman who was misdiagnosed with anorexia nervosa. The patient was ready to give up when one last doctor discovered villous atrophy and determined that it was celiac disease—not an eating disorder—that was causing her malnourishment.

Today the Gluten Free RN explores the reasons why celiac disease and gluten sensitivity are often mistaken for anorexia nervosa. She shares the limited research in the field, as well as the symptoms related to malnourishment that may be caused by gluten, including several mental health disorders.

Listen in as Nadine covers the use of PWAG (people who avoid gluten) as a derogatory term and shares her frustration with labels like ‘orthorexia nervosa’ which imply that gluten-sensitive patients are obsessed with healthy food: ‘I avoid gluten like the plague because it is, in fact, the plague for those of us who have celiac disease.’   

 What’s Discussed: 

The use of PWAG as a derogatory term

  • ‘People who avoid gluten’
  • Half of people in US
  • Implies food crazed/obsessed

 The new term orthorexia nervosa

  • Refers to obsessive behavior in pursuit of healthy diet
  • Not clinical term/official diagnosis

 The concept of food as medicine

 Anecdotal evidence of celiac disease misdiagnosed as anorexia

  • Introduction of Dr. Jerome Groopman’s book, How Doctors Think
  • Woman admitted to psychiatric hospital (thought to be pathological liar)
  • Continued to lose weight despite prescribed high-carb diet
  • Biopsy revealed Marsh 4 damage
  • Gluten-free diet resolved symptoms

 Why celiac disease and gluten sensitivity are misdiagnosed as eating disorders

  • Inability to absorb nutrients results in severe weight loss, malnutrition
  • Become picky eaters because food causes suffering
  • Practice food avoidance

 The prevalence of celiac disease

  • 3% of the US population
  • Millions undiagnosed

 How gluten affects a celiac patient

  • Gluten protein as neurotoxin
  • Damages intestines
  • Impairs immune system
  • Causes inflammation
  • Heart attack
  • Stroke
  • Joint, muscle pain
  • Any -itis

 Nadine’s recommended variation of a Paleo diet

  • Local, organic, whole foods
  • 100% grass-fed beef (no antibiotics/hormones)
  • Nutrient dense

 The study of celiac disease and eating disorders

  • Very few research studies in last 11 years
  • Handful of case studies in literature

 The issues associated with malnourishment

  • Little body fat
  • Cachectic
  • Hormonal disruption
  • Thyroid issues

 The anger and contempt Nadine has experienced as the Gluten Free RN

  • Gluten, dairy associated with comfort food
  • People resistant to give up

 The mental health issues associated with malnourishment

  • Significant cognitive impairment
  • Hypoxia
  • Brain atrophy (shrinking)

 The effect of gluten on epithelial tissue

  • Leaky skin, lungs, blood vessels, blood-brain barrier
  • Causes increased/decreased blood pressure, POTS

 The consequences of gluten getting through the blood-brain barrier

  • Causes hypoxia
  • Brain needs oxygen to work appropriately
  • Brain fog (irritability, anger)
  • Early onset dementia

 The shocking statistics around psychotropic medication in the US

  • Up to 50% of population on anti-depressants, mood-altering drugs
  • Gluten-free diet could help ‘get brain back’

 Nadine’s advice for parents of children who miss multiple days of school

  • Could be undiagnosed celiac disease
  • No downside to clinical trial of gluten-, dairy-free diet
  • Consider Whole30 Diet (eliminate sugar, grains, legumes)

 The process of a gluten detox

  • Gluten has narcotic-like effect on brain
  • May feel worse before you feel better
  • One day to two months

 The benefits of maintaining a gluten-free diet

  • Anxiety goes away
  • Mood improves
  • Able to sleep
  • Pain resolves
  • Heal intestines, epithelial tissue
  • Reduce inflammation
  • Heal immune system
  • Brain receives necessary oxygen

 The foods Nadine recommends as part of a super-good, high-fat diet

  • Avocados
  • Olive oil
  • Coconut oil
  • Coconut milk
  • Hemp milk

 Why Nadine chooses not to eat if there is any risk of gluten contamination in her food

 The places where gluten hides

  • Single bread crumb
  • Dusting of flour
  • Oil French fries cooked in
  • Personal care products

Resources:

 

How Doctors Think by Jerome Groopman, MD

Dr. Groopman’s NPR Interview

“The Interaction Between Eating Disorders and Celiac Disease: An Exploration of 10 Cases” in the European Journal of Gastroenterology & Hepatology

“Orthorexia and Anorexia Nervosa: Two Distinct Phenomena? A Cross-Cultural Comparison of Orthorexic Behaviours in BMC Psychiatry

“Predictors of Orthorexic Behaviours in Patients with Eating Disorders: A Preliminary Study” in BMC Psychiatry

“Eating Disorders and Celiac Disease: A Case Report” in The International Journal of Eating Disorders

Connect with Nadine: 

Instagram

Facebook

Contact via Email

‘Your Skin on Gluten’ on YouTube

Melodies of the Danube Gluten-Free Cruise with Nadine

Books by Nadine:

Dough Nation: A Nurse’s Memoir of Celiac Disease from Missed Diagnosis to Food and Health Activism

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The 2017 International Celiac Disease Symposium Recap #1 EP042

In his opening talk at the 2017 International Celiac Disease Symposium, celiac expert Dr. Abul Abbas of UC San Francisco said, “We are drowning in data, but thirsting for information.” Though there is still much debate around celiac disease and non-celiac gluten sensitivity (even among global experts), the featured ICDS speakers sifted through the numbers to help practitioners interpret what the latest studies can tell us about the negative effects of gluten and how celiac disease presents in populations all over the world.

Today the globetrotting Gluten Free RN is coming to us from Thailand, after attending the International Celiac Disease Symposium in New Delhi, India. Armed with the latest information from the ICDS clinical forum, Nadine covers talks given by Dr. Abbas on gluten and the immunological system, and Dr. Alessio Fasano on the spectrum of gluten-related disorders. She relays information regarding the barriers researchers face in studying autoimmune disease as well as gluten’s negative impact on body tissue, including that of our brain.

Nadine also shares the most up-to-date statistics around the big business that is celiac disease and the increasing prevalence of gluten intolerance in the US and Asia. She discusses the importance of celiac testing in patients with other autoimmune and neurological disorders and the need for a global education campaign. Listen as Nadine educates you about what gluten is, where it hides, what you can do to avoid it, and how to undo the damage and get healthy again!

What’s Discussed:

The challenge of eating gluten-free in India

The highlights of Dr. Abul Abbas’ talk on the immunological system

  • Celiac disease as autoimmune issue
  • ‘Drowning in data, but thirsting for info’

The importance of the thymus gland

  • T cells manufactured there

Why the ‘mouse model’ doesn’t work well in the study of celiac disease

The impossibility of in vivo experiments for celiac research

The significance of epithelial barriers in a functioning immune system

  • First line of defense against microorganisms
  • Produce local antibodies

The difficulty of studying the dendritic cells

  • Inside tissues

How the immune system recognizes double-stranded RNA (viruses)

  • Can’t escape autoimmune response
  • Should not recognize own single-stranded as ‘invader’

Dr. Terry Wahls’ work around the mitochondria

  • Cured MS with Paleo diet

Dr. Alessio Fasano’s presentation

  • ‘Spectrum of Gluten-Related Disorders’
  • Controversy re: who should go gluten-free
  • Gluten affects every tissue in body (even brain)
  • Celiac cases double every 15 years in US
  • 1:2 in US will try gluten-free diet this year

The big business of celiac disease

  • $17.6B industry at end of 2017
  • Largest untapped market in world

Who is affected by the gluten protein

  • Gluten can’t be digested by human body (long chain amino acid)
  • Triggers autoimmune response, especially in HLA-DQ2/HLA-DQ8 gene carriers
  • Patients without genetic predisposition can present with villous atrophy
  • In absence of celiac diagnosis, may still have non-celiac gluten sensitivity
  • AGA-positive patients at risk for developing neurological issues

How infants exposed to gluten are at an increased risk for developing celiac disease

  • Includes exposure in utero, breast milk
  • No downside to eliminating gluten from baby’s diet

The value of avoiding gluten exposure for infants

  • Emotionally stable
  • Grow, develop appropriately

The latest statistics regarding the prevalence of celiac disease

  • Increased to 3% in US (not 1% consistently reported)
  • 30-50% of world population has genetic predisposition
  • Global prevalence of 1.37%

Celiac disease in the Asian population

  • Used to say could not develop celiac disease
  • At increased risk of developing neurological disorders
  • 6-8M people in east, south Asia
  • 50 countries make up 60% of world population
  • 35B people in China have celiac disease
  • 22B people in India have celiac disease
  • 19% of Chinese 16-25 tested positive for celiac disease in study

How the Chinese diet has evolved over time

  • Older Chinese ate much less wheat
  • Fast food has become common in recent years
  • Despite rice-based diet, many products contain wheat (soy sauce, cashews)

Other disorders that may indicate undiagnosed celiac disease

  • Anemia
  • Osteoporosis
  • Elevated liver enzymes
  • Eating disorders
  • Type 1 diabetes
  • Autoimmune thyroiditis

Why patients should be tested for celiac disease annually

  • Can seroconvert at anytime
  • Develops at any age with any/no symptoms

The new information about a potential connection between Wilson’s and celiac disease

  • 3% of Wilson’s patients tested positive

What celiac experts agreed on at ICDS 2017

  • Poor support, understanding of celiac disease
  • Need to increase knowledge base (general practitioners, food manufacturers, public)
  • Important to find where gluten hides
  • Must take education campaign to non-traditional settings

Resources:

Nima Sensor

Gluten Free RN Travel Podcast EP036

Gluten Free Passport Allergy Cards

Dr. Terry Wahls’ Website

ICDS 2017 Program

Connect with Nadine: 

Instagram

Facebook

Contact via Email

‘Your Skin on Gluten’ on YouTube

Melodies of the Danube Gluten-Free Cruise with Nadine

Books by Nadine:

Dough Nation: A Nurse’s Memoir of Celiac Disease from Missed Diagnosis to Food and Health Activism

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The History of Celiac Disease EP041

Perhaps the most intriguing thing about the history of celiac disease in the US is its absence—from medical textbooks, the vast majority of research studies, and the news—from 1952 through the 1990’s. Why did celiac disease disappear from the healthcare consciousness as well as the public eye?

Today the Gluten Free RN takes a closer look at the story of celiac disease, starting with the first doctor to understand it as a dietary issue back in 1888. She highlights the important progress made by pediatricians Willem Dicke who is credited with identifying gluten as the issue and Sidney Haas who honed the gluten-free diet to exclude specific carbohydrates. Nadine explores the period of time when celiac disease seemingly ‘went dark’ in the United States, discussing the handful of renegade authors and researchers who continued to study the disease despite its absence from health education.

Nadine also explains the resurgence of gluten sensitivity to the public consciousness in the 1990’s, when medical professionals from abroad questioned the claim that there was no celiac disease in the US. She covers our evolving understanding of the symptoms of celiac disease and the woefully inadequate training around gluten in medical and nursing schools. Listen in to find out why the mass screening proposed by the National Institute of Health never materialized and how the for-profit healthcare system impacts celiac patients. Let’s honor the practitioners who dedicated their careers to understanding celiac disease and write our own history through celiac advocacy!

What’s Discussed: 

The first doctor to identify celiac disease

  • Samuel Gee, 1888
  • Established dietary approach to treatment

The role of Dr. Sidney V. Haas in advancing celiac treatment

  • All carbs and fats had been eliminated from celiac diet
  • Haas discovered that kind of carbs made difference
  • Experimented with fats, learned that could be absorbed
  • 370 celiac cases studied at Bellevue, only 2.2% not cured

The conclusions of a New York Times article from May of 1950

  • Late 1800’s, celiac disease ‘incurable and often fatal’
  • By 1950, 90% cured and deaths rare
  • Cause still unknown

The grains that contain gluten

  • Wheat
  • Barley
  • Rye
  • Oats (cross-contamination)

How Dr. Willem Dicke developed the gluten-free diet

  • Dutch pediatrician during WWII
  • No access to grains during famine, previously sick children improved
  • Mothers realized that when grains returned to diet, sickness returned
  • Dicke credited with determining that gluten causes damage

The myth that celiac is a childhood disease

  • Patients do not ‘grow out of it’
  • When gluten is reintroduced, disease returns (along with other disorders)

Elaine Gottschall’s work in developing the Specific Carbohydrate Diet

  • Grains containing proteins other than gluten have negative effect on digestive tract
  • Gottschall’s model removes all grains
  • Paleo/whole food diet considered ideal

The elimination of celiac disease from medical training

  • Stopped teaching in 1952
  • Debate over carbs vs. proteins
  • Same paragraph appears in medical textbooks from 1952-2008
  • Still taught incorrectly (if at all) in medical, nursing schools
  • Should be part of every differential diagnosis

The Paleo diet Nadine suggests for celiac and gluten-sensitive patients

  • Gluten-, dairy-free
  • Whole food
  • Low carb, super-good high fat
  • Appropriate supplements to remedy deficiencies

Hilda Cherry Hill’s 1976 book Good Food, Gluten Free

  • Hill cured invalid husband with gluten-free diet
  • Whole food, no grain derivatives

The classical symptoms of celiac disease

  • Fatty stool
  • Malabsorption
  • Short stature
  • Low energy
  • Infirm

The expanded picture of how celiac disease may present

  • Osteoporosis
  • Short stature
  • Delayed puberty
  • Iron deficiency anemia
  • Hepatitis
  • Recurrent canker sores
  • Elevated liver enzymes
  • Dental enamel defects
  • Peripheral neuropathy
  • Celiac cerebellar ataxia
  • Seizure disorders
  • Migraine headaches

The genes that indicate a predisposition to celiac disease

  • HLA-DQ2
  • HLA-DQ8
  • Occur in 30-50% of the population

How recognition of celiac disease resurfaced in the 1990’s

  • Gastroenterologists from abroad asking questions

The 2004 NIH Consensus Statement on Celiac Disease

  • Determined that celiac disease grossly underdiagnosed in US
  • Proposed mass screening, healthcare education program
  • Mass screening never materialized (‘too cost-prohibitive’)

How the US for-profit healthcare system impacts celiac patients

  • System profits from incorrect diagnoses
  • Celiac tends to be last thing we test for
  • Patients often spend hundreds of thousands of dollars out-of-pocket

Nadine’s advice for celiac patients around choosing healthcare providers

  • Many still don’t know how to manage celiac disease
  • Look for practitioner of functional/integrated medicine

What has changed since the NIH Consensus Statement in 2004

  • Little real change
  • More media attention, some doctors testing
  • Medical professionals still not educated in testing, follow-up
  • Little support, assistance for patients in adopting gluten-free diet

Dr. Rodney Ford’s role in celiac advocacy

  • Pediatrician, gastroenterologist and allergist
  • Promotes ‘gluten zero world’
  • Gut-brain-skin connection

Nadine’s guidance for vegetarians and vegans

  • Work with nutritionist to be sure not malnourished
  • Consider changing diet for optimal health

The vulnerable populations particularly at risk for celiac disease and non-celiac gluten sensitivity

  • Children
  • Williams, Turner or Down syndrome
  • Developmentally delayed, cystic fibrosis communities
  • Autoimmune patients

Resources:

“Celiac Disease: Most Children are Now Cured but Cause is Still Unknown”  in The New York Times

Management of Celiac Disease by Sidney Valentine Haas and Merrill Patterson Haas

“Whatever Happened to the Cure for Coeliac Disease?  in Nutritional Therapy Today

“The Erie Country Survey of Long-Term Childhood Illness” in the American Journal of Public Health

Good Food, Gluten Free by Hilda Cherry Hills

Dr. Alessio Fasano’s 2003 Celiac Study

2004 NIH Consensus Statement on Celiac Disease

Books by Dr. Rodney Ford

Gluten: ZERO Global by Dr. Rodney Ford

International Celiac Disease Symposium

“Small Intestinal Mucosal Abnormalities in Relatives of Patients with Dermatitis Herpetiformis” in Gut

“Adult Coeliac Disease and Other Disorders Associated with Steatorrhoea” in the British Medical Journal

The University of Chicago: Celiac Disease Facts and Figures

“A History of Coeliac Disease” in Digestive Diseases

“Dermatitis Herpetiformis in Two Patients with Idiopathic Steatorrhoea” in the British Medical Journal

Connect with Nadine: 

Instagram

Facebook

Contact via Email

‘Your Skin on Gluten’ on YouTube

Melodies of the Danube Gluten-Free Cruise with Nadine

Books by Nadine:

Dough Nation: A Nurse’s Memoir of Celiac Disease from Missed Diagnosis to Food and Health Activism

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Multiple Sclerosis and Celiac Disease EP040

According to the University of Chicago Celiac Disease Center, 10% of MS patients also suffer from celiac disease. Studies conducted in Italy and Spain uncovered a significant increased prevalence of celiac disease in first-degree relatives of MS patients, 18% and 32% respectively. Additional research has identified situations in which celiac disease mimicked other neurological disorders such as MS and ALS.

 With evidence like that, it is definitely worth it to further explore the relationship between MS and celiac disease. Today, the Gluten Free RN investigates whether MS and celiac disease are similar, related, or perhaps the same thing, as she shares case studies from the literature and her own experience.

Nadine discusses the story of Dr. Terry Wahls, explaining how she was able to resolve her symptoms of MS with a variation of a Paleo diet. She outlines the analogous symptoms of MS and celiac cerebellar ataxia, the neurological damage caused by gluten, and how malabsorption of nutrients caused by intestinal damage can extend to medication. Listen and learn how Nadine and others have resolved symptoms of MS and other neurological disorders on a gluten-free diet!

What’s Discussed: 

Nadine’s MS scare

  • Bouts with falling, dragging feet
  • Numbness, tingling (neuropathy)
  • Symptoms disappeared after adopting gluten-free diet
  • Takes two to three years to resolve neurological symptoms

Dr. Terry Wahls’ story

  • Diagnosed with MS, confined to wheelchair
  • Continued to research condition
  • Adopted version of Paleo diet
  • Now walks without cane, rides bike again
  • Conducts seminars to share how healed mitochondria

The commonalities between celiac disease and MS

  • Both autoimmune issues
  • Studies necessary to determine if conditions are similar, related, or the same

How celiac disease affects the body

  • Triggered by ingestion of gluten
  • Causes villous atrophy, cryptic hyperplasia in small intestines, damage to immune system
  • Primarily neurological disorder

The symptoms of celiac cerebellar ataxia

  • Poor balance
  • Hard to distinguish where body is in space
  • Trip, stumble or fall
  • Related to vision

The multi-organ manifestations of celiac disease in the central nervous system

  • White matter lesions
  • Inflammatory cerebral spinal fluid syndrome
  • Sinus venous thrombosis
  • Epilepsy, seizure disorders
  • Cerebellar pontine atrophy
  • Encephalopathy
  • Myelopathy
  • Dementia
  • Gluten ataxia
  • Migraines, headaches
  • Depression, anxiety
  • Cerebellar ataxia

Nadine’s patient who wasn’t responding to MS medication

  • Nadine recommended celiac testing
  • Panel negative, but gene carrier
  • Already adopted gluten-free diet
  • Fewer medications necessary
  • Hope to decrease, discontinue meds
  • Malabsorption issues extend to medications, could stem from undiagnosed celiac disease

The 2014 study in Vienna regarding celiac disease and MS

  • Concluded that celiac disease may mimic MS
  • Celiac disease may be present despite absence of anti-gliadin antibodies
  • If patient history indicates gastrointestinal issues, celiac disease should be considered even if CSF and MRI findings suggest MS

The new evidence around seronegativity in celiac disease

  • Most labs only test for tissue transglutaminase 2
  • Transglutaminase 6 is specific for neurological damage caused by gluten

The 2014 Italian study of the genetic overlap between celiac disease and MS

  • Sites significant increased prevalence of celiac disease in MS first-degree relatives (18%)
  • Recommends celiac testing in MS patients who aren’t responding to MS treatment or present with ataxia

The association between MS and celiac disease as reported by the University of Chicago Celiac Disease Center

  • Approximately 10% of those who have MS also have celiac disease

The genes that indicate a predisposition to celiac disease

  • HLA-DQ2
  • HLA-DQ8

The 2013 Iranian case study of a celiac patient diagnosed with MS

  • 37-year-old woman with history of chronic abdominal pain
  • Diagnosed with celiac disease, adopted gluten-free diet
  • Became ataxic, met with neurologist
  • MRI indicated multiple sclerosis
  • Nadine argues that patient likely re-exposed to gluten

How gluten acts as a neurotoxin

  • Pastor exposed to gluten in cookies had acute neurological event
  • Shaking, tremors (similar to stroke)

The 2007 Oxford case study of celiac disease mimicking ALS

  • 44-year-old man with progressive right-sided spastic hemiparesis (muscle wasting)
  • Remote family history of celiac disease
  • Strict gluten-free diet resolved most symptoms

Why patients with neurological symptoms should be tested for celiac disease

  • The anti-gliadin antibody is excellent biomarker for gluten sensitivity

Why it is acceptable to adopt a gluten-free diet if your antibody test is negative for celiac disease

The Paleo diet Nadine suggests for celiac and gluten-sensitive patients

  • Gluten-, dairy-free
  • Whole food
  • Low carb, super-good high fat

The increased prevalence of celiac disease in MS patients revealed in a 2011 study

  • Increased prevalence found in eight of 72 MS patients (11.1%)
  • Also in first-degree relatives (13/126 or 32%)
  • Advises increased efforts aimed at early detection and dietary treatment

The fundamentals of MS

  • Chronic disease of unknown etiology
  • T-cell mediated antibody response
  • Leads to demyelination of central nervous system
  • Associated with autoimmunity (body attacking itself)
  • Damage to enteric nervous system can lead to constipation

How to conduct your own research around celiac disease and neurological disorders

  • Celiac researcher Dr. Marios Hadjivassiliou

How long it takes to heal on a gluten-free diet

  • Villous atrophy heals in six months to one year
  • Neurological damage takes two to four years

The nutrients a celiac patient is missing that contribute to neurological issues

  • B vitamins
  • Trace amounts of copper
  • Magnesium
  • Zinc

The autoimmune symptoms Nadine resolved/reversed with a gluten-free diet

  • MS symptoms
  • Graves’ disease
  • Positive ANA panel

Why it’s important for celiac patients to work with educated practitioners who understand functional medicine

Resources:

Dr. Terry Wahls’ TED Talk

The Wahls Protocol: A Radical New Way to Treat All Chronic Autoimmune Conditions Using Paleo Principle by Terry Wahls MD

“Celiac Disease with Cerebral and Peripheral Nerve Involvement Mimicking Multiple Sclerosis” in the Journal of Medicine and Life

“Celiac Disease in Multiple Sclerosis: A Controversial Issue” in the International Journal of Neurology and Neurotherapy

University of Chicago Celiac Disease Center MS Info

“Multiple Sclerosis or Neurological Manifestations of Celiac Disease” in Advanced Biomedical Research

“A Case of Celiac Disease Mimicking Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis” in Nature Clinical Practice Neurology

“Prevalence of Celiac Disease in Multiple Sclerosis” in BMC Neurology

“A Case of Concurrent Multiple Sclerosis and Celiac Disease” in Govaresh

“Neurological Disorders in Adult Celiac Disease” in the Canadian Journal of Gastroenterology

“A Case of Multiple Sclerosis and Celiac Disease” in Case Reports in Neurological Medicine

 Connect with Nadine: 

Instagram

Facebook

Contact via Email

‘Your Skin on Gluten’ on YouTube

Melodies of the Danube Gluten-Free Cruise with Nadine

Books by Nadine:

Dough Nation: A Nurse’s Memoir of Celiac Disease from Missed Diagnosis to Food and Health Activism

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Dental Issues and Celiac Disease EP039

Did you know that it is possible to diagnose celiac disease with a smile?

Damage from gluten starts in the mouth, and today the Gluten Free RN explores the important role dentists can play in identifying undiagnosed celiac disease. She outlines the symptoms of celiac disease that present in the mouth, the follow-up questions dentists should ask when they notice dental enamel defects or aphthous ulcers, and the nature of the tongue as an indicator of overall health.

This episode covers how the plastics in orthodontic retainers might contain gluten and what to do if you are accidentally exposed. Nadine also explains the relationship between fat-soluble vitamins and celiac disease, as well as the nutrient deficiencies a potential celiac patient should test for. You’re never fully dressed without a smile, so listen in to understand how to keep your mouth healthy—and prevent the accumulation of complications from celiac disease with a whole food, gluten-free diet!

What’s Discussed: 

How the GI tract functions

  • Starts at mouth, ends at rectum
  • Allows us to consume food, liquid
  • Only extract what body needs
  • Expel the rest

How damage from gluten presents

  • Malabsorption of nutrients
  • Inflammation
  • Autoimmune issues
  • Type 1 diabetes
  • ALS
  • Lupus
  • MS
  • Sjögren’s
  • Leaky gut

How dentists can play an important role in identifying undiagnosed celiac disease

The symptoms of celiac disease that present in the mouth

  • Dental enamel defects
  • Aphthous ulcers (canker sores)
  • Cheilosis (cracks, open sores where upper and lower lip join)
  • Dry, cracked lips
  • TMJ—temporal mandibular joint disorder
  • Pain where jaws meet
  • Inflammation of the jaw
  • Clicking
  • Lock jaw
  • Mouth pain, burning
  • Oral lesions
  • Tongue pain, tingling
  • Redness, swelling of the tongue
  • Tongue sores
  • Changes in taste, smell
  • Diminished sensory input
  • Dry mouth
  • Sore throat
  • Difficulty swallowing
  • Increased thirst
  • Bleeding gums
  • Delayed eruption of teeth
  • Pyrosis
  • Oral lichen planus
  • Glossitis (inflammation of tongue)
  • Clearing throat
  • Sinus infections
  • Redness, swelling of the uvula

How Nadine treats gluten exposure

  • Activated charcoal
  • Drink water

The grains to look for in personal care products (e.g.: lip balm)

  • Wheat
  • Barley
  • Rye
  • Oats

The relationship between fat soluble vitamins and celiac disease

  • Gluten causes malabsorption
  • Vitamins A, D, E and K are fat soluble
  • Under 40 in vitamin D may indicate deficiency in all

How we tested for celiac disease in children in the early 20th century

  • Fecal fat score
  • Pale stool that floats suggests malabsorption of A, D, E and K

Why parents should be tested for celiac disease prior to pregnancy

The fetal development issues that may present if an expectant mother is unable to absorb nutrients

  • Dental enamel defects
  • Smaller jaw formation
  • Smaller airway passages

Why Nadine advocates for a mass screening

How gluten in plastics, personal care products can prevent celiac patients from healing

The questions dentists should ask when they notice dental enamel defects, aphthous ulcers

  • Other clinical celiac symptoms (abdominal pain, diarrhea, weight loss, anemia, fatigue)
  • Associated disorders (type 1 diabetes, thyroiditis, etc.)
  • Family history of celiac disease

Why we need to get much better at recognizing celiac signs and symptoms

  • Even in Canada, diagnosis takes 11.7 years

Why Eastern medicine examines the tongue as an indicator of overall health

The genes that indicate a predisposition to celiac disease

  • HLA-DQ2
  • HLA-DQ8

Why it is acceptable to adopt a gluten-free diet if your antibody test is negative for celiac disease

The deficiencies a potential celiac patient should test for

  • Calcium
  • Magnesium RBC
  • Vitamin D
  • Zinc
  • Folic acid

Why thrush may be an indicator of celiac disease or gluten sensitivity

Why one negative test for celiac disease doesn’t rule anyone out

The importance of early diagnosis

  • Symptoms accumulate over the years

The Paleo diet Nadine suggests for celiac and gluten-sensitive patients

  • Whole food
  • Focus on local, fresh
  • 100% grass-fed meat (no antibiotic, no hormone)
  • Fish and eggs
  • Nuts and seeds
  • 100% organic fruits and vegetables

Resources:

 “An Orthodontic Retainer Preventing Remission in Celiac Disease”  in Clinical Pediatrics

“Oral Manifestations of Celiac Disease: A Clinical Guide for Dentists” in the Journal of the Canadian Dental Association

Gluten Free RN Podcast EP027: Type 1 Diabetes and Celiac Disease

“The Association Between Celiac Disease, Dental Enamel Defects, and Aphthous Ulcers in a United States Cohort” in the Journal of Clinical Gastroenterology

“Small-Bowel Changes in Recurrent Ulceration of the Mouth” in Hepatogastroenterology

“Oral Signs and HLA-DQB1*02 Haploytypes in the Celiac Paediatric Patient: A Preliminary Study” in Autoimmune Diseases

“The Oral Manifestations of Celiac Disease: Information for the Pediatric Dentist” in Pediatric Dentistry

“Oral Aphthous Ulcers and Dental Enamel Defects in Children with Coeliac Disease” in Acta Paediatrica

“Oral and Dental Manifestations of Celiac Disease” in the New York State Dental Journal

“Jejunal Mucosal Abnormalities in Patients with Recurrent Aphthous Ulceration” in The British Medical Journal

“Dental Enamel Defects in Adult Coeliac Disease” in the European Journal of Internal Medicine

“Screening for Celiac Disease in Children with Dental Enamel Defects”  in ISRN Pediatrics

“Celiac Disease Associated with Recurrent Aphthae” in Gut

“Importance of Oral Signs in the Diagnosis of Atypical Forms of Celiac Disease” in Recenti Progressi in Medicina

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Melodies of the Danube Gluten-Free Cruise with Nadine

Books by Nadine:

Dough Nation: A Nurse’s Memoir of Celiac Disease from Missed Diagnosis to Food and Health Activism